New safety rules are coming into place for owners of super-fast e-bikes but helmet manufacturers are not yet up to speed, says broadcaster NOS.
From January 1 owners of speed pedelecs, which can reach speeds of up to 45 kilometers per hour, will have to wear a helmet. The new headgear is a cross between a motor bike helmet and a cycling helmet designed to keep cyclists cool while at the same time offering more protection.
The speedy bikes will also be classified as mopeds and will be banned from using bike paths.
There are between 8,000 and 10,000 speed pedelecs on the road at the moment and their number is increasing, according to road users lobby group BOVAG.
After January 1 new speed pedelec owners will have to park their bike until the hybrid helmet is on the market. ‘The specifications weren’t ready in time so the manufacturers won’t be able to deliver until February,’ speed pedelec salesman Nick Hielckert told NOS.
Not all speedy bike owners are happy to have to contend with motorised traffic in busy city centres. According to research by engineering consultants Grontmij speed pedelecs are mainly used for going to and from work outside of city centres.
Thanks to the speedy bikes two-thirds of users leave the car at home. When they do use bike paths in the centre they will adjust their speed, Grontmij found, and so shouldn’t be put in the same category as mopeds.