This entry was posted on Thursday, July 19th, 2007 at 2:09 pm and is filed under Bicycle advocacy, Celebs on bikes, Other YouTube vids. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
Alex Nott, a producer for ITV London, has released three video trailers for ‘Gone in 60 seconds’, a half hour documentary on bike theft in London. I did a news story on this programme on BikeBiz.com, July 10th.
The programme will air on ITV1 at 7.30pm on 24th July and will also be available on Sky, channel 993. Here are the three trailers for the programme:
‘We track the criminals that are stealing your bikes’
‘How easy is it to steal a bike in central London?’
‘How safe are the locks on your bike?’
The footage of the ‘bike thief’ sawing through the D-lock in broad daylight, but not being challenged, is echoed in this famous video from the Neistat Brothers of New York City. A version from ‘wakingavalon’ has had 405,807 views on YouTube.
Cycle theft is a serious disincentive to cycling. According to a French study, only 25 per cent of cyclists re-buy a new bike after a theft, and of these 10 per cent buy a cheaper bike than they had before (20 per cent cheaper on average). A further 23 per cent won’t return to cycling at all.
The study reports that 20 per cent of stolen bikes were not protected with any form of locks. 90 per cent of those which were locked were secured with an easily cut lock.
England and Wales
These are Home Office figures. There’s likely to be some under-reporting going on but Halifax insurance company claims there are 440,000 thefts a year.
As this was reported on BBC.co.uk - unchallenged - many folks now consider this the true figure, even though it is largely unsubstantiated.
Halifax also issues car theft and cellphone theft ‘market reports’. Their press releases always say something like ‘car/bike/mobile stolen every 71 seconds’.
Yes, bike theft is a big problem and professional thieves will be able to get through almost any form of lock, given time and an apathetic public, but, thankfully, thieves equipped with 42-inch bolt cutters are rare.
Those that are caught should have their hands cut off, believes the bicycling MP, and would-be London mayor, Boris Johnson.
In March, he was received warmly at a meeting of Islington Cyclists’ Action Group when he said:
“I think these people deserve punishment and I’m calling for Sharia law for bicycle thieves.
“If I had my way I would plant decoys in a whole lot of bicycles across the borough and in the evening I would send Navy Seals in through the thieves’ windows and show them what it’s all about.”