2020 New York Laws
VAT - Vehicle and Traffic
Title 7 - Rules of the Road
Article 34 - Operation of Bicycles and Play Devices
1242 - Additional Provisions Applicable to Bicycles With Electric Assist.

Universal Citation: NY Veh & Traf L § 1242 (2020)
§  1242.  Additional  provisions  applicable to bicycles with electric
assist. 1. In addition to complying with all of the rules,  regulations,
and  provisions  applicable  to  bicycles  contained  in  this  article,
bicycles with electric assist shall operate in  a  manner  so  that  the
electric  motor  is disengaged or ceases to function when the brakes are
applied or the rider stops pedaling, or operate in a  manner  such  that
the  electric  motor is engaged through a switch or mechanism that, when
released, will cause  the  electric  motor  to  disengage  or  cease  to
function.
  2.  No  person  less than sixteen years of age shall operate a bicycle
with electric assist. The failure of  any  person  to  comply  with  the
provisions   of  this  subdivision  shall  not  constitute  contributory
negligence or assumption of risk, and shall not in any way bar, preclude
or foreclose an action for personal injury or wrongful death  by  or  on
behalf  of  such  person,  nor in any way diminish or reduce the damages
recoverable in any such action.
  3.  (a)  Except  as  provided  in  paragraphs  (b)  and  (c)  of  this
subdivision,  the  governing  body  of any city, town or village may, by
local law or ordinance, further regulate the time, place and  manner  of
the  operation  of  bicycles  with  electric  assist  including, but not
limited to, maximum speed, requiring the use of protective headgear, and
the wearing of  readily  visible  reflective  clothing  or  material  by
operators  of bicycles with electric assist, and may limit, prohibit the
use thereof in specified areas, or prohibit entirely the use of bicycles
with electric assist within such city, town or  village,  provided  that
adequate  signage  is  visibly  posted  outside  the  boundaries of such
prohibited areas.

(b) The governing body of any city, town or village in the counties of Nassau or Suffolk may, by local law or ordinance, further regulate the time, place and manner of the operation of bicycles with electric assist, including, but not limited to, maximum speed, requiring the use of protective headgear, and the wearing of readily visible reflective clothing or material by operators of bicycles with electric assist only after adoption of a local law or ordinance by the governing body of the county in which the city, town or village is located. Provided, however, that the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to the adoption of a local law or ordinance by a city, town or village in the counties of Nassau or Suffolk pursuant to the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subdivision to prohibit the use of bicycles with electric assist in specified areas, or prohibit entirely the use of bicycles with electric assist within such city, town or village, provided that adequate signage is visibly posted outside the boundaries of such prohibited areas.

(c) The governing body of any town or village in the county of Westchester may, by local law or ordinance, further regulate the time, place and manner of the operation of bicycles with electric assist, including, but not limited to, maximum speed, requiring the use of protective headgear, and the wearing of readily visible reflective clothing or material by operators of bicycles with electric assist only after adoption of a local law or ordinance by the governing body of Westchester county. Provided, however, that the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to the adoption of a local law or ordinance by a town or village in the county of Westchester pursuant to the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subdivision to prohibit the use of bicycles with electric assist in specified areas, or prohibit entirely the use of bicycles with electric assist within such town or village, provided that adequate signage is visibly posted outside the boundaries of such prohibited areas. 4. (a) No person shall operate a bicycle with electric assist on any public lands or property, other than a highway exclusive of any greenway running adjacent to or connected with a highway, except that a bicycle with electric assist may be operated on any such lands that have been designated and posted for travel by bicycles with electric assist in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (b) of this subdivision. For the purposes of this subdivision, the term "greenway" shall have the same meaning as such term is defined by subdivision seven of section 44-0103 of the environmental conservation law and subdivision one of section 39.03 of the parks, recreation and historic preservation law.

(b) A state agency, by regulation or order, and a city, town or village, by local law or ordinance, may designate any appropriate public lands and properties under its jurisdiction, other than highways exclusive of any greenway running adjacent to or connected with a highway, as a place open for travel by bicycles with electric assist upon written request for such designation by any person, and may impose restrictions and conditions for the regulation and safe operation of bicycles with electric assist on such public lands or property, such as travel on designated trails and hours of operation. 5. (a) No bicycle with electric assist shall be operated on a sidewalk, except as may be authorized by a local law or ordinance adopted by a city, town or village having jurisdiction over such sidewalk including parking on certain sidewalks within such city, town or village in compliance with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended (Public Law 101-336).

(b) (i) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subdivision, a bicycle with electric assist owned by a natural person where the owner is engaged in personal use may park on a sidewalk whether attended or unattended. A city, town or village having jurisdiction over such sidewalk shall provide a method by which a bicycle with electric assist owned by a natural person may be identified as such.

(ii) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subdivision, a bicycle with electric assist used to transport property in commerce may temporarily park on a sidewalk, whether attended or unattended, for the purpose of and while actually engaged commercially in the loading or unloading of property. A city, town or village having jurisdiction over such sidewalk shall provide a method by which a bicycle with electric assist used to transport property in commerce may be identified as such.

(iii) No person shall park a bicycle with electric assist pursuant to this paragraph in a manner that interferes with the free passage of pedestrians on a sidewalk. 6. Every person operating a bicycle with electric assist shall yield the right of way to pedestrians. 7. Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision (b) of section twelve hundred thirty-four of this article to the contrary, persons operating bicycles with electric assist upon a roadway shall ride single file. 8. Except as may be otherwise provided by local law, ordinance, order, rule or regulation enacted or promulgated pursuant to this article, a bicycle with electric assist may only be operated on highways with a posted speed limit of thirty miles per hour or less, including non-interstate public highways, private roads open to motor vehicle traffic, and designated bicycle or in-line skate lanes. 9. No person shall operate a class one or class two bicycle with electric assist in excess of twenty miles per hour. No person shall operate a class three bicycle with electric assist in excess of twenty-five miles per hour. 10. The operation of a class three bicycle with electric assist outside of a city having a population of one million or more is prohibited. 11. (a) No person, firm, association or corporation engaged in the business of selling or leasing bicycles with electric assist shall sell or lease any bicycle with electric assist on or after June first, two thousand twenty-two unless such bicycle with electric assist has permanently affixed thereto, in a prominent location, a manufacturer's label which shall include the following information: the class, maximum motor-assisted speed, and motor wattage of such bicycle with electric assist. Manufacturers and distributors of bicycles with electric assist shall, by April first, two thousand twenty-two, establish a process by which an owner of a bicycle with electric assist may request and obtain a manufacturer's label providing the class, maximum motor-assisted speed, and motor wattage applicable to his or her bicycle with electric assist purchased prior to June first, two thousand twenty-two and installation instructions from such manufacturers and distributors.

(b) No person shall operate a bicycle with electric assist on any public highway or street in this state after June first, two thousand twenty-two unless such bicycle with electric assist has permanently affixed thereto, in a prominent location, a manufacturer's label providing the class, maximum motor-assisted speed, and motor wattage of such bicycle with electric assist. Any person who violates the provisions of this paragraph shall be punished by a civil fine of up to fifty dollars. The court shall waive any fine for which a person who violates the provisions of this paragraph would be liable if such person supplies the court with proof that, between the date on which he or she is charged with having violated this paragraph and the appearance date for such violation, a manufacturer's label was affixed to his or her bicycle with electric assist as required by this paragraph. Provided, however, that such waiver of fine shall not apply to a second or subsequent conviction under this paragraph. 12. A violation of the provisions of subdivision two, five, six, nine, or ten of this section shall result in a civil fine not to exceed fifty dollars. 13. A police officer shall only issue a summons for a violation of this section by a person less than sixteen years of age to the parent or guardian of such person if the violation by such person occurs in the presence of such person's parent or guardian and where such parent or guardian is eighteen years of age or older. Such summons shall only be issued to such parent or guardian, and shall not be issued to the person less than sixteen years of age.

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