Hawaii: People resorting to pedal power

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Hawaii: People resorting to pedal power

Postby Micronaut » Wed Oct 12, 2005 5:12 pm

Posted: September 22, 2005 05:41 PM
http://khon.com/khon/display.cfm?storyID=7468&sid=1152

People resorting to pedal power
Andrew Pereira

It's becoming the two-wheel alternative to rising fuel prices.

More people are hopping on bikes and mopeds as gas prices soar.

Moped shops say it's been difficult to keep enough inventory ever since gas prices shot upwards.

And it also appears a lot of people are dusting off their bicycles.

With gas prices spinning higher and higher, more people are getting out of their cars and getting on a bike.

"They saying they want to ride their bikes, do shorter errands. They're complaining about the gas prices," says Keith Nishimoto, The Bike Shop.

At The Bike Shop there's been brisk business from folks pulling out bicycles from the back of their garage.

What used to be a two to three day wait for repairs now takes a full week.

Waikiki resident Mike Rutland was tired of seeing his wallet drained at the pump.

He's been pumping his pedals instead and says it's paying off in more ways than one.

"Keeps you in shape. I've lost 32 pounds," says Rutland.

At the WalMart on Keeaumoku Street, bike assemblers are now on duty 24 hours a day just to keep bicycle racks full.

"We've seen an increase probably of about 25 percent off of the normal sales that we get after back-to-college. Like I said, that's about 25 percent up higher," says Debbie Shima, Keeamoku, WalMart.

If bicycling is not your thing, perhaps one of these two wheelers might do. Mopeds are a hot item right now, with a typical fill-up costing less than $10."

The typical moped only holds one gallon of gas, but you'll get anywhere from 40 to 60 miles for that gallon.

The manager of The Moped Company in Kapahulu says business is up 40 to 50 percent.

And because more people are getting back on their old mopeds, mechanics are working well past closing time.

"We literally stay here till past midnight trying to keep the flow going so that the next day we don't get slammed down again," says Jennifer Purcell, The Moped Company.

Robb Drown, a training officer for First Hawaiian Bank, doesn't think gas prices will come down anytime soon.

Just last night he bought a $3800 scooter and feels it's a great investment.

"Seemed like the sensible way to get around and save some money," says Drown.

If you're thinking about purchasing a moped you'll pay $1200 to $1600 for a new one.

Used mopeds go for $600 to $1100.
Micronaut
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