COMMUNITY cops have issued a warning following an increase in bicycle thefts across the southside.
According to Strathclyde Police, a marked increase in bike thefts has been observed in Pollokshields, Shawlands and Battlefield, as well as Govanhill and the Gorbals.
More than 60 per cent of the incidents take place in shared closes, which often have secure entry systems, and thefts usually take place between 7am and 10pm. Bikes stolen range in value from under £100 up to £3,000.
Crime stats show that thefts have doubled since the mid 90s due to the increasing popularity of cycling, more expensive models appearing on the streets and new ways to sell stolen goods online.
Officers based at Gorbals police station – which covers both the Southside Central and Pollokshields areas – recommend five steps to reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim of bike theft.
First up is parking: when out and about, chain your bike in a well-lit, CCTV covered area, and using an official bike rack where possible.
Invest in two high-quality bike locks of different styles for increased security and ensure all removable parts of the bike are secured.
Police suggest storing bikes safely even at home, by storing them out of sight and secured to a solid object.
Bikes can also be marked, and if found can then be identified – more information on this c an be found at your local police office.
Finally, it is recommended that bikes are insured, and that all relevant information is stored on a bike passport, also obtainable from your community police force.
Anyone who finds themselves a victim of bike theft, meanwhile, should report it to police as soon as possible, giving a serial number, photo and any identifying features.
Stolen bikes can also be registered on cycling websites and Facebook and Twitter, increasing the chance of recovery.