Avoid The Thief: Launch of Bike Theft Campaign

The cycling campaign has launched a campaign to tackle the growing problem of bicycle theft, which has doubled in Dublin since the introduction of the Bike to Work scheme in 2009. Almost 4,500 bicycle thefts were reported stolen in Dublin in 2013, but the actual number of bicycle thefts is likely to be in the region of 20,000 according to household surveys and international experience. The chances of being convicted for the crime are low, with a conviction rate of only 2% for reported theft. When you factor in our estimation of 20,000 thefts, the conviction rate drops to about 0.5%. With the high value of bikes bought on the bike to work scheme you can see that at present, bike theft is a low-risk, high-reward crime.

Following a bicycle theft many victims do not go out a purchase another bicycle. And fear of bicycle theft deters many more from taking up cycling. Combating bicycle theft is an essential step to achieving the national target of 10% of trips by bicycle by 2020.

See the RTE TV coverage of our Campaign launch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jUNJVcXKRM

Bicycle Security Survey

We want to find out more about the extent of the problem and the impact it has on cyclists.
If you have had a bicycle stolen in the last 5 years please complete our Bicycle Security Survey.
All entries received before the 31st December 2014 will go into a draw for a range of prizes, including a Trek 7.0 Ladies or Gents Hybrid bike, top quality locks and other bicycle accessories!

Key Campaign Objectives

Based on our research on the problem in Ireland and how it has been tackled abroad we have come up with the following key objectives to tackle bicycle theft:

Codes of practice for online sellers, buyers and bike shops:

We want online sellers to have

  • Tougher rules on seller identification
  • Mandatory photos of actual bikes (no stock photos)
  • The ability to include serial numbers in bike ads
  • A take down policy to remove ads within 24 hours if someone reports their stolen bike for sale.

We are asking online buyers not to buy a bike if they think it is stolen.

And we are asking bike shops to email the bicycle make, model and serial number to purchasers.

Bicycle theft to be given a higher priority by the Gardaí:

  • A publicity campaign to inform cyclists about how to lock their bikes securely
  • More resources allocated to improve detection and conviction rates
  • Use of bait bikes to track who is stealing bikes and where they are being sold

A massive increase in secure bicycle parking:

  • The Local Authorities to provide more secure bicycle parking throughout the city.
  • Irish Rail to provide sufficient, secure bicycle parking for commuters.
  • Provision of bicycle parking at 2nd and 3rd level colleges.

National steering committee to oversea policies and actions to combat bicycle theft

We are calling for the Department of Transport to set up a steering committee to co-ordinate action on bicycle theft. This committee would consult with Gardai, local authorities, shops, distributors, Dublin Cycling Campaign and other stakeholders. The first stage is to undertake a thorough analysis of the problem, including locations, profiles of thieves, and distribution channels. Following this a number of short and long term actions should be identified to disrupt the market and reduce opportunities for theft.

Advice for Cyclists

  • Always lock your bike, use 2 locks and attach it to an immovable object
  • Use high quality u-locks or chain & padlocks. Look for Solid Secure Certification on lock
  • Know what you own (frame number, type, photo)
  • If your bike is stolen or you see someone else’s being stolen report it to the Gardai (and keep a copy of the form completed)
  • Don’t buy a stolen bike
  • Lock your bike at home – one third of bikes are stolen from homes
  • Insure your bike on your house insurance or consider separate bicycle insurance.

For more advice see our Avoid the Thief video.

News Item

Thursday, 6 November 2014 (All day)

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