Electric scooters and electric bicycles are bringing personal electric mobility to the fore socially, which, it seems, will continue to grow at the same rate in the coming bars. It is because of the growth that this type of last-mile transport is experiencing that the legislation has to act proactively in the face of its growth, and ultimately lThe European Union has ruled on whether or not there will be an obligation for electric bicycles to have civil liability insurance.
Both electric scooters and pedal-assisted bicycles have seen in the pandemic caused by COVID-19 a perfect ally, since a significant part of the public population has prioritized exclusive and personal transport over public, which has led electric bicycles to reap the best sales in their history in our country.
As announced by the AMBE (Association of Brands and Bicycles of Spain) during the last months of 2020 (once the most restrictive period in terms of confinements had passed) the pedal sector in Spain experienced a strong impulse that has been reflected in historical data for the sector in everything related to the commercialization of bicycles. In total, more than one and a half million bicycles have been sold during the past year (which translates into a turnover of 2,607.38 million euros) of which more than 210,000 correspond to electric bicycles.
It seems necessary, therefore, the regulation of the use of the same in the field, not only national, but also European. Currently in Spain, regarding electric scooters, there is no obligation of civil liability insurance or registration if the element in question does not exceed 25 kilometers per hour of maximum speed or 250 W of peak power. If any of both aspects is exceeded, its registration will be mandatory, as well as that the scooter in question has civil liability insurance, since for legal purposes it will be counted as a moped.
Through a interim agreement between Parliament and the European Commission, both agencies have determined that excludes the considered assisted pedaling bicycles from the obligation to have civil liability insurance.
In the case of a provisional agreement, the measure has to be formally approved by the two institutions, and then published in the Official Gazette of the European Union, with an entry into force that will occur 24 months after approval.
This puts an end to a dilemma that has taken place since the European Commission in 2018 presented a guideline in which it considered pedelecs with 250 W of power and pedaling assistance up to 25 kilometers per hour as motor vehicles. The deputy of the European Parliament, Dita Charanzová, who previously declared that there was an “absurd over-regulation” regarding electric bicycles, has commented: “It was time to clarify the rules of car insurance, so that Europeans are better protected and treated equally in the European Union when accidents occur and when they insure their vehicles. “