Motorbike theft in York is on the rise

MORE motorbikes than cars are now being stolen in York – despite them making up only a small fraction of vehicles in the city.

New figures show that between October 2010 and September 2011, thieves stole 70 cars, while a total of 77 motorbikes were taken in the city, even though there are 16 times as many cars on the roads.

A national campaign group has now called on city leaders and police to make life harder for would-be thieves, saying not enough has been done to help motorcyclists.

Paddy Tyson, Campaigns Manager for the Motorcycle Action Group, said: “Cars are getting harder to steal, but we are still in the situation where there are very few councils in the country that integrate motorcycles at all into their thoughts. We have to battle constantly for secure parking.”

He said bikes were always an easier target, as they could be pushed into the back of a van, but said councils should do more for motorcyclists, to help encourage people to use them instead of cars. He said Bristol and some London boroughs had taken action to deter opportunist thieves, such as by installing “anchor” hoops in the ground, to which bikes can be secured, and called on City of York Council to follow suit.

Councillor Sandy Fraser, the council’s cabinet member for crime issues, said car and motorbike thefts in York were generally lower than the national average, and said: “I will ask the police and Safer York Partnership to look into what can be done to reduce thefts still further.”

The new statistics, revealed by North Yorkshire Police under the Freedom of Information Act, show that in total, there were 180 vehicle thefts in York over the 12 months – 77 motorbikes, 70 cars, seven vans, four light 4x4s, three lorries and 19 others or unrecorded types.

(Gavin Aitchison, ‘The Press’ York 28th Dec 2011)