City Says Barriers Have Been Installed To Protect System Equipment

NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) — Citi Bike riders recently raised concerns about a dangerous new obstacle installed by the city. Now, one woman wants her story to serve as a warning for others.

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Susannah Scott-Mitchell told CBS 2’s Amy Dardashtian that her helmet saved her life and that a concrete barrier at a Brooklyn Citi Bike kiosk almost killed her.

“I blacked out, I came to and I had a crowd of people around me. I look back and I’m like ‘oh my God I hit a concrete bar, what is that doing here?'” she said.

The accident happened two weeks ago. Scott-Mitchell was riding in the bike lane near Jay Street and Johnson when her bike struck the barrier.

“The bus forced me out of this lane so I ducked in here,” she said, “I flew over the handle bars and landed over there.”

She walked away bruised from head to toe.

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“I’ve ridden a bike all my life and I’ve never had an accident like that,” she said.

The city told CBS 2 that the barriers are called wheel stops and were installed to prevent vehicles from running into and damaging system equipment.

The barriers have been installed around the city at crosswalks and intersections where cars can’t park. The city said that the barriers are sectioned off by plastic poles, but riders said the wheel stops are difficult to spot because they blend with the street and just out past the bike rack.

Last Friday, fire officials said that a man struck a barrier in Midtown and fell on his head. He was rushed to the hospital unconscious.

Scott-Mitchell wrote to Citi Bike and received an apology, but two weeks later was shocked to see that the barriers were still in place.

The city is already facing at least two lawsuits stemming from injuries at Citi Bike stations. The city would not comment on pending legislation.

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