We were sad to read this article about the Church Stretton electric bike hire scheme being unable to continue because of the costs of insuring the 4 bikes. We were the first customers to hire their bikes back in January 2009 and the experience of riding up the Long Mynd inspired us to push ahead with our own electric bike trial here in Talybont last year.
We too found the cost of insuring the electric bikes for public use was very steep – £200 per bike .
Similarly, our car share scheme suffers with the same problem. Having struggled to find any insurance company willing to cover a car share scheme at all, we managed to find that the Co-op would do so but at the cost of £1000 per car.We will do slightly better next year when they have some data on us. It sounds like that is not the case for the bike hire.
It is sad that these high insurance costs make community hire or sharing schemes almost impossible to run without a grant or other subsidising source.