Met Police target bike thieves

Published: 23 June 2017

The Metropolitan Police have launched a new ‘Be Safe’ campaign that is aimed to help the prevention of motorcycle and scooter thefts in the capital, which have been rapidly rising alongside the use of scooter-related crime.

Owners are being asked to be vigilant and security conscious when parking in the capital with scooter owners being specifically targeted in the campaign as they are the least likely to have invested in solid anti-theft devices and locks for their vehicles.

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There is also a larger likelihood of stolen scooters being used in further crime such as snatch and robbery crimes, where the public are far more likely to be caught up and are also at greater risk.

The campaign is encouraging riders to layer up their security, making the vehicles less vulnerable to theft. This can be through using a combination of a solid chain and disc lock, fitting an alarm and also through vehicle identification markings such as Datatag.

Met Police 'Be Safe' campaign

At present, many scooter owners have inadequate security, making them an easy target for opportunist thieves.

 “This campaign is about encouraging scooter owners to do everything they can to adequately secure their vehicle against its theft and its subsequent use to commit thefts and violent robberies against the public” said Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Cressida Dick.

She further added, “Police are working hard to make the streets hostile territory for reckless criminals who endanger lives, but it is the easy availability of scooters that is driving the rise in scooter enabled crime. So, I urge all riders: properly secure your scooter to reduce its risk of theft. If everyone plays their part, we can thwart these thieves.”

The campaign is backed up with public banners that will help raise awareness and which will involve leaflets, a social media campaign and vinyl stencils printed onto dedicated parking bays in hotspot boroughs that will remind riders to use more security.

In some of the theft hotspots across the capital, there will also be advertisements on busses that will further carry the message. These will be seen travelling around Westminster, Wandsworth, Tower Hamlets, Lambeth, Southwark, Haringey and Hammersmith and Fulham.

Motorcycle and scooter crime in the capital has been getting vastly out of control, with a massive rate in the rise of thefts and related crime. In the last year, over 15,000 motorcycles and scooters were stolen in London alone and account for more than half of all the stolen vehicles in the capital.

Scooter crime has also rapidly been on the rise, with more than 14,000 related crimes reported in the past 12 months, with a lot of brazen and dangerous actions being involved.

The Be Safe campaign is operating in support of Operation Venice, which is the Met’s response to motorcycle and scooter crime.

It’s easy to see how the prevention rates will make an impact on the crime figures, both in the theft rate of two-wheeled vehicles in the capital, but also on the more dangerous crimes that follow. 

The Met Police have also issued further advice on making your vehicle less attractive to thieves;

  • Parking: Choose designated parking with a stand and security loop, or if this is not available try areas with lots of people, good lighting and CCTV.
  • Locks: Use more than one lock, focusing on disc locks and chain locks, fitted tight to the bike and through difficult-to-remove parts.
  • Time: When leaving your bike for a long period or overnight, lock it to something secure and use a motorbike cover. At home consider using fitted anchors to secure your bike. 
  • Attention: Use audible alarms where possible to draw unwanted attention to the thieves.
  • Marking: Choose to mark your bike parts with the vehicle identification number (VIN) number, your postcode or registration number using an ultraviolet marker pen or property marking kit. 
  • Insurance: Some companies will offer discounts on your insurance if you invest in certain security measures, so ask before you make your purchase.

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