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Stopped by police today.....


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Arbee - Unfortunately nothing like the way I have said it. Even my brief listing in my last post was to demonstrate that you need to investigate all this other information just to get to the basic fact of what constitutes as a vehicle in Hong Kong.

If you were to translate my statement into actual paper printout you would probably be looking at around 10+ printouts from different websites.

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Hey MvM, are there laws regarding devices like the Segway? Do those need to be licensed in your area? Since you have a name-brand Solowheel, you should try contacting the company to see if they can he

I'm from New York City and have 2 run ins with the law.  One was in a diner where I carried my msuper in and set it down and ordered my food.  He asked price, range, and where I got it.  Just general

I have had my Solowheel EU since June 2014. Since then, I have used it for almost 2500 km for all kinds of purposes. First, I am using it every working day to travel the last 3 km to work from the p

Surprisingly (and luckily for me), Finland actually has a quite reasonable proposition for legislation (Vee73 told me it should pass by autumn). Here's my translation, original in finnish is in http://www.lvm.fi/tiedote/4437033/muutosta-aletaan-valmistella-kevyet-sahkokulkuneuvot-laillisiksi-liikennekaytossa :

 

Reformation is being prepared: Light electric vehicles to become legal in traffic use
 
Press release 31.03.2015 15.03
The Ministry of Transport and Communications is beginning to prepare for legislative changes, that would allow the use of, for example, electric engine powered kick boards and Segway-type devices in road traffic. Under current legislation, the mentioned devices are allowed only within closed premises and indoors.
 
The Ministry has sent legal drafts on the subject for consultation. The statement responses time ends at 8 May 2015. The law project aims to increase the possibility of using low-powered electric engine-powered equipment.
 
Light, up to 15 km/h running devices would be equated with the traffic rules of kickboards and rollerskates, that is, they would be the same as pedestrian traffic rules. Devices aiding or replacing walking have so far only been allowed for persons with disabilities. This restriction would be removed.
 
Bigger, up to 25 km/h running devices could be used according to bicycle traffic rules, but self-balancing devices such as the Segway could also be used on sidewalks - as long as they are driven in walking speed. Like in bicycles, these devices should have reflectors and audible warning device. The user should also wear a helmet like cyclists.
 
The amendments are meant to carve out a space for a variety of alternative ways of movement, as well as technical development for the future.
 
In the background there is also a change in EU regulation, upon which Finland can decide nationally on such light vehicles, which current legislation does not recognize. Such vehicles are, for example, the so-called senior scooters, self-balanced single- or multi-wheeled people transportation devices and electrically-assisted bicycles.
 
Electrically-assisted bicycles have already been categorized as an ordinary bicycle, and with a separate operational program, their popularity is being attempted to increase. EU regulation is expected to increase the popularity further, particularly for electric bikes.
 

 

 

First post here, btw, waiting for my Ninebot One E (sadly, not E+) to arrive, maybe within a month (or more...  :unsure: )

Edited by esaj
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Hi Esaj,

 

Thanks for the update. I think those rules make a lot of sense. They specifically do not require special licenses or insurances for an EU and admit at the same time the usability of the EU.

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I've ridden Airwheel in the centre of Finland's capital Helsinki. Many times I've ridden the promenades of Helsinki. A couple of times I've seen police. Once lifted my thumb up for them and they replied same way so seems they are cool about Airwheel.

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I was stopped by two police officers (Well I believe one was in training) in Hong Kong today for riding my unicycle... but mainly because I rode across a section of sidewalk right next to the subway and the police were more concerned that I would collide with someone.  So I got told off for it. 

 

Letting the officer know I was acknowledging his instructions and not challenging his authority and agreed with him that what we where going to discuss next was off the record.  I started to question him about the use of an electric unicycle in Hong Kong.  The officer acknowledge that there was no official LAW in Hong Kong regarding the use of EUs as no licensing has been worked into the system as of yet, so an EU is not officially classed as a vehicle. (Like I have been preaching)

 

I also asked if I had objected to his instructions what would he be able to charge me on if he had to arrest me.  His body language told me that there wasn't anything directly he could charge me with but he did mention that other charges could be made for example if he thought I was a danger to public safety.  Also because I didn't have any protective gear on he could take me in for endangerment to myself, although not an official charge he hinted it would be a total inconvenience to my time, as I could be kept in holding for 24hours.

 

I then went on asking about the use in parks and other recreational areas.  He mentioned that officially bicycles are not allow to be used in them, his face screwed up because he also knew that rule could not be applied to an EU.  I mentioned what if hardly any pedestrians where in there at the time.  He gave a little nod signalling it would probably be OK.  As mentioned earlier our conversation was off the record so can't go by what he said as being official but to me the police are more concerned about public safety first and foremost and for you not to act like a total douche getting in other peoples way and disturbing the peace.

 

On a side note:

 

I'm still amazed at the gathering of Hong Kongers when anything to do with the police are involved, bet they where hoping to see lots of drama.  I think I got more fun out of the crowd than they did with me as I kept calm, my body language open and even gave out a few chuckles in my conversations with the officers.  I could feel the crowd where highly disappointed as they started to disperse. :)

Thanks for that story and information Chuts!

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  • 8 months later...

I was stopped by the police twice already, both times in my small town on LBI, NJ.

First time I was warned that my local municipality has the ordinance prohibiting all kind of electric vehicles (including electric wheelchairs, BTW!) to be used on public grounds without specific permit (requires some medical related story to get it). I checked - it appears to be true, there is such ordinance in place for quite a long time, probably EUs and hoverboards were not even known at that time.

The second time the officer stopped me when I was riding a very quiet local street (off season, I can see at best 2-3 cars over 10 minute period). I was told that I can't ride unlicensed motorized vehicle on public road, and that this is the state law... Then he paused a bit and added that it is actually even a federal law. Apparently he didn't know (or didn't care) about the local ordinance as he didn't even mention it. I was advised to remove the wheel from public roads asap.

This really sucks! Given that my town is relatively small and there are only 2 people owning EUs here (me and my friend), it is easy to predict that by word of mouse we'll be known to all the local authorities pretty soon, and they apparently won't ignore us as before (I was riding the streets here almost daily since September and police cars passed me many times before).

I am so sad. I won't stop riding, of course, as I can't imagine my life without EU anymore - but I'll have to avoid streets with the police (although it is nearly impossible here, as the island is very narrow and long, and there are couple of avenues you can't avoid using if you want to get from A to B and they are not within 3-4 blocks. I don't even know where I can ride legally at all (except of a few dirt roads I'll have to drive for 20-30 min just to get there). Probably the beach rides are ok for now until the season starts (although strictly speaking this is also illegal according to the local ordinance, as beaches are public).

Anyone else having this kind of issues in the US?

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11 minutes ago, trya said:

I was stopped by the police twice already, both times in my small town on LBI, NJ.

First time I was warned that my local municipality has the ordinance prohibiting all kind of electric vehicles (including electric wheelchairs, BTW!) to be used on public grounds without specific permit (requires some medical related story to get it). I checked - it appears to be true, there is such ordinance in place for quite a long time, probably EUs and hoverboards were not even known at that time.

The second time the officer stopped me when I was riding a very quiet local street (off season, I can see at best 2-3 cars over 10 minute period). I was told that I can't ride unlicensed motorized vehicle on public road, and that this is the state law... Then he paused a bit and added that it is actually even a federal law. Apparently he didn't know (or didn't care) about the local ordinance as he didn't even mention it. I was advised to remove the wheel from public roads asap.

This really sucks! Given that my town is relatively small and there are only 2 people owning EUs here (me and my friend), it is easy to predict that by word of mouse we'll be known to all the local authorities pretty soon, and they apparently won't ignore us as before (I was riding the streets here almost daily since September and police cars passed me many times before).

I am so sad. I won't stop riding, of course, as I can't imagine my life without EU anymore - but I'll have to avoid streets with the police (although it is nearly impossible here, as the island is very narrow and long, and there are couple of avenues you can't avoid using if you want to get from A to B and they are not within 3-4 blocks. I don't even know where I can ride legally at all (except of a few dirt roads I'll have to drive for 20-30 min just to get there). Probably the beach rides are ok for now until the season starts (although strictly speaking this is also illegal according to the local ordinance, as beaches are public).

Anyone else having this kind of issues in the US?

This is terrible! If this is now happening in a small town in Nj, they must be starting to do this in NYC also. I knew this day would come, thats why i always tried to keep a lower profile around cops. I was stopped only one about 3 months ago in central park in Manhattan. I wouldnt be surprised if now, after the MTA hoverboard ban, things will get worse. I cant live without the wheel too...

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3 hours ago, trya said:

The second time the officer stopped me when I was riding a very quiet local street (off season, I can see at best 2-3 cars over 10 minute period). I was told that I can't ride unlicensed motorized vehicle on public road, and that this is the state law... Then he paused a bit and added that it is actually even a federal law. Apparently he didn't know (or didn't care) about the local ordinance as he didn't even mention it. I was advised to remove the wheel from public roads asap.

It's always tricky to tell an officer he doesn't know the law, but as far I (a non-lawyer) can tell, New Jersey law (Title 39) defines several types of devices that have motors yet are not considered "motor vehicles." Here's probably the most appropriate statute: http://law.justia.com/codes/new-jersey/2014/title-39/section-39-4-14.10/  In particular it says  "An electric personal assistive mobility device may be operated on the public highways, sidewalks and bicycle paths of the State."

Like most of the US statutes, an EPAMD is defined as "self balancing non-tandem two wheeled device" because when the Segway folks proposed these laws to the states in 2001 that was the device they were interested in legalizing. However, I think most people agree that in all other ways an EUC meets the definition. If you can get the cop to gloss over the "two" in first paragraph you are golden. Either that or glue a non-tandem wheel somewhere. :D

Edited by dmethvin
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10 minutes ago, dmethvin said:

Either that or glue a non-tandem wheel somewhere

thanks, this might be helpful. I'll think of keeping one training wheel around, just in case :)

 

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On 18-4-2015 at 10:48 PM, MvM said:

...

After some talking, I was told that I could no longer drive on public roads for the reason that, as far as they know, an electric unicylce is not a recognized motorised vehicle and therefore not allowed on the public street.

...

 

I understand you are Dutch (location Rotterdam). I have good new for you. I posted this before...

In The Netherlands EUCs are NOT vehicles. Therefore they cannot be motorized vehicles. I did verify this with the Dutch authority (Rijksdienst voor het wegverkeer).

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In The Netherlands EUCs are NOT vehicles. Therefore they cannot be motorized vehicles. I did verify this with the Dutch authority (Rijksdienst voor het wegverkeer).

DO you have any sources from rijksoverheid.nl or another overheids website?

Het rdw doet er vaag over joh, ik krijg geen duidelijk antwoord van ze of ik nou wel of geen e-wiel mag gebruiken in nederland.
[[the rdw is being vague about it, I can't get a clear answer ouf of them wether or not I can use the e-wheel. (translation for our non-dutch friends)]]

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2 hours ago, Cobal said:

 

 

DO you have any sources from rijksoverheid.nl or another overheids website?

Het rdw doet er vaag over joh, ik krijg geen duidelijk antwoord van ze of ik nou wel of geen e-wiel mag gebruiken in nederland.
[[the rdw is being vague about it, I can't get a clear answer ouf of them wether or not I can use the e-wheel. (translation for our non-dutch friends)]]

You have difficulties walking long distances, it's 1/4 of an electric wheelchair :ph34r:

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  • 1 month later...

I did contact the authority myself @Cobal

Primarily I wanted to know wether I should have some kind of insurance. At the moment, there is no insurance agency that can insure an EUC (as is obligatory for the twowheel versions, like segways).

The next text is a copy of  the answer that i got (by e-mail) from the authority. It is in Dutch, and i will not translate it, since it only applies to the situation in the Netherlands (although european rules are mentioned).

One hightlight of the text below is that an EUC with two tires next to eachother is still considered tot have one wheel, because the distance between side by side wheels must be greater than 46 cm in order to become two wheels. It also states that local police can form local policies around insurance and admittance. 

 

 

Hartelijk dank voor uw e-mail. U vraagt de RDW informatie over one wheel voertuigen.
Een one wheel (ook wel Airwheel) is een 1-wieler. Europa (EG) stelt eisen aan categorieën voertuigen. Deze eisen zijn van toepassing op 2-, 3- en 4-wielers. Airwheel is een 1-wieler en valt daardoor niet onder EG-richtlijnen en dus niet in één van de bestaande voertuig categorieën. Daarmee is het dus geen voertuig in de zin van de regelgeving en ook geen motorrijtuig. De WegenVerkeersWet (WVW) geeft als definitie van motorrijtuig immers :

Artikel 1, onder c:

motorrijtuigen: alle voertuigen, bestemd om anders dan langs spoorstaven te worden voortbewogen uitsluitend of mede door een mechanische kracht, op of aan het voertuig zelf aanwezig dan wel door elektrische tractie met stroomtoevoer van elders, met uitzondering van fietsen met trapondersteuning;  “. De  WVW beschouwt de 1-wieler dus niet als een voertuig.

RDW keurt dus geen 1-wieler goed.  (Op een type Airwheel zitten twee wielen. Internationale en nationale regelgeving beschouwen echter twee wielen, waarvan de afstand tussen de middens van de contactvlakken van deze wielen met de grond kleiner is dan 460 mm, als één wiel )

Handhaving ten aanzien van en verzekering of gebruik van 1-wieler op een voor het openbare verkeer toegankelijk terrein, is aan de politie.

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On 3/25/2016 at 8:00 AM, Simon Lovell said:

I wonder if this means that when you add the seat pad on the Kingsong KS18 it magically becomes a vehicle under the law in Hong Kong?.......Now it is.....now it isn't.......Magic!

I believe you still need two wheels before it changes into a proper vehicle.

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On 4/19/2015 at 10:06 AM, Shady Tools said:

That is worrying for me, as the UK is slowly but surely turning into America & I ordered the Gotway 18" (fast version). I'm thinking of finding or making a sticker from a different company so it will pass a quick inspection from a novice.

Ummmmmm no. Read what the above user wrote. Here in the US, we have rights. I ride that hover board thing and the police hasn't bothered me at all. As long as I'm not putting myself or any pedestrians in danger. 

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I'm constantly riding past police & not getting stopped but always have the feeling they could if they were bored enough.

I tend to keep my headphones in so I can ignore people whenever I ride as there's constant shouts of surprise, questions, requests for a try & jealousy lol

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  • 1 month later...

So today I had my first encounter with the Scottish Traffic Police - or 'Scot Squad' as they are now known in this country. (See here…)

I have been cruising my local area for 6 months on an Airwheel and have passed police patrols on quite a few occasions with nothing more than a surprised look or a smile.  However, today I was riding on an access road (deserted) behind a block of flats when a patrol car crossed the centre line quite aggressively and blocked my way.

The driver informed me that my vehicle was illegal on the public road and also, on footpaths.  I responded with surprise and dismay and asked which law prohibited it.  The answer was, 'Lots of laws'.  I didn't push it as I did not want to appear belligerent but it was rather a vague answer.  However, he said that the road prohibition was for MY safety to which I agreed that it was not a suitable vehicle for busy roads and I only rode it on back streets where there was little or no traffic.  He reinforced his ruling that I must not ride on ANY road.

Interestingly, he then volunteered that he would not object to my riding it on a footpath if I did not attract complaints from pedestrians and did not put them at risk.

I have taken this to be permission to ride on footpaths/sidewalks until told otherwise and will continue to use it to get around.  However, I now feel it is time to quiz my Member of the Scottish Parliament and Member of the European Parliament about what is happening with regard to the law on small electric vehicles.

I will post if I get any responses.

It is an absurd situation that new vehicles like these should attract this kind of persecution from laws which have not caught up with reality and we should all use any opportunity to make the case for them.

 

Has everyone signed the UK petition on Change.org by Joanne Allen, 'To review the laws of using electric self-balancing boards and unicycles in public places'?

 

Signing off for now….

 

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@Blackwheel Jack Hate to say it but the cop is right.  Roads in the UK as well as Hong Kong (where the law is based on) the UK law states that roads are for recognized vehicles.  In that I mean ones which are taxed and insured with the exception of bicycles.  However it is good that he mentioned use on footpaths and I also assume the very few bicycle lanes in Glasgow.  Before I moved to Hong Kong I used to live in Glasgow :)

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  • 3 months later...

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