Bicycle Shortage Continues in the Bay Area
In the era of social distancing and shelter in place orders, bicycle businesses have found new traction. The boom in biking can be seen along nearly any San Franciso Street. Demand for two-wheeled travel has been surging as people stuck at home with limited social or entertainment options.
Bicycles provide exercise, stress relief, and for those still required to show up to work, a germ-free form of commuting. The Los Angeles Times talked to the CEO of PeopleForBikes. Their research proves the point. Bike sales are up 65% in 2020 over last year’s numbers.
Gearing up for Shortages
The popularity of cycling is a positive for the environment and traffic congestion. Fewer cars mean fewer accidents and less pollution. Bikes are back in the lives of many Bay Area residents, but there have been some speed bumps along the path to resurgence.
Like many products in short supply during the crisis, affordable bikes and bike parts have been increasingly hard to find. Local bike shops point to the added demand and the decreased output from manufacturers. Many bike companies across the country have dealt with shutdowns. MPRNews also cites the fact that many bicycle parts are made in China and factories over there lost about two months of production and shipping time at the start of the year due to COVID-19.
The View from Bay Area Bike Shops
NBC KNTV talked to a bike shop manager in the Bay Area about what he sees in his store. The worker at Mike’s Bikes in San Rafael says they usually have 400 bikes on the showroom floor, now they can generally only keep 100 in stock from day-to-day. They fly off the shelves as soon as they arrive.
The Los Angeles Times talked to the owner of Menlo Velo Bikes in Menlo Park. Rainer Zaechelein says the store has been in business for 25 years and has never been so busy. He’s found that people want new bikes, but many who had bikes in storage are now seeking parts and tune-ups to get their gears up and running. He has seen four week wait times for bike tune-ups when last year the wait was usually one or two days.
Rainer finds that people are desperate for bikes, but not willing to spend on the top-of-line line rides. Any bikes above 1500 dollars are fairly easy to find, but cheaper bikes are the ones in short supply.
Pedal Power Keeps America Moving
The backorders and lack of parts will keep some riders in a holding pattern, but overall one of the few positives to come out of the new normal is a renewed sense of self-reliance. Americans have gotten creative in finding ways to safely get out of the house and bicycles are helping them do just that. The positive benefits on a personal and planetary level are worth the wait.
We are Bay Area Bicycle Law
Bay Area Bicycle Law has spent years advocating for the local bicycle community. We want safer rides for every cyclist. In the event of an accident, we also want to help protect the victim. We concentrate our practice solely on bicyclists who have been injured as a result of the carelessness and negligence of others. We’re dedicated and effective bicycle accident lawyers. If you were injured in a bicycle accident in or around San Franciso or anywhere around the bay area, contact us right away for a confidential free consultation and case review.