A new registry aims to make it easier to reunite stolen bikes with Red Deer cyclists.
Red Deer RCMP Cpl. Karyn Kay said police find stolen bikes in parks, forests, outside stores — everywhere.
“Bike theft has always been an issue in Red Deer because it’s a crime of opportunity. An unlocked bike is easily taken,” Kay said.
She said a thief will see a bike left on a front step, and if no one is around, take it for a ride and usually just ditch it.
“They are using them for transportation. It’s quick. It’s easy. You can get to and from places super fast and then drop it.”
She said a lot of people don’t write down their bike’s serial number, so bicycles can be hard to identify.
Janise Somer, programs co-ordinator at the Central Alberta Crime Prevention Centre, said the registry is a step in the right direction.
“According to the crime map that came out in the past two weeks, 24 bikes have been stolen. That’s approximately two bikes a day,” Somer said.
She said 166 bikes have been registered in the past six weeks without much advertising, so the initiative is off to a good start.
Registration booths have been set up at local farmer’s markets and bike shops.
Mud, Sweat and Gears manager Sean Watson said a registry is a good idea.
“Red Deer is still a great city. It’s just that something needs to be done to bring down the crime rate, especially against bikes,” Watson said.
He said high-end models are often broken down for parts and sold.
“If it can be stolen, it will be stolen,” Watson said.
Somer said it only takes about five minutes to register a bike and an app allows cyclists to immediately send out an alert if their bike is stolen.
For more information, visit https://project529.com/reddeer