How can I prevent bike theft?
Just because you've purchased a new helmet, light reflectors and bell to go along with that new bike doesn't mean you're ready to cross "bike accessories" off your shopping list just yet.
The National Bike Registry estimates that over 1.5 million bicycles are stolen each year in the U.S. and only a small percentage of them are ever recovered. A large portion of those bicycles were stolen due to the fact that they were not locked up- or they were locked up improperly. In order to protect your bike from theft, practice the following steps:
- Buy a good lock- cable locks are relatively easy to cut- purchasing a U-lock will prevent bike thieves from easy access to your bike
- Lock your bike- keep your bike locked even when it is in the garage
- Lock your bike correctly- lock the frame and both wheels to a post, pole, or bike rack
- Register your bike with local police- if you register your bike with your local police or the National Bike Registry your chances of recovery tremendously increase. When registering your bike make sure to have the following information available: make, model, color, and serial number.
Bicycles are often covered under your homeowners insurance policy. Your homeowners policy might also provide liability coverage in the event of a collision that results in injury. There are usually no deductibles for liability claims.
As with any new purchase, be sure to call you insurance agent if you purchase a new bicycle, keep the receipt and take photographs of the bike.
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Statistical Data Source: National Bike Registry. Bicycle Theft. http://www.nationalbikeregistry.com/theft.html
Last Updated: July 15, 2009
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