Cracked Citi Bike Seats Leave Riders' Pants Soaked After Storms, Users Say
LOWER MANHATTAN — Before you take a crack at Citi Bike, you may want to check the seat.
Cracks on the seats of the shared blue bikes are becoming more prevalent, regular riders say — which creates a nuisance when rain seeps into the fissures and the seats stay soggy for days after a storm.
“You don’t feel the cracks, you just notice your pants are wet after you get off it,” said regular user Leah Lieberman, 28, who was riding a Citi Bike Downtown on Monday.
“I try to avoid the cracked ones, but it’s hard to do.”
BikeshareNYC, a blog about Citi Bike, recently surveyed 24 bike stations in the Financial District and Battery Park City and found that the majority of the docked bikes they checked — 68 percent — had cracked seats.
DNAinfo New York found similar counts at several Downtown docks. At a Citi Bike station on Fulton Street, for example, 16 out of 24 docked bikes had noticeable cracks.
Several regular riders said they had spotted more cracked seats over the past couple of months as Citi Bike, which launched in May 2013, rolls into its second year of operations.
The Department of Transportation referred questions about damaged bike seats to Citi Bike. A Citi Bike spokeswoman said replacement seats had been ordered and would begin arriving at the end of this week.
Most riders said the cracked seats were only a problem after a rainstorm.
"I just try to avoid to using the bikes when it rains," said Dario Rivera, 31, after grabbing a bike from a Maiden Lane station where eight of nine available bikes had cracked seats. "That's my solution."