A York cyclist's e-bike was vandalised by suspected thieves, believed to have been hoping to steal the wheel and rear-hub motor, leaving the mobility vehicle in a dangerous condition.
Anna Semlyen, a campaign manager for the 20's Plenty UK speed limit campaign told road.cc how the bike was locked in the city centre when the damage occurred, the offender or offenders removing bolts from the disc brake rotor, leaving her rear brake unusable.
"They've removed six bolts holding the disc on and they've actually removed the big nut holding the axle on the frame," her mechanic explained. "Dangerous. No back brake and your wheel is not fixed in properly."
Asked by Anna if they could have killed her on her bike, he replied: "Yeah, potentially... clearly [criminal damage]."
Speaking to YorkMix about the incident, Anna said she was riding around questioning why her brakes weren't working very well.
"These parts are very cheap. They are six different bolts that attach your disc brakes to the back of the bike, and then as a single bolt that attaches the the bike frame into the back wheel hub," she said. "So I don't know why they would bother to take them off my bike.
"Why are you attacking a bike that is labelled a disability vehicle? It's completely appalling and nasty behaviour to the point of potentially putting my life at risk. What this does is leave me with a ticking time bomb, with a back wheel that is so unsafe that if I hit something hard, the wheel's going to come off.
"I feel shaken. I'm extremely upset about this. This is very stressful – it's not just a little bit of theft. It's an appalling version of theft that is completely dangerous to my my welfare."
Anna explained to road.cc how she relies on her Transeo e-bike as her mobility vehicle having suffered a broken her leg in 1992 when she was knocked off her bike in a collision involving a driver, this one a recent replacement after a previous bike was stolen.
"My leg was broken in 1992 cycling," she said. "Tibia didn't join when pinned. Surgeon cut into fibula to join tibia. The tibia joined but the fibula didn't."
Anna has in the past days been recommended further surgery to insert a metal rod to stabilise the leg.
"It's a bit scary," she said. "I was tearful and tired today, cancelled a few things. I'm pleased he agreed to operate. Short-term pain. Long-term gain.
In happier news... Martin's started making me another really good e-bike."
Dan joined road.cc in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining road.cc, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.