The LTA has released their Rules and Code of Conduct for cyclists and users of electric bicycles and Personal Mobility Devices (PMD). I thought all in all, this was a fairly reasonable approach. You can see the document here. Based on the Recommendation Paper by the Active Mobility Advisory Panel.
Bicycles: footpaths, cycling paths and roads can.
Electric Bicycles: footpaths cannot, cycling paths and roads can.
PMDs like e-scooters: footpaths and cycling paths can, roads cannot.
Footpath speeds are limited to 15km/h and cycling path speeds are limited to 25km/h.
I am glad they took electric bicycles off the footpaths. Also good, more stringent specs for what constitutes an electric bicycle (must be pedal-assist only, less than 20kg, max 250W electric motor, below 25km/h, must comply with European Standard, EN15194). This removes the electric motorbikes from the equation.
Also interesting are the allowed specs for e-scooters: Below 20kg, below 70cm in width and no faster than 25km/h. This kills off the huge e-scooters that can go at silly speeds like Inokims and Zoom Airs. They have a non-exhaustive list of the non-approved scooters here.
Two abreast cycling is now allowed on roads with at least two lanes in the same direction, except roads with bus lanes during bus lane hours.
Lights are now required for front and back, and switched on during darkness (it used to be just reflectors needed only). This applies to bicycles, e-bikes and PMDs. I support this wholeheartedly.
All this talk about cycling is making me reminisce about cycling in Portland last year in September. I miss Portland. And cycling in Amsterdam and Denmark too.
The kids’ mobile bills went slightly over free limit this month. I launched into a lecture on the Unholy Trinity of Mobile Phone Fees that telcos love to charge you for, when you overuse any one of them: Voice, SMS and Data.
These are things they don’t teach in school.
You don’t learn this until you pay for the mobile bill yourself and get bill shock either because you have been making calls from the mobile phone even though you have a perfectly fine landline at home. Or streaming video or music on the road. Or engaging in a massive SMS chat. Or downloading stupid videos on Whatsapp, or worse, sending them to friends.
For example, the kids get 150 free minutes a month, incoming. I asked them to calculate how many minutes they would use a month if they used their mobile phones 10 minutes a day for 30 days.
“300 minutes,” they replied.
“That’s 150 minutes over the free calls you get a month, right?” I said.
The 13-year-old and the 11-year-old looked a bit shocked.
“See? It adds up. Five minutes here, five minutes there, and soon, you will be paying for some telco CEO’s sports car,” I told them.
“Repeat after me, I will use the home landline when I am at home, and not call from my mobile phone.”
The kids repeated after me, “I will use the home landline when I am at home, and not call from my mobile phone.”
“And what do you do if your friend keeps on talking even though you say you’ve got to go?” I declared.
“Hang up on them, Papa.”
“Correct. Because as long as your friend keeps blabbering on over the mobile phone, who pays?”
“We do,” the kids replied.
“Indeed. You will pay. And you will pay dearly, Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock,” I said.
I sent them out to the world with this mission: “Your goal is to ensure I don’t see anything other than $0.00 in the Usage Charges column of my phone bill.”
Teach them early. Teach them well and let them lead the way. Show them all the beauty they possess inside.
And how much moolah they will have to cough up the next time they overshoot the limits.
P.S. Tell the telco to cancel the bloody voice mail service. Every missed call that ends up there is a chargeable call. Who uses Voice Mail these days lah.