When I first saw this I thought it was a joke. A bad one. Snowplows for the bike… Of all the impractical gadgets there is, this one must be somewhere in the middle. I couldn’t even imagine why someone would want one, with how heavy it must be to operate. But apparently it is true. These things exist. And I must admit that this is a very fun and creative way to solve a problem.
It got me thinking; why on earth would someone need to attach a plow to the bike. Doesn’t the city plow the bike paths as well as the regular streets, regardless of country? Apparently not. Bad style that.
If more and more people are going to use alternative forms of transportation, something that will help reduce traffic congestion, save emissions and improve the general health of the population, the infrastructure needs to be safe and working. By NOT plowing bike paths, they become unsafe and act as an deterrent to bike commuters. The commuters shouldn’t have to plow the cities roads themselves.
I am used to plowed and sanded bike paths here in Gothenburg, but we actually had a similar situation this(and last) winter. It was a matter of priority; ambulances, police, fire department, buses and regular commuters had to get top priority. After all the city has to be active even though it is snowing quite a lot. So for a couple of weeks the bike paths were more or less hidden in layers of dirty white stuff. But as soon as possible, they were prepared for safe passage.
Biking is the future. More and more people are interesting in the environment, in health and are looking for ways to save a buck or two. Cities all around the world are struggling with traffic congestion and are trying to get more people to ride the bus or bike instead of having lots and lots of single occupant vehicles dominating the roads. In that spirit, they should make sure to stimulate a bike commute as well as making sure the “regular commuters” have a smooth ride.