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Over 26K bikes stolen last year

Bike owners in Austria are not doing enough to protect bike theft an insurance company has said as their annual survey reveals that there were a total of 26,652 bikes stolen in the country last year.

There was an increase of 2000 thefts on the previous year, according to research carried out by insurance company VVO. Their survey also found that 21% of bike owners did not lock their vehicle at all.

Furthermore many bike owners are unable to give a full description of their bike, making the likelihood of police recovering the theft low. Although 97% of bike owners could describe the colour correctly, just 74% could say what make of bike it was and 70% how much it was worth. Only 30% of bike owners knew the frame or coding number of their bike.

"If a bike is stolen, it is particularly important to report the theft immediately to the local police, especially the serial number, make and colour of the bicycle. You should have the information right at hand," says Herwig Lenz from Austria's Federal Criminal Police Office.

Lenz also warned that some bike thieves are not professional and will just be seizing the opportunity after seeing a bike poorly secured which is "is often seen as an invitation."

The survey from VVO found that only 30 percent of bike owners say they use a high quality tank lock or chain for securing their bike, despite thieves being able to break alternative spiral or cable locks in under 15 seconds according the insurance company.

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