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Legal Speed Limit


For EUCs that can be driven without licence or insurance on public sidewalks or bike lanes or roads  

48 members have voted

  1. 1. For EUCs that can be driven without licence or insurance on public sidewalks or bike lanes or roads, what should be the general legal speed limit?

    • There shouldn't be any general legal speed limit
    • 15km/h
      0
    • 20km/h
    • 25km/h
    • 30km/h
    • 35km/h
    • 40km/h
    • more than 40km/h
    • other
      0
  2. 2. For EUCs that can be driven without licence or insurance on public sidewalks or bike lanes or roads, what should be the legal weight limit?



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Considering the variant of EUCs that we want to ride without licensing or insurance, I wonder about which speed and weight limits seem to be reasonable to prescribe.

Edited by Mono
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That is why I wrote general speed limit, which applies to each and every riding situation. Of course that does not mean one is allowed to ride this maximal speed all the time and everywhere.

Edited by Mono
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Quote

If we want to attach numbers, I believe 30/15/5 mph (50/25/10 km/h) are fair "limits" for roads/bike lanes/sidewalks, respectively.

Just to understand correctly, you think that everybody should be allowed to ride an EUC at 50km/h in traffic without insurance or drivers licence?

And there should be no weight limit?

Edited by Mono
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I agree with the idea of suggest some rules for us in order to prevent more restrictive laws due improper riding. I'm not for mandatory use of helmet because anyone is responsible of himself but maybe yes for a strap to keep your euc contact in case of accident.

Speed limit of sidewalk must be the speed of the pedestrian ahead. If they are enough space for safe pedestrians overtaking and you have good visibility I'm agree with 10 kilometres per hour sidewalk limit. Also is mandatory get down and walk if they are not space enough to ride your sidewalk.

I agree with a weight limit for any unlicensed vehicle but is hard to setup because they are many different electric assisted vehicles with a lot of mass. Looking at my country laws I found a weight limit of 50 kilogrammes for trikes and 25 for the rest. Maybe is better a limit of 17 kilogrammes per wheel, or mandatory use of safe strap for those who didn't have handles. Mind the propensity of euc's for keep running without his rider when he falls. 

For the higher limits I search again for my country laws and there's a limit of 45 kilometres per hour for electric trikes and 30 or 20 for others depending of his weight. I haven't enough experience to measure the risk of a euc riding up to 25 km/h, but will be nice see our roads full of unicycles mixed with buses, cars and motorbikes. Like bikes today, they are allowed to share the road without any license or insurance. That doesn't mean bikers don't must know the traffic regulations and how to ride his vehicle 

Edited by Demargon
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The speed differential between two vehicles/people colliding is what injures or kills people. Therefore limiting the speed differential rather than the absolute speeds is what laws should concentrate on, and what driver education should encourage.

Present laws in many (most?) places of the USA limit the Segway to under 20 mph on sidewalks. I find that frighteningly fast, and don't go anywhere near that especially on sidewalks. Notably, my average speed on roads is about 16 mph, and perhaps 6-8 mph on sidewalks. More interestingly, I consistently pass Segways (there is a daily Segway tour near where I live); my observation is the two wheels on a Segway makes the vehicle difficult to ride if one wheel hits a bump while the other does not.

I do like the idea of categorizing EUC's by their weight. The feeling of riding my V5F is very different from my MSV3s; losing control of the Gotway, and watching it have a head-on with people or cars, I think that'd cause an awful lot of damage--which insurance's whole purpose is to mitigate such incidents.

EUCs are similar to bicycles; most Europeans who bicycle don't go particularly fast, or even try to, use reasonable though slack care, and have the occasional minor spill. Most American bicyclist wear Spandex, go unduly fast, crash hard despite their equipment care, and aggressively run stops.

Interestingly, when I was talking to my insurance company in order to try to insure my bicycle, the insurance person said they had tried several times throughout the years to figure out how to insure bicycles but that the insurance premiums were consistently estimated too low. That is, you'd have to set the insurance premiums at like $600-$1000 per year just to break even, maybe even much higher, as the bicycles were that expensive and crashed that often.

So I would assume with EUCs. The tiny IPS i5, 14 inchers, maybe even the KS16s are rather small and quite light, and aren't driven very fast so they wouldn't require insurance (except perhaps self-insurance!), but the bigger faster wheels are now at the point where a fall is likely to cause some collateral damage.

Also, and perhaps most dangerously, wheels have a tendency of continuing onward forever by themselves until they crash into something. If you've fallen enough times then you've even probably been hit by your own wheel as it circles around. No one ever crashes their bicycle without taking their bicycle down with them. Motorcycles occasionally go without their rider. EUCs, however, are pretty much guaranteed to go by themselves if the rider bails while the wheel is still upright, such as going over a huge bump, or hitting a gumball, anything that causes you to bail while the wheel is still upright.

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I don't want any regulation to be honest, a person who cannot self regulate and understand where he/she can or cannot speed or in other way put any peoples health in danger should perhaps not ride at all imho. But yeah understand humans are all different, hard one to solve honestly and I am not the one to do it but I will take responsibility for myself and I know what I would and would not do.

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I answered no limit on the poll, mostly because the limits are out of context. There's no license on a bike, muscle powered or electrical, and while there is a limit at 25kph over here for how fast the bike can go with the electric motor still pushing, there is NOTHING stopping the rider from using the motor to get to 25 kph and then pedaling up to 35-40 kph or more.

I can think of a couple of solutions to the dilemma of regulation that would be "ok" by me:

  1. A staggered speed limit, with a max of 5 mph/8 kph on sidewalks meant for pedestrians, 20 mph/32 kph in bike lanes, and the same limits as cars on the street.
  2. A dual classification with one type of EUC being acknowledged as the slow type max 25 kph/15 kg, with no licensing requirements. All that are faster or heavier than that requiring some basic form of licence - and by that I do not mean the car type driving licence requirements, but a driving licence "light" so to speak. You have to show you can get on, start, stop and turn in a controlled manner, as well as answer some basic questions to show you can be let out off the reservation :)

That is basically how the EU "moped" classifications are treated over here. There are two classes with the "light" class being able to go in bike lanes, but limited to 25 kph, and the "heavy" variant requiring a simplified driving licence. In the case of the EUC, we could probably live with something similar - with the addition of the segway rules, that allow us to go where bikes normally can't.

Ideally no regulation would be my ideal. But regulation is going to happen sooner or later, that's how society works, so I would opt for as light a regulation as possible.

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13 hours ago, Scatcat said:

I answered no limit on the poll, mostly because the limits are out of context. There's no license on a bike, muscle powered or electrical, and while there is a limit at 25kph over here for how fast the bike can go with the electric motor still pushing, there is NOTHING stopping the rider from using the motor to get to 25 kph and then pedaling up to 35-40 kph or more.

I can think of a couple of solutions to the dilemma of regulation that would be "ok" by me:

  1. A staggered speed limit, with a max of 5 mph/8 kph on sidewalks meant for pedestrians, 20 mph/32 kph in bike lanes, and the same limits as cars on the street.
  2. A dual classification with one type of EUC being acknowledged as the slow type max 25 kph/15 kg, with no licensing requirements. All that are faster or heavier than that requiring some basic form of licence - and by that I do not mean the car type driving licence requirements, but a driving licence "light" so to speak. You have to show you can get on, start, stop and turn in a controlled manner, as well as answer some basic questions to show you can be let out off the reservation :)

That is basically how the EU "moped" classifications are treated over here. There are two classes with the "light" class being able to go in bike lanes, but limited to 25 kph, and the "heavy" variant requiring a simplified driving licence. In the case of the EUC, we could probably live with something similar - with the addition of the segway rules, that allow us to go where bikes normally can't.

Ideally no regulation would be my ideal. But regulation is going to happen sooner or later, that's how society works, so I would opt for as light a regulation as possible.

That's actually some good ideas I did not even think about, driving license light would be much better than full out gov hard regulation imo, hard regulation by people with potentially 0 clues about what they regulate to begin with and that to me is scary. In that case yeah get it under some moped variant

I thought these went under electric bike laws and that it meant maximum 250 watts as well, I coulee full of it here cause going by shaky memory that might or might not even be correct?

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17 hours ago, Scatcat said:

I answered no limit on the poll, mostly because the limits are out of context.

17 hours ago, Scatcat said:

A dual classification with one type of EUC being acknowledged as the slow type max 25 kph/15 kg, with no licensing requirements. All that are faster or heavier than that requiring some basic form of licence - and by that I do not mean the car type driving licence requirements, but a driving licence "light" so to speak.

I don't exactly understand why you answered no limit, because you are now exactly describing a limit for non-licenced insurance-free EUCs .

17 hours ago, Scatcat said:

Ideally no regulation would be my ideal.

Why would you want to allow someone going 180+km/h with a 100kW 90kg electric unicycle on public roads without license or insurance? This is for sure going to happen without legislation, as it is technically feasible and not even terribly expensive to build. Luckily enough most current legislations prevent this anyways.

Edited by Mono
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On 10/13/2017 at 9:47 PM, LanghamP said:

The speed differential between two vehicles/people colliding is what injures or kills people. Therefore limiting the speed differential rather than the absolute speeds is what laws should concentrate on, and what driver education should encourage

Tell this the thousands and thousands of people who die every year colliding with a tree... Most objects around us do not move at all, hence differential speed can often be equated with "absolute" speed.

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21 hours ago, Electroman said:

I don't want any regulation to be honest, a person who cannot self regulate and understand where he/she can or cannot speed or in other way put any peoples health in danger should perhaps not ride at all imho.

That's perfectly true, but how would you prevent those from riding and put other people in danger without having a law?

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1 hour ago, Mono said:

That's perfectly true, but how would you prevent those from riding and put other people in danger without having a law?

I favor a Libertarian form of lawmaking, whereby if one injures or threatens you then you simply respond with overwhelming and preferably fatal force. I'm American in that way, and so the potential of fatal retaliation is what keeps people honest and polite.

The beauty of no law but that of unlimited retaliation is that people will drive with utmost care, which indeed laws are try to do but often fail.

For example, suppose I am a pedestrian with my Clock Mini, with a chambered Talon round. Do you suppose that you, as an EUC rider, would not take the utmost care when speeding by me? Of course you would!

Now I think you're German, and so have that European horror towards guns? I love guns, and many more people should carry them as it's simply the most effective way of making sure people do no harm to each other. I certainly feel much safer when I bicycle with other riders who do carry and conceal, as you simply need such weapons to ensure one's safety, or when laws are complicated, aren't effective, or are subject to endless discussion. You don't even need to have much of a police force, as an all-volunteer militia with guns is perfectly capable of policing themselves.

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1 hour ago, Mono said:

I don't exactly understand why you answered no limit, because you are now exactly describing a limit for non-licenced insurance-free EUCs .

Why would you want to allow someone going 180+km/h with a 100kW 90kg electric unicycle on public roads without license or insurance? This is for sure going to happen without legislation, as it is technically feasible and not even terribly expensive to build. Luckily enough most current legislations prevent this anyways.

Well, I have to admit that I kind of misread the conditionals. I am not totally agains regulating unlicensed uninsured EUCs. My bad. I do however to a point appreciate that I can currently go on my GT16 without either a licence or insurance, but I actually checked with the proper authorities on traffic insurance what insurance I might need.

I'd feel a bit more comfortable paying for traffic insurance, and knowing that I thereby could be sure not to get into a situation where I had to fight my insurance company to cover an accident. And a simple form of a license would be no big problem.

The comparison with an extreme 180 kph, 100kW and so on EUC isn't even remotely realistic. Not because it can't be built, but because it's a totally different beast even than the monster. The sheer weight would mean it weighed as much or more than the rider, meaning control as we know it would have to be radically different to even be feasible. It would probably be classified as a totally different vehicle, and I doubt it would even be legal in most countries outside private race tracks.

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2 hours ago, LanghamP said:

I love guns, and many more people should carry them as it's simply the most effective way of making sure people do no harm to each other.

It's kind of funny hearing that from someone from the USA, the western country with the most guns per head ratio, where on average 31500 people get shot to death each year. Here in Germany, that figure is two orders of magnitude lower after correction for population count. 

Back to topic: I think EUCs should be free of licensing and insurance (which means over here it's covered by your general privat liability insurance) up to 20kg and 25 kph. Above that you can still use EUCs, but you need to get a vehicle liability insurance and a drivers license. Over here, the smallest drivers license for mopeds etc. up to 45 kph is included in every other drivers license, so something like that would be fine. Just as a proof, that you know how to behave in traffic.

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52 minutes ago, Scatcat said:
  • That is exactly the logic of a criminal gangland, not exactly the most beautiful environment where I would like to raise kids or live at all for that matter. 

The Padishah emperors would beg to differ, as they made Salusa Secundis violently inhospitable for precisely that reason; to breed better soldiers.

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3 minutes ago, Slaughthammer said:

It's kind of funny hearing that from someone from the USA, the western country with the most guns per head ratio, where on average 31500 people get shot to death each year. Here in Germany, that figure is two orders of magnitude lower after correction for population count. 

It's still like the Wild Wild West over here.  So many different cultures mixed together we don't understand yet.

5 minutes ago, Slaughthammer said:

 

Back to topic: I think EUCs should be free of licensing and insurance (which means over here it's covered by your general privat liability insurance) up to 20kg and 25 kph. Above that you can still use EUCs, but you need to get a vehicle liability insurance and a drivers license. Over here, the smallest drivers license for mopeds etc. up to 45 kph is included in every other drivers license, so something like that would be fine. Just as a proof, that you know how to behave in traffic.

I agree,  it should be included in the car insurance.  If a person has car insurance, that should cover smaller vehicles.

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5 hours ago, LanghamP said:

The Padishah emperors would beg to differ, as they made Salusa Secundis violently inhospitable for precisely that reason; to breed better soldiers.

I don't want to breed better soldiers, I want to breed better humans.

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Even sidewalks are too different for setting a reasonable EUC speed limit. My typical commuting route is 90% on sidewalks, yet I usually pass by up to 10 people in total in a 8 km distance. You could absolutely ride at 25 km/h all the distance, probably even faster, because there are almost no blindspots, you could see everything from far away.

And of course, there are plenty of busy sidewalks as well where you would be stupid to ride any faster than 7 km/h  and in fact you should just step off from your EUC.

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On 10/15/2017 at 10:56 PM, LanghamP said:

The beauty of no law but that of unlimited retaliation is that people will drive with utmost care, which indeed laws are try to do but often fail.

Though the ugly face of no law but unlimited retaliation is the blood shed. And certainly, the target of "unlimited retaliation" can defend themselves and don't need to accept the death penalty for a minor insult, I assume. No law looks like an unsustainable and outdated concept to me.

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On 10/12/2017 at 7:01 AM, ir_fuel said:

I suppose to be consistent you would need to stick to bicycle speeds. max 25km/h as is now already the case for electric bikes.

EUC's and probably all forms of ESS's (Electric Self-Balancing Scooters) will likely have traffic laws modeled after more familiar (if not very similar) personal electric vehicles.

On 10/10/2017 at 12:49 PM, who_the said:

EUC are the only form of transportation designed to safely travel at speeds from a slow walk up to city traffic (30 mph) while doing so with a "footprint" no larger than that of a pedestrian (smaller, in fact). Cars, bikes, electric bikes, hoverboards, electric skateboards, roller blades, Big Wheels — literally no other form of transportation can make that claim.

While much can be said about the unique qualities of EUC's, there is not much empirical evidence to treat them differently from any other form of PEV (Personal Electric Vehicle) and so we are left with whatever decision-makers consider comparable (for making laws).

ESS-Impact-Model.thumb.jpg.9ac4ed9efbe44ba424982525693175ae.jpg

Studies on the impact characteristics of EUC's vs. ESS's, PEV's, etc. (insert appropriate acronym here) are hard to come by.

Edited by RayRay
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On 16/10/2017 at 1:18 AM, Slaughthammer said:

It's kind of funny hearing that from someone from the USA, the western country with the most guns per head ratio, where on average 31500 people get shot to death each year. Here in Germany, that figure is two orders of magnitude lower after correction for population count. 

Back to topic: I think EUCs should be free of licensing and insurance (which means over here it's covered by your general privat liability insurance) up to 20kg and 25 kph. Above that you can still use EUCs, but you need to get a vehicle liability insurance and a drivers license. Over here, the smallest drivers license for mopeds etc. up to 45 kph is included in every other drivers license, so something like that would be fine. Just as a proof, that you know how to behave in traffic.

I like this, but i would make the rules even more precise by using momentum in stead of speed or wheight.

So wheight multiplied by speed. So if the euc wheighs less, you can have more speed.

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