Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Electric Bikes
Reload this Page >

Legality in Ohio

Notices
Electric Bikes Here's a place to discuss ebikes, from home grown to high-tech.

Legality in Ohio

Old 04-14-15, 06:06 PM
  #1  
dpeters11
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 477

Bikes: 2010 Trek FX 7.5, 2011 Trek 2.1

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Legality in Ohio

What is the consensus (if there is one) for electric bikes in Ohio. It almost looks like they are considered mopeds and require a license and registration, plus has to be one from an approved list, which from the looks of it omits most if not all electric assist bicycles.

I also notice that the approved list which is mainly what I would consider a true moped has more than a little slant toward the 70s. A JC Penney Pinto? I've seen references to the federal law regarding low-speed ebikes as being defined as bicycles, but that this is only in terms of safety requirements, not a license and registration.

So what's the real deal on this, if you wind up going by a cop that is a stickler for the law and in a bad mood, on something like a Trek with Ride+ or any other pedal assist bike?
dpeters11 is offline  
Old 04-15-15, 04:58 AM
  #2  
BoxTurtle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Virginia
Posts: 55
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
https://www.eco-wheelz.com/docs/fed-regulation.pdf
BoxTurtle is offline  
Old 04-15-15, 05:07 AM
  #3  
dpeters11
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 477

Bikes: 2010 Trek FX 7.5, 2011 Trek 2.1

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Right, but this is part of the Consumer Product Safety Act and is only in regards to the safety requirements for a bicycle when built. That doesn't supercede state traffic laws.
dpeters11 is offline  
Old 04-15-15, 08:03 AM
  #4  
tds101 
Wake up!!!
 
tds101's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Mastic Beach, NY
Posts: 3,366

Bikes: 9+,...

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 751 Post(s)
Liked 251 Times in 158 Posts
Visit a local police station and get the information right at the source.
__________________
If it wasn't for you meddling kids,...
tds101 is offline  
Old 04-15-15, 11:23 AM
  #5  
BoxTurtle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Virginia
Posts: 55
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Police are a very poor source for legal advice, and certainly police are not the source of any laws.

The federal law referenced above says "This section shall supersede any State law or requirement with respect to low-speed electric bicycles to the extent that such State law or requirement is more stringent than the Federal law or requirements referred to in subsection (a) of this section." That sound unambiguous to me, but then, I'm not a lawyer.
BoxTurtle is offline  
Old 04-15-15, 12:48 PM
  #6  
Metal Man
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 353
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
There is no reason to ask the police and have them say no. It sounds very similar to what PA law was and yes in an extreme case the law could come down on you. For the most part keep it a little quite and low key and don't worry about it. Don't ask don't tell.
Metal Man is offline  
Old 04-15-15, 12:57 PM
  #7  
2old
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: socal
Posts: 3,023
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 565 Post(s)
Liked 347 Times in 257 Posts
Agree with MM 100%. Just be as stealth as possible. Even in CA where AFAIK 750w systems are acceptable, I pedal when encountering constabulary.
2old is offline  
Old 04-15-15, 12:57 PM
  #8  
dpeters11
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 477

Bikes: 2010 Trek FX 7.5, 2011 Trek 2.1

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
It very well could be like another law in Ohio, you must give an audible signal (honk) when passing someone if it's not a divided or 4 land highway. It's a 4th degree misdeameanor if you happen to have gotten a traffic ticket in the previous year. I think the only case where it makes a difference is that you get the question wrong on the written exam. Absolutely no one does it in real life.

I do imagine decending into the depths of the DMV never to return if I went this route. I did make a query with the Ohio Bicycle Federation, which works with state government on laws. If they respond, I'll post it.
dpeters11 is offline  
Old 04-15-15, 01:04 PM
  #9  
dpeters11
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 477

Bikes: 2010 Trek FX 7.5, 2011 Trek 2.1

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by BoxTurtle View Post
Police are a very poor source for legal advice, and certainly police are not the source of any laws.

The federal law referenced above says "This section shall supersede any State law or requirement with respect to low-speed electric bicycles to the extent that such State law or requirement is more stringent than the Federal law or requirements referred to in subsection (a) of this section." That sound unambiguous to me, but then, I'm not a lawyer.
I think what it really means is that it falls under the Consumer Product Safety Commission rules for bicycles and that states can't require them to be equipped with things like turn signals or other safety requirements of a scooter etc.
dpeters11 is offline  
Old 04-15-15, 02:12 PM
  #10  
BoxTurtle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Virginia
Posts: 55
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I don't think so. I looked deeper and found that there is a "Section 2." It reads:

PUBLIC LAW 107–319—DEC. 4, 2002 116 STAT. 2777
SEC. 2. MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS.
For purposes of motor vehicle safety standards issued and enforced pursuant to chapter 301 of title 49, United States Code, a low-speed electric bicycle (as defined in section 38(b) of the Consumer Product Safety Act) shall not be considered a motor vehicle as defined by section 30102(6) of title 49, United States Code.
Approved December 4, 2002.


The purpose of the law was to define an assisted bike as a bicycle, not a motor vehicle, and to make the definition uniform across the 50 states. I have a copy of the law as a PDF, but don't know how to post it here. If you wish to send me your email address in a PM I'll send a copy to you.


Last edited by BoxTurtle; 04-15-15 at 02:17 PM.
BoxTurtle is offline  
Old 04-16-15, 11:40 AM
  #11  
chas58
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 4,614

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 35 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1053 Post(s)
Liked 308 Times in 249 Posts
Generally local jurisdictions superseded federal law. Local police can always write you up for a local ordinance. (Just look at NYC and e-bikes).

Its rather a grey area. In Michigan, I would contact the league of Michigan bicyclists for advice. You got a bicycle advocacy program in Ohio?
chas58 is offline  
Old 04-16-15, 12:56 PM
  #12  
BoxTurtle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Virginia
Posts: 55
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.
BoxTurtle is offline  
Old 04-19-15, 06:11 PM
  #13  
dpeters11
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 477

Bikes: 2010 Trek FX 7.5, 2011 Trek 2.1

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I heard back from the Ohio Bicycle Federation. Basically, their position is that bicycle laws are a mess in Ohio and they have a whole list of things they want to get changed. Right now, they are concentrating on getting a state law passed for a three foot passing law, and allowing us to proceed through a traffic light with caution if it isn't changing. So this has taken a bit of a back seat.
dpeters11 is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
tn_roadie
Advocacy & Safety
44
03-26-19 10:05 PM
cytotoxictcell
Electric Bikes
59
05-20-17 03:31 AM
lildeph
Electric Bikes
31
07-08-14 07:56 PM
KD5NRH
Texas
3
08-18-10 10:10 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.