Bike –sharing services owned by Lyft have recalled the electric bikes from their respective fleets in New York, Washington and San Francisco due to safety concerns. Ford GoBike, Citi Bike and Capital Bikeshare have removed the bikes after a small number of users experienced stronger than expected braking force on the front wheel. A leading daily reported that dozens of Citi Bike riders in NYC had reported injuries while riding the e-bikes.
The recent incidences had forced the company to pull 1,000 electric bicycles from the streets. Citi Bike in a statement said that a new e-bike is on the way but for the time being all the three companies are replacing the e-bikes with the classic pedal bikes as a part of their respective fleets. The companies in their respective statements said, “Out of an abundance of caution, we are proactively removing the pedal-assist bikes from service. We know this is disappointing to the many people who love the current experience — but reliability and safety come first.”
Lyft had recently began trading publicly with a valuation of more than $24 billion and acquired Citi Bike, Capital Bikeshare and Ford GoBike parent Motivate in November 2018. During the same time it had announced a deal with NYC to expand CitiBike through a $100 million investment. The was to triple Motivate’s required 12,000 bikes to 40,000 within the next five years. It was more than double the coverage area to 35 square miles. The company also promised a fleet of the conventional and pedal assist-e-bikes and 12 new valet stations.
The e-Bikes by Citi Bike were introduced on the streets of New York in August, 2018 after the city’s approval of new rules on electric bikes. The pedal-assist system on the bikes can reach a maximum speed of about 18 miles per hour. The company had reportedly also planned to have 4,000 e-bikes available by June, 2019.
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