Tips to keep your bike safe

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DEARNE police are encouraging cyclists to follow basic bike security tips to reduce their risk of becoming a victim of crime.

Officers from the Wentworth North Safer Neighbourhood Team issued the warning because the warmer weather usually brings about a rise in bike thefts when owners fail to lock their bikes securely.

The team made one in a series of visits to the Ventura House call centre at Manvers to offer bike security advice, hand out bike locks and register workers’ cycles using the “Selectamark” security tool.

Selectamark is a special permanent paint, that is applied to the bike using a stencil with a unique code.

The code is then registered on a database alongside the owner’s personal details. The owner then receives a “log book” document as proof of ownership.

If the bike is stolen and subsequently recovered by police, officers can check the paint and reference code, and return the bike to its rightful owner.

PC Craig White said: “The majority of cycle thefts are opportunist thefts.

“We are all guilty of just ‘nipping’ into a shop for a minute or two and leaving our bikes outside unattended and insecure, or getting back home and leaving it in the back garden unlocked or propped up against our shed or back wall.

“The problem is, that a thief only needs a minute or two to notice your bike is insecure, jump onto it and cycle away.

“These stolen bikes are either dumped, sold off to buyers who don’t realise they’re stolen, or even sold for scrap metal.

Officers issued the following tips for cyclists:

* Register your bike using a property registration database such as Immobilise.com

* Keep a record of your bike’s frame number, brand, make and model name, type of bike, along with noting any identifiable marks

* Invest in a decent lock – and use it

* Never leave an unattended bike insecure

* If keeping your bike in a shed or garage, make sure the building is secure, with its windows covered.