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EVs in Hong Kong: Segways, e-bikes, pedelecs ...

Discussion in 'Hong Kong' started by DITB, Jun 2, 2014.

  1. DITB

    DITB Charged.hk co-founder

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    In the EVs forum, I posted about Hong Kongs quite conservative stance on EVs in Hong Kong, namely Segways, pedal assist bikes and so on.

    http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/31815-Electric-bikes-allowed-regulated-or-banned

    Even the tiniest little toy with a motor to help propel it, is illegal in Hong Kong, no matter what limited power it has, it's weight and especially, it's top speed (whether limited by the motor, or electronically).

    Three months imprisonment for a first offence, a bit stiff for doing something which is legal, although often regulated, in something like 98% of the world *)

    The discussion is also including, what is perceived as a public area, with regard to using EVs in Hong Kong?

    A fenced off area in an exhibition centre? A golf course? The airport terminal (airside area)? Private marinas? Estates with guarded access for residents and their guests only?

    At the airport, I found two different EVs.

    One is the buggy type cart, which propels people to and from gates, against a fee of 50 HKD pr person as far as I know. These vehicles have something which resembles license plates, white front, yellow rear, although smaller in size than those found on road vehicles. Are these really approved and licensed by the HK TD? I asked the driver of this one, whether or not it would require a drivers license to drive it and he replied "yes, of course!"


    HKIA 1.JPG HKIA 2.JPG

    (Not sure why the orientation isn't the same as on the Mac, must be some EXIF rotate issue)


    Well, then, how about these, used to move baggage carts around at the airport:

    Movexx 1.JPG Movexx 2.JPG Movexx 3.JPG

    Clearly electric vehicles, they are not pedal powered, but have batteries and motors.

    So why are these without license plates? Do they require the "driver" to have a driving license?

    Maybe they are exempt if you don't sit or stand on them, but walk next to them.

    For Hong Kong to be a better place, with cleaner air, it is vital that we fight to move more and more of the transportation requirements off fossil fuel power and onto electric power or other clean platforms. At the same time, solar and wind power, of which there is plenty available in Hong Kong, should be allowed, and even promoted, so we can move towards a self sustainable and clean Hong Kong. Why aren't rooftops and other surfaces facing the sun, plastered in solar panels? Why is there one (1) wind turbine on Lamma Island, as the only source of electric wind power in Hong Kong? Maybe there are more, if so, they are hidden quite well.



    *) (Hong Kong and New York are the only two states in the world I have found so far, entirely banning e-bikes etc. Maybe North Korea also bans electric assist bikes?)
     
  2. mchk

    mchk Member

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    I know Discovery Bay had some allowance for golf carts, which I believe is not at max capacity and they will not allow anymore new golf carts. So I've heard to own a golf cart in Discovery bay may cost you a couple million HKD.

    Someone from that area can confirm more about that. Weren't you telling me that? I know a few people have mentioned it to me over the years.

    I wonder why more golf carts are not allowed in Discovery Bay.
     
  3. DITB

    DITB Charged.hk co-founder

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    I am sure this is something regulated by DB itself, and not the transport department. These golf carts for sure must have license plates (someone please confirm that), just as golf carts on golf courses in Hong Kong must be TD approved as well.

    How private must an area be, in order for the TD requirements not to be enforced? If you have a fenced off back yard, I would suppose you could ride around on a Segway there.

    Anyone who knows of or sees any Segway/e-bike/buggy/stock-picker EV in Hong Kong, please post pictures here in this thread (but don't get anyone in trouble by disclosing too much information, if it seems to be an illegal EV!). Especially if it doesn't have a license plate, and is operated by any kind of official HK authority.
     
  4. DITB

    DITB Charged.hk co-founder

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    (I suppose this was the thread you intended to respond in, so I moved my reply here)

    3kW is quite a lot, some electric bikes have as little as 200W, or 0.2kW, and even those are illegal. According to the TD, any engine, no matter how small, would be illegal, and herein lies the problem: There is no trifle limit, there is no regulation, it is purely black-white - all is banned.
     
  5. Titus

    Titus Member

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    Unfortunately with the fire in a Choi Hung residential unit where one of those half priced segways exploded and caused a fire, it seems there will be a clamp down maybe by HK Customs
     
  6. markwj

    markwj Moderator, Asia Pacific

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    Areas such as tunnels and airport are not 'public roads' in Hong Kong, and not subject to the normal transport regulations. That is a the reason for the signs "Tunnel Area Regulations Apply", etc. In particular, Segways can be used at the airport, subject to airport area regulations.
     
  7. icemankaka

    icemankaka Member

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    what mark is also intending, is that, as long as you are at somewhere that isnt a road and isnt a public lot, you could, in effect challenge if they have a legal right to stop you from propelling an EV (say, MTRC, Airport, perhaps the 6 pier terminals with immigrations and customs presence too)
     
  8. markwj

    markwj Moderator, Asia Pacific

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    The issue is that the definition of 'road' in Hong Kong is overly broad (CAP374).

    So, a road is anything the public has access to (even if privately owned).
     
  9. icemankaka

    icemankaka Member

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    or you can say where police can give you speeding/traffic tickets, would be my interpretation (as a traffic enginner in HK)
     

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