Lancashire Police have contacted us to ask that we make our members aware that there has been a dramatic rise in the number of thefts of quality bicycles in our region, with 63 cycles priced over £1000 each stolen in a ten week period! Many of these incidents appeared to be targeted thefts, going to some lengths to achieve their aim because they know the bikes are there, which sugguests intelligence gathering. It may be that the victim has been seen regularly coming and going from home by bike, but what other tell-tale signs are we unwittingly showing thieves? Garage doors left open with bikes on view, cycle racks left on a vehicle in the drive. the use of GPS applications that map a ride or route repeatedly showing where the ride started and finished at home, then loaded onto social media for others to view, can advertise the fact that expensive cycles are located within. the statistics show that the security often does not match the technology of the machine. Many, but not all, have been stolen from sheds and garages with poor standards of locks and alarms.
The Police are asking us to review our cycle security arrangements.
- Always make sure your bike is locked even if you are only going to be away from it for a short time.
- Use a good quality lock. The police recommend a solid steel D-shaped shackle lock which can be bought from any good bike shop.
- When out, lock your bike to something solid like a lamp-post or railings, preferably in a public area.
- If you have quick release wheels, take off the front wheel and lock it to the frame and back wheel.
- Remove all detachable accessories, such as lights, pumps, panniers and quick release saddles.
- Mark your postcode on the frame with a UV pen.
- Think about taking out insurance cover for your bike.
- Register your bike FREE at www.bikeregister.com the onlypolice approved cycle database. (Further tamper proof security markings can be purchased during registration for under £25)
- Alternatively ther is datatag which is a bit more expensive but state-of-the-art system of marking cycles wothout damagingexpensive frames, forks and wheels. The system involves UV etching that is not visible and gives your bike a unique fingerprint. Component parts can also be marked. For more information go to www.datatag.co.uk/bicycles.php.
If you would like to be kept abreast on policing issues in our area you can sign up to www.lancashire.police.uk/intheknow. to get info about bike related issues just tick that you work in a bike shop.
On 18th December 2014 Burnley and Padiham Police added that a number of people had reported finding chalk marks on their properties, front & rear gates, walls etc. It has been established that each of the chalk marked properties owned expensive bikes. The Police are concerned that the marks are put there to identify properties to be targeted later, although this has not been confirmed. Please be aware of this type of crime and review your security if necessary.