China: Around The Nation

Chinese city halts electric bike-sharing schemes amid safety fears

Authorities in Hangzhou take action over concerns regarding bikes’ quality and lack of training on how to ride them

PUBLISHED : Monday, 18 September, 2017, 3:26pm
UPDATED : Monday, 18 September, 2017, 3:52pm

A city in eastern China has suspended five electric bike-sharing services amid safety concerns, state media reported.

The authorities in Hangzhou in Zhejiang province acted amid fears that some of the bikes did not meet national safety standards and some rechargeable batteries were a potential fire hazard, Xinhua reported.

The authorities were also concerned that customers were not given training on how to ride the bikes safely, according to the article.

Why China’s bike-sharing boom is causing headaches

The city government was quoted as saying that the massive number of normal bikes used in bicycle sharing services had also brought chaos to Hangzhou in recent months.

Five large electric bike-sharing firms have been told by city officials to halt operations. The report did not make clear when services might be resumed. There are 2,590 shared electric bikes in Hangzhou, the article said.

Bike-sharing schemes have proved massively popular in China, but authorities around the country have started taking action to limit the number of cycles on the streets. Many litter pavements after use, or block bike lanes and other rights of way.

Beijing became the latest Chinese city to ban new shared bikes this month.