Bike thefts on campus and how to prevent them

Although students have reported nine bicycles stolen so far this semester, thefts have reduced substantially since last year.

Only about two months into the semester and students across campus can be heard complaining about their bike going missing. While a multitude of bike thefts have gone unreported, the current official number of bicycles reported stolen is nine according to Campus Security Report.

However, according to Campus Security, while general theft is at a shocking low compared to the last calendar year. Bicycle theft is filed under a general “theft” category. For the first nine months of calendar year 2019, there have only been 36 reports of theft, while there were 66 cases during the first nine months of 2018.

Speaking of 2018, the number of bikes reported stolen during the first nine months totals out to a shocking 45. Seven of those thefts took place during January alone, which is a large disparity when compared to the mere nine that have been reported stolen in the last two months.

Interestingly, there have been no reports of stolen tires or attempted bicycle thefts these last few months. In the first nine months of 2018, however, there were two attempted bike larcenies and two cases of stolen tires.

Many bikes are usually reported missing or stolen at the end of each semester or year as well. This usually occurs as students are getting their items in order to go home and notice the bike is gone.
A few of the stolen bikes have already been recovered this year by Campus Security or the Tulsa Police Department (TPD). Campus Security recovers the bicycles whenever they see non-TU people on or in possession of them. The TPD or other agencies notify Campus Security when someone is arrested and in possession of a TU bike, although they are most likely arrested for a different crime.

Campus Security is taking steps to ensure that bicycles are not stolen, and going by the data they are much more successful this year. Some of their ongoing efforts include constant campus patrols and advising students at orientation to use U-Bolt locks instead of the traditional, but weaker, chain type lock.

In the end, Campus Security can only do so much. The best way to ensure your bike is not stolen is to lock it up properly, use a stronger lock and lock it up somewhere that is very visible. These steps make it that much more difficult to steal your bike so that most thieves wouldn’t bother.

Any student who is using a non-university provided bicycle should immediately have their bike registered with Parking and Card Services. This helps Campus Security in the event that your bike is stolen. It also lets them know not to impound the bike if it appears “abandoned.”
Bikes that appear abandoned and do not have registration are impounded by Campus Security. If the owner is not found, the bike may be donated to Tulsa Hub. Tulsa Hub is a local non-profit that teaches bicycling for transportation, refurbishes bikes and does follow-up support for members of the community in need.

Post Author: Brayden McCoy