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Shanghai mulls restrictions for electric bikes

By Shi Yingying (

09:20, February 07, 2013

The local legislature in Shanghai plans to discuss a draft regulation on restricting electric bikes as well as other non-motor vehicles in late March as they are pouring onto the city's streets and causing a slew of traffic accidents.

Whether to ban the sale and registration of overweight and over-speed e-bikes as well as how many persons a bicycle or e-bike can carry will be highlights of the hearing.

Earlier regulations introduced in 1998 required e-bikes to travel no faster than 20 km/h. But many on the road today are much faster than that.

Neither manufacturers nor retailers are willing to heed the rules. E-cyclists are equally complicit.

“You don't have to observe any traffic lights or any traffic regulations and you can ride anywhere, even on the sidewalk,” said a salesman at an e-bike shop in a Shanghai suburb. “You don't even need a driver's license.”

The draft regulation, however, stipulates that those non-motor vehicles without legal registration would be banned from the road, and violators could face a fine ranging from 50 to 200 yuan ($8 to $32).

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