A new bicycle that is able to carry up to four children could make thousands of school-run SUVs redundant according to Environmental Transport Association (ETA).
The Madsen Cargo Bike is in most respects much like any other bicycle, but on its rear rack it sports a tub large enough to be equipped with two benches, four seatbelts and a rain hood.
A spokesperson for the ETA said: “Such bicycles are popular on the European continent, but despite making perfect sense for the school run have yet to catch on here.”
The Madsen Kg271 costs £1099, which at first glance seems expensive for a bicycle. However, the bike offers a practical alternative to a car (or second car) for those wanting to reduce their costs as well as their carbon footprint
Cargo bikes replace cars on the school run
A school in the London borough of Richmond offers parents the free use of bicycles that are designed to carry up to three passengers and is considering a charge for parents who drop off their children by car.
The four Dutch cargo bikes, which look like a conventional bicycle that has been stretched to accommodate a wheelbarrow-like box ahead of the rider, are kept at Stepping Stones nursery and are borrowed by parents for short trips. Since May 2007, when the Parents for Pedal Power project was launched, the bikes have been in non-stop use, organisers say.
Buying insurance for your bicycle
It’s important to shop around before buying cycle insurance – many providers charge extras that you can get included for free if you do your homework. For example, every cycle insurance policy from www.ilovemybike.co.uk includes the following and costs from just 33 pence per day:
- Third party cover up to £1m
- Cover for theft, accidental damage and vandalism (new-for-old) RACE COVER INCLUDED
- Personal accident cover up to £20,000
- Breakdown recovery for your bicycle (worth £34 on its own)
- 90 days’ European cover
- 60 days’ worldwide cover
- ‘Get You Home’ – a taxi home should your bike be stolen or damaged
- No claims discount up to 40%
- Discount of up to 40% for folding bikes