Thursday, 22 August 2013

Bike Security comes in many Forms

Only leave out what you can afford to lose..........

From The Province Newspaper, Sunday August 18 2013, Page a21

Two men charged after GPS-equipped bike leads police their way
Police tacking a "bait bike" stolen in Whistler found it and seven other stolen bikes in the back of a U-Haul trailer heading back to Vancouver. 
Whistler RCMP tracked the GPS-equipped bike, stolen early Friday, going South and called other police along Hwy 99 for help, police said in a news release.  West Vancouver police at a road check on Hwy 99 at Lawrence Way in West Vancouver pulled over the U-Haul and arrested a Vancouver man, 45 and a Surrey man, 47.
Both are "very well known" to police and are facing charges, police said. 
If your bike was recently stolen in the Sea to Sky corridor, contact Whistler RCMP.

At this point I should add I know nothing more than what is written in the newspaper article listed above, other than I know that the idea of bait bikes has been around for awhile. This is the first time I have heard of its successful use.

During my CAN-BIKE courses when we talk about bike security I show a picture that was taken at the Edmonds Bus Loop, Burnaby BC.  The picture is of a wheel and tyre locked to the bike rack.  The rest of the bike is gone, but the wheel and tyre are intact.  I just took a picture for my bike teaching files of a frame attached to a bike rack at the MetroTown Skytrain station, Burnaby BC.  In this case there is only the frame and front fork, and of course the lock still attached to the bike rack.
The reason I mention these two pictures is to show that bike thieves will take what ever they can steal.
Please don't infer that Burnaby BC is not a safe place for parking your bike and locking it to a bike rack.  I suspect that this is a much more common occurrence the world over than admitted.
I come back to my opening statement about leaving your bike out, locked up or not.
Cycling safety is about being safe, and being able to ride to your destination and back to whence you started.  Locking your bike securely and having it there when you come back, in one piece, is what you want.
Know, I am going to suggest that taking a couple of extra steps that will greatly assist if your bike is stolen.  If you recall that I mentioned I have a back round in Policing, so when I suggest that the Police require certain pieces of information, please believe me.
Technology and the advancements in cycling has ment that bikes have gotten more expensive.  The quest for lighter and faster has pushed the price of frames and attached pieces up through the stratosphere. It seems that to some price is no object. That in turn has drawn the interest of those that make their vocation of stealing bikes.
Now, is there a best way to stop the thieves? Don't leave your bike out where it can be stolen is the first thought, but when that doesn't happen try the following:
- take a photo of your bike and keep it on file
- record the serial number of your bike along with the colour
- record the particular extra pieces you have assembled  on your bike
- if possible add an extra identifying number scratched on the frame in an obvious place
         *** I would suggest your drivers licence number ***
- If you have a carbon fiber bike, you know the serial number is a sticker attached. I am not sure how serial numbers are affixed to titanium frames.

That brings me to the main point of this entry, Yes there is a reason, sorry it took so long to get here.
There is a new company that has the ability to assist you with combatting bike theft.
Registering bikes is an age old system.  Once done with paper, know can be done using a computer. They have the ability to put an register your bike.  Once done and registered through your favorite bike shop, you have a record of your bike and in turn you have a quick ready description to take to your local Police Jurisdictional office.
      is the name of the company and this is their web site.
This appears to be the next step in bike security.
                 It is an idea whose time has come !!!!!
Police require a few things to add your stolen bike to CPIC (Canadian Police Information Computer) or in the United States, NCIC (National Crime Information Computer), and Police on both sides of the border have access by simply running a serial number.
      BUT, and this is the big part and where you come into the equation....
             they require the bike serial number to make this equation work.
Please take the time to record the serial number from each of your bikes, and take a picture of your steed. Insurance will like the idea also, if you have to call them.
Then check and ask your favorite bike shop to look into the program.
I registered both my bikes today through my bike favorite bike shop here in Maple Ridge - Local Ride.
Having said all this, don't leave your bike out without locking it to something substantial, that you are allowed to lock to, and keep an eye on it.  If riding in a group take turns sitting with the bikes so the would be thieves see your bikes are not targets.
 If in doubt, then refer back to the opening comment, and enjoy the walk home.
 I encourage you to check out their web site.
Please assist you local Police to combat bike theft.

   Thanks for stopping by,
       Safe Ride Home......


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