Friday 22 November 2019

Decoy bikes with GPS trackers lead to sharp drop in bike theft, expert say

Photo: Depositphotos.com

The use of decoy bikes fitted with police GPS tracking systems has reduced bike theft by up to 50% in the places where they are being used, economist Ben Vollaard told Thursday’s Telegraaf.

The paper says Vollaard’s research at Tilburg University shows that ‘professional criminals’ are more likely to disappear when the special bikes are being used.

Vollaard looked at 14 places where the decoy bikes were placed, including Dordrecht and Gorinchem. In total, the decoy bikes were used 1,612 times last year and 1,220 arrests were made as a result, the paper said.

Police currently have a pool of 300 bikes at their disposal, of which around 70 are electric bikes. All are new bikes from popular brands such as Gazelle or Batavus.

By the beginning of October this year, police had received 61,063 reports of stolen bikes, down more than 13,000 on the 2016 total.

‘I know that everyone says no-one bothers to report a stolen bike but these are the only figures we have to base policy on,’ said Mogjan Yavari of Centrum Fietsendiefstal, which unites police, insurers and manufacturers.

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