Law and Enforcement


A group of police question a cyclist during an operation to improve cycle safety on Hong Kong Island - police vans and police motorbikes are lined up, while the lycra-clad cyclist on the road bike answers their questions

Police quiz a cyclist during a three-day crackdown on bicycle safety issues such as “no bell”, “no lights” and illegal use of e-mobility devices

Police arrested three cyclists and gave out nine tickets in a three-day Hong Kong Island operation to crack down on cyclists riding without bells, lights and the illegal use of e-bikes and e-scooters.

The operation hit the Peak, Chai Wan and Central districts from 27-29 March “in response to recent traffic accidents involving bicycles,” the police said.

“The action was mainly aimed at bicycle safety issues, such as ‘no bell’ and other serious bicycle violations such as non-compliance of traffic lights or traffic signs by cyclists,” said a police spokesman. The action also aimed to tackle illegal e-bikes and e-scooters.

An e-scooter in Hong Kong, seized by the police

An e-scooter seized by police

A total of three men, aged between 26 and 42, were arrested for “driving an unregistered vehicle”, “driving without a valid driver’s licence” and using a vehicle without third-party insurance. Police kept three electric mobility devices, and also issued nine summonses to eight cyclists on charges of riding bicycles without bells and violations of traffic signs.

Use of e-bikes and e-scooters on public roads is illegal in Hong Kong – as “mechanically propelled”, they have been classed as motor vehicles, requiring licences under law – and Transport Department has not granted any such vehicle licences. The department holds that users would also need a valid driver’s licence to use one, and e-bike riders have been successfully prosecuted.

The government says its stance against the mobility devices is due to road safety and product safety, pointing to the two separate fatal scooter accidents in Tseung Kwan O and Tai Po late last year; there have also been several fires, one fatal, involving poor quality scooters which have short-circuited and caught fire.

Nevertheless, there are thought to be more than a million e-bikes and e-scooters in the city, according to import records. The Transport Department says it is reviewing its position.





2 replies »

  1. e-bikes that require the rider to pedal are motor assisted, and are not faster than other bikes; they require the rider to pedal to get assistance from the motor; they are called pedelecs and are not throttle operated; they are completely different therefore to escooters; also, motor assistance for ebikes/pedelecs is restricted to 25kmh; thus professional road bikes are way way faster than pedelecs that are restricted at 25kmh.

    Also, ebikes – ie pedelecs – can be switched off, and used without motor assistance; unlike e-scooters.
    So, then they operate as just ordinary bikes.

    Why is HK so backward on ebikes/pedelecs?
    They are all over China, Asia (even Singapore), Australia, NZ, Europe, the US etc.
    They encourage people to exercise, and are no more no less dangerous than regular non-motor assisted bikes.

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