As we have mentioned several times before, the Covid-19 pandemic caused an upsurge in bicycle purchases around the world. But statistics from the UK show that something else happened at the same time. Since the beginning of 2020, the number of bicycle thefts has risen rapidly across the country.
Bikmo, a cycling insurance company, has collected data on bicycles reported stolen, and launched a map displaying bike theft hotspots throughout the UK.
Surprisingly, despite the fact that the number of reported crimes rose substantially in the beginning of 2020, the overall number of bicycle thefts in 2020 was lower than previous years. As Bikmo stated, 74,573 bicycles were stolen last year in England and Wales. In 2019, the number reached 83,000 reported crimes.
As for the locations of bike theft, the City of London area of the capital, Cambridge and Hackney ranked in the first positions on the map. The Greater Manchester area on the other hand, turned out to be the safest place for urban cyclists, followed by West Devon. There was a catch, however, as under more scrutiny it was revealed that the police in the Greater Manchester area failed to report about 80,000 crimes last year.
Bikmo’s new tool is designed to raise awareness in high-risk areas and help its users to identify the bike-theft hotspots in their surroundings and park their bikes more effectively. It will be regularly updated to keep its users in the loop.