Nationwide Park Service Declares Coverage for Electrical Bicycle Use in Nationwide Parks and BLM Land

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On August 30, the Nationwide Park Service introduced a brand new electrical bicycle (e-bike) coverage for nationwide parks, increasing leisure alternatives and accessibility. The coverage helps Secretary’s Order 3376, signed by U.S. Secretary of the Inside David Bernhardt on August 29, that directs Division of the Inside (DOI) bureaus to create a transparent and constant e-bike coverage on all federal lands managed by the Division. The coverage additionally helps Secretary’s Order 3366 to extend leisure alternatives on public lands.

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A majority of states have adopted e-bike insurance policies, most following mannequin laws that enables for the three courses of e-bikes to have entry to bicycle trails. The NPS e-bike coverage seeks to offer some consistency with the state guidelines making use of the place park items are situated.

“As extra Individuals are utilizing e-bikes to benefit from the nice outside, nationwide parks ought to be conscious of guests’ curiosity in utilizing this new expertise wherever it’s protected and applicable to take action,” mentioned Nationwide Park Service Deputy Director P. Daniel Smith. “They make bicycle journey simpler and extra environment friendly, and so they present an choice for individuals who need to journey a bicycle however may not in any other case accomplish that due to bodily health, age, incapacity, or comfort, particularly at excessive altitudes or in hilly or strenuous terrain.”

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This new coverage will allow guests to make use of e-bikes, low-speed electrical bicycles with energy help, in the identical method as conventional bicycles, permitting them on park roads, paved or hardened trails, areas designated for off-road motorcar use and administrative roads. The operator of an e-bike could solely use the motor to help pedal propulsion. The motor might not be used to propel an e-bike with out the rider additionally pedaling, besides in areas open to public motorcar site visitors.

Much like conventional bicycles, e-bikes should not allowed in designated wilderness areas. Park superintendents will retain the suitable to restrict, prohibit, or impose situations of bicycle use and e-bike use in an effort to guarantee customer security and useful resource safety. Over the approaching month, superintendents will work with their native communities, workers and companions to find out finest practices and steerage for e-bike use of their parks. Guests ought to verify the web site of the park they plan to go to for particulars about the place e-bikes are permitted and every other issues particular to that park.

E-bikes make bicycle journey simpler and extra environment friendly, as a result of they permit bicyclists to journey farther with much less effort. When used as an alternative choice to gasoline- or diesel-powered modes of transportation, e-bikes can cut back greenhouse gasoline emissions and fossil gas consumption, enhance air high quality, and help lively modes of transportation for park workers and guests. Much like conventional bicycles, e-bikes can lower site visitors congestion, cut back the demand for car parking areas, and improve the quantity and visibility of cyclists on the highway.

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A replica of the Nationwide Park Service’s new e-bike coverage is on the market on-line.

www.nps.gov

Contact: NewsMedia@nps.gov

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Full Memorandum

Objective

Electrical bicycles (e-bikes) are showing in nationwide parks with better frequency. This Coverage
Memorandum (Memorandum) addresses this rising type of recreation in order that the Nationwide
Park Service (NPS) can train clear administration authority over the usage of e-bikes inside the
Nationwide Park System.

This Memorandum defines “e-bikes” per Federal regulation and a majority of State legal guidelines
and supplies for his or her use and regulation on the identical foundation as bicycles with out energy help
capabilities (“conventional bicycles”).
Background

Definition of E-bikes
An e-bike is a two- or three-wheeled cycle with absolutely operable pedals and an electrical motor of
lower than 750 watts (1 h.p.) that gives propulsion help.
A Federal definition of “low pace electrical bicycle” is included within the Shopper Product Safety
Act.
1
Many States have adopted insurance policies for regulating e-bikes per this Federal
definition, together with in some circumstances a labeling requirement figuring out an e-bike’s compliance
with the next classifications:
1 15 U.S.C. 2085 states: “For functions of this part, the time period ‘low-speed electrical bicycle’ means a two- or threewheeled car with absolutely operable pedals and an electrical motor of lower than 750 watts (1 h.p.), whose most
pace on a paved degree floor, when powered solely by such a motor whereas ridden by an operator who weighs 170
kilos, is lower than 20 mph.”
2
“Class 1 electrical bicycle” shall imply an electrical bicycle geared up with a motor that gives
help solely when the rider is pedaling, and that ceases to offer help when the bicycle
reaches the pace of 20 miles per hour.
“Class 2 electrical bicycle” shall imply an electrical bicycle geared up with a motor which may be used
completely to propel the bicycle, and that isn’t able to offering help when the bicycle
reaches the pace of 20 miles per hour.
“Class three electrical bicycle” shall imply an electrical bicycle geared up with a motor that gives
help solely when the rider is pedaling, and that ceases to offer help when the bicycle
reaches the pace of 28 miles per hour.
Units with electrical motors of 750 watts (1 h.p.) or extra of energy and never included as Class 1,
Class 2 or Class three within the classification system above ought to be managed as motor autos below
36 CFR half four. Underneath 36 CFR four.10, motor autos are allowed on park roads and on routes and
areas designated for off-road motorcar use.
Advantages of E-bikes
E-bikes advance Wholesome Parks Wholesome Folks objectives to advertise parks as a well being useful resource by
supporting a wholesome park expertise that’s accessible, fascinating, and relatable to folks of all
talents, and by minimizing human affect by the growth of lively transportation
choices in parks. Particularly, e-bikes can:
• Enhance bicycle entry to and inside parks. E-bikes make bicycle journey simpler and extra
environment friendly, as a result of they permit bicyclists to journey farther with much less effort.
• Broaden the choice of bicycling to extra folks. E-bikes present a brand new choice for folks
who need to journey a bicycle however may not in any other case accomplish that due to bodily health, age,
or comfort, particularly at excessive altitude or in hilly or strenuous terrain.
• Mitigate environmental impacts. When used as an alternative choice to gasoline- or dieselpowered modes of transportation, e-bikes can cut back greenhouse gasoline emissions and fossil
gas consumption, enhance air high quality, and help lively modes of transportation for
park workers and guests. Much like conventional bicycles, e-bikes can lower site visitors
congestion, cut back the demand for car parking areas, and improve the quantity and
visibility of cyclists on the highway.
Coverage
E-bikes are allowed the place conventional bicycles are allowed. E-bikes should not allowed the place
conventional bicycles are prohibited, together with wilderness areas. Besides on park roads2 and different
2 Park highway means the main-traveled floor of a roadway open to motor autos that’s owned, managed or
in any other case administered by the NPS. 36 CFR 1.four. Roads embody bicycle infrastructure that’s a part of a highway equivalent to
bike lanes and shoulders.
three
areas the place use of motor autos by the general public is allowed, operators could solely use the ability
offered by the electrical motor to help pedal propulsion of an e-bike. The intent of this coverage is
to permit e-bikes for use for transportation and recreation in an analogous method to conventional
bicycles.
Regulations for conventional bicycles in paragraphs (f), (g), and (h) of 36 CFR four.30 relate to
closures and different use restrictions, different necessities, and prohibited acts.
• Paragraph (f) permits superintendents to restrict or prohibit or impose situations on bicycle
use or shut any park highway, path, or portion thereof to bicycle use after taking into
consideration public well being and security, pure and cultural useful resource safety, and different
administration actions and aims.
• Paragraph (g) states that bicycle use is topic to (1) sure NPS laws that apply to
motor autos;three and (2) State legal guidelines concerning bicycles that aren’t in any other case addressed by
NPS laws.
four

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• Paragraph (h) prohibits possessing a bicycle in wilderness and comprises NPS security
laws for the usage of bicycles.
5
This Memorandum requires that these provisions additionally govern the usage of e-bikes in order that the usage of
e-bikes and conventional bicycles are usually regulated in the identical method. Superintendents
could restrict or prohibit or impose situations on bicycle use, together with particular limitations on e-bike
use, or could shut any park highway, parking space, administrative highway, path, or portion thereof to
such bicycle use and/or e-bike use, or terminate such situation, closure, restrict or restriction after:
(1) Making an allowance for public well being and security, pure and cultural useful resource safety,
and different administration actions and aims; and
(2) Notifying the general public by a number of strategies listed in 36 CFR 1.7.
Any such bicycle or e-bike closures and restrictions ought to be included within the park compendium.
Superintendents ought to perceive State and native guidelines addressing e-bikes in order that the usage of ebikes inside a park space just isn’t restricted greater than in adjoining jurisdictions, to the extent
doable.
NPS workers ought to collect and preserve details about the usage of e-bikes inside the park space,
together with details about impacts and customer use patterns. This data could inform
future choice making about the usage of e-bikes inside the Nationwide Park System.
three Particularly, sections four.12 (Site visitors management units), four.13 (Obstructing site visitors), four.20 (Proper of means), four.21 (Velocity
limits), four.22 (Unsafe operation), four.23 (Working drunk or medicine), and four.30(f) (Closures and
different use restrictions).
four State legal guidelines in regards to the definition, security operation, and licensing of e-bikes fluctuate from State to State. A rising
variety of States use the three-class system to distinguish between the fashions and speeds of e-bikes.
5 Particularly, paragraphs (h)(2)-(5) (regarding designated wilderness and operation in periods of low visibility,
abreast of one other bicycle, and with an open container of alcohol).
four
Required Actions
Superintendents are directed to handle e-bikes per this Memorandum below the
authority in 36 CFR 1.5(a)(2). This authority permits superintendents to designate areas for a
particular use or exercise, or impose situations or restrictions on a use or exercise.
Superintendents should take the next actions as quickly as doable, however no later than 30 days
after the issuance of this Memorandum or the introduction of e-bikes within the park space, whichever
is later:
1. Insert the next language within the park compendium:
The time period “e-bike” means a two- or three-wheeled cycle with absolutely operable pedals
and an electrical motor of lower than 750 watts (1 h.p.).
E-bikes are allowed in [insert name of park] the place conventional bicycles are allowed.
E-bikes are prohibited the place conventional bicycles are prohibited. Besides the place use of
motor autos by the general public is allowed, utilizing the electrical motor to maneuver an e-bike
with out pedaling is prohibited.
An individual working an e-bike is topic to the next sections of 36 CFR half four that
apply to the usage of conventional bicycles: sections four.12, four.13, four.20, four.21, four.22, four.23, and
four.30(h)(2)-(5).
Besides as specified on this Compendium, the usage of an e-bike inside [insert identify of
park] is ruled by State regulation, which is adopted and made part of this
Compendium. Any violation of State regulation adopted by this paragraph is prohibited.
2. Adjust to the necessities in 36 CFR 1.5, together with the requirement to offer
enough public discover in accordance with 36 CFR 1.7.
three. Adjust to all relevant legal guidelines implicated by the compendium motion, together with the
Nationwide Environmental Coverage Act of 1969 (NEPA). The compendium motion will
ordinarily fall inside the categorical exclusion laid out in part three.three.D.three of the
Nationwide Park Service NEPA Handbook for which documentation is required.6
No Third Get together Enforceability
This Memorandum is meant solely to enhance inner administration of the NPS, and isn’t
meant to, and doesn’t, create any proper or profit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at
regulation or in fairness by a celebration in opposition to the USA, its departments, companies, instrumentalities
or entities, its officers or staff, or every other individual.
——-Finish of Coverage Memorandum——-

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