Increasingly, scooters in London are being targeted by thieves for use in committing ‘snatch and grab’ crimes in the capital. The key things to remember are ‘lock, chain and cover’ when it comes to keeping your bike, scooter or moped safe.
Sadly, more than 14,000 two-wheeled vehicles were stolen in the last year in London alone. It only takes a couple of seconds for a thief to make off with your much-loved vehicle if it’s not secured properly. Advice from the Met Police says ‘lock, chain and cover’ to make your bike invisible to potential thieves.
One type of lock is a disc lock, which will fasten to the front brake disc. Another option is the grip lock, that can be used to secure both the brake and throttle. You can also apply a d-lock to the wheel at the front to help prevent it from being wheeled off.
Steering locks can be broken, with thieves simply walking the bike away. Using a chain lock through the back wheel is a good idea as the front wheel can be removed by thieves. The lock must be secured to a heavy and immovable object, like a ground anchor or lamppost. If this isn’t feasible, lace the chain through both the bike’s frame and the back wheel.
Don’t make your bike obvious to passer’s by. If a thief is on the lookout for a specific model, don’t make it easy for them to spot yours by using a cover. Removing a cover to see what’s underneath is both noisy and time-consuming, two obstacles a thief doesn’t want to deal with. Whilst you can never 100% guarantee the safety of your bike, by using multiple methods you can decrease the likelihood of it happening to you.
Don’t leave the keys
Most thefts are opportune strikes with thieves looking for easy and quick targets. Ensure you always apply the steering lock and remove the keys, even if you only intend to be away from the bike for a few seconds. A steering lock on its own is not enough to secure your bike.
Alarms on their own might not prevent a theft but they certainly make a good deterrent. Ideally, you’ll want to fit a 1 or 2 rated Thatcham system that comes with immobilisation, tracking and movement sensors to trace your bike. An added incentive is that it could bring down your insurance payments. A local motorcycle service can advise you on the fitting of security alarms.
Mark your bike
A marked bike is a much less attractive prospect to thieves, as it’s too difficult to sell on the parts. In the event your bike is stolen, property marking also makes it easier for the police to identify the owner.
Where to store your bike at home
The best place to store your vehicle safely is in a garage, shed or other secure outbuilding. Make sure your garage has strong, fully functional locking devices. You could also consider fitting alarms to outbuildings as well as locks. Outside sensor lighting through the night is another security feature to add into the mix. If you don’t have a suitable outside building to store your bike, invest in a cover and ground anchor or a purpose-built motorcycle locker for storing at home.