Utah law identifies E-bikes as a traditional pedal bike that is propelled by human power and equipped with an assisting motor. Utah recognizes three classes of E-bikes. Each class is limited to a 750W (1 Horsepower) motor and has a maximum assisted speed of 20-28mph. Below, every reference to E-bikes is based on this definition. Considering E-bike laws, every state is different. Many states have adopted the three class system; many have not. Often, counties will have their own area-specific rules regarding E-bikes. Here’s a breakdown of laws that apply to electric bike use in Utah, keeping in mind that each county may have slight variations on local paths and trails.
- E-bikes are regulated like bicycles. The same rules of the road apply to both electric and human-powered bicycles.
- E-bikes are not subject to the registration, licensing or insurance requirements that apply to motor vehicles.
- Utah designates three classes of E-Bikes that categorize E-bikes based on motor size, max assisted speed, and throttle-assist.
- E-bikes are allowed on bike paths.
- E-bikes are not allowed on sidewalks.
E-Bike Laws for Trails
Unfortunately, there’s a lot of confusion regarding E-bike use on mountain trails. This exists because local, state, and federal land agencies have yet to draft concise rules governing E-bike usage. Please contact your local and state land management agencies to voice your support of E-bikes on Utah trails.
- LOCAL: Consult your local land management agency.
- STATE: Utah State Parks does not currently have an E-bike (eMTB) policy. Contact the department (801-538-RIDE) for the most up to date information.
- FEDERAL: On federal lands, eMTBs are considered motorized vehicles and have access to motorized trails. Contact the U.S. Forest Service – Intermountain Region (801-625-5605) or the BLM Utah State Office (801) 539-4001) for more information.
- E-bikes can be ridden in any area or trail where OHVs are currently allowed.
- E-bikes are allowed on trails limited to bicycles and non-motorized travel ONLY IF a BLM Manager issues a written decision authorizing E-bike use in accordance with applicable laws and regulations
- Similar to traditional bicycles, E-bikes are not allowed in designated wilderness areas and may not be appropriate for back-country trails.
- Do not ride your eMTB in areas where the local rules are unclear. Ride legally and only on authorized trails. When in doubt, ask your local land manager about access to specific trails. Local land rules change frequently.
- Be a responsible trail user at all times. Be kind, pull over, and say ‘Hello!’
- An individual under 16 years of age may not operate a class 3 electric assisted bicycle.
- An individual under 14 years of age may not operate an electric assisted bicycle with the electric motor engaged on any public property, highway, path, or sidewalk unless the individual is under the direct supervision of the individual’s parent or guardian.
- An individual under eight years of age may not operate an electric assisted bicycle with the electric motor engaged on any public property, highway, path, or sidewalk.
- The owner of an electric assisted bicycle may not authorize or knowingly permit an individual to operate an electric assisted bicycle in violation of this section.
- Beginning January 1, 2017, each Utah-based manufacturer of an electric assisted bicycle and each distributor of an electric assisted bicycle in Utah shall permanently affix a label in a prominent location on the electric assisted bicycle.(b)Each manufacturer and each distributor shall ensure that the label is printed in Arial font, in 9-point type or larger, and includes the:(i)appropriate electric assisted bicycle classification number described in Section (41-6a-102);(ii)top assisted speed; and(iii)wattage of the motor.
- An individual who violates this section is guilty of an infraction.
- A class 2 electric assisted bicycle is subject to the restrictions of Section (41-6a-526).
- A person may not drink any alcoholic beverage while operating a motor vehicle or a class 2 electric assisted bicycle, or while a passenger in a motor vehicle, whether the vehicle is moving, stopped, or parked on any highway or waters of the state.
- A person may not keep, carry, possess, transport, or allow another to keep, carry, possess, or transport in the passenger compartment of a motor vehicle, or a class 2 electric assisted bicycle, when the vehicle is on any highway or waters of the state, any container which contains any alcoholic beverage if the container has been opened, its seal broken, or the contents of the container partially consumed.
Is My E-Bike Street Legal?
- You are required to have a white headlight, red taillight or reflector, and side reflectors, all visible for at least 500 feet (41-6a-1114) any time you ride earlier than a half hour before sunrise, later than a half hour after sunset, or whenever it is otherwise difficult to make out vehicles 1000 feet away (41-6a-1603).
- You must have brakes capable of stopping you within 25 feet from a speed of 10 miles per hour on dry, level, clean pavement (41-6a-1113).
- You cannot have a siren or whistle on your bike (41-6a-1113).
If you have been injured by an E-Bike, call Injury Smart Law today at 1-435-688-1919.