> The Bakfiets Cargobike: How Babies and Bakfiets Mix

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

How Babies and Bakfiets Mix

So how baby friendly is the toddler-toting Cargobike? Friendly enough that Henry WorkCyles produces a Maxi-Cosi carrier for the Dutch market (Maxi-Cosi is just a Euro brand of car seats comparable to Graco or Evenflo in the US). While carrying newborns isn't really recommended, many Dutch moms are doing it anyway. Obviously this is much safer on the mostly car-free streets of Amsterdam, but I don't think a little very slow speed cruising on Portland's Eastbank Esplanade would be any more dangerous than taking a run with a jogger. In my view it would seem to be much less dangerous than cruising at 85mph on wet roads with the same car seat fastened into an Excursion or Suburban which I see all the time on Portland freeways. Opinions anyone?

There's plenty of room for 2 kids and a car seat or a car seat and Bugaboo style stroller strapped to the back of the cargo box in the long Cargobike, so it opens up some interesting possibilities for families with infants who often find it hard to get out for a bike ride in the early days. Henry says you just drop the front tire pressure way down for a smoother ride. Dutch moms report that infants, who are largely motion junkies by nature, sleep very happily. As a safety obsessed father expecting a new baby very soon, I doubt I would feel comfortable with any bike carrying until at least three months and then only very slow riding in very, very controlled circumstances like neighborhood sidewalks or the Esplanade that are off-limits to all cars.