Dockless bike scheme
You may have read in December that we are planning to introduce a dockless bike sharing scheme into Enfield this year. We will be working in partnership with bike share company Urbo, who have already launched a successful scheme in Waltham Forest, and this launch will enable people to use the bikes throughout both boroughs.
But, what exactly is a dockless bike scheme and how does it work?
Dockless bike sharing works by users opening an app on their smart phone and selecting a bike off a map, or simply by walking up to a bike on the street and scanning a QR code. The app then sends the user a four-digit code, which is typed into the specially fitted wheel-lock on the rear of the bike. The user is then free to cycle the bike. Unlike many bike sharing platforms, there are no docking stations, giving people the freedom to start and end their journey at any designated bike parking area near their destination. When the user finishes their journey, they simply click the lock back into place, and park the bike on its side-stand, with no need to lock it to a railing. The user’s online wallet is automatically charged. Using this technology, areas can be ‘geo-fenced’, meaning bikes can only be used and/or locked in designated areas.
People may be concerned that bikes can be easily stolen or damaged. However, there are security measures on the bike, including GPS location tracking, an alarm which goes off if the bikes are tampered with and custom-made parts that are unsuitable for other bikes. The cost of any lost or damaged bikes is borne by Urbo.
People also worry that that riders will just leave the bikes wherever they like. There will be designated parking sites, most of which already have cycle parking facilities. The app comes with an interactive reporting system, which means we are aware who the current and most recent rider is, riders showing bad behaviour can be banned from the system and good riders rewarded with free rides. There is also an Urbo team of wardens to ensure appropriate rider parking behaviour.
Dockless bike sharing users are shown to have a better overall safety record than the general cycling public. There is lighting equipment on all bicycles, with continuous maintenance of all elements of the bike. Urbo has public liability insurance covering all bike hires for injury to a third party or accidental damage.