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CRIME

Swede stopped at 98kmh on souped-up electric bicycle

A man in Sweden was stopped by police after hitting close to 100kmh on an electric bicycle he had souped up with an engine more than 15 times as powerful as permitted under Swedish law.

Swede stopped at 98kmh on souped-up electric bicycle
The Enduro is one of a number of Chinese-made e-bikes on the market. File photo: Enduro
The 40-year-old was stopped on Monday while riding along a road in the central city of Linköping, with the police car which apprehended him having to accelerate to 98kmh to catch up. 
 
“It was life-threatening,” Björn Goding from the local police told Linköping News. “The bicycle probably didn’t have a frame built for such speed, and the brakes didn’t work either.” 
 
The bicycle had two power modes, 1KW and 4KW, according to the local daily, which would put it well beyond the permitted limits of an electric bicycle. 
 
According to Swedish vehicle regulations an electric bicycle should run on a maximum of 250w, and have a maximum speed of 25kmh. 
 
An electric light motorcycle, however, is permitted to have up to 11kw of power under Swedish law, but must  be registered as such in order to be driven on Swedish roads, which this vehicle was not. 
 
The man is facing potential charges of both “serious illegal” and “careless” driving. 
 
He reportedly bought the vehicle on the Blocket website, a popular classifieds site in Sweden. 
 
At the time of publication, Blocket had several high-powered e-bikes for sale with similar specifications to the one the man was riding, but they were recommended for off-road use only. 

TRANSPORT

Travellers express frustrations over Sweden’s public transport ticket systems 

Tricky travel apps and lack of information are some of the complaints that have been made about travelling with a valid ticket on Sweden's public transport, according to the Swedish Consumer Agency (Konsumentverket).

Travellers express frustrations over Sweden's public transport ticket systems 

Most of the complains sent to KO, the Swedish Consumer Agency, were regarding fines of 1,500 kronor, which is the penalty for not having the right ticket on public transport.

The agency’s analysis of the complaints showed that many of the travellers had a ticket but didn’t pay enough, didn’t have a receipt or bought the wrong type of ticket in the app. Many are critical that the fine in these cases is not written off or reduced.

“We see that there is great frustration among those who have ended up in this situation. Many people experience it as unfair to be treated as travellers who intentionally did not want to buy the right ticket,” Fanny Forsling, lawyer at KO said.

KO will now contact the transport companies to review the reasons for the fines.

Systematic ticket inspections were halted in Stockholm during the coronavirus pandemic and as a result, there was an increase in people travelling without a ticket.

Let us know your thoughts on Sweden’s public transport ticket fines by emailing us.

Swedish vocabulary

fine – böter

ticket – (en) biljett

travelling without a ticket – planka

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