Bike thieves on the prowl

Spring is well under way in the North Okanagan and that means people are enjoying the wonderful weather.

It can also mean thieves are looking for unsecured bicycles.

There have been several reports on social media about stolen bikes recently, but Rachel Zubick with the Safe Community Unit said there are things you can do to protect your ride.

Zubick said bike thefts are often a target of opportunity and an unlocked bike is a tempting target.

“In terms of reducing the opportunity, you want to invest in a very good bike lock,” said Zubick. “You want to make sure it is a heavy duty U-lock that is difficult to remove and break off.”

Zubick also advises people to have their bike engraved with a driver's license number or BC identification number.

Bikes can be engraved for free at the safe community office, 3010 31st Ave.

529 Garage is a province-wide program that helps protect bikes.

“If your bike is stolen there are ways of getting it back,” she said of the popular program.

Other tips to keep your bike safe are:

  • Don't leave it in a carport unattended
  • Don't leave it in unattended in a public place, even for a few minutes
  • Bring the bike into the house

Put the bike someplace it cannot be seen at home and lock it up

“Unfortunately theft of anything is a crime of opportunity,” said Zubick. “Theft of bicycles is a big issue across the province and across the country, it is not unique to Vernon. Gone are the days where you can just drop your bike and go play in your friend's house.”

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