Author Topic: 20mph speed limit -applies to bikes ?

20mph speed limit -applies to bikes ?
« on: February 26, 2013 »
KirstinS at Pedelecs writes:

Blanket 20mph speed limit coming to Brighton and they started painig the road markings today

Try as I might I have failed to find an answer to the following

1) Does the speed limit apply to bicycles? And is there any change when

on the road just like all the motor vehicles
On the road but in a cycle lane
Off the road but on a designated cycle path

2) If it does apply to bicycles what sanctions can be applied ? A small fine ? A large fine ? The taking of the first born ?

Now local plod have said they wont enforce it and so its easy to apply a common sense approach. However, what I really want to know is the hard position in law

Anybody got any insight ? I feel it is especially relevant for ebikes as, given assistance to 15.5pmh, it is fairly easy to break the 20mph limit if you are a relatively fit rider or going downhill.

I have searched this site and the webbernet but failed to find anything that could be considered an evidenced view

This is what's known in jurisprudence as a gotcha, however latent the threat of a ticket. That the law does not currently allow for confiscation of the first born as a fixed penalty should not breed complacency given the ever-encroaching nature of the state. Actual enforcement comes down to how close the officer is to meeting his quota or how well CCTV cameras are being maintained.

As you have noted, riders of ebikes – or "cheaters" as they are known in the non-ebike community – are especially at risk from becoming unwitting scofflaws. Uneasily inhabiting that grey area between bicycle and motorcycle, power assisted two wheelers fall into an equally indistinct area of the law. When assessing mitigating circumstances the judge is permitted to take into account whether you are representing yourself as a gentle Hell's Angel or an empowered Walter Mitty.

Advise you keep it under 20, if not in pursuit of an unblemished record than to keep from egging on impressionable old age pensioners (God's waiting room being in Eastbourne just down the road from Brighton), who are easily goaded to pursue speeds in excess of their reaction time.

pic grabbed from here