Bicycle shop focusing on repairs looking ahead as nationwide bike shortage continues

Bicycle shop focusing on repairs looking ahead as nationwide bike shortage

ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) -There are many sudden, and even unexpected demands created by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic like sanitizer, mask, and toilet paper. Perhaps the most surprising surge focused on something a little bigger and faster.

The struggle for many to lay hands on some fresh wheels – and a lot of other parts, too – is real.

Kirk said even repairs are scarce.
Kirk said even repairs are scarce. (Source: WALB)

Locked up for months and ready to get outside, more and more people are turning to biking to get exercise. As a result, the entire country is facing a national bike shortage.

“We have experienced some extreme over demand as far as that first couple of weeks when we were experiencing the shelter in place when we were selling bikes faster than we are getting them in,” said owner of Breakaway, Gene Kirk.

Having been in business since he was 12 years old and for the past 20 years, Kirk said he has never seen bike sales so low.

Gene Kirk, owner of Breakaway in Albany
Gene Kirk, owner of Breakaway in Albany (Source: WALB)

“I spend a lot of my day telling people no, like ‘no we don’t have any bikes',” said Kirk. “No, there are not any bikes and no I don’t know when there are going to be any bikes.”

Now some industries have suffered during the pandemic with not having enough business, but owners like Kirk are suffering from having too much.

“I was just thankful to be open and be busy almost to the point of feeling guilty a lot of people had to struggle and not be able to work,” said Kirk.

Kirk said he hasn’t received any dates on when bikes will be replenished. But, he said now is not a good time to break your bike because even parts are scarce.

“We are at the moment where we are about two weeks out on repairs and there are some things we can’t even repair because the parts are not available,” said Kirk.

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