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SOURCE Markel Corporation
PEWAUKEE, Wis., April 30, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Spring is finally here and with that, comes the start of riding season. As cyclists dust off their bikes for the first ride of the season, they should be sure to grab all of their gear – including a good quality bike lock. Bicycle theft is an unfortunate occurrence and an increasing trend these past few years, and cyclists from California are no exception.
According to the latest FBI Uniform Crime Report, from 2007 to 2011, bicycle theft in California rose (on average) 10.9% each year. Over 25,000 bicycle thefts are reported stolen each year in California, a statistic that in itself is staggering when one also considers the number of bicycle thefts that go unreported. California's stolen bikes make up over 15% of the U.S. bicycles that are reported stolen each year. Some California cities are starting to fight back against bicycle theft. In San Francisco, the city issued its first ever official look at the bike theft problem in 2013 and issued a goal to reduce bicycle theft in the city by at least 50% over the next 5 years. The city also created a bike registry to help combat the 70% rise in bicycle thefts since 2006. In both Los Angeles and San Diego, law enforcement is starting to fight back against bike theft by placing bikes with hidden GPS technology around the city and beach areas in hopes of catching a bike thief.
"It's amazing how easily a bike can be stolen," says Audrey Hanken, President of Markel Personal Lines Insurance. "We hear stories about bicycles being stolen from locked bike racks, cars, or even directly outside of their homes. We have also heard about thieves targeting hotels during bicycle road races, looking for opportunities to grab expensive bikes and run."
To minimize the chances of becoming a victim of bicycle theft, Markel recommends that bicycle owners take these easy steps to protect their bike:
6 Easy Ways to Help Prevent Bicycle Theft:
"Most cyclists don't find out about their lack of coverage until they have to file a claim," continues Hanken. "One of our goals is to build awareness and educate bicycle owners on the value of bicycle insurance, and then in turn, provide them with an affordable insurance solution that gives them peace of mind knowing that Markel will be there for them should they need us."
If you are a bicycle owner and your bike does happen to get stolen, be sure to call the police immediately. Also check the area where you locked your bike to see if any area business had a security camera to help police identify the thief. In addition, if you chose to protect your bike with bicycle insurance, don't forget to call your bicycle insurance carrier to file a claim for the stolen bike.
2012 FBI Uniform Crime Report
About Markel Specialty
Markel Specialty, a division of Markel Corporation, provides innovative insurance solutions for both commercial customers and individuals. Types of insurance offered include property & casualty, workers' compensation, accident, and programs featuring industry or risk-specific coverage packages.
About Markel Corporation
Markel Corporation (NYSE: MKL) is a diverse financial holding company serving a variety of niche markets. The Company's principal business markets and underwrites specialty insurance products. In each of the Company's businesses, it seeks to provide quality products and excellent customer service so that it can be a market leader. The financial goals of the Company are to earn consistent underwriting and operating profits and superior investment returns to build shareholder value. Visit Markel Corporation on the web at markelcorp.com.
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