During the last year, an average of 139 cars and motorbikes were stolen in South Africa every day. In 2017, the country lost R8-billion to car theft and hijacking. What’s more, last year there was a large spike in motorbike thefts in and around the Pietermaritzburg area which sparked outrage among the biking fraternity who believed a syndicate was at play.
Considering that nearly 90% of households have experienced theft in one way or another, more needs to be done to safeguard not only ourselves but our cars and motorbikes as well. But, have you ever wondered what thieves look for when they go ‘shopping’ and what happens to a stolen motorbike?
If you own a new bike (one to three years old), a Harley, or a superbike, chances are you are in the high-risk category. Worldwide, these are favourites amongst criminals. Common sense tells us to avoid high-risk areas when possible and never leave any spare keys lying around. The cost of this could be more than just losing your mode of transport. Bikers should also never leave items of value or important documents in saddle and luggage bags. Thieves look for easy targets and opportunities so perhaps the most important piece of advice is to make it incredibly difficult for thieves to steal your bike and belongings.
There is no silver bullet solution when it comes to security. Rather think of it as using a combination of measures that add to the time it will take for a thief to appropriate your possession. Basics like locking the steering wheel, putting a disk lock on the rear wheel, and even using a chain lock through the secure parts of the bike (for example the frame, swingarm, and so on), all add to the time schedule of a thief, making yours a less attractive option.
Of course, subscribing to a recovery service should be standard practice by now. After all, you want to get your bike back as quickly as possible if the worst should happen. Sadly, many bikers still do not consider this as important. The reality is that if your bike is stolen, it more than likely has been stripped and used for spare parts thereby eliminating any hope of getting it back in one piece, or it has been cloned or transported to another African country. And worst of all – it happens quickly. So, can you really afford not to safeguard it effectively?