Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Drunks on motorized bicycles

What think ye of those bicycle "conversions," with a little 49cc 2-cycle engine and a gas tank?

Personally I don't care for them AT ALL!

I'm fairly ambivalent about the electric bicycles, because they make about as much noise as a human-powered bicycle. By comparison, the gas bicycles are downright obnoxious.

Plus - where do they belong? They're too slow to be out there moving with traffic in the traffic lanes. But I certainly don't think they belong in the bike lanes, either. I've even seen 'em buzzin' down sidewalks - that can't be legal or safe!

A little over a year ago, I inquired of the police department about what's legal, and where. They sent me a little chart with their policies. I suggested they needed to publicize it; they agreed that was a good idea, but I never saw anything. (Not that I notice everything.)

Well, I saw something on the Craigslist a week or 10 days ago that very much bothered me. It was posted by a guy who does gas-bike conversions, inviting business. And one of the points he was making to his prospective clientele was, "They're legal to ride even without a driver's license - so if you have a DUI conviction and don't have a license any more, tool around on one of these gas bicycles."

What think ye of drunks riding bikes with little gas motors?


A side-note on the electric bicycles. Several times, I've seen a guy riding a very obviously high-tech electric bike. It has those motors that are in the hubs, both front and back wheels (or so it appears). The thing is utterly silent, and obviously moves along comfortably at 15+ mph. (No idea on the range - that would be a consideration. But I assume you can pedal-power the things just like a regular bike, albeit with more weight to push along.) The guy riding it is pedaling... but ever so slowly. You know, one revolution every 2 or 3 seconds. I always want to ask him why he's pedaling; he's obviously not contributing to forward motion. Maybe his legs are just bored. Or maybe he's embarrassed to be seen coasting along on the thing. (It's not for me! One of my rewards is getting a bit of exercise and fitness.)

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