Success! – Officials Reconsider Throttle Ban on Okanagan Trail
June 2. 2022
Our cry “throttles are not illegal” was heard! Class 2 electric bikes will again be welcome on the entire Okanagan Rail Trail.
This week, the Regional District of North Okanagan’s (RDNO) Greater Vernon Advisory Committee (GVAC) unanimously supported repealing a bylaw restricting throttles on certain sections of the popular multi-use trail.
Sheila Fraser, owner of Pedego Oyama, made a delegation to the June 1 meeting where a decision in principle was made on the spot to reverse the bylaw. She has been a strong advocate for Class 2 electric bikes, starting an online petition that saw more than 4,200 signatures in less than two weeks, showing that many agree – throttles are a great aid, not a detriment to safe, courteous, and fun riding.
“I’m truly happy, that’s what we wanted to happen, so I was really excited with the responsiveness of the Greater Vernon Advisory Committee that they actually took what they heard from us and agreed it was the right time to make a change,” said Fraser after the meeting in coverage by Vernon Matters.
Read full news coverage in Vernon Matters…
BACKGROUND: This spring, new signage on the section of the Okanagan Rail Trail between Coldstream and Lake Country advised users of a bylaw restricting trail use to Class 1 electric bikes or bikes without a throttle. Many riders including the elderly or those with mobility challenges rely on the throttle for an extra boost of power when needed.
The GVAC recognized an e-bike throttle helps with accessibility and that enforcing a bylaw restricting one type of bike over another would be difficult.
“Thank you to everyone who joined me in voicing our concerns over this unreasonable bylaw. I am pleased with so much support and that it is possible to make a difference when we speak up and take a stand,” said Fraser.