Inner West impounding share bikes

Inner West Mayor Darcy Byrne has placed the operators of share bikes on notice: “pick up your abandoned bikes or face the consequences”.

After a review of a three month trial of share bike guidelines, Inner West Council has had enough of damaged and discarded bicycles littering local streets and is impounding bikes that are blocking footpaths for disabled, immobile and elderly residents.

Mayor Byrne said share bike operators hadn’t stepped up enough during the trial or in the period afterwards.

“In the absence of action from share bike operators, Council is undertaking a bike blitz to remove dangerous and badly parked bicycles throughout the Inner West,” said Mayor Byrne.

“We’ve proposed a simple set of guidelines for the operators, but they haven’t done enough to lift their game.

“Having offered them the carrot, we now have to use the stick.”

Inner West Council is using powers under the Impounding Act to seize the bikes.

Operators face fees of $80 to prepare the notice of impounding, and $65 per staff member, per hour to take the bikes to a secure Council depot.

They also must pay $16 a day per bike in storage until it is claimed.

“Operators have up to 28 days to collect their bikes from Council. After which time, the bikes become Council’s responsibility,” said Mayor Byrne.

“We know operators haven’t been collecting bikes that have been impounded elsewhere.

“Rather than putting them into land fill, we will be looking to repurpose unclaimed bikes and give them to homeless and disadvantaged people.”

Mayors from six Inner Sydney councils – Inner West, Woollahra, Waverley, City of Sydney, Randwick City and City of Canada Bay – are also calling for immediate action from the State Government, with the councils eager to work with them to update legislation that is rapidly being outstripped by the bike share industry.

“The State Government has so far done nothing to address the serious safety problems share bikes have introduced to the city,” said Mayor Byrne.

“Inner West Council is working with other inner Sydney councils and has proposed changes needed at the State level to allow us to deal with this issue properly.

“Andrew Constance has his head in the sand when it comes to share bikes, hoping the issue will just go away.

“It’s time the Minister stepped up to the plate on bikes, make the changes to legislation that the councils have asked for and ensure share bikes are properly regulated in this city,” he added.

For further information, please contact John Roper on 9392 5912.

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Page last updated: 30 Jul 2018