As part of national Bike Week (12-16 June) Hertfordshire Constabulary is reminding cyclists of measures they can take to protect their bikes.
Cyclists are being encouraged to review their cycle security and get their bike added to BikeRegister, a national cycle database, which is used by police forces to reunite owners with lost and stolen bikes.
Inspector Nicola Dean, from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Crime Reduction Unit said: “As the weather improves, people are out on their bicycles more and this inevitably leads to an increase in thefts. By using secure locks and getting your bike security marked, you can greatly reduce the chances of your bike being stolen. Bike marking is a great deterrent, and it can also help us to reunite stolen bikes with their owners. The marking only takes a few moments and you can get this done for free at one of our regular bike marking events.
“Free bike marking and advice events are held regularly across the county, keep an eye on our news section for details of upcoming events near you.”
Double lock it - using two locks slows thieves down and makes your bike less of a target. Use two quality locks, at least one of which is a D-lock. Thieves are less likely to carry multiple tools, so use two different types of lock if possible.
Lock the lot - lock the frame and both wheels to a secure cycle stand.
Take removable parts with you - take parts that are easy to remove with you, such as wheels, lights, baskets or the saddle. Or use locking skewers or nuts which can increase security by securing the bike's components to the frame permanently.
Park securely - lock your bike at recognised secure cycle parking. It should be well lit and covered by CCTV.
Register it - register your frame number for free on a cycle database such as BikeRegister (opens in new window). Alternative companies can be found on the Secured by Design (opens in a new window). The frame number is usually found underneath the bike between the pedals or where the back wheel slots in. If your bike is ever stolen and recovered by the police, it can be traced back to you.
Mark it - get your bike security marked. It’s a highly effective, visible deterrent to bike thieves. They know that if they are caught with a registered bike, the owner can be traced and they will be arrested. Bikeregister provide a list of police bike marking events.
Remember safety begins at home - take the same care to lock your bike securely at home as you would on the street. Avoid advertising that you have a bike at home, for example, by removing car roof racks, and creating ‘privacy zones’ on apps like Strava to avoid disclosing your location.
Act fast - if your bike has been stolen, contact us as soon as possible by calling 101 or reporting online. Give us your frame number, cycle database number, a photo and any other details and make sure you update the status on the cycle database where you registered it. The sooner we know, the sooner we can act, which might stop it being sold on.
To receive police messages about a range of topics including burglaries, scams and missing people in your local area, sign up to OWL (opens in new page) or download the ‘OWL crime alerts’ app from your app store.