Photo Credit: Miriam Alster/FLASH90
A man rides his electric bike past a construction site mural in Ramat Gan.

As of Wednesday, electric scooter riders of all ages and on every road must wear a helmet, as part of a national program initiated by Transport Minister Yisrael Katz. The new law passed a few days ago in the Knesset.

The current fine for not wearing a helmet while riding an electric bicycle is 250 shekel ($68), but it is expected to increase to 1,000 shekel ($272).

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In recent years the number of electric bicycles in Israel has increased significantly, according to data from the Israel Tax Authority on the import of electric bicycles to Israel in the years 2014-2017 has reached 257,000 units, and in 2016 16% of all the imported bicycles in Israel were electric.

From the beginning of 2014 until the end of September 2018, 97 people were killed in accidents involving bicycles, electric bicycles, and electric scooters. About 62% of them were killed in regular bicycle accidents; some 36% accidents involving electric bicycles; and about 2% of them were killed in electric scooter accidents.

The greatest increase in the number of fatalities involved electric bicycle accidents: from one death in each of the years 2014 to 2015, to 16 deaths by the end of September 2018, a rise of 1600%.

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