Lock it or Lose it

Lock it or Lose it

Hundreds of bicycles are stolen across Canberra every year. Making sure you lock your bike properly every time helps reduce the likelihood of losing it to a thief. Bike thieves are often opportunistic, if you leave your bike unlocked and unattended, even for a short time, it could be gone in seconds. Front yards, apartment balconies and car bike racks are common places for bikes to be stolen from when they aren’t locked properly.

Locking your bike securely

Lock your bike and follow these tips to outsmart the offender and reduce the likelihood losing it:

Lock it - don’t leave your bike unsecured, whether you are at home, or out and about a secured bike is much harder to steal.

Use a heavy duty lock and fasten your wheels, make it hard work for your bike to be stolen. Small locks and/or chains are easy for offenders to cut through and if your wheels aren’t secured to your bike or a lock, you can lose them too – take them with you if you can’t lock them.

If you spend thousands on your bike or its your main mode of transport, why skimp on a lock?
D-locks offer a high level of protection against bike theft. However, combining multiple locks is the best method to prevent theft. When using a D-lock, position your bike frame and wheels so that you fill as much of the space within the D portion of the lock as possible. This makes it harder for thieves to use tools to break your lock. Position the D-lock so the keyhole is facing downwards but the lock is still elevated from the ground.

Lock your frame and wheels to fixed objects like purpose-built bike racks. If you lock your bike to something that can be easily cut like a wire fence a thief can easily take your bike and lock with it. If a chain lock is loose a thief can even lift the bike up over a pole or other object. 

Be smart about where you park. Park in places that are well lit and secure, if an offender is likely to be seen or it’s hard work to get to a bike, it is a lot less tempting for a thief.

ACT Government has a range of park and pedal options with secure bike cages and lockers available. 

Recording your bike's details

Many bikes stolen in the ACT are not returned to their owners as they cannot be accurately identified. It is your responsibility to prove to police that you own a recovered bike.

The  'bike passport' can be used to keep information in one convenient location or follow these tips to help claim your bike if it is stolen:

  • Many bike shops now offer to keep records of your purchase and the serial number of your bike on file.
  • Record your bike’s serial number. It is located under the crank shaft between the pedals.
  • Take a photo of the bike so that if it is recovered it can be returned to you.
  • Keep a description of your bike including any markings or characteristics that make your bike easily identifiable.
  • Engrave your details on the bike.
  • Use an insurance company’s or other mobile application to record your property details (including your bike) electronically.

Useful links:

  • The National Bike Register is a database that disseminates identifying features through social and industry networks, and provides information to insurers and police in every state and territory to aid the investigation, identification and recovery of stolen bikes.
  • Pedal Power is Canberra's peak cycling body. As a not-for-profit organisation they represent the interests of all Canberra bike riders and provide many services to encourage more Canberrans to ride more often.  
  • ACT Government Transport Canberra and City Services is responsible for managing our roads, footpaths and cycle paths and operating our public transport system (ACTION).

Call

  • Police Assistance on 131 444 to report a crime that it is NOT life threatening or a time critical emergency  
  • Triple Zero 000 in an emergency or life-threatening situation
  • Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 to report information about illegal activity, suspicious activity or information which may assist in solving a crime.