New Resolution to Reduce Bike Theft in SF

Great news for the huge and growing number of people biking in San Francisco… Yesterday, the Board of Supervisors’ Neighborhood Services and Safety Committee passed a resolution designed to cut bike theft in San Francisco in half and increase bicycle parking in the city by 33%.

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is proud to have worked on crafting this important resolution, which will provide a more systematic and citywide approach to handling bike theft.

An all too common sight in San Francisco

The resolution accomplishes three goals:

  1. Establishes a citywide voluntary bike registration of serial numbers and bicycle information to make it easier to track stolen bikes and return those to their rightful owners. The program will be managed by San Francisco Safety Awareness for Everyone (SFSAFE), and the SF Bicycle Coalition is working closely with SAFE on this program.
  2. Urges the San Francisco Police Department to streamline response to bike theft in processing thefts. Right now, the response to bike theft varies widely from officer to officer and station to station. This resolution calls for a more unified approach to handling theft.
  3. Calls upon the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (MTA) to increase secure bicycle parking facilities in the city. The City plans to add 1,000 new bike racks, a 22% increase, over two years. Additionally, the City will be studying the idea of locked bike cages and bike lockers throughout SF.

In July, the City issued its first official report on bike theft in San Francisco. For the first time, we had concrete numbers to support what San Francisco bike riders have known for a long time: bike theft is a serious problem in our city. Among the findings:

  • There has been a 70% increase in bike theft in San Francisco in just five years, a number that mirrors the increase in ridership
  • 4,085 bikes were stolen in San Francisco in 2012.
  • The number of bike thefts in 2012 outnumbered iPhone theft by 3:1. iPhone theft is an issue that has gotten widespread media and police attention, while bike theft has not.
  • 4.6 million dollars in property loss from bike theft in 2012, and this number does include stolen bike parts like wheels, saddles and lights
  • District 6, in San Francisco’s downtown and Soma neighborhoods, accounted for 40% of all bike theft in the city in 2012, though bike theft occurred/is a problem in every neighborhood.

The anti bike theft resolution was authored by Supervisor Eric Mar, who, like many San Franciscans, has had multiple bikes stolen, one recently from his locked garage. Supervisor David Chiu, who signed on in support of this report, has also had bikes stolen.

The SF Bicycle Coalition will continue to work closely with Supervisor Mar and SF Safe to ensure this resolution is enacted quickly and fully, and help ensure that people who bike in San Francisco have more secure bike parking and have to worry less about the threat of theft.

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition has worked extensively to open up more secure bike parking and reduce bike theft in our city. To learn more about how to lock your bike securely, visit sfbike.org/theft_locking

To learn more about what to do in case of bike theft, visit sfbike.org/theft
For information about the Employee Bicycle Access Legislation that provides more indoor secure bike parking, visit sfbike.org/access.

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April 23, 2014 6:00 pm

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