The Wellesley Police Department has noticed a slight increase in bike thefts, especially at MBTA commuter lots and in commercial areas. Wellesley Police Lieutenant Marie Cleary has compiled some theft prevention tips from the Internet to help reduce the chance that YOUR bike will be stolen.
WELLESLEY POLICE DEPARTMENT: PREVENTING BIKE THEFT
TIPS AND SUGGESTIONS FROM LT. MARIE CLEARY
1. Always, ALWAYS, always, lock your bike, even if you're just leaving it for a moment Lock it in a visible and well-lit area.
2. Lock it in a location where there are other bikes. The chances are better that there will be a bike with a less secure lock than yours. Thieves will usually go for the easiest target
3. Always lock your bike's frame and wheels with a high-quality, modern U-lock (with a disc/flat key).
4. Remove all detachable items like lights, bags and quick release parts and take them with you
5. Lock to a bike rack, or firmly affixed (bolts covered in concrete) parking meter or sign pole - these are the most secure places.
Be careful that your bike cannot be lifted over the top of the object to which it is locked
6. Record your bike's serial number. Take a photo of you and your unlocked bike. Keep the receipt. All will help you identify the bike.
7. Always lock through the frame and a wheel. Add a cable, cable lock, or second U-lock to lock the second wheel. Don’t lock your bike to itself (i.e. put the lock through the wheel and frame only). Lock it to something. Otherwise, it can be easily lifted and carried away.
8. When using a U-lock, position your bike frame and wheels so that you fill or take up as much of the open space within the U-portion of the lock as possible.
The tighter the lock up, the harder it is for a thief to use tools to attack your lock.
9. Always position a U-lock so that the key way is facing down towards the ground. Don’t position the lock close to the ground. This makes it easier for a thief to attack it.
10. Buy the most expensive lock you can afford. U-locks are strong and better ones come with theft warranties. Only buy a U-lock with a flat or disc key. Cylindrical keyed locks are more easily picked.
11. Beware of locking your bike to defective poles that are loosely bolted down and can easily be removed.
Avoid locking to private property. Store your bike inside if space is available.
12. Lock your bike when keeping it in a garage or on a porch. Don't leave a bike on the front lawn overnight or at a school. Take your bike home!
13. Learn about the lock manufacturer's warranty and product replacement policy.
14. If your bike is stolen, look on Craigslist. Many stolen bicycles are found days after the theft posted for sale on Craigslist. If you do see your bike, call the Wellesley Police at 781-235-1212.
Don’t attempt to recover it yourself.
15. If your bike is stolen, call the Wellesley Police as soon as possible.
Have all of your information readily available.
16. You can also register your bike on the National Bike Registry before it is stolen for a small fee. If your bike is stolen, even if not registered with NBR, you can still register the serial number of your stolen bike for a .99 cent fee. Click HERE for their website.
If you see anyone stealing or attempting to steal a bike, call 911 right away. If you see anyone acting suspicious around a bike, call the Wellesley Police. Many of these tips that Lt. Cleary has compiled are common sense, but keep them in mind.