In Germany, electric bikes are now banned for the summer from mountain roads

A German region has announced a ban on electric bikes on some mountain roads for the summer, in addition to combustion bikes.

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Several European countries often ban motorcycles from mountain roads in the summers as a safety and anti-noise-pollution measure. Now, Germany has also banned electric bikes. 

Le Repaire des Motards has reported that in the Haut-Taunus region of Germany, the local council has decided to launch an experiment that would prohibit motorcycle traffic on mountain roads on every weekend between April and October. 

It is not something which is new, though, as the same outlet notes that it has become a common occurrence in some European countries, including Austria and Switzerland in addition to Germany. 

Since the bans of motorcycles on these roads for the weekends are primarily to limit noise pollution, surely electric motorcycles would be exempt? Well, perhaps not. The measure specifies that a motorcycle would be considered as anything deemed a motorcycle by German law. That means any motorised two-wheeled vehicle that can travel above 45kph (28mph) with an engine capacity greater than 50cc. But, this definition of a motorcycle is created in ignorance of electric motorcycles, which emit almost no noise. 

The BVDM, a German motorcycle association, approached the authorities in the Haut-Taunus region for clarity on the matter. However, the response from the authorities, according to Le Repaire des Motards, said that the legislation does not distinguish between a combustion or electric bike.

Unless electric cars are also banned from mountain roads on weekends, the only thing to assume is that this is a measure not against noise pollution but against motorcycles. It is not a shock when authorities act in ignorance of the fans of two wheels, but that does not make it any less frustrating when such ignorance is displayed.

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