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Registering an ebike in Northern Ireland

Discussion in 'Electric Bicycles' started by Sinjin Smythe, Jul 15, 2017.

  1.  
    Sinjin Smythe

    Sinjin Smythe Just Joined

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    Hi all,
    I have an ebike which I have been cycling to commute to work oblivious to the fact an ebike needs to be registered, taxed, insured and motorbike helmet worn when cycling in Northern Ireland.
    There is some debate that European law overrides the northern irish legislation regarding ebike regulations. Has anyone else in Northern Ireland had to go through this process?
    I have read on these forums that the ebike test for registration is done againthe motorcycle criteria so you need a headlight, stop light, motorbike tyres etc?
    Apparently the delay in bringing Northern Ireland into line with the rest of the UK is down to not having any politicians at Stormont to push through the legislation.
    Using the car for commuting again but I miss my bike, not sitting in traffic and not worrying about parking :-(
     
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  2.  
    tommie

    tommie Pedelecer

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    Oh, don`t start me on this one again!!

    Get onto your MP at Westminster, in the present circumstances there preferably a DUP one!
     
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    d8veh

    d8veh Pedelecer

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    We had a similar situation over here, when the UK law was 200w, but the EU law was 250w. Everybody got 250w bikes, including the police, and nobody was bothered.

    I'd be surprised if they enforce that rule, especially if your bike doesn't look too different to a normal bicycle. It's probably a good idea to make sure it's restricted to 25km/h and doesn't have a throttle.
     
    #3 d8veh, Jul 15, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2017
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    tommie

    tommie Pedelecer

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    @ flecc,

    any reason your post disappeared??

    I`m not at all sure EU law in this instance overrules UK law......

    or does it?

    Interesting..
     
  5.  
    flecc

    flecc Member

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    This depends on whether N.I. had a legislature on 9th May 2003 or whether it was directly ruled from Westminster then.

    Whichever it was would have received an EU order on that day which had to be implemented, enforcing EU pedelec rules from 10th November 2003. Therefore in theory the EU rules override anything N.I has to say on the matter. However, knowing how chaotic the situation of N.I. governance has been, it's possible that no implementation applicable to N.I. took place at that time.
    .
     
  6.  
    flecc

    flecc Member

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    I replaced it to make clear the possibility that there was no law in existence, unlikely but possible as I've posted.

    However, EU law overrules national law for all EU member countries, without exception.
    .
     
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    tommie

    tommie Pedelecer

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    i think it must have as the regulations have been exactly the same as the rest of the U.K. up until a few days ago
     
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    tommie

    tommie Pedelecer

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    you could well be right flecc..

    from Wiki..
    The Assembly has been suspended on several occasions, the longest suspension being from 14 October 2002 until 7 May 2007, during its second term. During that time the Assembly's powers reverted to the Northern Ireland Office.

    So that would include the period you mentioned.

    However, that would have been Direct Rule from Westminster, so logically any directive from the EU would/should have applied to all UK regions??
    Would it not?
     
  9.  
    flecc

    flecc Member

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    In that case EU regulation 2002/24/EC came into force on 10th November 2003, and that includes this exception from being included as a motor vehicle:

    (h) pedal cycles with pedal assistance which are equipped with an auxiliary electric motor having a maximum continuous rated power of less than or equal to 250 W, where the output of the motor is cut off when the cyclist stops pedalling and is otherwise progressively reduced and finally cut off before the vehicle speed reaches 25 km/h
    .
     
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  10.  
    flecc

    flecc Member

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    I believe so, especially since the EU order 2002/24/EC applied to all member countries without exception. Even non-member Norway has to comply with those pedelec regulations in order to trade with the EU.

    Since then that order 2002/24/EC has been incorporated into an inclusive order, regulation 168/2013, with identical wording.
    .
     
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  11.  
    Sinjin Smythe

    Sinjin Smythe Just Joined

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    Thanks for this very interesting, I'll follow up with my local MP.
     
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    soundwave

    soundwave Pedelecer

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    why even bother ? has anyone had there bike taken from them and are there any test cases that have gone to court?
     
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    Danidl

    Danidl Pedelecer

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    I think that Tommie would agree with me on the following statement...
    .. because the people in NI, particularly the unionist leaning population have a huge respect for law and order . It would offend their sense of self worth to be found out doing something illegal.
     
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    Sinjin Smythe

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    Technically you can be taken for driving an unregistered vehicle without tax and insurance. I need my license for my job and I see from earlier postings that one cyclist was stopped on the road in northern ireland for cycling an ebike.
    I doubt any politician cares about this issue but I've written to my local constituency office, which thankfully isn't dup, to see if my vote was wasted last time round.
     
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    Sinjin Smythe

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    Northern Ireland was under direct rule from October 2002 until the spring of 2007. So not sure how this was implemented at the time.
     
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    Amps Electric Bikes

    Amps Electric Bikes Trade Member

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    This topic was flagged up by the BAGB last week.

    Here is the response they received to questions put to the Department of Infrastructure for Northern Ireland

    E-bikes in Northern Ireland

    Responses to BA questions from the Road Safety and Vehicle Regulation Division (RSVRD) of the Department of Infrastructure for Northern Ireland

    10 June 2017

    BA: For EAPC sellers: can they legally sell EAPCs without registering/type approving the vehicles first? (assuming they are not of the "Twist and go" type of EAPC)

    RSVRD: Assuming the EAPC is not a “twist and go” type, EAPC sellers do not have to register the vehicles – the onus is on the owner of the EAPC to register their own EAPC through DVLA in Swansea.

    BA: For users: it is correct that for legal use they need driving licence, registration, tax, insurance and must wear an approved motorcycle helmet?

    RSVRD: Yes. I appreciate that this is not the answer you want but an EAPC in NI is classed as a motor vehicle and therefore would put in the motorcycle licence category.

    BA: Are there any firm plans to bring NI in line with the rest of the UK/EU in this matter? There appears to have been a consultation on this, ending May 2016 but I cannot find any reports of developments since that:

    https://www.infrastructure-ni.gov.u...slation-exempt-certain-licensing-requirements

    RSVRD: Yes. I am currently working on drafting legislation to bring NI into line with the rest of the UK on this matter but there is the added concern that in Northern Ireland we have been without an Assembly or Executive since January. All policy and legislation has to go through the necessary Assembly approval in order to become law. Without that system or even Direct Rule from Westminster in place, we are unable to proceed with the implementation of legislation to exempt EAPCs from licensing, registration and tax requirements.

    Currently in NI, an EAPC has to be registered, licensed, taxed and insured as it is deemed a motor vehicle in our domestic legislation. I hope that this is only for an interim period until the NI Assembly reconvenes but it will definitely not happen before the end of the summer as the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland has extended the talks process for NI politicians to come to an agreement on power sharing.

    BA: Do you have any advice for sellers of EAPCs in Northern Ireland? Our members are keen to behave responsibly in line with regulations, but also to serve customer demand for what is an eco-friendly and healthy form of transport.

    RSVRD: The Department’s advice for EAPC sellers would be that they must highlight to any customers wishing to use these vehicles in NI that they must register their vehicle through DVLA in Swansea. Customers must also be made aware that they will have to tax and insure these vehicles in order to use them on NI roads. Sellers can advise customers that the Department is working to resolve this issue and will implement legislation to exempt EAPCs from registration and licensing requirements when the NI Assembly has reconvened.

    All the best, David
     
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    Danidl

    Danidl Pedelecer

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    ..That was not intended as a humourous comment, I am sorry it was perceived as such. It was intended to be soladarity for people like Tommie, who through no fault of their own, find themselves on the wrong side of the law. Amps posting on the other thread just shows how intractable this will be..
     
  18.  
    flecc

    flecc Member

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    David, with repect to the BA and RSVRD, I think they are misreading the law. Consider the following:

    On 9th May 2003 the EU issued the Two and Three Wheel type approval regulation 2002/24/EC to all member countries. Accompanying that was the mandatory order that it had to be implemented within six months, i.e. by 10th November 2003. The DfT did that, but they failed to carry out the other instruction to remove all conflicting national legislation, leaving the unchanged EAPC regulation in place as well, thus creating the confusion.

    The mandatory order further instructed that if a member country wanted any variation to the regulation, it had to be submitted to the European Commission within that same six months for consideration. The DfT made no such submission, and since N.I had no assembly over the relevant period, it also could not have made a submission. Therefore 2002/24/EC came fully into force across the UK on 10th November 2003, the day parliament approved it.

    Ergo, in the absence of an approved variation, the EU regulation takes precedence over national legislation in the whole of the UK, as it does throughout the EU. That is the position as I understand it until we leave the EU in 2019.

    The only way that could have been changed is if the N.I. assembly had at some time since 2003 sought approval from the EU for their own regulation to take precedence, and I think that is highly unlikely. It's even more unlikely that the EC would have approved such a variation.
    .
     
    #18 flecc, Jul 16, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2017
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    d8veh

    d8veh Pedelecer

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    It's exactly the same as when we had the 250w anomaly. Every government website and spokesmen always reiterated that anything more than 200w was illegal, even though the majority of bikes being sold and used (including by the police) were 250w. Nobody took a blind bit of notice of what they said. Nobody was prosecuted.
     
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    the_killjoy

    the_killjoy Pedelecer

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    If they have to register them through DVLA in Swansea what type approval/ class would apply?
     

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