Mandatory helmet: Dutch youngsters massively sell their mopeds
In Amsterdam (The Netherlands), mopeds will no longer be allowed on the bicycle paths. As from April 8th, they will have to ride on the road. And the drivers have to wear a helmet. A measure that is unacceptable for most Amsterdam’s youngsters. They fear their hair style will be ruined, so they’re selling their mopeds in large numbers and turn to e-bikes.
Mandatory helmet law
Local authorities in Amsterdam have tried for years to keep mopeds from the bicycle paths. It took a while because first the helmet needed to become mandatory. Without a helmet, it would be too dangerous to have mopeds driving among common car traffic. Amsterdam is the first city to make the helmet mandatory.
According to Ferry Bieseman, owner of the Amsterdam Bromfietshuis, a shop specialized in mopeds, teenagers and people in their twenties are massively selling their mopeds. Main reason is the obligatory helmet.
E-bike valuable alternative
According to the Central Office for Statistics (Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek, CBS), 750.000 mopeds are riding around in The Netherlands, or 4% more than one year ago. In Amsterdam alone, there are 32.000. The largest part, some 9.700, are used by people in their twenties. “Since the announcement of the mandatory helmet, sales of mopeds have gone down”, explains Tom Huyskens, spokesman for sector federation Bovag.
Rutger Kuiper of Amsterdam’s Scootercity sees the e-bike as a valuable alternative. Since the announcement, sales of scooters and common bicycles have gone up as well.
According to Bovag’s spokesman, it is “completely irresponsible” to allow mopeds on the road among other traffic that is going twice as fast. “A helmet is okay, but it won’t prevent a broken leg when hit by a truck.”