SEOUL, March 21 (Korea Bizwire) — Electric bicycles will be allowed to run on cycle lanes across South Korea starting this Thursday.
With new bicycle laws entering into effect tomorrow, pedal-assist electric bicycles will be categorized as regular bicycles and be given the right of way on bike paths if they meet a number of requirements, the Ministry of the Interior and Safety said on Wednesday.
Under the new legislation, cyclists riding electric bicycles will no longer need a driving license.
The requirements specify that only pedal-assist electric bicycles approved by the Electrical Appliances and Consumer Products Safety Control Act will be permitted, and moped-style electric bikes will still be banned from bike paths. The maximum speed is capped at 25 kilometers per hour, while the total weight must be below 30 kilograms.
Imported electric bicycles without safety confirmation, modified models with a bicycle motor kit and throttle activated electric bikes are still prohibited from being used on bike paths.
Cyclists with electric bicycles with a safety approval issued prior to the new law can ride in bike lanes until September 22, but manufacturers and importers will be subject to further safety exams for the right of way on bike lanes afterwards, according to traffic authorities.
To confirm a bicycle’s eligibility, visit www.bike.go.kr for more information, including a list of approved electric bicycles.
In celebration of the cycling law, the Ministry of the Interior and Safety held a promotional event earlier today at Cheonggye Plaza featuring singer Kim Se-hwan, an honorary ambassador for the ministry’s cycling safety campaign, and cycling director Cho Ho-sung, raising awareness of safe cycling and the new policy.