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About three decades ago, China was known as the “Bicycle Kingdom”. But the two-wheeled mode (方式) of transport’s popularity began to fade, with many bikes soon replaced by their fuel-powered competitors.

大约在30年前,中国被称为“自行车王国”。但随着自行车不久被燃油驱动的汽车所取代,这种双轮交通方式的热度开始衰退。

But recent months have seen a revival of the humble bike across China, with an increasing number of people choosing cycling instead of driving to schools, to workplaces or to do sightseeing. The introduction of bike-sharing schemes, pioneered by start-ups like Ofo and Mobike, has brought the trend to a new level.

但在近几个月中,中国大地上见证了一场普通自行车的复兴,越来越多的人选择骑车上班上学、游览观光,而非驾车出行。而由Ofo、摩拜单车等新兴公司发起的共享单车计划,则将这一趋势带向了一个新高度。

According to data compiled by iResearch Consulting Group, the first week of this year saw 5.85 million active users of Mobike while Ofo had 1.4 million active users.

根据艾瑞咨询集团整理的数据显示,在本年度的第一周中,摩拜单车共有585万活跃用户,而Ofo则有140万。

People can unlock the shared bikes by simply using their smartphone. The bikes are equipped with GPS and can be left anywhere in public for the next user. They’re popular among many Chinese people as they provide an effective solution to the “last mile” problem, which refers to the final leg of a person’s journey.

仅凭自己的智能手机,人们就能解锁这种共享单车。这些单车都装有全球定位系统,可以被放在公共场合的任何地方,等待下一位用户使用。它们受到了许多中国人的欢迎,因为它们有效地解决了“最后一公里”难题,即个人行程中的最后一段。

“In places where the subway doesn’t extend, where it’s difficult to change from one kind of transport to another, it’s so easy to get where you want to go with Mobike,” Hu Hong, 29, told AFP. She pedals to her Shanghai real-estate job.

“在地铁线路覆盖不到的地方,很难换乘其他交通,用摩拜单车去你想去的地方就简单多了,”29岁的胡红(音译)在接受法新社采访时表示。在上海从事房地产行业的她都是骑自行车去上班的。

However, the schemes have also led to problems such as illegal parking, vandalism and theft.

然而,这一计划也出现了一些问题,如非法停车,故意破坏和偷窃等。

Last month, two nurses in Beijing were placed under administrative detention for five days for putting locks on two shared bikes.

上个月,北京的两名护士因在共享单车上上锁(占为己有),被处以行政拘留5天。

And in December, a man who stole a shared bike was sentenced to a 3-month detention with a 3-month probation, and fined 1,000 yuan by the Shanghai Minhang People’s Court.

而在去年12月,一名男子因偷窃一辆共享单车,被上海闵行人民法院判处拘役3个月,缓刑3个月,并处罚金人民币一千元。

“Bike-sharing is a greener method of transportation and provides a user-friendly experience,” said Liu Xiaoming, vice-minister of transport. “But it’s a combination of online and offline business. Operators are usually strong in online services, but lack offline business experience, which causes problems.”

“共享单车是种更加绿色的出行方式,并且为用户提供了一种友好的体验,”交通部副部长刘小明表示。“但是这是一种线上和线下商业的结合。经营者的线上业务能力很强,但缺乏线下业务经验,导致了问题产生。”

In fact, these problems are also shared by bike-sharing schemes abroad. Launched in 2007, Vélib is a large-scale public bike sharing system in Paris. At its early stage of operation, it also suffered from problems of vandalism or theft.

事实上,这些问题在国外的共享单车体系中也同样存在。创建于2007年的Vélib是一个位于巴黎的大型公共单车共享系统。在其初期的运营中,它也曾遭遇故意损毁及偷窃等问题。

By Oct 2009, a large number of Vélib’s initial bikes had to be replaced due to vandalism or theft, according to The New York Times. Bikes were found hanging from lampposts or thrown into the Seine River.

据《纽约时报》报道,截至2009年10月,由于故意损毁和偷窃问题,大量初期的Vélib自行车不得不被置换。这些自行车曾被发现挂在街灯柱上,或是被扔进了塞纳河中。

To deal with these problems, the company came up with the idea of encouraging people to return the bikes to stations by rewarding free time for their next rides.

为了处理这些问题,该公司想到一个办法:鼓励人们将自行车归还至站点,并在他们下次使用时奖励免费用车时间。

Now, Chinese service operators are also trying to address these problems. For example, Mobike sets a 100-point credit score for each user, with points taken in the case of bad behavior. Once a score drops below 80, bike rental is increased to 100 yuan per 30 minutes, up from 0.5-1 yuan.

现在,中国的服务经营者们也开始尝试去解决这些问题。举个例子,摩拜单车为每个用户设定了100分的信用值,行为不当将会被扣分。当信用值降到80分以下时,自行车租赁费用将会从每30分钟0.5-1元上涨到100元。

图文来源:21世纪英语

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