E-bikes are a common sight these days. With more than 37,320 E-bikes registered at the end June of 2023, the concerns relating to E-bikes are also on the rise. One of these concerns was brought to surface just yesterday when Straits Times reported the rise in e-bike accidents amidst the increase in riders.
The rise of e-bikes on the road
With report after report documenting cases of accidents involving e-bikes, why do so many still opt for e-bikes as a mode of transportation?
Several factors might have contributed to the rise of e-bikes on our roads.
However, one of the most probable reasons is the surge in demand for food delivery services, which has led to an increase in e-bikes to meet these needs.
ROADS.sg interviewed Mr Tan, an undergraduate at a local university. He used to undertake food deliveries on an e-bike during weekends when he had the opportunity.
When queried if he would still choose to do food delivery on an e-bike given the chance now, he responded “yes” without much hesitation.
“As long as the compensation is right, the small risk is acceptable,” he said. He further noted that the incidents highlighted in the news are but a “few out of the many.”
It appears that reports of accidents and cases aren’t deterring e-bike riders from taking to the roads.
Delivery firms says no rise in accidents involving e-bikes
The first thing the ROADS.sg team emphasised to Mr Tan was the importance of erring on the side of caution.
However, he might not be entirely mistaken in noting that the accidents we see could represent only a minority of cases.
The Straits Times reported that, within the food delivery sector, companies have not observed any significant increase in accidents involving e-bike riders.
Foodpanda conveyed to the Straits Times report that there hasn’t been a significant rise in accidents amongst its numerous delivery associates. Similarly, Grab highlighted that 99.99% of their rides and deliveries in 2022 took place without any safety incidents.
Numbers do not lie
Despite Mr Tan’s confidence in the safety of e-bike riding and the observations of food delivery companies, the figures and reports we encounter remain concerning, and numbers do not lie.
Data from the Traffic Police indicate that there were 157 accidents involving e-bikes, a modest rise from 150 in 2021, and a significant increase from 78 in 2020.
Of these incidents, several were fatal: three in both 2020 and 2021, and two in 2022.