Urban Tribe - Ride with your kids in front.

Stolen: Specialized Hemi

Posted by on October 30th, 2005 at 12:21 pm

I don’t usually list stolen bikes here on the front page, but this one was particularly interesting. If anyone has advice for this woman, please comment. Here is her account:

Last night while I was riding the 4 bus to St. John’s with my 11 year old friend, my Specialized Hemi 24 inch BMX bike was STOLEN right in front of me off the front of the bus. The bus driver did nothing! When I told her that it was my bike, she opened the door and expected me to “run after” the jerk. It was after 1 in the morning and it had already been a long night. I wasn’t going to leave my little friend on the bus and since I commute everyday by bike, had no idea where I was because it wasn’t my neck of the woods. When my stop came, the bus driver told me to wait and she at that point (a half an hour later) called the Tri-Met people. She WOULD NOT wait for the police and actually laughed at me while I cried. Please, help! I am not sure what rights as a rider I have and this was my transportation and race bike. What else can I write here?? Anyone?

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you.

  • joe adamski October 30, 2005 at 4:20 pm

    I am sad to hear about your loss. this is not the first time this happened,but i can’t expect much better than your received at the hands of Trimet.. reality is that the driver is responsible for the safety of her passengers and safe operation of the bus. The driver is not responsible for looking after your property. Nor could she or he be expected to abandon their route to facilitate looking for your bicycle.Laughting at you is poor form,and I bet she isn’t on your list of favorite people. Truth is you did the right thing staying put and not abandoning your young friend and putting yourself at risk.

    But what did we learn here? There are some real scumbags that will steal from you and that Trimet isn’t going to do much about it. Lock your bike when it goes on the rack. Lock your bike anywhere when you arent in arms length.

    Did you report the serial numbers? Does that do any good?

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • revphil October 31, 2005 at 3:13 am

    Letting the person steal the bike (if she knew it was a robbery) bothers me. I don’t know what the driver could have done… blow the horn?

    Why did she wait call the cops?

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • marissa October 31, 2005 at 10:53 am

    She told me she he asked to “get his bike”. I was the only woman on the bus since boarding at 5th and Burnside. i guess I can’t believe that she didn’t remember. She called Trimet on her bus phone 30 mins after it happened and said she would not wait for the police with me. She never even took my name.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Joel October 31, 2005 at 12:37 pm

    I’m so sorry your bike was stolen. That’s pretty brazen to steal it off the front of the bus.

    I’ve often wondered what keeps people from doing this as my bike has been perched out on the rack. I guess the answer is nothing. How would one lock the bike down? Is there a loop or anything on the rack we can use?


    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • felix October 31, 2005 at 1:47 pm

    That sucks! I remember meeting you while you were on that bike, I was the guy on the blue 24 inch Haro. I know what your bike looks like but does it have any stickers / something special on it? If I see it I will lock it up.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • abi October 31, 2005 at 7:44 pm

    I noticed that the buses have cameras inside, and there appears to be a camera directed at the front of the bus. Assuming that the video still exists, perhaps there is footage of the actual crime or at least a shot of the guy sitting in the bus.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Cate November 1, 2005 at 8:09 am

    Try contacting complaint inspector Ruth Tilson at Tri-Met: 503.962.7511 or tillsonr@trimet.org

    She has helped some other bicyclists when they’ve had problems with Tri-Met.

    I hope you get your bike back and they catch whoever stole it. Good luck.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Beth November 4, 2005 at 9:57 am

    I’m very sorry to hear about your bike.

    A few thoughts here:
    1. When TriMet established the bikes-on-busses program and still required permits, you had to sign a waiver stating that TriMet was not responsible for anything that happened to your bike as a result of using the racks. If you didn’t sign, you wouldn’t be issued a permit and couldn’t use the racks.

    Later, when the permits were no longer required, TriMet issued a statement saying that use of the racks now meant an implicit understanding that the cyclist would not be able to hold TriMet responsible for anything that happened to the bike on one of its racks. So by using the rack the rider assumes all risks. That may not be cool but that’s how it is.

    Also realize that, according to my bro-in-law who is a driver, TriMet bus drivers are not supposed to do ANYthing at all that will put them in danger of getting hurt by a potentially violent rider or other assailant. This may include NOT stopping or confronting the thief when a bike robbery occurs — what if the thief had a weapon?

    I always take a front seat when using the rack; or stand near the front if there are no front seats. I also try to use my rain bike on days I suspect I’ll be using the rack. Finally, I accept the inherent risk built into the program, and remain grateful that TriMet chooses to have racks on their busses. I’ve lived in big East Coast cities where such racks would be an engraved invitation to theft or worse.

    2. Regardless of TriMet’s self-absolution from responsibility, the driver in this situation behaved badly and you should definitely file a complaint against her. Her response to you did not reflect well on the bus company, especially in light of the late hour and the young age of your travellng companion. Remember that TriMet needs the route number, bus number and time-of-day to follow up on any remarks. DO file something with TriMet (www.trimet.org) as soon as you can, and good luck.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Cheryl November 5, 2005 at 1:39 am

    I am reading this account 12 hours after discovering my cannondale road bike was taken out of my apartment building basement;the rack the bike was locked to was sawed apart. Before hearing about the bus rack lift, I thought my thief was brazen. Thank you for sharing this sad incident as it helps us understand what we’re dealing with.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • -patrick. November 6, 2005 at 10:16 am

    One lesson I think we should all take away from this incident: Put your lock through one of your wheels before putting your bike on a Trimet rack. Your bike is less likely to be stolen if the would-be thief has to CARRY it away rather than ride it away.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Bill May 30, 2007 at 11:15 am

    wonder if this is the bike


    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Jose May 18, 2008 at 5:03 pm

    I\’m considering on using the racks on our buses and was thinking about the possibility of my bike being lifted. This is proof that it does happen.

    I wonder if something like this could be prevented if one was to place a u lock on the front tire and frame before you place the bike on the bus rack.

    Recommended Thumb up 0