Tiger.co.uk Exposes the Truth About Bike Theft
Home Office figures show that theft rates for motorcycles in the UK are far higher than those for cars. In 2003 the rate of theft for motorcycles was 37 per 1000 registered bikes, compared to 10 per 1000 for cars. Tiger.co.uk has looked in to some of the figures in more detail.
Home Office documents, rider group statistics, Police National Computer (PNC) archives and information from insurance companies show that in the decade 1971 to 1981, nearly 45,000 motorbikes were reported as being stolen every year. In 2003 the Home Office reported that over 50,000 motorcycles were stolen in England, Scotland and Wales. In 2009 a much reduced 26,000 motorcycles were reported as stolen. It is encouraging that theft rates appear to be declining but for those unfortunate riders who have been left without their wheels the disheartening news is that there is a less than 50% chance of getting them back!
Shockingly, only 42% of the motorbikes stolen in 2009 have ever been recovered. Since 1971, 760,000 stolen motorbikes have never been found. To put this into context there are estimated to be around 1.4 million bikes on UK roads currently and as such, so in theory at least, half of those could be stolen!
According to statistics from the government, bikes made by the big manufacturers such as Honda, Suzuki, Yamaha and Kawasaki are popular targets for organised crime groups that sell the vehicles on the black market. These crime groups are so practiced that bikes are stolen and resold in a highly efficient manner, resulting in very few being recovered.
The unfortunate truth is that motorbike theft is relatively easy. According to statistics from vehicle crime surveys, half of riders do not habitually lock up their bikes and a professional thief can steal a motorcycle in as little as 15 seconds. The other concerning statistic is that 80% of motorbikes are stolen from owners’ homes.
Andrew Goulborn, Commercial Director of Tiger.co.uk commented, “If motorbike owners can try to ensure that it takes thieves longer to take a vehicle, then they are in with a better chance of deterring them. Locking your motorbike away safely in a garage if you have one makes it much more difficult for criminals. Storing it in a lock up or garage will also help you to secure cheaper bike insurance. If you don’t have access to a garage make sure you park in a well lit area and anchor the bike to a permanent object with lockable chains. Make sure you fit an approved alarm and immobiliser to deter thieves. If they manage to get around the alarm an immobiliser will make it difficult to start the engine. When shopping around for your motorbike insurance ensure you buy the correct level of cover to suit your needs. Circumstances are different for all riders and given the risk of theft it is important to make sure you are covered should you become a victim of crime.”