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E-Bikes: Laws and Driver’s License Requirements in Georgia

Bikes that operate on electricity, or E-bikes, actually have fully operable pedals and a seat just like regular bicycles. However, they also have an electric motor that provides power to propel the E-bike forward. Here we want to discuss the laws and driver’s license requirements in the state of Georgia for a person to operate an E-bike.

Defining an E-Bike in Georgia

The state of Georgia defines electric bicycles as any type of bicycle or tricycle equipped with fully operable pedals, that have a seat or saddle for the rider, and have an electric motor of less than 750 watts. Electric bikes are placed into one of three categories:

  1. Class 1 defines E-bikes as ones equipped with a motor that only provides assistance when the rider is pedaling and that turns off when the bicycle reaches 20 mph. 
  2. Class 2 defines E-bikes as ones with a motor that can power the bicycle even when the rider is not pedaling and ceases to provide propulsion when the E-bike reaches a speed of 20 mph.
  3. Class 3 defines E-bikes as those equipped with a motor that only provides assistance when the rider is pedaling but stops when the bicycle reaches 28 mph.

Do You Need a Driver’s License to Operate an E-Bike in Georgia?

In Georgia, an individual does not need any special type of driver’s license to operate an E-bike. 

What Are Georgia’s E-Bike Laws?

Some people think that E-bike operators are required to carry insurance or register the vehicle with the state of Georgia. That is not true. Electric bicycles do not have to be registered, and owners do not have to carry insurance to operate the E-bike. However, the power output of the motor of an E-bike in Georgia cannot exceed 750 watts.

There is an age restriction concerning E-bikes, but only ones that are considered Class 3. A Class 3 E-bike can only be operated by an individual 15 years of age or older. Additionally, any person who operates a Class 3 E-bike in Georgia must wear a helmet when doing so.

Electric bicycles are allowed to ride on the roadway, but they must be as far to the right as practical, just like regular bicycles. Additionally, electric bicycles are allowed onto marked bike paths. All local ordinances must be obeyed, including any local ordinances specifically restricting E-bike usage.

Riders Need to Maintain Safety

Even though the state of Georgia generally treats electric bicycles as regular bicycles when it comes to roadway safety, we need to caution any E-bike user in this state to maintain safety standards. The reality is that these bicycles typically reach cruising speeds that most bicyclists do not maintain regularly. These vehicles skirt the line between regular bicycles and mopeds, and individuals can sustain severe injuries if they are involved in an accident.

If you or somebody you love has been injured in an accident while riding an E-bike, you may need to seek assistance from a bicycle accident attorney who can help you recover compensation for your losses. This is particularly true if your crash was caused by the careless or negligent actions of another driver in Georgia. Contact us today online or by calling us at (770) 251-7100 for a free consultation