Keep your motorcycle secure
Our towns and cities have been a lot quieter this year, but the Motorcycle Crime Reduction Group (MCRG) are reminding us all not to take our eyes off the ball where bike security is concerned.
Police National Computer (PNC) figures for motorcycles stolen between January and September this year show a 45% reduction compared to 2019, which sounds reassuring, but feedback from MCRG members suggests the figures don’t give the full picture. The national vehicle crime working group report no reductions in overall vehicle theft - that’s probably because PNC figures don’t include vehicles stolen and recovered within a few hours, nor ones that aren’t registered with the DVLA, such as off-road bikes.
London remains the hotspot for bike theft - accounting for 66% of all stolen motorcycles and 49% of all scooters on the PNC, but that’s no reason to be complacent if you live elsewhere. The overwhelming message is pandemic or not, make your bike as secure as you can wherever you live and wherever you park. Follow these top tips to keep your motorcycle secure:
Stop the opportunists -
- Many bikes are stolen from the owner’s home or other familiar places, when the guard is down.
- It sounds obvious, but turn your bike off and take the key out of the ignition - while you’re in the house looking for that missing glove, the bike could go missing too
- Even if you’re leaving it for just a couple of minutes, engage the steering lock and if you have one, set your Immobiliser and alarm – neither are infallible, but will help stop the opportunist thief
- Gate on the driveway? Close that too, it all helps to slow the theft down and put the thief off
- If you’re going to be a bit longer, keep your bike out of sight and lock it to something; it might take a few minutes, but it will help discourage criminals
At home -
- Thieves often ‘shop’ for particular bike models, so get your bike in a locked shed or garage and make sure it isn’t visible through windows or doors - a Moto Corsa Indoor Cover would be perfect!
- If you can’t park it inside, try to pick a visible, well-lit area on or around your property and invest in a decent cover - preferably one that can be secured to the bike
- Secure your bike to something solid, to stop it being carried or simply pushed away - a ground anchor is well worth investing in, whether the bike is indoors or outdoors
At work / out and about -
- Where you can always try to park in a Secured Car Park - even if you have to pay for it, it’ll work out cheaper than replacing a stolen machine
- If you can’t find one go for a busy, public place and look for a motorcycle parking bay with an anchor point
- At night, park in a well-lit area
- Vary your parking place. Don’t create a ‘pattern’ of use
- Lock and cover it properly every time you park - even if you’re just nipping to the shop
Layer Your Security -
Both the Metropolitan Police and the MotorCycle Industry Association (MCIA) advise using two or more devices – 'layering' – to help maximise protection.
- Get yourself a good quality, Sold Secure or Thatcham-approved chain or D-lock like Oxford's Monster; a disc lock - preferable one that’s alarmed and highly visible like this one from Kovix; and a Lever Lock, to stop the controls being operated
- Pass your lock and chain through the frame of the bike if possible - not through luggage racks and other removable parts - and keep the lock and / or chain off the ground - it makes it more difficult to break
- If your bike doesn’t have one, fit an audible alarm and/or immobiliser. And also consider a tracker like the Datatool TrakKING Adventure S5 - trackers are becoming more and more effective at finding and recovering stolen machines, often within a couple of hours of the theft. Our trained technicians can supply and fit alarms and trackers for you.
- Use an approved security marking and registration system - like Datatag. Marking as much of your bike as possible will make it more difficult for criminals to sell parts on, and less attractive to steal. It will also help police identify parts and return recovered stolen bikes