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Bicycle snatching a problem

Imagine finishing class for the day and walking out to the bike rack to get your bike and go home, only to find that your bike is not there anymore. This is a story senior Hilary Gerber remembers well.

“I was so glad to be done for the day and all I wanted to do was go home and relax,” Gerber said. “When I went to get my bike, I noticed it was gone and I started to panic not knowing what to do.”

Today, bicycle theft on college campuses is an ongoing problem, according to Neal Todrys, president of Todson Inc. which makes heavy duty bike locks.

“Bikes are a popular and convenient form of campus transportation, which makes them all too easy to swipe and resell,” Todrys said. Knowing the problems students face with bike theft, Todson Inc. has provided a few simple precautions to keep your bike parked safely so that it is still waiting for you when you are done with class.

One way to deter thieves from taking bikes is to make sure it is locked to the bike rack with a secure lock that can’t be picked. “Even if you’ll be gone for just a minute, always lock your bike,” Todrys said.

“The vulnerability of a bike lock has to do with more than just the chain itself. If the lock can be picked, you’ve got a real problem,” Todrys said. Some locks such as Kryptonite brand locks can be picked open with a simple ballpoint pen, according to Todrys. “Chains on a padlock bike lock should be at least 3/8 of an inch and cables on a cable lock should be at least _ of an inch in diameter,” Todrys said.

“New OnGuard bike locks provide maximum protection against bike theft,” Todrys said. “They are pick-proof, which is why we confidently offer up to a $3000 warranty for OnGuard locks which retail at $150 or under.”

Something else students should take into consideration is the place they park their bikes, according to Todrys.

“Bikes should be locked to a bike rack in a well-lit and populated area,” Todrys said. “If you must leave your bike where there is no bike rack, be sure that the object that it is locked to provides adequate security.” “Chain link fences are easily cut and locked bikes can be easily lifted over a parking meter.”

Students should record the make, model and serial number of their bicycle and keep the information where it can be accessed easily, according to Todry. This makes it easy to prove that the bike is yours if it is ever stolen and recovered. Going along with that idea, bike owners should license their bikes with the local police department as well. This way the police will have all the information needed to identify the bike’s owner if it is recovered.

Lastly, “Students should help prevent bike thefts on campus,” Todry said. “Be observant around bike racks for someone who might be checking out bikes or are looking for an easy target.” Any suspicious persons should be reported to the campus police.

Editor’s Note: For more information about OnGuard locks, visit www.onguardlock.com or contact Todson, Inc. at (800) 213-4561.

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