Po­lice lock in bike se­cu­rity

North West Telegraph - - Telegraph News - Sophia Con­stan­tine

The suc­cess of a bike lock reg­is­ter in Kar­ratha aimed at de­ter­ring thieves and re­unit­ing own­ers with their bikes has prompted the Shire of East Pil­bara to ask for the same pro­gram to be of­fered in New­man.

Shire pres­i­dent Lynne Craigie said the is­sue of stolen bikes in New­man had been on­go­ing and the in­tro­duc­tion of the reg­is­ter would help re­duce the is­sue.

The Na­tional Bike Reg­is­ter web­site was launched late last year, and al­lows peo­ple to reg­is­ter their bikes on a po­lice data­base, en­abling of­fi­cers to search for de­tails if the bike has been re­cov­ered as stolen prop­erty.

New­man Po­lice Sta­tion Act­ing Se­nior Sergeant Colin Guy said po­lice would be keen to take part in a bike lock reg­is­ter be­cause it would re­duce the heavy work­load that went into lo­cat­ing own­ers.

Act. Sen. Sgt Guy said there was a sig­nif­i­cant is­sue with stolen and aban­doned bikes in New­man.

“If you look at the hu­man re­sources and in­ves­ti­ga­tion that goes into that bike, it is ex­ces­sive,” he said.

“We have to do an au­dit on the item every month and the store­room starts fill­ing up.

“We don’t have the space to hold the bike for a long pe­riod and it is then de­stroyed.

“With our work­load, it’s the po­lice process of lodg­ing the bike, stor­ing it, in­ves­ti­gat­ing, and then putting it through so­cial me­dia.

“At the end of the day, if it’s not claimed af­ter a cer­tain pe­riod, the bike is de­stroyed and needs to be writ­ten off by an in­spec­tor.”

He said a a lot of own­ers did not re­call the colour and make of their bikes and were very lim­ited in the de­tails they could pro­vide, mak­ing it dif­fi­cult for po­lice to iden­tify their bikes.

“It’s rare peo­ple come in and re­port their bikes stolen,” he said.

“They re­port it on­line on sites such as Face­book, which is very in­ter­est­ing be­cause it shows peo­ple seem to just go to the com­mu­nity and don’t go to po­lice.”

Kar­ratha Se­nior Sergeant An­drew Stevens said the reg­is­ter had suc­cess­fully re­duced the work­load of the po­lice by mak­ing it eas­ier to re­unite own­ers with their bikes.

“It’s com­pletely free, you can add pho­to­graphs of your bi­cy­cle on­line and it cer­tainly makes the job of po­lice a lot eas­ier to get the bi­cy­cles back to their own­ers,” he said.

“It’s dis­ap­point­ing that with many of the bi­cy­cles we seize, we can’t iden­tify the own­ers, so they end up be­ing de­stroyed.”

Sen. Sgt Stevens said although the in­tro­duc­tion of the bike lock reg­is­ter had been suc­cess­ful, a big num­ber of bi­cy­cles were still coming into po­lice pos­ses­sion.

Pic­ture: Ali­cia Perera

City of Kar­ratha com­mu­nity safety co-or­di­na­tor Steph Sparks, Mayor Peter Long and Kar­ratha po­lice Se­nior Sergeant Andy Stevens dis­play the free bike locks and stick­ers as part of the Na­tional Bike Reg­is­ter, with keen young cy­clists Natasha, 6, and Alexan­der, 10, Lit­tle.

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