“Love is that feeling you get when you like something as much as your motorcycle,” Hunter Thompson
For many South Africans, motorcycles are considered to be one of man’s greatest inventions. The emotional combination of exhilaration, fear, relaxation and pleasure, with an extra layer of adrenaline and anxiety, have caught the hearts of many men and women since the Daimler gas-engine motorcycle made its first appearance in 1885.
Theft is a major concern in South Africa and having your personal property stolen is very upsetting, but having your motorcycle stolen can be heart-breaking. For some, it’s not just a form of transportation, but a badge of pride. Unfortunately, regardless of whether you own a vehicle or motorcycle, recent events have revealed that motorcyclists also fall victim to theft and hijackings. In 2017, Crime Stats SA revealed that 14,717 cases of carjacking were reported and motor vehicle and motorcycles theft sat at 53,307 cases.
Biker groups have been warning others of an increase in motorcycle hijackings by armed criminals on bikes. Riders have been shot at and pushed off their bikes by hijackers, who then ride away on the hijacked motorcycle. Due to the criminals being appropriately dressed in riding gear and helmets, there is no reason for law enforcement to pull them over unless they witness the actual crime.
Ensuring the safety of yourself and your motorcycle is of the utmost importance. Expert Vehicle Crime Consultant, Ken German, gives his top tips to securing your bike:
1) Whenever you park your bike, do something to prevent it from being stolen
This statement seems obvious, but the figures show that many riders do nothing when they park their motorcycles. You need to at least engage the steering lock and any other manufacturers’ security device that is fitted to your bike.
A recent survey shows that 70% of machines parked in motorcycle bays had no visible signs of any secondary security fitted to them! Unsurprisingly, 75% of machines were stolen from commuter parking bays.
2) Stop your machine from being moved – fit a lock.
When you park your bike, secure your chain, disc lock, U shackle, clutch grip etc. and set your alarm or immobiliser and ensure your tracking device is working.
Prevent the bike being ‘pushed’ away by fitting a quality chain around your rear wheel and frame and use a disc lock as a supplementary device. Thieves have been found to carry ‘spare’ front wheels in the event that a locked front wheel has to be removed.
The most common form of theft nowadays is by ‘freeing’ the machine from any lock (if there is one fitted) and ‘riding’ the bike away. This is done without the engine being started and by an accomplice usually riding a scooter pushing the rider along on the stolen machine with his foot on the footrest, usually to a garage where alterations or stripping takes place.
3) Fit a Beame Stolen Vehicle Recovery device
Did you know that Beame is a solution that you can trust to not only protect your vehicle, but all your other movable assets too – giving you the freedom to do the things you love with the added confidence of knowing that in the unfortunate event your vehicle or assets are stolen – you have one of the country’s leading recovery devices securing your prized possessions – not to mention a device with one of the highest recovery rates in the market.
4) Secure your garage
Whether your garage has been seen by thieves as one to burgle, or you have been followed home in order to see where you park the bike, your garage may become a target so make sure it is secure.
Garage alarms, strong doors, secure windows and ground anchors should all be considered because an easy entry into your garage can give thieves both cover and time to remove anything inside. Always use your secondary security even inside your garage.
Don’t leave your bike outside your home at night, but if you do, make sure it is covered and the alarm set.
If you are away from home, make sure you nominate a friend or neighbour to monitor your property and garage. Security lights can also scare a potential criminal away.
5) Fit an ignition cut-out switch
The most common method for organised crime gangs stealing high value and desirable motorcycles is to either push them away from the scene or simply load them into a van. Their motivation is for profit only and that money is reinvested in other illegal businesses they have.
However, other motorcycle thieves operate in a given area that use stolen motorcycles for their own use or for stripping and selling the parts and selling them locally, or perhaps for racing.
Many attempts to steal motorcycles, by starting and riding them away, have been abandoned by thieves where owners have devised their own individual security such as cut out switches that prevent the engine being started.
Before you venture out on your motorcycle this weekend, you will have to go beyond just packing your helmet, leather jacket and boots. Considering the fact that motorcycle syndicates are on the rise in certain communities, as thieves work around the clock to try and outsmart motorcycle owners, there is no doubt that protecting more than your car these days is critical.
To find out more about installing a Beame device in your motorbike or other moveable asset, contact us on 0860 23 26 31 or visit www.beame.co.za