Riders do not need a licence to operate a power-assisted bicycle, and no registration is required.
Questions and Answers
Why is the government making this change?
Without a legislative amendment providing exemptions from registration and driver's licence requirements, power-assisted bicycles are not eligible for operation on public roads.
In an attempt to allow the operation of power-assisted bicycles on public roads, the Highway Traffic Board issued SGI a permit delegating the authority to conditionally exempt operators of power-assisted bicycles from registration and driver licence requirements. This permit expired on December 31, 2012.
This legislation is intended to harmonize with national best-practices and to simplify regulation and enforcement.
What is a power-assisted bicycle?
A power-assisted bicycle means a vehicle that:
- Is capable of being propelled by muscular power.
- Has one or more electric motors that have, singly or in combination, the following characteristics:
- it has a total continuous power output rating, measured at the shaft of each motor, of 500 W or less
- if it is engaged by the use of muscular power, power assistance immediately ceases when the muscular power ceases
- if it is engaged by the use of an accelerator controller, power assistance immediately ceases when the brakes are applied
- it is incapable of providing further assistance when the bicycle attains a speed of 32 km/h on level ground
- bears a label that is permanently affixed by the manufacturer and appears in a conspicuous location stating, in both official languages, that the vehicle is a power-assisted bicycle
- has a mechanism that prevents the motor from being engaged before the bicycle attains a speed of 3 km/h OR has an enabling mechanism to turn the electric motor on and off that is separate from the accelerator controller and fitted in such a manner that it is operable by the driver.
Is a driver's licence required to operate a power-assisted bicycle?
No, a driver’s licence is not required. That said, the operator of a power-assisted bicycle must be at least 14 years of age.
Is the operator of a power-assisted bicycle required to wear a helmet?
Yes, a CSA-approved bicycle or motorcycle helmet is required.
Is the operator of a power-assisted bicycle allowed to carry a passenger?
Yes, provided the power-assisted bicycle is designed to carry a passenger. The passenger is also required to wear a CSA-approved bicycle or motorcycle helmet.
Who was consulted before making this decision?
SGI consulted with other Canadian jurisdictions, the Saskatchewan Safety Council, law enforcement, and provincial power-assisted bicycle dealers.
What if a municipality wants to restrict the operation of power-assisted bicycles?
A municipality may choose to enact a bylaw prohibiting or restricting the use of power-assisted bicycles.
Does SGI have to approve a municipal power-assisted bicycle bylaw?
No, any bylaw restricting the use of power-assisted bicycles would not be subject to SGI approval.
What do other jurisdictions do?
|Registration and insurance||No||No||No||No|
|Max. continuous power rating||500W||500W||500W||500W|
|Maximum assisted top speed||32kph||32kph||32kph||32kphW|