Theft and vandalism
Biking is often more than just a leisure activity for urban cyclists. It’s an economical and eco-friendly way to get around. Unfortunately, nearly 2,000 bikes are declared stolen to the police every year, and this only on the island of Montreal. There are a few steps you can take to make sure your very valuable method of transportation – your bike – doesn’t get stolen.
Insurance Bureau of Canada, the City of Montreal and its Tandem offices, the Montreal Police (SPVM), Sun Youth and Vélo-Québec have joined forces to fight this scourge.
A prevention campaign entitled Burine-le, déclare-le! has been launched to invite cyclists to take concrete action in order to prevent bicycle theft and to enable easier recovery. Posters will be put up around the city close to bike racks, metro stations, schools, parks and libraries. They will also be put up inside restaurants, cafes, movie theatres, libraries, Maisons de la culture, Maison des cyclistes and bike stores in Montreal.
Tandem and the SPVM will also be handing out wallet-size information cards at major Montreal cycling events.
Make it harder for thieves!
- Secure your bike using a good quality U lock.
- Park your bike in a well-lit area where there are people around, without inconveniencing pedestrians.
- Don’t secure your bike to a chain link fence or to small trees. The safest place to park bikes is still indoors.
- Secure the bike to a solidly anchored post and put a lock through the frame and, where possible, a cable through the wheels.
- Remove parts equipped with a quick release mechanism.
- Remove removable items such as odometers, bike bags, pumps, etc.
- Make your bike less attractive to thieves and resellers.
Engraving remains a good theft prevention option
- Have your bike engraved at your neighbourhood police station. Once the bike is engraved, the police enter the data in an in-house register. Thus, when an engraved bike is found, it is possible to quickly locate its owner and return it.
- Write down the bike’s serial number when you buy it and keep it with the inventory of your belongings. And remember to keep the invoice.
If your bike is stolen, what can you do?
Report the theft to the SPVM:
McGill Transportation Research study
According to a Transportation Research at McGill study, 51% of cyclists have had their bikes stolen at least once.
- The most stolen bikes are those worth less than $500.
- Most bike thefts are not reported to the police, and most bikes are not engraved or registered.
- More bikes are stolen between May and July.
- The most affected sectors are downtown Montreal, Plateau Mont-Royal and university campuses.
Contact your insurer. Your bike is covered under your home insurance policy. To find out more about the maximum amount paid out by your insurer for this type of loss, consult the table of limits.
Keep your eyes open!