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Meeting on ‘out-of-control e-bikes’ to gather pols, police brass, crash victims

BY THE VILLAGE SUN | A new and growing grassroots advocacy group is calling on local politicians to take steps to ensure citizens’ safety and “rein in the chaos caused by out-of-control e-bike riders” — including requiring all e-bikes to be licensed, registered, inspected and insured.

The new group, E-Vehicle Safety Alliance a.k.a. EVSA-NYC, will hold what it’s billing as a town hall meeting on “electric vehicle safety and accountability” on Wed., Sept. 27, at the Church of the Good Shepherd, at 240 E. 31st St., in Kips Bay, from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. However, the meeting, in fact, is specifically intended for the group’s many members — to share their concerns with legislators and offer suggestions on addressing the issues — not as a forum for the wider public.

According to EVSA-NYC, New York City’s streets and sidewalks have become a “Wild West” due to the proliferation of unregulated e-bikes, scooters, mopeds and motorcycles that “operate with no accountability or regard for the law.

“Collisions involving e-bikes and pedestrians, traditional bicycle riders and even cars and buses occur on a near daily basis and pose a constant danger,” EVSA-NYC said in a press release announcing the town hall.

A man maneuvering a heavy and unwieldy, 65-pound electric CitiBike uses a push-off on a light pole to help get rolling at 38th Street and Second Avenue, where a 69-year-old woman was critically injured by a wrong-way e-bike on Sept. 15. (Photo by The Village Sun)

Local politicians, New York Police Department top brass and crash victims who have been seriously injured will come together at the town hall to discuss possible legislative measures to ensure New Yorkers’ safety — including requiring all e-bikes to be licensed, registered, inspected and insured through a reclassification system.

Confirmed attendees include Assemblymembers Harvey Epstein and Alex Bores; City Councilmember Robert Holden; state Senator Liz Krueger; N.Y.P.D. Assistant Chief Kevin Williams, commanding officer of Patrol Service Bureau, Queens South; and N.Y.P.D. Sergeant Losada from the Office of Chief of Patrol. The event will be moderated by Janet Schroeder, a co-founder of EVSA-NYC.

Schroeder said the meeting is not really open to the public since it’s essentially for EVSA-NYC members.

“It is for our EVSA members, legislators and press,” she said. “The church seats 225 and there are probably that many EVSA members coming. This is our opportunity to have legislators hear from our victims and to hear EVSA’s suggestions and discuss these with the legislators.”

Councilmember Holden is the prime sponsor of a piece of legislation, Intro 758, to modify the New York City administrative code to require that e-bikes, e-scooters and “other legal motorized vehicles” — either electric or gas powered that cannot be registered with the state Department of Motor Vehicles — be licensed, registered and sport actual license plates. Intro 758 currently has 27 co-sponsors, including Erik Bottcher, constituting a majority of the City Council.

An invitation to the town hall has been extended to a spokesperson for the family of Patricia Loke, 69, the longtime Chinatown Head Start teacher fatally struck by an electric CitiBike on Sept. 5 at the chaotic intersection of Grand and Chrystie Streets. Police spoke to the cyclist who hit her but then allowed him to leave the scene without recording his name or information. Loke’s family members say they want information from police about exactly what happened and why the man was allowed to leave the scene.

EVSA-NYC’s membership currently includes more than 550 New Yorkers, who, according to the group, are “advocating to make the city’s streets, sidewalks and parks safe and free from dangerous e-vehicle drivers.” The group’s members include more than 50 victims of crashes.

The city’s bicycle lane network — after years of hard-fought lobbying by cycling advocates — was built out to serve pedal-powered bikes. Today, however, the bike lanes are increasingly dominated by much faster-moving electric vehicles, including — along with commuters and recreational bikers — an army of e-bike delivery persons speeding tacos and hamburgers to couch-potato cell-phone jockeys. In addition, CitiBike, which initially launched here in 2013 with only pedal-powered bikes, in recent years has been increasing the number of its popular e-bikes on the streets.


  1. Cooper Union parent Cooper Union parent September 25, 2023

    Why did the cop let the cyclist go who killed the woman in Chinatown?

  2. Allie Ryan Allie Ryan September 25, 2023

    During Early Voting of the Primary Rivera’s campaign manager, Casey Lamb, said that Rivera wanted to regulate ebikes, too. Here’s a perfect opportunity – a meeting in her council district, a room filled with constituents/ voters with the prime sponsor of a bill to regulate ebikes. Maybe its a dangerous stroll since Rivera lives a few short blocks from this meeting’s location.

    If Rivera doesn’t attend this meeting, she can continue her inaction on this issue and continue to pretend the 2nd Ave bike lane is safe in Kips Bay and Gramercy. (The 2nd Ave bike lane is not safe DUE to the ebikes, mopeds, escooters and motorcycles disregarding the rules of traffic and speeding to their destination.)

  3. Barbara Ruether Barbara Ruether September 25, 2023

    This traffic situation is a mess indeed. Does anyone remember when New York was called a most walkable ciity? No longer, and this is a great loss, especially for those who are more limited in activities due to Covid and are not attending large more expensive events.

  4. Penny Mintz Penny Mintz September 24, 2023

    Does anyone know the comparison of pedestrians injured or killed by motor vehicles compared to those injured or killed by bikes? Just in New York City? I believe it’s somewhere in the range of several thousand by motor vehicles to every one by bicycle. If that’s true, maybe we should be getting rid of cars, which also happen to pollute our air and take up an awful lot of real estate.

    • Anonymous Anonymous September 25, 2023

      Does the NYPD even track ebike bit and runs? I’ve heard from pedestrians hit by an ebike that they don’t.

  5. ddartley ddartley September 24, 2023

    Hey Village Sun: please don’t call it a “town hall,” and when evsa members call it one, please point out that that’s *their* characterization of the event.

  6. Bill Weinberg Bill Weinberg September 24, 2023

    Also, the e-bikers tend to be immigrant delivery workers, and there may be an element of xenophobia informing this double standard as well.

    • alissa alissa September 24, 2023

      IMO the most dangerous to pedestrians are the “regular” bicyclists (Citibike pedal & ebike, the racing/spandex folks, the TransAlts) The “regular” bicyclists who go through red lights, go the wrong way, curse pedestrians who object ….

      In contrast, I generally feel sorry for the exploited food delivery workers — and actually some of them do stop at red lights and seem to try to respect pedestrians. And the food delivery workers don’t curse pedestrians.

    • subway-bus subway-bus September 25, 2023

      Several bicyclists I know are themselves pretty xenophobic about riding the subway. They bike and Uber because they don’t want to mix with the “lowbrow”.

      And BTW they also get lots of food and e-commerce delivery

    • David R. Marcus David R. Marcus September 26, 2023

      Ethnicity and national origin has nothing to do with the harm, death and destruction caused by these vehicles, just as it has nothing to do with automobiles and automobile drivers, who are subject to the strictest rules, regulations, licensing and enforcement, as well as strict liability requiring the mandate for insurance. All vehicles with demonstrable capability to inflict harm or fear to the public should be regulated in comparable ways. Add into the mix the requirement for helmets — no different than to be cited for not wearing a seat belt.

      • Susan Susan September 26, 2023

        Thank you! It is pure insanity reigning, in an act by both the city and state, which have refused to regulate and enforce those regulations on e-vehicles and bikes! It’s about the only thing in NY that isn’t regulated!! And that’s because of the biker lobby and the delivery companies, bike-share and car-share companies they represent and financially invest in. At the expense of the safety of our citizens. The deaths and injuries from e-vehicles and bikes can be attributed to a dereliction of duty by our elected leaders. Thanks to nyc-EVSA for trying to address this breach.

  7. Bill Weinberg Bill Weinberg September 24, 2023

    I have some sympathy for this initiative, but also some misgivings. First, I fear that we purely human-powered bicyclists may get indiscriminately swept up in the backlash against e-bikes. And, critically…where is the anger at AUTOMOBILES, which kill something like 200 New Yorkers annually, the much-hyped “Vision Zero” notwithstanding? THAT car-nage is “normalized” by generations of acceptance, while the much lesser damage done by e-bikes is hyped because it is still a relative novelty. #JustSaying

    • Kibby Rose Kibby Rose September 24, 2023

      Automobiles don’t speed on sidewalks or explode in apartment buildings.

    • MSA MSA September 25, 2023

      Truly everyone should be using bus and subway – not bicycles.

  8. steve stollman steve stollman September 24, 2023

    There is a total ban on participation here by those most affected by these moves. What could be more unfair, unjust and plain stupid. Organized negativity often does not permit nuance or healthy varieties of perspective. I sold e-bikes in the ’80s and it is 50 years later and the importance of this modality is just now gaining full acceptance. It would have been much better to insist upon pedal-activization but we are a power-hungry and power-addicted society.

    Don’t blame e-bike riders. How many deaths and serious injuries occur every day on account of cars and trucks? Transitioning to appropriately scaled vehicles in crowded urban spaces is essential and will not take place without friction. Demanding licensing (and insurance, no doubt) will cripple this needed move to human-scale transport. Go after dangerous players of all types, from bikes to cars, the rude and dangerous who screw everything up for everybody else.

    • David R. Marcus David R. Marcus September 24, 2023

      The argument for regulation, enforcement, insurance and accountability for all vehicles and their drivers in the city is evident from the injury and deaths these so-called human-scale modes of transportation cause on a regular and recurring basis.

      • Cooper Union parent Cooper Union parent September 25, 2023


    • Jan Jan September 24, 2023

      Don’t blame e-bike riders? One person was killed and another critically injured over the space of a week by e-bike riders. Both pedestrians had the right of way? So who is to blame? As far as “transitioning” goes, do you know one person who rides a bike instead of driving a car?

    • Not Lance Armstrong Not Lance Armstrong September 24, 2023

      Yes, Steve, you sold e-bikes in your Houston Street store in the ’80s and ’90s.

      And why did you close? Because the government at that time declared them a hazard and banned them. Isn’t that correct?

      And in the four decades since, nothing has changed = they are still a hazard, only more so.

      However, with the advent of delivery services about ten years ago, they began to appear and proliferate again. So Mayor de Blasio cracked down, to his credit.

      Unfortunately, the most unpopular and disliked City Councilmember in memory, Margaret Chin, championed the illegal bikers, claiming ludicrously that they were in their 40s through 60s and couldn’t use regular bikes to make deliveries as distant as “30 blocks”, another false exaggeration of hers.

      She said that many could not speak English, a clear indication they likely weren’t voters and perhaps not even citizens. So, Chin threw the welfare of New Yorkers under the bus to placate her Chinatown base. Typical of her racist policies against “lo fan”.

      Ironically, I wonder if she offered condolences to the family of Chinatown teacher Patricia Loke, recently killed by an e-biker? Knowing Chin, I doubt it.

      Read her Streetsblog interview below, where she says the e-bikes should be legalized but said there should be enforcement.

      Let me ask you: when was the last time you saw an illegal e-biker ticketed?

  9. Kim Kim September 23, 2023

    Of course Carlina won’t be there. Coward.

    • Lin Lin September 24, 2023

      Though CR is a big TransAlt bicycle lobby supporter and describes herself as “progressive”, she uses a lot of evil Uber.

    • Cooper Union parent Cooper Union parent September 25, 2023

      Totally agree

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