Bicycle dealers urge their shops to be opened
The bicycle dealers are pressing for permission to reopen their shops despite the current lockdown. “Bicycles and e-bikes are the ideal means of transport to move around in a healthy, environmentally friendly and protected manner in the Corona crisis”said the chairman of the ZEG purchasing cooperative, Georg Honkomp, on Friday. He referred to that “Still high risk of infection in the often hopelessly overcrowded public transport”.As part of the current lockdown, the containment ordinances of the federal states generally provide for exceptions for bicycle repair shops, but not for sales. In letters to Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn and Economics Minister Peter Altmaier (both CDU), the ZEG has now requested that this also be allowed again. Currently, the shops in Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia are only allowed to open to the bicycle trade.
The purchasing cooperative, which claims to have 1000 member companies, refers to studies by the Freiburg biostatistician Gerd Antes, according to which cycling and e-bike riding could help to flatten the infection curve in the population. Cyclists not only automatically keep their distance from everyone else, they are also exposed to a lower risk of becoming infected by touching surfaces. Last year, Spahn himself also called for people to travel as far as possible on foot or in the saddle.
However, the ZEG also argues with the economic burden for dealers and unequal treatment of the industries. Bicycles would certainly be offered for sale in large supermarkets. “That meets with great incomprehension, and sometimes also anger,” wrote Honkomp to the two ministers. “Bicycle shops are part of the critical infrastructure and contribute to maintaining it,” he emphasized. (AFP)
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