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York police seize 'bike' - because owner had no licence or insurance

Bicycle had been converted to run on petrol, making it in effect a moped

Police in York have seized a bicycle that had been converted to run on a petrol engine - with the owner reported for having no licence or insurance.

Appropriately for Halloween, it's a bit of a 'Frankenbike' - essentially, it's a mountain bike that's been converted into a moped through the addition of that engine - one that even the UCI wouldn't have too hard a time detecting.

Under the Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycles (Amendment) Regulations 2015, electric bikes with power assistance to a maximum speed of of 25 km/h (15.5 mph) and a motor of no more than 250 Watts (maximum continuous rated power output) are considered to be pedal cycles and therefore no licence or insurance is needed.

Those regulations do not apply to petrol-powered bikes, however - and even if they did, or if the motor in this case was electric-powered, the owner of the bike seized in York said the speed had been capped at 20mph, which would have taken it beyond the permitted threshold.

Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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