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  #46  
Old 02-02-2023, 12:05 PM
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Pegoready Pegoready is offline
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Originally Posted by Alistair View Post
Was there anything about this death that was different because it was an e-bike? Seems like just a freak bike accident that could happen to any kid (or adult).
Kids lived in a wealthy neighborhood in the hills. I think the argument can be made that they wouldn't have ridden analog/acoustic bikes up such a steep grade but an e-bike made it easy.

This is beyond sad. I have a daughter and would be crestfallen forever if something like this happened but ultimately I would agree with most opinions in the Bicycling article that this isn't on RAD power. There are a lot of crappy, dangerous bikes out there not just RAD powers.
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  #47  
Old 02-02-2023, 12:17 PM
Andy340 Andy340 is offline
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Originally Posted by GoJavs View Post
My wife and I go out for walks late in the afternoon around here - say 6 pm or so. We are generally very attentive. After all, we live in South Florida were anything goes (unleashed big dogs, cars backing out without looking)...

A new wrinkle: the occasional e-bike flying on the sidewalk. We'll see where it all goes, but a 70 lb e-bike hitting someone square at 20-25 mph sounds like a broken femur waiting to happen.
I see this too in SoCal and close to elementary school - 70 lb e-bike at speed hitting a young child walking to school could be much worse than a broken femur.
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  #48  
Old 02-02-2023, 12:33 PM
peanutgallery peanutgallery is offline
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It should read that the bike had inherently janky steering characteristics, goofy wheel size, and a downright ugly frame design... and the driver was an inexperienced pre-teen with a passenger on the back piloting down a 14 percent grade

Surprised that Velofix hasn't been sucked into the litigation, too. The family of the deceased seems to have sued everyone but the rabbi at the bat mitzvah. Giro, the family of the driver and so on. Someone was a fool to agree to assemble that bike, or any internet ebike. Those things are D2C and built on the cheap for the benefit of VC group. If there is a way to cheap out or skin a nickel for a fart, you can bet they'll find it. There's not a large enough labor fee that will protect a business for someone at a shop/service company to assemble it. If I don't sell them I turn them all away; too many janky parts, proprietary pieces, half baked solutions and flammable batteries.

Ebikes in the US are the Wild West, there are really no rules or oversight...and what rules there are don't seem to be enforced. The poor girl was wearing a bicycle helmet on what was basically a motorcycle and everyone was operating under the assumption that that was OK. If a case like this is what it takes to shine a light on the issues that abound with ebikes in the US and leads to set rules, testing, enforcement and accountability, I am all for what the parents are doing in suing rad power. Leave the neighbors and Giro out of it

Quote:
Originally Posted by zap View Post
From the lawsuit...edited italics and bold

48.Specifically, Rad designed and manufactured the RadRunner electric-motorized bikes, including the Subject Powerbike, with at least two design defects. First, Rad chose to use disc brakes in conjunction with a quick-release mechanism for detaching the front wheel. This configuration has been a known safety hazard in the industry for at least a decade, even when used with non-electronic bikes. This is because the front disc brakes have calipers behind the fork blade, and when the rider pulls hard at the front brakes, it generates a powerful force and friction that causes the quick-release mechanism to unthread, loosening the wheel and causing it to wobble and shake, and in some cases, causing the wheel to come off entirely mid-ride. Even one hard pull at the brake, especially during a steep downhill ride such as here, is enough to cause these two components to interact with each other in an unsafe way, causing a loss of control, which of course causes injuries and deaths. This is a known safety hazard in the industry, and Rad chose not to use the safer alternative mechanism for releasing the wheel, called a “through axle” mechanism. Through axles are universally used in connection with disc brakes in motorcycles for this reason. However, bicycle manufacturers continue to use these unsafe quick-release mechanisms with front disc brakes in lower-end bicycles, because the quick-release mechanism is cheaper to manufacture than the through-axle mechanism. Rad knew or should have known that this was an unsafe and defective design, but Rad chose to implement it anyway to increase its profits.

49.This design defect - the combination of the quick-release mechanism and the front disc brakes - was a substantial factor in causing this accident and Molly Steinsapir’s death. After the accident, the rear brakes of the Subject Powerbike were worn thin and the front wheel was loose and wobbly. The Subject Powerbike was purchased new approximately a month before the accident. It was assembled by Velofix on January 7, 2021, and therefore had been in the Greens’ possession for just over three weeks on the date of the accident. The brakes were intact, and the wheel was not loose when Emerson and Molly began their ride on January 31, 2021. They rode to the top of the hill on Enchanted Way, riding up a steep incline they only achieved in the first place due to the Subject Powerbike’s powerful motor. On the way down, Emerson tried to control their descent by using the rear brakes, but that only succeeded in wearing the brakes out. As the Subject Powerbike continued to pick up speed, Emerson pulled hard on the front brake, but because of the design defect of the quick-release mechanism used in connection with the front disc brakes, her hard braking caused the quick release mechanism to unthread. The front wheel loosened and became wobbly, the bike began to shake, and Emerson lost control of its steering.
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  #49  
Old 02-02-2023, 12:54 PM
bshell bshell is offline
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Man, that article was too heartbreaking to finish but I've been on QRs/vertical dropouts and disc brakes for almost 25 years w/o a single wheel wobble or ejection.

Last edited by bshell; 02-02-2023 at 12:55 PM. Reason: add drop outs bit
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  #50  
Old 02-02-2023, 02:22 PM
Mark McM Mark McM is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peanutgallery View Post
It should read that the bike had inherently janky steering characteristics, goofy wheel size, and a downright ugly frame design... and the driver was an inexperienced pre-teen with a passenger on the back piloting down a 14 percent grade

Surprised that Velofix hasn't been sucked into the litigation, too. The family of the deceased seems to have sued everyone but the rabbi at the bat mitzvah. Giro, the family of the driver and so on. Someone was a fool to agree to assemble that bike, or any internet ebike. Those things are D2C and built on the cheap for the benefit of VC group. If there is a way to cheap out or skin a nickel for a fart, you can bet they'll find it. There's not a large enough labor fee that will protect a business for someone at a shop/service company to assemble it. If I don't sell them I turn them all away; too many janky parts, proprietary pieces, half baked solutions and flammable batteries.

Ebikes in the US are the Wild West, there are really no rules or oversight...and what rules there are don't seem to be enforced. The poor girl was wearing a bicycle helmet on what was basically a motorcycle and everyone was operating under the assumption that that was OK. If a case like this is what it takes to shine a light on the issues that abound with ebikes in the US and leads to set rules, testing, enforcement and accountability, I am all for what the parents are doing in suing rad power. Leave the neighbors and Giro out of it

Are RadPower bikes any worse than the millions of BSOs (Bicycle Shaped Objects) sold at discounters like Walmart and Target each year? (I didn't grab the "millions" number out of the air - there are 15 - 20 million bicycles of all types sold each year in the US, the majority not from specialty retailers, i.e. bike shops).
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  #51  
Old 02-02-2023, 02:36 PM
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dsimon dsimon is offline
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Originally Posted by Elefantino View Post
Agreed. We call them "mopeds" because that's what they are. And we don't sell them.
Not to segway, but we call em DUI bikes
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  #52  
Old 02-02-2023, 02:39 PM
Alistair Alistair is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark McM View Post
Are RadPower bikes any worse than the millions of BSOs (Bicycle Shaped Objects) sold at discounters like Walmart and Target each year?
By overall quality? No,

By ability to go fast and kill people? Yes.

Most BSOs are heavy mountain bike/hybrid contraptions. Not many will ever see 20mph, or if so only for very short periods. Any class 2 e-bike will do 20mph with a throttle, no effort required, and do it for miles and miles.
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  #53  
Old 02-02-2023, 03:41 PM
peanutgallery peanutgallery is offline
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They should get sued too. But as pointed out, BSOs are less dangerous in that they have to propeled pretty hard to go 12 mph. These D2C ebikes are particularly egregious as they go 20...for miles...with a throttle...many of the same janky parts and at least twice the weight

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark McM View Post
Are RadPower bikes any worse than the millions of BSOs (Bicycle Shaped Objects) sold at discounters like Walmart and Target each year? (I didn't grab the "millions" number out of the air - there are 15 - 20 million bicycles of all types sold each year in the US, the majority not from specialty retailers, i.e. bike shops).
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  #54  
Old 02-02-2023, 04:03 PM
zap zap is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alistair View Post
By ability to go fast and kill people? Yes.

Most BSOs are heavy mountain bike/hybrid contraptions. Not many will ever see 20mph, or if so only for very short periods. Any class 2 e-bike will do 20mph with a throttle, no effort required, and do it for miles and miles.
The accident happened on a descent. I'm sure a US$250 40lb Walmart bicycle can hit 30+mph pretty quickly on a steep descent. Well, I know they can because my first bike was an inexpensive big store bicycle. The rim brakes on that bike were laughably bad so one compensated.
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  #55  
Old 02-02-2023, 05:36 PM
unterhausen unterhausen is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zap View Post
her hard braking caused the quick release mechanism to unthread. The front wheel loosened and became wobbly, the bike began to shake, and Emerson lost control of its steering.
This just doesn't seem right to me and I think what happened is that the bike shimmied due to the rear loading. This doesn't Rad's case at all though, they are the ones that put a rear seat on the bike. And it is known that rear loads promote violent shimmy.
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  #56  
Old 02-02-2023, 07:20 PM
Alistair Alistair is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zap View Post
The accident happened on a descent. I'm sure a US$250 40lb Walmart bicycle can hit 30+mph pretty quickly on a steep descent. Well, I know they can because my first bike was an inexpensive big store bicycle. The rim brakes on that bike were laughably bad so one compensated.
That directly contradicts the parents’ lawsuit, which claims the kids+bike, sans electric assist, wouldn’t have made it up the hill at all. Which I think is complete bollocks, and I agree with you. But, the fact still remains the heavy BSO will go up hills far less often than the e-bike, and therefore be less prone to failing on the descent.
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  #57  
Old 02-02-2023, 08:33 PM
windsurfer windsurfer is offline
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Wait, I have a Santa Cruz Mt bike with Hayes disc brakes and quick releases. Ridden many thousands of miles without the release coming unscrewed. I cant even imaging how a correctly used quick release can unscrew.

Our street is an 18% grade. We regularly see an elementary school age kid riding an electric scooter up this hill at 30+ mph, on the wrong side of the street, and with no helmet. Those patents are idiots.

Last edited by windsurfer; 02-03-2023 at 11:18 AM.
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  #58  
Old 02-03-2023, 06:45 PM
windsurfer windsurfer is offline
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