Phoenix e-bike Ordinance


City of Phoenix passed an ebike law recently; I was unaware.

Arizona’s state ebike laws, which were passed in 2018, are essentially mum on ebikes vis a vis sidewalks, leaving them in the same somewhat strange boat as bicycles; “what is not prohibited is allowed”. And leads to a lot of confusion as local regulations, if any, regulate sidewalk cycling. See this long discussion of Arizona’s sidewalk laws including selected municipalities. Continue reading “Phoenix e-bike Ordinance”

Teenage e-bicyclist killed in Tucson crash

7/26/2022 ~ 830am. Fatal collision between an e-bicyclist and heavy truck, along E 22nd St near Pantano, Tucson. According to the police/news report the cyclist was headed westbound in the eastbound bike lane when he collided with a semi-truck emerging from a private drive. Continue reading “Teenage e-bicyclist killed in Tucson crash”

Is this an e-bike?

Motrino XMr w/pedals attached

A rider near Vancouver, British Columbia was ticketed for operating his device without insurance and driver’s license. The rider claimed his device was a “Motor Assisted Cycle”, as defined in their traffic codes, while police said otherwise. A trial judge went with the police’s interpretation; and an appeal to the BC’s supreme court failed.

Continue reading “Is this an e-bike?”

Motorized bicycles, Ebikes and crash reporting

[UPDATE: it seems quite possible something changed after 2020? see comment and stats]

Executive Summary

  • People riding motorized bicycles are categorized as DRIVERS, and not as bicyclists, for crash reporting purposes.
  • How will Ebike crashes be reported?
  • new wildcard: what about escooter crashes?

Each of these has the potential to skew crash reporting statistics. Motorized bicycles have not seen wide use, but ebikes are expected to become much more common

I propose adding a few new “Body Style” definitions: 1) bicycle (well, pedalcycle), 2) motorized bicycle, 3) ebike; this would not require any changes to the Arizona Crash Forms, simply an update to the Crash Form Instruction Manual.

It is expected that ebikes will see large growth in use in the coming years; e.g, the WSJ reported: Continue reading “Motorized bicycles, Ebikes and crash reporting”

Ebike bill rides again

In 2018, Arizona passed e-bike legislation, adopting the model legislation promoted by the industry. Quick reference, as enacted:


[Update — It’s all passed and signed as of 5/16/2018… see below ]
Late in this legislative season (53 2nd regular), an ebike bill has once again surfaced from Rep Worsley; this time as a “striker” in the former dark sky lighting special plates bill HB2266.

The bill is suddenly, as is always the case I guess with strikers, being heard, scheduled for 3/20/2018 in the senate where it passed unanimously… Continue reading “Ebike bill rides again”

Arizona Electric Bicycle Legislation (bill died)

An ebike bill PASSED in 2018: HB2652. Below info is for historical purposes…

[5/10/2017; bill stalled. Never got a House floor vote]
[Current Status as of 3/1/2017: passed the Senate by wide margins, also passed House T&I Committee but they implied it would need to be amended to pass the floor; as of 3/19 it’s not passed the house; see below ]
ca-e-bike-croppedAs of spring 2017 there is an e-bike bill working its way through the legislature.  SB1273  (2017, 53rd/1st Regular session). This bill, if passed, would address some or all of the confusion documented at length in these pages, at least for e-bikes. The bill’s prime sponsor is Bob Worsley (R-Mesa), is senate president so I’d have to assume it’s going to pass ; [correction, Yarborough is, so I have no idea how i got that wrong] and is moving fast, as of the time of this writing (early February 2017) it has already passed the Senate Transportation and Technology Committee unanimously with little debate. Besides being senate president,  Worsley is the chairperson of the senate Transp committee. I have no idea about the house but there’s little apparently standing in the bill’s way.  Continue reading “Arizona Electric Bicycle Legislation (bill died)”

Arizona e-bike model municipal law

ca-e-bike-cropped[UPDATE: spring 2018 in AZ State legislature, HB2652, has PASSED; how this relates to local laws isn’t completely clear to me]

This is not coincidentally  similar to legislation passed in California in 2015, and pushed by People For Bikes along with the e-bike industry, so start there. I say similar because it’s odd it doesn’t follow the class 1/2/3 in the CA (and as of Aug 2018 the AZ law?)

Electric bikes fall under the category of what Arizona calls a Motorized Bicycle at the state level. There are a number of gotchas involved, which have been copiously documented on these pages, e.g. start here. The main gotcha is illustrated below about unwittingly needing a drivers license, insurance and registration.

No municipality can fix these gotchas, they can only be addressed by the state legislature. I can only speculate the idea is for Tempe (or whoever; there is similar effort for MAG to recommend/adopt model regulations) to adopt rules that would in effect only kick in when the state “fixes” the state statutes. Continue reading “Arizona e-bike model municipal law”

Is your ebike a play vehicle?

[UPDATE: Arizona STATE law was updated to explicitly define ebikes in 2018.
Tempe has updated their ordinances a couple of years ago (2019?) to explicitly include ebikes; and Phoenix did so in March 2022. So the article below, written in 2009 is here more for historical purposes.
HOWEVER many many other cities and towns have this “trap” in their local ordinances]

Original title: Is your motorized bike a play vehicle?

First, see Moped and Motorized Bicycles in Arizona for general background on Motorized Bicycles. Sort of unfortunately, every individual city or jurisdiction can have their own codes further regulating things. Continue reading “Is your ebike a play vehicle?”