Cycle Crime Prevention and Cycle Safety
Cycles are a popular target for thieves because they can so easily be stolen and sold on.
- Always lock them whenever you leave them, even if you just going to be a few moments.
- Mark the frame with your postcode. This will help us to get it back to you if we find it - we have thousands of unclaimed unidentified bicycles.
- Get your bike frame marked with your postcode and stick on a 'Coded Cycle' sticker to let thieves know.
- Get a 'recorded cycle' form from your local police station or bicycle dealer and take a photograph.
- Record all your bike's details so that if your bike is stolen and then recovered, we will be able to match it to the description.
- The best kind of bicycle locks are made of a loop of solid metal. Chains deter casual thieves but can be easily cut with the right equipment.
- Always lock your bike to something solid like a lamp-post or railings. If you have a quick release wheels, take off the front wheel and lock it to the frame and back wheel. An increasing number of bus and railway stations in West Yorkshire have secure "sheds" where you can lock your cycle, safe from crime...and the weather!
To improve the chances of recovering your bike if it is stolen, follow these tips:
- SNAP IT – Take a photo of your bike and any identifiable parts. It is also a good idea to have a photo of you with your bike.
- FLIP IT – Turn your bike upside down, over 90% of bikes have a frame or serial number under the crank near the pedals.
- SAVE IT – Make a record of your serial number. Write it down or take a photograph of it and keep it in a safe place.
- MARK IT – Use a third party marking company like Bike Register, which adds the bike to a National Cycle Database.
See our cycle security crime prevention leaflet and pedal cycle passport which can be used to keep all the details of your bike in one handy place.
Cycling Road Safety Tips
Whether it's for work, school or pleasure, cycling has many benefits. It's convenient, environmentally friendly and can help you keep fit when it is done in a responsible and safe way.
- Cyclists should always wear helmets that meet the British Standard (BS EN 1078:1997)
- Highly-visible clothing should be worn at all times
- When cycling at night you must have front and rear lights on your bike and it is advised to wear reflective clothing - be safe, be seen!
- Obey traffic lights and road signs
- Use arm signals before you turn right or left
- Look behind you before you turn, overtake or stop
- Don't ride on the pavement unless there's a sign saying that you can
- On busy or narrow roads, don't cycle next to another person
- When overtaking parked cars, watch out for car doors opening suddenly and allow room to pass safely
- Don't use headphones while cycling
- Never use a mobile phone while cycling
Drivers and motorcycle riders are urged to remain alert to cyclists and keep safety in mind at all times, especially by passing by at a safe distance.
Keep Your Bike Secure
Thieves think cycle theft is a low-risk, high-reward crime. Follow these tips to lock thieves out and ensure your bike remains safe and secure.
Security mark the bicycle. A number of property marking and tagging systems are available.
To be effective a security marking must be:
- clearly visible - advertise that the bike is security marked or tagged. For example, attaching a clearly visible label is a simple option.
- secure - for example, by using a tamper-resistant label, etching, etc, or an inaccessible electronic device.
- placed in at least two separate locations, preferably on or in the frame. At least one of these locations should not be clearly visible.
- give clear information via the visible mark (label, etching, etc) that will quickly allow police to identify the method of security marking or tagging (and where applicable the registration company), and through this identify the owner. Contact your local police team to find out when the next bicycle security marking event is being held.
Record and register your bike
- Register your bicycle model, make and frame number. This assists the police in returning recovered bikes to their rightful owners. This can be done via Immobilise (www.immobilise.com) and BikeRegister (www.bikeregister.com) or contact your local police station for further advice.
- Take a clear colour photograph of your bike and make a written record of its description, including any unique features, so that you can report it accurately if stolen.
Use locks of gold 'Sold Secure' standard. Also, use two different types of lock, with at least one being a high quality D-lock. It takes thieves a few seconds to cut through poor quality locks - make it as difficult for them as possible.
Lock the frame and both wheels to the cycle parking stand.
Make the locks and bike hard to manoeuvre. Secure your bike as close to the stand as possible.
Take parts that are easy to remove with you. For example, saddles and wheels. Or use secure skewers, which can increase security by securing the bike's components to the frame permanently, making it difficult for thieves to steal parts such as saddle or wheels.
Lock your bike at recognised secure cycle parking. It should be well lit and covered by CCTV.
Take the same care to lock your bike securely at home. Bikes get stolen from communal hallways, gardens and sheds.
Don't buy a stolen second-hand bike. Insist on proof of ownership and check the bike frame number at BikeRegister.
If your bike has been stolen, contact the police. Give them your frame number, Immobilise or BikeRegister number, photo and any other details.
Take out insurance, either by extending your home contents insurance or through a separate policy. Cycling organisations and bike shops may offer specialist cover. Do this at the time of purchasing the bike, otherwise you may not get around to it.