In the O: Three Part Package on Bike Theft
The links in question:
- Part one: Tips for Preventing Theft
- Part Two: What To Do if your Bike is Stolen
- Too Hot to Handle: How to Avoid Buying Stolen Bikes
This set of articles for the Oregonian could also be called, “Everything You Never Want to Learn the Hard Way About Bike Theft”. It’s a two-point-five part package covering on a topic that we all probably have (at least some indirect) experience with.
Part one: Tips for Preventing Theft provides a step-by-step guide for how you can safeguard your bike ahead of time (including documentation), how and where to lock, and other tips for ensuring that your favorite bike doesn’t fall into enemy hands. In Part Two: What To Do if your Bike is Stolen, I discuss Portland’s impressive bicycle crime-fighting trio (Jonathan Maus of Bike Portland, Bryan Hance of Stolen Bicycle Registry and the Portland PD) and outline the nuts and bolts of what to do if your rig disappears.
There’s also a bonus section called “Too Hot to Handle” which provides some guidelines for how you can avoid buying a stolen bike. (I can’t over-emphasize how critical it is to stop the stolen bike trade from this angle – by becoming savvy and shrinking the resale market.)
This was an interesting set of articles to write. A little outside my usual and preferred realm of creative narrative non-fiction storytelling, but fun nonetheless. I learned a lot and met some members of our cycling community that I’d not yet had a chance to connect with.
Bryan Hance, the creator of the Stolen Bicycle Registry, is so incredibly passionate about recovering stolen bikes that it kind of boggles the mind. (Hey – if you want to support his efforts, head over to his site and check out how you can help his “big promotional push” or just buy a “Death to Bike Thieves” sticker. : ) Basically, the more people that know about the Stolen Bike Registry, the more effective it becomes. So, spread the word! Sing it from the mountain tops!
Finally, I want to throw out a big thank you to Jonathan, Bryan and Officer Pickett from the Portland Police Department for their help with these articles and for all that they do for the cycling community in Portland.
PS: Completely off topic. While doing research for this story I came across an article that Officer Pickett wrote outlining the anatomy of a traffic stop: what’s going through the cop’s mind, why they do the things they do, and how you can make your next traffic stop experience safer and more comfortable for both you and the officer. I found it super fascinating and educational.