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24 September 2014

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Cycle security: Keep your bike safe from theft
Keep your bike locked up!
Keep your bike locked up!

This section of our guide to cycling in Cambridgeshire looks at how to keep your bike secure - including advice on bike locks and security marking.

  see also  

Cambridgeshire Traffic News

Cycling in Cambridgeshire Message Board

Travel, Traffic and Transport Message Board

  internet links  

Cambridgeshire Constabulary Recovered Cycles
An Aladdin's Cave of cycles which have been recovered in the Cambridge area.

Drive Safe, Cycle Safe
Information from the Department for Transport to make motorists and cyclists more aware of one another.

National Cycling Strategy
The NCS aims to increase the use of bicycles for all types of journey.

Cycle Maps Directory
A UK directory of official council cycle maps on the web.

An independent, community-run site for cycling news and information.

The Cambridge Cycling Campaign
Provides a voice for cyclists in our area.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external websites.

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Cycle Security
In the UK 150,000 bicycles are stolen every year and many are never recovered. Bicycle theft is preventable though - here are some tips from the National Cycling Strategy:

  • Don't leave your bike in isolated places.
  • Park your bike safely and considerately where it will not cause a danger or obstruction to others.
  • Always lock your bike when you leave it, even if it is only for a minute while you pop into a local shop.
  • Secure your bike to immovable objects like cycle anchors or robust street furniture e.g trees, parking meters, ralings (but do observe requests not to use them), it stops it being carried away.
  • Lock your bicycle through the frame.
  • Lock the wheels and other detachable parts.
  • Remove the smaller parts which cannot be secured and take them with you when you can, especially lights and quick release saddles.

Different bike locks
There are various bike locks on offer

Locks and bolts
Look for products that have been tested against attack and are resistant for one minute or more.

Here are some tips from Parkside Police Station in Cambridge:

  • Some locks offer virtually no security and can simply be pulled apart. 'D' or 'U' locks may look strong but the security they offer varies widely.
  • Thin cable locks can easily be cut, but the better ones are thicker and have interwoven threads that force any attacker to spend longer 'chewing' through them.
  • Horseshoe locks, fixed to the frame around the back wheel are strong. Use with an extension cable or second lock to secure to an immovable object.

Mark your bike
Marking your bike can act as a deterrent to theft and may also help the police to return it to you if it is stolen and subsequently recovered.

If you are unlucky enough to have your bike stolen, you can check the Cambridgeshire Constabulary Recovered Cycles website to see if yours has been found.

Make sure you record details about your bike such as make, model, frame number and colour. It will help you describe the bike to police officers and increase the chance of recovery.

Here are some more tips on security marking from the National Cycling Strategy:

  • Security marking should be clearly visible. Hidden marks do not deter theft unless they are backed up by visible ones - a tamper proof label for instance.
  • Make sure your security marking is permanent. It's no good if it comes off easily!
  • Place markings in two separate locations on your bike, and not on any part which is removable.
  • Give clear information that will quickly lead the finder to the owner of the bike.
  • You can buy easy to use property marking kits from stationers and DIY stores and many bike shops provide this service too.

Alternatively, you can get help marking your bike at a Cycle Security Coding Session held by the local police. In Cambridge these are held on:

  • The first Wednesday of every month at Cambridge Station Cycles, 5-7pm.
  • The last Saturday of every month at Park Street Cycle park, 10am-2pm.

MoreFind out what cycling equipment is on offer and take a look at some of the best cycle routes »

The benefits of cycling »
Road safety tips and training »

Defensive and assertive cycling
The right gear »
Bike lights
Cycle routes »
Cycle message board »

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