Moving Ontarians More Safely Act

Ottawa resident sails along on her cargo bike with her son at the helm. Photo credit: GabeImages

“The Moving Ontarians More Safely (MOMS) Act”, is touted by the Ontario government as new legislation that “will help protect people and families by targeting those who engage in stunt driving and unsafe, high-risk driving.” Digging into the Bill, we find it also includes new regulations for e-bikes and cargo bike usage across Ontario.

Bike Ottawa has submitted the following letter in response to the proposed Bill, as we have concerns about many of the details in the Bill. You can read our letter below, further discussion on the topic of cargo bike/e-bike use and the MOMS Act is forthcoming.

Stay tuned…

To: Honorable Caroline Mulroney, Ontario Minister of Transportation; MPP Jennifer
French, Transport Critic; MPP Joel Harden, Ottawa Centre
CC: info@sharetheroad.ca, info@canadabikes.org, advocacy@bikeottawa.ca
Via email: minister.mto@ontario.ca, jfrench-qp@ndp.on.ca, jharden-co@ndp.on.ca


Date: May 6, 2021

Subject: Bill 282, Moving Ontarians More Safely Act, 2021


Dear Hon. Caroline Mulroney, MPP Jennifer French, MPP Joel Harden:

We are encouraged to see this government reviewing legislation to make our communities
safer concerning the dangerous operation of motor vehicles.
We are also encouraged to see a requirement to report injuries of cyclists hit by car doors
(“dooring”). However, we suggest that this reporting not be restricted to one part of a vehicle
only, but encompass injuries to a cyclist resulting from contact with any part of the car. We
urge that agencies across the province be provided with the directions and information to
properly document these “collisions” (not “accidents” per language used in this Act) from the
perspective of someone riding a bicycle.


We would also like to highlight other language in this Act that, if left unchanged, will have
negative impacts on Ontarians, families and companies currently using electric-assisted
bicycles (e-bikes) now and in the future. Namely, Bike Ottawa is concerned with:


● Restricting e-bikes to “conventional exposed fork-and-frame bicycle design”, makes
certain types of bicycles already being used by Ontarians illegal (such as recumbents
and tricycles). We are concerned this may stifle future e-bike development and
accessible designs. Instead, we suggest differentiaing between pedal-driven cycles
and those that resemble motor scooters or motorcycles;
● Not permitting quad-cycles, which are often used to move cargo safely in the EU;
● Language around pedals will make some types of bicycles already used in Ontario,
such as hand-rowed bicycles and walking bicycles, illegal if electrified. We
recommend adopting the North American standard Three Class System,
already used in many US states, to better differentiate between pedal and
throttle driven cycles;
● Wheel-size restrictions making many bicycles already in Ontario illegal to electrify;
● Weight restrictions off 55 kilograms, which diminish the practicality of these e-bikes
already in use by families, restrict “Cycling Without Age” cycles, as well as the
implementation of cargo bikes by businesses to move goods in Ottawa more
sustainably and efficiently;

We strongly encourage your government to consult with industry groups and other
concerned organizations with respect to this Act to ensure that any e-bike legislation is
well-researched, focusing on promoting their use while making Ontario safer for people on
bikes.
Relevant examples of documentation you may want to consult includes:
1) European Union REGULATION (EU) No 168/2013: the approval and market
surveillance of two- or three-wheel vehicles and quadricycles
2) People for Bikes: Model Electric Bicycle Law with Classes


We thank you for your time and consideration of our concerns and recommendations.


Sincerely,
Dave Robertson
Board of Directors
Bike Ottawa