Cargo bicycles are specially designed and built for the purpose of transporting large loads such as vending goods. It is mainly a normal bicycle modified to include a special cargo area. The cargo area consists of a makeshift flat platform, such as a wire basket or a steel tube carrier or even an enclosed or open box. The cargo area is mounted above the front or the rear wheel, or sometimes in between both wheels. It is also designed to have a load capacity that is several times greater than that of a normal bicycle.
Cargo bicycles were initially used by tradesmen for delivery of milk, bread, mail, etc. These days, they are used for a variety of purposes, including delivery services, cargo handling at airports, warehouse inventory transportation, food collection, food vending, child transport, and transport of trade tools, especially around installation with large areas (e.g., power stations).
A cargo bicycle has numerous advantages over its motorized counterpart. For one, it is very eco-friendly as it does not run on fuel nor causes air pollution. Also, it compactness ensures that it is easier to navigate, especially amidst traffic. Its low cost is also a huge plus, more so when it is going to be used on a large scale, for example, at airports and in delivery services.
It is not hindered by the non-availability of fuel and on-street parking. It does not generate sparks, and hence, it alleviates the threat of fire hazards when used in industries like refineries and chemical plants.
There are so many things going in favour of the cargo bicycle. However, an important disadvantage surfaces because the cargo bicycleis human-powered, and human power is weaker than the power of most motors. This narrows down the scope for balancing geographical and topographical range, payload, and tare weight against each other.
Propelling the vehicle is physically taxing and does not provide the driver any protection from traffic or other elements. This is bound to take a toll on the driver, causing problematic working conditions - another disadvantage of a cargo bicycle. Despite these limitations, the use of cargo bicycles is on the rise. They are especially popular in cities like Copenhagen, Denmark, and Amsterdam.
Some manufacturers of cargo bikes increase the range and payload of the bikes by using power assist motors to supplement the propelling efforts of the cyclist. Predictably, these modified bikes have higher costs and also require an electric source or fuel.
The main goal of a cargo bicycle is to help you transport large items from one place to another. It gives you a convenient, cost-effective solution to run errands, get fitter and healthier, and thankfully, go green, if only in a small way.
All About Cargo Bicycles