Inspectorate fines nine firms for selling fatbikes as e-bikes, not regulated scooters
The Human Environment and Transport Inspectorate fined nine retailers 15,000 euros each for selling fatbikes without the proper licenses and approvals. The Inspectorate considers these electric two-wheelers to be scooters, which are subject to stricter requirements than regular e-bikes.
The classification for a scooter is that it can go faster than 25 kilometers per hour, has a power higher than 250 watts, or can move forward without pedaling, for example, using a throttle. According to the Inspectorate, fatbikes - e-bikes with thicker wheels - fall under this classification.
“We care about road safety. The mostly younger users of such a fatbike don’t realize that it is not an electric bicycle but a scooter. And then a driver’s license, license plate, helmet, and third-party insurance is mandatory,” Karin Visser of the Inspectorate said.
In November last year, the Inspectorate warned 27 online sellers that they illegally sold fatbikes under the wrong classification. Fifteen of them then stopped selling fatbikes. In April, the Inspectorate sent the remaining 12 another warning with a threat of a fine. The objection process for three of them is still ongoing. The other nine have now been fined.
“We believe that the sellers of fatbikes should take their responsibility,” Visser said. “They must provide proper information to potential buyers and comply with laws and regulations.”
The Inspectorate will keep an eye on the suppliers, and if they don’t stop selling these vehicles, it will fine them again.