Friday, March 11, 2011
Got this info from our friends over at the Chainlink (.org) in their weekly newsletter today & thought I'd share it with our readers too, even though I REALLY hate to bite, but this is important stuff!!! And even though this was written for Chicago riders, it's still chock full of great advice. Also, almost every town has a bike registry, and it's always wise to register your bike.
Personally, back in the late 80's, my GT Pro Performer got swiped, and even though it was registered, it was never recovered (and that was also when I personally started to lose faith in the police, even though I know now that MOST bikes ARE NOT RECOVERED). There's still a hole in my heart where that bike fits.
I'd love to get another one just because... if I ever came across it & had the extra cash... hot pink with Skyway Mags... straight dope...straight DOPE! ...and straight jacked. Adios.
I found it in our paper for $200 with the mags & the spoked wheelset too... It was a dream come true.
What to do if Your Bike is Stolen
Your bike is stolen and you want it back. One place in Chicago where stolen bikes have been spotted is the Swap O Rama at 4100 S. Ashland. If you do decide to check out the swap for your stolen bike, here are some pointers:
Be safe: Watch your surroundings, go with at least 1 other person (ideally someone who has been there before), trust your instincts.
Bring documentation: Copy of your police report, or police report number, copy of your receipt (if you have it), pictures of the bike, pictures of you with the bike, a detailed description of the bike.
Don't buy back a stolen bike: If it is yours, this isn't necessary. Paying rewards theft!!!
Act casual: Everyone does this differently. Sellers with stolen property may pack up if they think they are going to be busted. More than likely, you can identify your bike from a distance.
Check booths, the aisles where some people roll around bikes and also the parking lot. Bikes can be in many locations in the swap and can move around...
If you see your bike:
- Don't talk to the seller or ask any questions.
- Have at least 1 person keep an eye on the bike.
- Have someone else call 911.
-Take the police to your stolen bike and have them check the serial number or other verifying details.
-Confronting with official assistance will minimize risk to yourself.
Know that hundreds of bikes (and parts) are stolen annually in Chicago (and everywhere else), however only a small number are recovered.
-Do what you can, but don't beat yourself up if you aren't one of the lucky ones.
-Don't forget to check Craigslist. It may be listed there as well.
If you are interested in getting involved in a concerted effort to recover stolen bikes and fight bike theft, check out Chainlink Bike Theft Task Force. More tips, tricks and the additional write-ups on the latest stolen bike recovery story can also be found at : Checklist for Bike Ownership, Balloon Biker, Active Tran's Blog and Let's Go Ride A Bike.
Going to try & get a review or two up over the weekend- been kind of a crazy week to say the least... Glad it's the weekend!!!