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E-bikes and e-scooters have become an enormously popular way for pedestrians, especially tourists, to move about major cities quickly. But citing reports of over-sensitive brakes that could pose a safety hazard to riders, Lyft has announced that it will be removing its fleet of e-bikes from major US cities.
Lyft has a total of 3,000 e-bikes across three cities: New York, Washington, DC, and San Francisco. Lyft told CNN that only “a small number of reports” have been made concerning the e-bikes, however, the company is pulling them out of an abundance of caution. The bikes will be removed from streets and replaced with manual bikes, according to CNN.
While e-bikes, like those operated by Lyft, often serve a more practical purpose with some users riding them to and from work, they’re also a popular way for tourists to zip about a city. The same goes for e-scooters, which first hit the streets in 2012. Major dockless scooter companies like Bird and Lime popularized e-scooter sharing during the past few years, bringing the service to cities across the United States.
Since e-bikes hit the streets, which are also offered by Uber’s JUMP and Lime, there have been a shocking number of incidents involving faulty bikes. Lime has been hit especially hard with recalls and faulty vehicles; the company has reported multiple recalls over a period of a few months.
In fall 2018, Lime also issued an e-scooter recall over concerns that the scooters could simply fall apart mid-ride. Just recently in February, Lime issued another recall over concerns that its e-scooters could brake abruptly during the ride.
Nonetheless, e-vehicles are growing more and more popular in major cities. Additionally, most rides are carried out safely. However, travelers planning to use scooters on their next trip should be aware of the issues facing popular sharing services.
To ensure your next e-scooter or e-bike ride is safe, always make sure to check local laws and regulations regarding the use of scooter or bikesharing services. Most major US cities require riders to wear helmets on e-devices, while some cities will fine users via the vehicle-sharing app for improperly parking their vehicle. Finally, always make sure to use an application like Google Maps to pre-plan your e-bike or e-scooter ride to familiarize yourself with traffic patterns.
Featured image by Xinhua/Jin Peng via Getty Images
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