5 April 2007
As the weather starts to turn for the better and spring arrives, the chances are you will be spending more time outside to make the most of it.
Plenty of you will be out riding your bike in the local parks, or to and from work. However better weather does not mean you should be less vigilant when it comes to bike security. There are plenty of ways in which you can make it more difficult to prevent yourself from becoming a victimof bike theft and preventing the opportunity of a thief to steal your bike.
It is also worth remembering that you can prevent this opportunism from affecting your home as well. There are many easy ways to make your home a target for burglars, and open window is like a red rag to a bull. Don't make it easy for them! Bare this advice in mind and make life difficult for those burglars.
-Take out insurance, either by extending your home contents insurance or through a separate policy. Cycling organisations and bike shops may offer specialist cover.
Record and register your bike
-Register your bicycle model, make and frame number. You can register your bike for free on the immobilise database (www.immobilise.com). Should your bike get stolen and then recovered - it can be reunited with you.
-Take a clear colour photograph of your bike and make a written record of its description, including any unique features.
-Wherever you keep your bike, be it in your house or a garage, secure it with a lock as well.
-Keep it out of public view.
-Secure it to an immovable object, or consider installing a floor or wall mounted anchor lock for extra security.
Out and about
-Always lock your bicycle, even if you are just leaving it for a couple of minutes
-Avoid isolated places. Leave your bike where a potential thief can be easily seen
-Park your bike safely and considerately where it will not cause a danger or obstruction to others - particularly the elderly or the very young, or people with a disability
-Invest in a quality lock. Ask your local bike shop for advice. It is recommended you spend between 10-15% the value of your bike on a good quality lock. Visit the Sold Secure website (www.soldsecure.com) for more information.
-Lock your bike to an immovable object - a bike rack or ground anchors. Remember that thieves can remove drainpipes and lift bikes off signposts
-Make the lock and bike hard to manoeuvre when parked - stop thieves smashing it open:
-Keep the lock away from the ground
-Keep the gap between bike and lock small - this reduces leverage from a tool like a crowbar.
-Secure removable parts. Lock both wheels and the frame together. Take smaller parts and accessories with you, for example, lights, pumps and quick-release saddles.
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