Swobbee has installed four battery-swapping stations in New York City to help provide e-bike delivery workers with safe and reliable charging infrastructure.

This initiative is part of the city’s ‘Charge Safe, Ride Safe‘ pilot programme that aims to support safe charging and prevent battery-related fires.

Swobbee station with open battery compartments
Swobbee station with open battery compartments

During the pilot, an initial group of delivery workers will have free access to dedicated charging infrastructure, including Swobbee’s battery-swapping stations. Addiitonal charging infrastructure will also be provided by Popwheels and Swiftmile.

The project will gather data on the usage and user experience of new charging options. This will then inform future practices on how to scale up New York’s e-mobility charging infrastructure and improve conditions for delivery drivers.

Swobbee US Managing Director, Stephan von Wolff said:

We are extremely excited about this opportunity to contribute to New York’s mobility transition and to offer delivery drivers a reliable charging solution. Our swapping stations were specifically designed to tackle challenges like this. To ensure maximum safety for the delivery workers, we’re introducing the safest battery technology around. This lithium ferrophosphate (LFP) technology outperforms any conventional lithium-ion alternative—and with a lower total cost of ownership. We’re convinced that this accessibility and safety can serve as a blueprint for the city’s approach to fire safety and sustainability moving forward.

Recently, cases of fires caused by batteries in electric micromobility vehicles in New York City have risen from 40 in 2020 to 220 in 2022. These fires are often caused by improper charging practices or physical damage. In addition, as around 65,000 delivery drivers in New York provide their own e-bikes for work, they are at increased risk due to the number of inexpensive but low-quality batteries available.

To address these issues, the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) issued a call for pilots last year, seeking new technologies to improve safety for micromobility charging.

As part of this project, 30–60 workers will now have access to Swobbee’s battery swapping stations. These workers will be able to quickly swap out their vehicle’s UL-certified battery and replace it with a fully charged one. Compared to recharging, this reduces wait times to increase efficiency during their shift.

Shaina Horowitz, Vice President of Applied Innovation at Newlab said:

First-of-their-kind collaborative pilots like this are essential to de-risking new technologies and shaping solutions so that they work for people and for our city. This work epitomises Newlab’s focus on scaling real-world solutions to urgent challenges that are critical to our sustainable future and we are thrilled to partner with Swobbee to get their technology deployed in New York City.


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