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Electrically assisted pedal cycles, also known as electric bikes or EAPCs have grown massively in popularity over the past few years. They have proven to be a great alternative to standard bikes but beware, they also come with a few more risks.

With the increased number of people riding around on electric bikes, comes the potential for an increased risk of serious and fatal road traffic collisions.

Join us as we delve into some common questions surrounding the safety of electric bikes.

How common are electric bike accidents?

In more recent news we have heard about a few cases of people involved in electric bike accidents. For example, in late 2023 we heard of a 31-year-old man who sadly died after being involved in a tragic e-bike accident.

Are accidents common though? Well, there currently isn’t much data surrounding electric bike accidents, as they are a relatively new issue. However, in 2022, Greater London’s Metropolitan police reported a total of 64 casualties in accidents involving e-bikes, and we saw 106 casualties in 2021.

Of course, the number may be higher if people haven’t reported their accidents. With electric bikes becoming more popular, only time will tell if accident figures will increase as well.

 

Are electric bikes less safe than a standard bike?

Typically, electric bikes are no less safe than traditional bikes. With regular bike maintenance and proper care when riding, electric bikes are a great alternative to standard bikes.

The average cycling speed is around 16-19mph, which is actually faster than the legal limit for an electric bike. The safety issue is similar to those of your standard bike; where other road users aren’t cautious when in the presence of a cyclist.

Another problem which we seem to be facing in England is that there are some electric bikes which have been modified to go faster than the legal limit of 15.5mph.

If they are faster than the limit, then they are classed as a motorcycle or a moped. This means that they must be registered and taxed like other road vehicles. However, this isn’t happening, and the use of illegal e-bikes is an issue.

 

Will we see more enforcement around illegal e-bikes?

It looks likely that we will see more local authorities clamping down on illegal e-bikes. Already we’ve seen many counties acknowledging an issue in their area. We’ve seen this from the likes of Gloucestershire, Merseyside, Cardiff, and more.

 

How old do you have to be to ride an electric bike?

In England you must be 14 years or older to ride an electric bike, as long as it meets the requirements of an EAPC. Even if the bike has a battery, but the battery is switched off, it’s still illegal for children under the age of 14 to ride them.

 

How much is an electric bike?

Electric bikes can start from anywhere around £500 and can go up to over £5,000. Despite their high cost, they have still become very popular. The battery is the most expensive component, which is why many people decide to have cycle insurance.

Our friends over at Velosure Cycle Insurance off comprehensive e-bike insurance, that covers you for theft & accidental damage, battery protection, and European cover. If you have an electric bike accident, you don’t have to worry about the cost of replacing your bike, which is a relief.

 

How does an electric bike work?

E-bikes are great as they work by having a battery attached to the bike. This allows you to ride your bike without peddling, which is brilliant for longer distances or if you need some extra help.

Some people decide to get hybrid electric bikes, which means they get the best of both worlds. They give people the freedom and independence to explore new places, and get around without relying on a car, public transportation, or walking.

Due to them having a battery, you’ll need to make sure that you are regularly checking this for any issues. The last thing you want is to be out and about and encounter problems with your bike! Not only could this be dangerous, but it’s also frustrating too.

 

Been involved in an electric bike accident?

We’re here to help you get the compensation you need. Here at Cycle Accident, our team are experts at what they do. We know how much of an impact a cycle accident can have on you not only physically but mentally.

If you’d like to start a claim, or want more information, make sure to contact us today. A member of our friendly team will be happy to help.

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