Ministry of Transportation of Ontario & Toronto Cycling Union vs E-Bikes!
Ontario's 3 year E-Bike Pilot Program is coming to a close this October 3rd, 2009. As of 2 or 3 months ago the Toronto Cyclists Union has been trying to get the scooter style E-Bike out of the bike lanes and have also been promoting that the scooter style E-Bikes should be classed as LSMs (Low Speed Motorcycles) which will need a license and insurance. This just like it did to MOPEDS in the 70's will kill the E-Bike market because the majority of E-Bikes sold in Ontario is the scooter style E-Bikes.
Now the MTO saw the motion as a great cash grab at the expense of an industry as a whole and has sent out a proposal that only gives 3 choices.
Two of the choices will rule scooter style E-Bikes off of the roads legally by not having them classed as E-Bikes (but can be classed as LSMs) and the only remaining choice is to keep the current status quo. Of coarse the TCU is already telling all their members to fill out the proposal to choose the other two options. Whenever us E-Bike riders talk to the cyclists or their union they state unconfirmed and unsubstantiated (sp?) made up safety problems of the scooter style E-Bikes. And when we state that the rest of Canada and the world has a proven safety record of millions of E-Bikes on the roads, and we also state the built in extra safety features over a bicycle, the cyclists just state that it does not matter and continue on rambling.
Have you got any recommendations on how to combat the TCU and convince the MTO that scooter style E-Bikes are a viable form of transportation and belong on our roads as much as bicycles without the LSM (cash grab) classification that will easily kill Ontario's E-Bike market?