DONG NAI Electric motorbike drivers in southern Dong Nai Province will now have to register their vehicles as motorbikes and obtain registration plates.
According to the new Road Traffic Law that took effect on July 1 and Circular 06/2009/TT-BCA that was issued by the Ministry of Public Security, electric motorbikes have to be registered. Traffic police departments nation-wide are responsible for the implementation and enforcement of the new law.
Head of the Dong Nai Province s Road Traffic Police Department, Huynh Tien Manh, said the province would be one of the first in the country to begin regulating electric motorbikes.
"It was necessary to tighten regulations on electric motorbikes, because these vehicles can now reach speeds equal to that of motorbikes, and have been involved in a large number of traffic accidents," he said.
Currently, Viet Nam and international regulations stipulate that a vehicle is classified as an electric motorbikes if it consumes electric power and has a top speed of over 50km/h.
"With such speed, injuries caused by electric motorbike drivers would be similar to those caused by other motorised vehicle drivers," Manh said. "The regulation will not only intensify the management of electric motorbikes but also help reduce traffic accidents."
Manh said the department had already informed people about the regulations through a mass media campaign. The procedures involved with registering electric motorbikes will not be different from the registration process for motorised vehicles.
According to Manh, the registration fee would be based on the decrees 95/2005/TT-BTC and 02/2007/TT-BTC issued by the Ministry of Finance that charge 1 per cent of the vehicles value. Electric motorbikes that are not registered might be seized, he said.
Tran Son from the Road and Railway Traffic Police Department, under the Ministry of Public Security said: "Even xich lo (cyclos) are required to have registration plates, so it s not odd to apply the same regulations to electric motorbikes".
Son added that drivers of electric motorbikes may also have to obtain driving licences in the near future.
Nguyen Thi Minh from the Emergency Department of the Dong Nai General Hospital said that the better management of electric motorbikes was a necessity due to their increased popularity, especially among students.
"Drivers of electric motorbikes were already required to wear helmets," she said, "Now we have another method to not only manage them but also ensure their safety."
Minh said no official statistics have been reported on accident cases caused by electric motorbikes. However, according to her estimation, her hospital has received at least three to five patients a month that have been seriously injured by electric motorbikes. VNS