Revel shuts down NYC service after two deaths
by Benjamin Fang
Aug 05, 2020 | 2361 views | 0 0 comments | 127 127 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Revel, the shared electric moped service that began operating in New York City two years ago, has suspended service until further notice.

The announcement came last Tuesday after two Revel users died in separate incidents just ten days apart in Brooklyn and Queens.

On July 18, Nina Kapur, a 26-year-old television reporter, died after falling off a rented moped near the intersection of Franklin and India streets in Greenpoint. According to reports, a 26-year-old male operator swerved and completed a “hard brake on the front wheel,” causing both of them to fall.

Kapur was taken to Bellevue Hospital, where she was pronounced dead. The driver suffered minor injuries.

On July 28, 32-year-old Jeremy Malave from Cypress Hills lost control of his Revel moped near Woodhaven Boulevard and 67th Drive in Rego Park. According to the NYPD, Malave “failed to properly navigate the roadway” and struck a light pole on a center median.

He was taken to North Shore Forest Hills Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Revel announced that it shut down New York City service a few hours after his death.

“We’re reviewing and strengthening our rider accountability and safety measures, and communicating with city officials,” the company posted on Twitter, “and we look forward to serving you again in the near future.”

The following day, Mayor Bill de Blasio said at his daily briefing that in recent weeks more and more concerns came up about Revel’s safety issues.

He said the Department of Transportation (DOT) and Deputy Mayor for Operations Laura Anglin worked with the company to try to address the problems, but “it was just clear that not enough was happening and it was time to suspend the service.”

“That service will remain suspended until we are satisfied that it can be done safely,” de Blasio said. “And if we are not, it will not be allowed to resume.”

Manhattan Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, who chairs the City Council’s Transportation Committee, noted that the shared electric moped service is popular among delivery workers and younger New Yorkers.

However, the city should regulate the service appropriately to keep riders and pedestrian safe, he said, including increasing safety requirements, traffic enforcement and public service announcements.

Rodriguez said his committee will hold a hearing to address safety concerns over mopeds, electric scooters and e-bikes.

“It is clear that Revel needs to evaluate their service before returning to operations,” he said. “At the same time, our city leadership must work to put in place all necessary protections required to keep New Yorkers safe.”
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