While the Colorado weather pushes its winter snowstorms later into the year, bicycles remain a frequent target of theft in the warmer months.
However, students have resources on campus that may lower the risk of theft and aid in recovering stolen property.
UCCS sophomore Joe Fronheiser said his bike was stolen overnight outside Crestone House on Sept. 1.
“I just locked it up when I came in that night, and then when I woke up, I went downstairs, and it’s gone. I thought I was crazy, so I looked around at all the other bike racks, and yeah, it was gone,” the geology and environmental studies major said.
With this theft comes a need for students to protect their bikes on campus. Executive Director of Parking and Transportation and former UCCS chief of police Jim Spice says the most important bike protection measure students can take is registering their bikes in the Parking Portal.
“It gives the police the ability to have a one-stop shop for everybody’s serial number if they registered it with us as well as a photo of their bike and the color of their bike. It helps the person who had their bike stolen give the police information if they don’t have it elsewhere,” Spice said.
After students register their bikes in the Parking Portal for free, they need to visit Parking Services to receive their registration sticker. Spice also encourages students to use the National Bike Registry and register their bikes into a national system.
Spice suggests that students invest in a kryptonite u-lock to use on the bike racks because cutting through them is very difficult. Students can also store their bikes in the Alpine Garage for extra protection.
“We’ve got bike racks in Alpine Garage right by the elevators that actually have cameras that store video images of those bike racks,” Spice explained. This gives the police a way to identify the thief if a bike gets stolen from this area.
Fronheiser also has some advice regarding bike protection as someone who lives on campus. After his roommate’s bike was stolen from a rack outside Eldora House two years ago, Fronheiser usually took the front wheel off his bike when he parked it.
“I just kept the front wheel. The front wheel on my bike had a quick disconnect lever, so I would pop the front wheel off and carry that to my room,” he said.
Students who may not have the space for this one-wheeled-bike theft prevention strategy can rent one of the bike lockers on campus for a fee. The Kraemer Family Library also has bike locks available for students to check out for up to a week.
Any students who have their bikes stolen or who have information about a stolen bike should report it by calling the UCCS Police’s report line at 719-255-3111.
Photo caption: Bike racks located in Alpine Village. Photo by Taylor Villalpando.