BIKE-SHARING operator oBike has acknowledged and expressed disapproval of the recent acts of mischief on its bikes in the country.
The reported cases of vandalism included the removal of seats, damaged smart locks, painting the bikes and disposing it into drains.
oBike has filed more than 50 police reports over these cases and are working closely with the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) to identify those responsible.
Offenders who are found guilty of causing any loss or damage to the oBikes worth RM25 or more will be charged under Section 427 of the Penal Code, with offenders found guilty liable to imprisonment up to five years or a fine, or both.
oBike aims to provide a service that will improve the ease of mobility in Malaysia and the cities we operate in.
“Such intentional destructive acts on the part of malicious users deprive others of this convenience, and will not be condoned,” oBike Malaysia marketing manager Elaine Chan said.
“Vandalism could happen anywhere on anything, not just on oBikes. We are eager to collaborate with the relevant authorities and hope to garner their support in helping us apprehend the culprits as soon as possible to curb the problem,” she added.
One such case that happened in Subang Jaya saw a man in his late 20s openly dumping an oBike into a lake.
The entire action was recorded and publicly shared on social media.
oBike has since filed a police report over the matter and is waiting for updates from PDRM.
oBike users are encouraged to report damaged bicycles through the oBike app or on oBike Malaysia’s Facebook page to facilitate repairs and the filing of police reports.
The company currently tracks commuter travel patterns through its bikes to help facilitate planning for deployment and redeployment of bikes in strategic parking locations, providing a more seamless commuter experience.
Various features have also been introduced in the oBike app to educate and prevent misuse of the oBike bicycles, including a Geo-Fencing technology where users are required to cycle oBike bicycles only within allowed zones and areas, and bicycles that are not parked in designated parking spots will result in higher ride charges or even getting the user banned from the app.
The oBike operations team regularly patrols the streets and relocates the bikes as well as identifying damaged bikes and ensuring the other bikes are well-maintained.
“Our users play an active role in providing feedback so that our on-ground technicians can repair and collect the affected bikes promptly.
As bike-sharing is a relatively new concept, we have always prioritised educating users on proper bike-sharing etiquette so that together we can build a gracious cycling community,” Chan explained.
oBike also recently announced a strategic partnership with ride-hailing service provider Grab, with users now able to access oBike bicycles through the new GrabCycle platform and pay for their rides with GrabPay. The partnership was launched in Singapore and will soon be rolled out in more countries.