Motorized Bicyclist Bust: Can this happen to YOU ?

ezrider

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May 14, 2016
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117


"Part of his personal renaissance was acquiring some means of transportation so he had a chance of getting to a job and generally getting around. With all of the other forms of personal motorized transport barred because of his license situation, Burns built a motorized bike and thought he was good to go.

He got pulled over in Decatur in July after a police officer said he measured the bike's speed at more than 30 mph. Burns was ticketed for driving while license revoked, operating an uninsured vehicle, having no registration and not wearing goggles. Police seized the bike as evidence. Burns then attempted to fight the tickets on the grounds that his motorized bike was not a moped. He appeared to have won the day Aug. 11, when the Macon County State's Attorney's Office filed a motion to dismiss the charges on the grounds that the moped statute "does not apply to such a vehicle."

But after conversations with the police department, the charges were reinstated Aug. 20. Burns wound up going to court and being convicted in a bench trial April 8, at which he was given a conditional discharge for 12 months, ordered to perform 300 hours of community service, fined and ordered to pay court costs."

Motorized Bicycles Cross Moped Line
http://herald-review.com/news/local/motorized-bicycles-sometimes-cross-moped-line-police-say/article_2504c8b0-2956-599a-b44c-4fc4fef2a6a6.html
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Wolfshoes

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Sep 17, 2013
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The risk in Illinois is not quite that dire. This ruling was overturned by an appellate court. Overturning the ruling did not change Illinois law, but in that one of five appellate districts the ruling determined that because of Newton's Laws, the 20 mph speed limit for motorized bicycles does not begin until the motor takes over allowing a legal speed greater than 20 mph. My town police chief, that is not in this area of Illinois, accepts the ruling. I carry a copy of the ruling when I ride. Decatur Appellate Ruling 2012, 4110593_R23

In my opinion, the important thing in Illinois is to always be seen pedaling off from a dead stop and keep the speed under 30 mph. That alone would offset the worst of problems. If you are not in the Decatur area, make your case with the local police chief that you believe it is legal to ride as accepted by the Appellate Court decision. A link to a copy of the court decision is posted on motorbicycling.com in their older (2012) legal forum threads.
 

Steve Best

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Let me get this straight.
A guy is caught riding a bicycle faster than 30mph with no eye protection.
When pulled over to talk about this, the cop finds this guy has had his motorized driving privileges revoked.
The saying: "People who live in glass houses should not throw stones" rings in my ears.

If he was wearing all the safety gear and pedaling at 20mph on a quiet bike, do you think he would have been stopped?
I really don't think this could happen to me. I'm quiet, I pedal, I follow the rules of the road.
If I exceed 30mph I do it where it will not offend people or risk safety.

I watched a guy go by the other day, gutted muffler, no pedaling, helmet unfastened.
Idiot. Going to ruin our good thing.

We have a wonderful little nook that allows us the freedom to build and design and ride that motorcycles have lost.
DO NOT MESS THIS UP folks. Do not flaunt the law. Do not attract negative attention.
Be safe, be stealthy.

Steve
 
Last edited:

ezrider

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These are some excellent replies and suggestions. In addition to pedaling off from a dead stop, a concealed radar detector might be a good idea as well.
 

bakaneko

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Well, I am sure he wasn't stopped because he did not pedal from a dead stop. I mean he should not be going above the speed limit and wearing protective eye wear but it seem they just made an example of the poor guy to remind the rest to follow the rules. How many times have we exceeded the limits of the law here? Regardless of the road, if we go above the speed limit, cops do have the right to stop us and impose heavy fines. But, would they for a simple motorized bike, it seem from this article the cops and city just wanted to make an example of the guy and tell the citizens the operating difference between a motorized bike and moped. And, a poor guy with a less than stellar background trying to recover is sadly their way of doing it. Funny thing is that in Wisconsin all the mopeds I've seen go beyond 30 mph easy otherwise you get a refund...
 

Steve Best

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Sep 22, 2012
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He got
Well, I am sure he wasn't stopped because he did not pedal from a dead stop.
He was stopped because he was going over 30mph. Very clear.

I mean he should not be going above the speed limit and wearing protective eye wear but it seem they just made an example of the poor guy to remind the rest to follow the rules. How many times have we exceeded the limits of the law here? Regardless of the road, if we go above the speed limit, cops do have the right to stop us and impose heavy fines.
Yes, if you break the laws, you get a fine. Very clear.
If when you are stopped they find other factors, like no safety gear and your driving privileges have been revoked for past behaviour, expect it to affect the decisions the officer makes regarding further charges. Past performance often predicts future behaviour. If this guy's driving hurt people in the past, would you blame the officer for doing what he could to get him off the road?

But, would they for a simple motorized bike, it seem from this article the cops and city just wanted to make an example of the guy and tell the citizens the operating difference between a motorized bike and moped. And, a poor guy with a less than stellar background trying to recover is sadly their way of doing it. Funny thing is that in Wisconsin all the mopeds I've seen go beyond 30 mph easy otherwise you get a refund...
Each case runs on its own merits. "less than stellar background"? Multiple impaired driving charges or maiming a pedestrian or fellow driver is not "less than stellar background", it is a history of disregard for the law and the safety of others, which the officer sees repeated yet again. That officer wants to see THIS DRIVER off the road because of his repeated disregard for the law and the safety of others.

Unfortunately we get caught up in the technicalities. That rider is not our friend.

Steve
 

JunkyardDog

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Jun 10, 2010
Messages
247
I think 30 mph is crazy for a motorized bicycle. The law in my state is 20 mph, and I ride a lot slower than that, basically keeping pace with pedal bikes. I ride a motorized bike because I cannot pedal due to medical issues, not to go fast. I have a drivers license, though one is not required. However, there is an exception. If you lost your license for DUI, you cannot ride a motorized bicycle. I wear eye protection. Motorized bikes in my state do not require registration or insurance, but that is when riding in a legal manner. 30 mph IS moped speed. If this guy had been riding along like a regular bicycle, he probably would not have attracted the cops attention. Having a loud exhaust, like an expansion chamber on a 2 stroke also attracts attention.
 

Randall

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May 23, 2016
Messages
564
Let me get this straight.
A guy is caught riding a bicycle faster than 30mph with no eye protection.
When pulled over to talk about this, the cop finds this guy has had his motorized driving privileges revoked.
The saying: "People who live in glass houses should not throw stones" rings in my ears.

If he was wearing all the safety gear and pedaling at 20mph on a quiet bike, do you think he would have been stopped?
I really don't think this could happen to me. I'm quiet, I pedal, I follow the rules of the road.
If I exceed 30mph I do it where it will not offend people or risk safety.

I watched a guy go by the other day, gutted muffler, no pedaling, helmet unfastened.
Idiot. Going to ruin our good thing.

We have a wonderful little nook that allows us the freedom to build and design and ride that motorcycles have lost.
DO NOT MESS THIS UP folks. Do not flaunt the law. Do not attract negative attention.
Be safe, be stealthy.

Steve

I like your posts Steve but I take issue with this one thing: "I watched a guy go by the other day, gutted muffler, no pedaling, helmet unfastened.
Idiot. Going to ruin our good thing."

His brain farts are HIS problem, not ours.

Also, remember we are in a common law jurisdiction. Injury - Property Damage - Violation of a Legal Right, are the items that are actionable.
www.marcstevens.net
 

Wolfshoes

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Sep 17, 2013
Messages
140
In reply to the opinion about riding a motorbike up to 30 mph, I would agree riding at 15 or 20 mph for many is fast enough. The engine is not screaming at you, pavement can be rough without suspension and wind chill can be significant even at 68 degrees F. If you are going to use the bike for a extended ride or as utility from going from point A to point B, it may be unavoidable to stay away from 55 mph roads where the traffic is going 60 mph. Taking the lane in heavy traffic, even if legal likely would reduce life expectancy, so riding a paved shoulder, if there is one, may be the only option. The advantage of a 30 mph speed is the safety of getting out of that situation as soon as possible until higher speed roads are made safer for lower speed travelers. Therefore the speed capability of the bike can depend on what you are doing with the bike. For urban riders, 20 mph may be fast enough for all around riding.
 

Randall

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May 23, 2016
Messages
564
I try to only ride on the right side of the white line when possible. Ridden past plenty of city police and sheriff's deputies, they don't even look twice at me. Might be the size of the town I am in. Not sure.
 
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