E-Bikes: Ridin’ Clean, Not Dirty
The Western Front
March 4, 2017
Bike commuting is a way to live a healthy, environmentally friendly lifestyle, but some people don’t because of Bellingham’s dreaded hills.
Sustainable Transportation Program Assistant Jillian Trinkaus is trying to combat that problem. She helps run Western’s Viking eBike program. E-bikes have a motor and battery built into them which assists riders, Trinkaus said.
“They have been used for people who are recovering from knee surgery because they can lightly pedal and the bike will do most of the work. As they heal, they can step down the amount of help they are getting.” – Jillian Trinkaus
Research Analyst Elizabeth Hartsoch originally brought the idea of e-bikes to Western and started up the program. Hartsoch thought of the idea while she was riding up a hill and realized an electric assist would solve the problems of a regular bike, like fitness barriers, sweating in nice clothes and having things to carry.
“I’ve been bike commuting for close to 20 years. People would always say to me ‘I would love to ride, but the hill,’” Hartsoch said.