Bike theft in Eugene: 'Have a nice bike? Never let it out of your sight'

Bike theft in Eugene: 'Have a nice bike? Never let it out of your sight'

Ever had your bike stolen - and got it back? KVAL News wants to hear your story

EUGENE, Ore. – Bicycle thefts are up significantly in 2013, the Eugene Police Department found in an analysis of crime reports.

Eugene police says there were 848 bicycles reported stolen in 2012, and 846 in 2011.

That's about 2.3 bikes reported stolen per day or one bike every 10 hours.

In 2013, there were 174 bikes reported stolen in the first 3 months, a jump of 64 percent compared 2012.

Sgt. Lisa Barrong with the Eugene Police property crime unit says these numbers are very concerning.

“If the numbers have jumped that much in the off-season time, we really are concerned about what’s gonna happen from this point forward,” said Barrong.

Barrong recommends people to register their bicycle for free through their website. The website allows the owner to include descriptions and photos of their bicycles. Once registered, the owner will receive a registration number and a decal.

“If we have a serial number, great descriptions, it increases our ability to get your bike to you,” said Barrong. “If we have their bike registered, then it’s an automatic return.”

Darren Ohl from Hutch’s Bicycle Store in Eugene has some tips to keep your bicycle safe. He says U-locks are more effective than coil-type bicycle locks.

“If your bikes locked with a U-lock, the next person over has a small cable lock or a thin chain, any thief will move on to the easier-to-steal bike,” said Ohl.

Ohl said the best way to lock your bicycle with a U-lock is through part of the frame that can’t be separated, like the triangle area of the bicycle as opposed to a wheel.

However, he said the best way to prevent theft is to keep your bike inside your home or apartment.

“If you have a nice bike, never want to get it seen stolen, never let it out of your sight. That’s the only way to guarantee it,” he said.