PLEASANTON (KRON) — BART is issuing a warning for people who leave their bikes at BART stations.
The transit agency said thieves have started targeting bikes secured with U-locks. This is particularly concerning because BART has long advised riders to use the locks.
BART tells people to use U-locks because they are normally thought to be better than cable locks. They are not as easy to cut, but that may no longer be the case.
Over the past few years, BART has seen an overall decrease in the number of bikes being stolen even while bike ridership on BART has gone up.
“Bike ridership is up big time at BART,” transit agency spokeswoman Alicia Trost said. “Thirty-three percent increase in the past few years, so it’s wonderful news that while we have had this surge (in) bike riders, we are also seeing a drop in the thefts of bikes.”
As part of an ongoing effort to reduce bike thefts, BART advises riders to secure their bikes with sturdy U-locks instead of cable locks.
Unfortunately, there is growing evidence that U-locks might not be enough.
“But what we are now seeing for the first time is thieves cutting through U-locks. And that’s upsetting,” Trost said.
“I have both. I have a cable and I have a U-lock,” BART rider Bruce Engelfried said.
Engelfried rides his bike to BART for work.
He said hearing that thieves are now cutting through U-locks is bad news.
“Yeah, it’s concerning of course,” Engelfried said. “Especially because I can’t afford another bike.”
BART officials said they will continue to advise people to use U-locks. They are still better than cable locks.
BART also said they are planning on expanding secure bike parking to more than a dozen additional stations.
“Those are really 100-percent theft proof because you walk it to an attendant, and they leave it safe and secure in (an) office environment,” Trost said.
BART also advised using two cable locks and to park bikes at the indoor bike racks if possible.