Bike Register Would Help Deter Thieves
Cycling solicitor James Pritchard is calling for a new initiative designed to tackle rising bike theft in Northern Ireland to be rolled out across the UK.
Police in the province are offering owners a free registration scheme that they believe will make stolen bikes much easier to track down.
Officers say the scale of the problem has become so bad that it is now “almost like the new car theft”.
Keen mountain biker James, who has built several machines from scratch, believes a register would help deter thieves.
“For me, a scheme like this is a no-brainer and I’d love to see it introduced here in England,” said personal injury claims expert James.
“The increasing value of bikes and that fact that they are much easier to sell on than cars is making them more and more attractive to thieves.
“I’m not at all surprised to hear that police say bike theft is now a bigger problem than car theft. “Cyclists invest an awful lot of money in their bikes these days and they can sometimes be worth more than the family car.
“One of my biggest fears is having my bike stolen and I’m sure it’s the same for most cyclists.”
Some estimates suggest that only around 15% of bike thefts are ever reported to the police.
“Bikes are quite simply much easier to snatch than cars and can be distributed to other parts of the country with ruthless efficiency,” said James.
“My advice to cyclists is to buy the best lock they can afford and be vigilant at all times.
“If you leave your bike unattended even just for five minutes you can be pretty sure someone will take advantage of your carelessness.
“Leave it in a well-lit area whenever possible and always lock it, even if you’re only going to be away for a few moments because that’s all the time the criminals need.”
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