Earle Macpherson of Cornwall Ontario on E Bikes on Bike Paths – February 15, 2012

Power assisted mobility scooters and e-bikes are not the problem on the bike path.Most of these vehicles average 85 to 100 KGS.=,not a three hundred pound missile as some of the media would have you believe.


The bike that Bill Kingston is referring to as a chopper/Motorcycle is owned by an mature male adult driver that we have met on the trails many times and it is grossly unfair in my opinion to single out this individual and use him as a benchmark for all e-bike/power assisted bike owners.


My experience with this bike rider has been nothing but polite and respectful use of the pathways. Their is no fair reason to criticize the bike and rider based on appearance only. The theory that this is an accident waiting to happen is a cruel comment to say the least. The possibility of  physical injury any vehicle such as a mobility scooter or power assisted wheelchair could cause to an individual at any speed when coming in contact is also a great risk if people do not behave in a respectful and responsible manner.


The maximum speed for an e-bike is 20 miles per hour. The speed at which the spandex wearing club riders on multiple speed racing/mountain bikes in most cases far exceeds this.  The bottom line is behavior, for example pedestrians walking 3 and four abreast,pet owners with dogs not leashed running loose all over the recreation path,joggers and pedestrians with I-Pods stuck in their ears and are completely oblivious to bikes etc. approaching from the rear,90% of the non e-bikes who are not equipped with a sounding device such as a bell or horn,many juveniles who are required by law to wear head protection not doing so.


This bike path which has morphed into a recreation path for these activities which I will list such as,Joggers,mobility scooters, electric wheelchairs, roller bladers,e-bikes,mothers walking with children in strollers,pedestrian strolling along the path and also at times skateboards. If we all behave responsibly I am convinced that there will be no problems regarding safety for all who use this valuable asset.

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Best Western Cornwall


  1. I agree ..matter of fact , roller bladders swinging side to side take more room .. E -bikes are here to stay , lets face it ..People who are against it are like people who thought the computer will never take off ,or were against snowboarders on the ski hills.

  2. There is so much confusion out there in the general population including the politicians and police! There are 3 types of “vehicles” that are seen mostly; the bicycle with an electric motor, the “scooter style” with an electric motor and pedals thrown on to “pass” as an ebike to meet the current legistlation, and then the ILLEGAL gasoline burning engine kits that are two strokes that are very noisy and very polluting. I totally agree with Earle and I hope that respectful users of legal ebikes are allowed to continue using multiuse pathways. The electic bike is truly a wonderful devise to save money, exhaust and noise pollution, increase divercity,reduce the overuse of the automobile for many tasks plus promoting a sense of community. 🙂

  3. I am a cyclist (leg power) and the only issues I have had on the bike path are dog walkers (not all) and geese, other than that I have no problems with e-bikes or scooters. Although I must admit you sometimes do come across the odd (and I mean ODD) pedestrian who will not move off the path to give a cyclist the right of way.

  4. I have used our beautiful recreational bike path for years, both walking and biking and for most part find users to be courteous and friendly. Key words ” Be courteous “, smile, say hello and slow down when necessary. Our waterfront is one our most valuable assets, keep it clean and use it well. C u on the path. Pixie

  5. I agree with Earle that common courtesy would solve many of the issues with the recreational path. I also agree that the “BIKE PATH” has now become a “RECREATIONAL PATH” and for that reason alone I do not believe a motorized vehicle should be permitted along the rereational path. Unfortunately, too many people are using the e-bikes for the simple reason that they help them “speed up” and allow them to go faster than they could under their own strength!

    Not allowing E-Bikes on the path makes the recreational path safer and on a personal note my 2 year old daughter was nearly run over by an e-bike who did not ring a bell and who could not be heard since they are very quite! Common courtesy would have simply solved this problem!

    Too many e-bike’s users have a sense of right of way and expect all pedestrians to move out of the way! I have personally spent many hours seeing how e-bike’s are being used. I am a member of the Recreation Advisory Committee and when the topic came to light I spent nearly 40 hours driving around looking for e-bike’s, visited two stores for information, shopped on line and, more importantly, took my daughter to the park to see if I could find some e-bike’s……and I did!

    The E-Bike came from behind and could not be heard! My daughter had to be pulled off the path as the biker yelled “get out of the way!” It nearly caused a confrontation and accident! From my research I found that the majority of the E-bike’s are being used similarly to Electric Scooters more so then as Bicycles and I believe they should be treated as such …a motorized or motor-assisted vehicle!

    For the safety of all park visitors E-bike’s should NOT be allowed on our recreational paths. This is purely my opinion and mine alone but I think you will see that the majority agree with me and if you take the time, as I have, you will see the “hard” truth without prejudice and come to the same conlusions that I have!

    Thank You,
    Mike Bedard

  6. I agree with Mike. My wife and I have had unpleasant experiences with e-bikes coming from behind on the path to the bird sanctuary. You can’t hear them and then the riders make rude comments if they have to slow down to get around you. It would seem that the e-bikers that complain the loudest are the ones who expect everyone to yield to them.

  7. Stop complaining! Anyone with half a brain in their head knows that bike paths are for bikes! They were not constructed for pedestrians to walk on nor walk their dogs on. You wouldn’t walk on a skidoo trail nor in the middle of the 401, then why walk on a bike path? You deserve what you get!

  8. Once again it has to be pointed out that the path is called a “recreation trail” and it is for everyone to use. If you want a bike lane, they are clearly marked along the side of the roads. There are new ones along Second Street. You e-bikers should try them sometime and see how far you get with trying to intimidate the cars and trucks.

  9. Seems like the city is going to have their work cut out for them. If you want to give the city your input on the Cornwall Recreational/Bike Path, visit this link and fill in the survey. https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/W5BV592

  10. E-bikes are great for the older set who have a hard time keeping up with someone who is riding a “normal” bike. I know of a couple who have an e-bike for that reason alone. They both enjoy riding but one is older and had a hard time keeping pace, so they bought an e-bike for the older one to keep up.
    Now they can still enjoy our bike trails and get much needed exercise as well as fresh air. Yes, the older one only uses the “juice” when necessary, because it does have pedals and gears just like a regular bike. They have NEVER encountered anyone who disliked or mentioned that they should not use the bike paths. So, for their sakes I hope that e-bikes are not banned from them enjoying rides when they can.

  11. These recreational trails while not for motorized vehicles should be met with the same regard as any road or street. look both ways and keep an eye out for other users whether they are on bikes or not. Both courtesy and common sense are required. Children as well as adults need to realize that there is a flow of traffic and basic safety need be applied. If your going to stop, please step off the pathway. If you have children be mindful of their actions and their whereabouts. The paths were not made wide enough to begin with. The notion of banning E-bikes on the paths is ridiculous. At least the paths are being used. They should be upgraded to be made wider in my opinion. At least two feet wider. Rollerblading takes up much more room than is allowable. The path has been a bit of a joke amongst construction workers to my knowledge over the years due to the initial installment being poorly done. All too often i have had to repair broken spokes and have wheels realigned on my own bike due to the large humps that are not always visible. As for speed limits there could be perhaps some room for debate. Maybe around high pedestrian traffic areas like around the complex.

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