London Rental Bikes less Subject to Vandalism
Transport for London (TfL) announced that the repair costs for the London rental bike system (also called ‘Boris bikes’) are less than expected. A TfL spokesman stated that most of the repairs that take place are minor, such as
LONDON, UK – Transport for London (TfL) announced that the repair costs for the London rental bike system (also called ‘Boris bikes’) are less than expected. A TfL spokesman stated that most of the repairs that take place are minor, such as tightening of brake or gear cables, and do not therefore require bicycles to be out of use for long.”
Two-thirds of London’s “Boris bikes” have had to undergo repairs in their first six months of operation. The (TfL) disclosed that their repair teams are being called out to fix the rental bikes at the rate of more than 30 every day of the week, as the strain of millions of journeys takes its toll.
The majority of the repairs were described as due to “wear and tear”, but more than 100 bikes have needed repairs after being vandalized since the start of the rental program last summer. On average, nearly 200 of the 5,400 bikes at any one time are so badly damaged that they are taken out of service.
According to critics the rate of repairs is substantial as a result of TfL choice for a cheaper rate bike over more sophisticated ones. “These bikes are hardly user-friendly when you are riding them, but it seems that they are liable to loosen up or seize up at an alarming rate,” said Peter Hunter, a cyclist who has complained that the hire bikes were a “bargain-basement” purchase.
“The total number of stolen bikes is still significantly lower than has been the case with similar international cycle hire schemes,” the TfL spokesman said.