After the police raided 14 mopeds without vehicle identification numbers (VINs) in Ridgewood, Councilman Robert Holden continues to ask for more law enforcement on the streets to combat the issue.
After the City Council legalized certain e-mobility devices in 2019, many businesses are using it as an opportunity to profit from selling illegal devices to the community and delivery drivers, according to Holden. These devices mainly include mopeds without VINs.
“Every electrical contraption should be registered and have a license plate,” Holden said. “They are using our roads, hitting people and not observing the laws. Allowing this to continue is costing people their lives. We need to change the laws immediately.”
Holden has been advocating for stricter laws on mopeds, scooters and e-bikes after several accidents involving users of such devices.
Two shops — H.C. E-Bike Corp, located at 17-02 Gates Ave., and Fly Wing, located at 55-48 Myrtle Ave. — were found displaying mopeds without VINs. The police confiscated and vouchered all 14 illegal mopeds.
🚨To further our efforts in curbing reckless driving, today we conducted an operation with the NYPD Transportation Bureau at businesses within the 104 Precinct that were selling illegal scooters & mopeds. A total of 14 bikes were seized with 14 fines @NYPDnews @NYPDQueensNorth pic.twitter.com/HnNdhGR8q9
— NYPD 104th Precinct (@NYPD104Pct) September 14, 2022
The stores were fined $1,000 for each vehicle confiscated, according to authorities.
Police raided the shops after Holden, who had received several reports of people obtaining such illegal mopeds from these shops, had tipped them off.
Holden has been “asking for more enforcement on the streets in general,” according to Kevin Ryan, Holden’s director of communications.
“A big part of the problem is scooters whose riders don’t obey traffic laws or registration laws. Some types of powered bikes need to have VINs and be registered,” Ryan said.
“If a cop stops them, there is no license plate. If they hit someone, there’s no way of identifying them and they don’t have insurance,” he added. “It’s a recipe for disaster and that is what we are seeing in New York City.”
The raids come as a result of an NYPD effort to reach out to businesses and educate them on which devices are legal, after the NYPD conducts outreach and education they return and conduct a business inspection, according to a police spokesperson.