Bicycle industry isn't spared from Hurricane Ian
Hurricane Ian had disastrous effects on the industry and for bicycle owners. Also, Lime is back in Tampa as Key Biscayne ramps up its battle with e-scooter and e-bike riders.
Bike shops & bike owners hit hard by Ian
With Hurricane Ian striking Florida, the newsletter took a break last week. The reports of the damage and loss of life have been widespread from Southwest Florida. Bicycle Retailer and Industry News (BRAIN) reported that the Fort Myers Pedego store was “utterly destroyed.”
Bike Bistro in Fort Myers gave this message on their Facebook page, as reported by BRAIN:
The Bike Bistro took a full-on punch to the throat from the hurricane. The surge pounded the area and the back doors to our shop were breached. Our first looks at the shop are horrific. We are heartbroken but are determined to rebuild. It is going to be our 10th anniversary on Nov. 2.
Many shops are trying to help customers now with repairing bicycles. Doug Newman, president of The Bike Route in Naples, told BRAIN:
The first couple days, we’ve been inundated with our customers’ bikes that were under water — saltwater. There’s probably going to be thousands of bikes that were submerged in saltwater. They look OK, then over a period of a day or so, everything starts to seize up. If (the bike's value is) less than say $1,000, the cost to tear everything apart — and I don’t have enough hours in my life to do that — it’s approaching the cost of the bike. And a lot of times, even the headsets were affected. It went that deep.
The article takes a really deep dive into all of the aspects Hurricane Ian has affected the bicycle community and I highly recommend it.
Lime is back in TPA with their newest e-bikes
The new Lime Gen4 e-bikes have arrived and hit the streets in Tampa, according to Creative Loafing Tampa Bay. As covered before, Lime e-scooters were pushed out by the city but were given a permit to operate the new electric bicycles.
The permit will allow Lime to operate 1,500 of the e-bikes, which come with a swappable 25-mile range battery, throughout the downtown area.
Thefts of e-bikes and bicycles on the rise in JAX
Jacksonville is reporting an increase in bicycle thefts, according to the Journal Courier, and e-bikes aren’t safe from the threat. As a precaution, Jacksonville Police Department Lt. Sean Walker had some advice:
I would say one of the biggest things is to write down the serial number. That helps a ton because it places it in a lead database. … Don't leave it in a yard. … If you have a garage, place it in there.
E-scooters and e-bikes are under attack from Key Biscayne NIMBYs
The Village of Key Biscayne is up in arms over e-scooters and e-bikes, as reported by the Islander News. And the opening paragraph gives you an idea of NIMBY take:
Careless, non-yielding riders of electric scooters and motorized bicycles have become such a nuisance on Key Biscayne that Village leaders are actually contemplating how a ban could be enforced if things don't improve soon.
The Village, along with Police Chief Frank Sousa, have been warning riders all summer of violations, but have held back from giving tickets. The Key Biscayne Independent covered the movement that led to the program last April. Tickets for what, I’m not sure. The article mentions violations for not wearing a helmet or not having lights after dark but doesn’t go into any detail regarding moving violations. It does hint that the issue might be riders going on the sidewalk.
Now, the issue has shifted to the motorized bikes and electric scooters, "98 percent" of which are ridden on the sidewalks, Sousa said. Technically, that is against the law, but Sousa said he would prefer not seeing them on the street near cars and trucks.
This sounds more like a problem with infrastructure than with people wanting to get around without a car. I would point out that e-bikes and e-scooters are allowed on sidewalks under Florida law and couldn’t find any ordinances saying otherwise. The Village would do well to provide safer infrastructure instead of trying to ban bicycles and scooters.
The latest releases from Micromobility America don’t disappoint
Not a Florida take, but Electrek headed over to the recent Micromobility America conference in San Francisco a couple of weeks ago and covered some of the “coolest e-bikes, e-scooters, electric micro-cars, and more.” They even saw some electric roller skates from Escend Blades!
Micah Toll does a great job covering all the different vehicles and devices that were showcased and it’s worth a look.
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