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7 rules of safe city use of EUC


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To make EUC’s acceptable in everyday life, which they should be, some rules need to be defined. After 500 miles in London in 2020, I have some recaps. Hopefully they could help governments fully legalise this innovative and green technology. 

Rule 1: Have a an official road test. This could be driving license or just cycling proficiency, but knowing the road signals or how traffic moves is mandatory.

Rule 2: Control at slow speed. You need to be able to control EUC at 2-3 mph or do circles of 2m radius, this enables you to avoid any dangerous situations (control at speed is easier)

Rule 3a: act within all cycling law or recommendations. Signal turning with you arms, wear a helmet, have lights, never go on pavement. The lights on the EUC are inadequate in the dark have cycle lights in helmet or shoulders

Rule 3b: within cycling regs you are not allowed on fast roads, 30 mph or ideally less. Best to plan routes mainly of cycle or bus lanes. You can only mingle with slow traffic.

Rule 4: disengage if you need to stop, or walk at junctions. Starting a EUC is more tricky than stopping it. Don’t sit on the road getting your feet to balance from standing start. Even if you are a master at standing start there is always a tiny initial wobble 

Rule 5: Cap your EUC speed to <20 mph, this is about higher end cycling speed and allows the blend in. Don’t use the top models doing 30-40 mph in the city

Rule 6: wear full clothing covering legs and arms. Actually EUC are very stable you are unlikely to fall, but if you did it’s a scrape over concrete. This includes gloves. But you don’t need motorbike leather or kit 

Rule 7: Check the weather for high winds and ice. The EUC works well under most conditions but strong winds and/or ice aren’t those due to it being about balance. Ice is bad for everyone but EUC’s should not attempt to go out with winds exceeding 30-40 mph

As I have learnt to use the EUC in the city, I know actually feel pretty confident. The fat tyre and the power braking actually is better than cycling, and you are more upright than cycling with better visibility and anticipation. Now that I have really done it, I understand the EUCs are safe and have a place in our cities among other vehicles. But to make that happen, people like me or you that have pushed the boundary as early innovators, need to share our experiences of being safe to create general rule book for everyone.

 

 

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I've been riding in my city for a couple weeks now and the most important thing I have learned is that, in the absence of bike lanes, you should take up at least 1/3 of the outside lane (where a bike lane should be). Doing small carving and taking up that space means that cars won't try to pass you with less than an arm's distance in between. 

My city, especially, has pretty rough roads and if I'm staying tight to the curb, it's really hard to manage all the bumps, cracks, potholes, and whole chunks of missing road. By carving out more room for myself, I can ride around these obstructions rather than making countless mental calculations about if I'm going to make it through them. 

Taking advantage of the fact that cars don't know what EUCs are, they'll keep their distance if they see you constantly moving on the road. If you're riding one straight line, they'll treat you like a cyclist and not give you any space when passing. 

Take up space and be safe!

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  1. Road test does make sense for those who ride on roads. Might be a bit of an overkill for people on toy wheels like v5f, ks14 etc. who only ride on sidewalks
  2. Well yeah, control at slow speeds is important, but it won't "enable you to avoid any dangerous situations"
  3. а: yeah cyclist laws do seem like a reasonable thing to follow for an EUC rider. b: Lights on EUCs are generally enough to make the rider visible on the road. I don't think there should be additional mandatory lights. Most riders would probably use them though if they want to see better.
  4. Nah disengaging should not be mandatory. If the rider can balance within a 1x1 m circle let him do that. Besides, putting your foot on the ground is best avoided in the winter, because it can lift snow onto the pedal, which will make it slippery
  5. Lol no, 20 mph is ok for joy riding, but that is snail pace for commuting. I don't want to blend in with the cyclists, they're super slow, I want to pass them and move on with my ride.
  6. Now that's just dangerous advice. Cloth will not help. Never ride without at least some form of plastic covering your knees and wrists. At least get the basic ones that rollers use.
  7. I live in a place with long winters, so if I can't ride EUCs on snow and ice I might as well not get an EUC at all. Winter riding is possible and it's a part of live. It might make sense to lower the speed limit when the temperature is below freezing though. Although you probably won't want to go fast in these conditions anyway. Winds are alright as long as the road is not slippery, but if you've got both strong winds and ice.. yeah, that would be difficult. I won't impose restrictions on that though, let them riders have their extreme ride :D
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42 minutes ago, desia said:

you should take up at least 1/3 of the outside lane (where a bike lane should be). Doing small carving and taking up that space means that cars won't try to pass you with less than an arm's distance in between. 

Now this is solid advice that I don't see mentioned that often for some reason. Keeping tight to a curb is also dangerous because there is a higher risk of clipping the curb with your pedals accidentally, which is never good.

I'd rather annoy some drivers for a couple of minutes, than let them dangerously pass putting my life at risk.

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17 hours ago, Gingerbap said:

Starting a EUC is more tricky than stopping it. Don’t sit on the road getting your feet to balance from standing start. Even if you are a master at standing start there is always a tiny initial wobble

There is absolutely zero wobble or instability once you're practiced enough. Please ride at least 1000km before talking about riding. ;)
An EUC can be just as precise as walking at low speeds.

Quote

Don’t use the top models doing 30-40 mph in the city

???
So, should I ditch my MSX and opt for a way less safe EUC just because MSX can do 30mph? Even if I don't ride that fast? :facepalm:

Edited by atdlzpae
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