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Sparks and Claims: The Shocking Insurance Dilemma of Surging E-Bike Use

Sparks and Claims: The Shocking Insurance Dilemma of Surging E-Bike Use

In recent years, the use of electric bikes (E-bikes) has significantly increased in the United Kingdom. These eco-friendly alternatives have attracted a variety of individuals with their efficient and convenient features. However, alongside the increasing popularity of E-bikes, concerns about safety have also emerged. This insight examines the rules around E-bike use, as well as the issues that surround the lack of regulation.

What actually is an E-bike?

E-bikes are known as ‘electrically assisted pedal cycles’ or EAPCs for short.  They are defined by the 1983 and 2015 Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycle Regulations as being a bicycle that fits the following parameters:-

  1. Its weight does not exceed 40 kilograms
  2. It is propelled by fitted pedals
  3. It is fitted with only an electric motor that has a continuous rated power that does not exceed 250 watts and cannot propel the vehicle when it is travelling more than 15.5 miles per hour.
At what age can you start using an E-bike?

In the United Kingdom, you can ride an E-bike if you are 14 or over.

Where can you use an E-bike?

E-bikes are treated as normal pedal bikes; therefore, you can ride it on cycle paths, cycle lanes and most roads.

Do you require a driving licence to use an E-bike?

EAPC’s are exempt from the standard licensing and insurance requirements for motor vehicles.

What are the implications of not requiring insurance to use an E-bike?

While E-bike users are not legally required to have motor insurance, it is still advisable to consider personal liability insurance. This type of insurance provides coverage in case of accidents or damage caused to third parties or their property.

Not having adequate insurance cover can cause serious issues should an accident occur;

  • For the E-bike user, it could mean being on the receiving end of a costly and stressful personal injury claim.
  • For the injured party, it could mean that there are issues around obtaining sufficient or fair compensation. This can have further implications concerning receiving adequate medical and psychiatric treatment.
What should you do if you are injured in an E-bike accident?

If you are injured in an accident involving an E-bike, you should contact a Personal Injury Solicitor.

Thornton’s Personal Injury team operate on a No-Win No-Fee basis. This means that we can provide guidance, assess the specific circumstances of the case and help explore any available options for compensation, without any financial risk to the client. Contact our team on 0800 731 8434.

About the authors

Gary Mannion
Gary Mannion

Gary Mannion


Personal Injury

Ben Ager
Ben Ager

Ben Ager

Trainee Solicitor

Personal Injury

For more information, contact Gary Mannion or any member of the Personal Injury team on +44 1382 346294.