BikePortland

Thief unbolts staple rack as stolen bike season heats up


Don’t become a statistic!

“The bike was secure, all tires locked down, but the thief unbolted the bike rack and took it and the bike in broad daylight.”
— Amie D.,

I don’t want to dampen anyone’s biking spirit just as we come out of the winter doldrums; but as temps warm up, so do bike thieves. Check out the chart above, which is based on our Stolen Bike Listings last year. As you can see, we’re at the cusp of an upward trend in bike theft activity.

Reader Amie D. wrote in last week with a sad tale about the lengths one thief went to to steal her bike.

“Just wanted to let you know that my bike was stolen today. The bike was secure, all tires locked down, but the thief unbolted the bike rack and took it and the bike in broad daylight (between 10am-4pm) on SW 13th and Salmon. It’s a busy street, cars moving, people walking and they were able to steal the whole sha-bang. Just wanted to give the folks out there with nice bikes a heads up!”

Racks installed by PBOT have a special
bolt (an Allen bolt with a piece that protrudes
in the middle).

Amie’s experience is concerning because Portland has thousands of staple racks. Since back in 2007 I’ve worried about the potential for the bolts that secure the racks to the ground to be loosened by thieves. Then of course last April, we shared a story of it actually happening.

I’ve asked Amie for more information about what type of bolts were used in the rack and whether or not it was an official City of Portland staple rack or not, but I haven’t heard back.

Amie’s experience shows that some thieves will stop at nothing (even using a hacksaw to cut your lock) to take your bike. Thankfully her incident is an exception. The majority of thefts are the result of using a cable lock (which is easily snipped) or leaving bikes unlocked on porches and in backyards.

Don’t let bike theft discourage you from riding. Check out a few bike theft prevention tips here.

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