Ohio Revised Code Section 4511.522

Electric bicycles; labels; compliance with federal regulations; permitted use; violations.
Legislation: House Bill 295 - 133rd General Assembly

Effective: April 15, 2021
 

In a nutshell**:
 

  • Ohio recognizes Electric Bicycles as a regular bicycle. It classifies them under 3 types and defines their permitted use as follows:
     

    • Class 1: 750W max motor power with a motor assist max speed of 20 MPH & no throttle.

      • When the rider ceases pedaling the electric motor ceases to provide assistance.

      • Operation is permitted on a path set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles or on a shared-use path, unless the county, township, municipal corporation*, other local authority, or state agency with control over the path by resolution, ordinance, or rule prohibits the use of a class 1 electric bicycle on such a path.

        • *As an example: Geneva on the Lake has an ordinance that prohibits the use of bicycles (including e-bikes) on sidewalks. You may however ride up and down "The Strip", following all traffic rules and sharing the road with all traffic. The Geneva State Park has a bike trail where Class 1&2 bicycles may enjoy riding away from traffic.
           

    • Class 2: 750W max motor power with a motor assist max speed of 20 MPH & a throttle.​

      • When the rider applies the brakes, ceases pedaling, or releases the throttle the electric motor ceases to provide assistance.

      • Operation is permitted on a path set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles or on a shared-use path, unless the county, township, municipal corporation, other local authority, or state agency with control over the path by resolution, ordinance, or rule prohibits the use of a class 2 electric bicycle on such a path.
         

    • Class 3: 750W max motor power with a motor assist max speed of 28 MPH & a throttle.

      • No person shall operate a class 3 electric bicycle on a path set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles or a shared-use path unless that path is within or adjacent to a highway or the county, township, municipal corporation, or local authority, or state agency with control over the path by resolution, ordinance, or rule authorizes the use of a
        class 3 electric bicycle on such a path.

      • No person under sixteen years of age shall operate a class 3 electric bicycle.

      • No person shall operate or be a passenger on a class 3 electric bicycle unless the person is wearing a protective helmet that meets the standards established by the consumer product safety commission or the American society for testing and materials.
         

    • No person shall operate a class 1 electric bicycle, a class 2 electric bicycle, or a class 3 electric bicycle on a path that is intended to be used primarily for mountain biking, hiking, equestrian use, or other similar uses, or any other single track or natural surface trail that has historically been reserved for non-motorized use, unless the county, township, municipal corporation, other local authority, or state agency with control over the path by resolution, ordinance, or rule authorizes the use of a class 1 electric bicycle, a class 2 electric bicycle, or a class3 electric bicycle on such a path.
       

**We make no assumption of responsibility or offer any legal advise. Please read and understand the laws pertaining the use of e-bikes before renting. Check all county, township, municipal corporation, other local authority, or state agency ordinances before engaging in any e-bike rides. Follow all traffic laws. You may read Ohio's original House Bill 295 by following this link:
https://codes.ohio.gov/ohio-revised-code/section-4511.522