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HARRY TOUART, San Clemente
Over the past few years, there has been an overwhelming increase in the amount of e-bikes, motor-driven bikes, e-carts, golf carts and other non-licensed vehicles dominating the streets and pedestrian areas.
Some can operate at speeds in excess of 30 mph. Many are operated by very young children without a driver’s license, no professional training or drivers education to the rules of safely operating on public roads.
Traffic signs, lights and safety devices are blatantly ignored. Most dart across in front of traffic, pass cars on all sides and veer in between cars. Far too many are being operated at night without any lighting. Some even have the safety reflectors removed to look stealth.
Then there are the intoxicated people operating them in traffic, crashing into things and wiping out on them. The most interesting operators are the ones who have never experienced riding an e-bike. Then they decide to rent one, take a crash course—no pun intended—on how to ride down the crowded beach trail terrorizing the people on foot.
Many municipalities with far less population and density have banned these non-licensed vehicles from the streets and classed them as motor-driven vehicles, outlawing them from traditional bike and pedestrian paths.
When is enough going to be enough? Will it take someone getting killed or a licensed driver losing everything they own for negligent homicide due to some idiot being careless/reckless on an e-bike? I’ve personally lost count on how many close calls there have been to date.
Will it take a politician or some high-profile “rich” person to have the unfortunate deadly encounter to finally force new regulations and enforce the existing laws for operating non-licensed vehicles on the public roads?
Let this be food for thought, folks. If someone has been out on the town and had a couple drinks, then some kid on an e-bike blasts through a stop sign at night without lights and gets smashed, your life will be ruined forever, and you will certainly be incarcerated for vehicular homicide.