The UK has seen a fall in motorcycle crime over the last 12 months.
Motorcycle crime decreases as car crime are on the rise
Unfortunately for car owners, as motorcycle crime is falling, cars have become the new target. In the last 12 months, automotive crime has risen from 86,000 thefts to 112,000. This is nearly a 50% increase in crime.
In comparison to this, motorcycle crime has fallen from 34,000 to 27,000 over the last 12 months. Many outlets are accrediting the fall in bike-related crime to the police and their new tactics. Police forces across England have implemented a whole new range of anti-theft measures from tactical vehicle ramming to DNA spray. One thing is for sure, and it’s having some effect.
Motorcycle crime is due to fall even further
Bikers around the UK will be happy to hear that current trends predict that motorcycle thefts will continue to decline in 2019. However, unfortunately, the recovery rate for stolen machines remains low. Additionally, it shows no sign of improvement shortly.
Within the last five years, over 79,228 motorcycles were stolen. This amounted to an excess of £54.5 million pounds. The vast majority of bikes themselves were never recovered. Currently, 59% of bikes which are stolen are either sold on with cloned identities or shipped abroad.
In some cases, the machines are broken down into salvaged parts and make their way onto eBay or Facebook marketplace. As a result, they often their way onto legitimate motorcycles. The owners are often non-the-wiser.
Only 10,400 motorcycles are recovered a year. The vast majority of the bikes are found in a poor state, often set alight. As a result, they are frequently written off by their insurance company.
Police have changed their priorities
About ten years ago, vehicle crime was considered a relatively low priority issue. It was considered an insurance issue rather than a severe offence. However, with the rise of moped gangs and street violence, police forces across the country have been forced to take the issue more seriously. Gang crime has increased ten-fold in the UK. Muggings and robberies are being committed daily and in broad daylight.
As a result, the police have become tougher on bike crime. Without a doubt, motorcycle crime has fallen dramatically. The knock on effect of this is that the Government can no longer afford to see bike crime as an isolated issue.
A neighbourhood team based in Worksop have decided to take it upon themselves to tackle nuisance off-road bikers. Working alongside a local drone training company the team decided to revolutionise the way they address crime.
The drones were donated by SalusUAV
SalusUAV donated the drones to the team. During the test operation, local officers learnt how to manoeuvre the aircraft in the sky. The team hopes that implementing new technology such as drones will help officers be more efficient in identifying criminals quicker.
The drones use onboard cameras to identify issues swiftly
During training, officers were able to fly drones into the air and track individuals using built-in cameras relaying information back to a screen. This meant that the officers could cover more distance than their patrolling officers.
When no issues were identified, the team can quickly move the drone on. What would usually take officers an hour, only took 10 minutes
Drones allowed police to tackle woodland fire early on
During practice, officers managed to locate an area of woodland which had been set alight. As a result, they were quickly able to deploy officers to extinguish it swiftly. The use of drones isn’t the first time the police have used new inventive measures to help tackle crime. Last week it was announced Wrexham police have decided to try out a new DNA spray.
The trial was a success
The team of officers concluded that the trial event was a success. It has allowed local police to understand how technology can help make the force more effective. The team was made up of six local officers, a professional drone pilot and four members of a motorcycle team who acted as the dummy targets.
Neighbourhood Police Sergeant Kate Long said:
“The operation was a great success and has opened our eyes to how effectively we could work to combat rural crime by utilising this technology. It was great to work with SalusUAV and we’d like to thank the local company for offering up their services. Nuisance bikers need to be aware that we’re going to crack down on the issue any way we can and we’ll be looking to use drones in this way in the near future.”
Illegal off-road bikers are causing issues for the citizens of Wrexham. It’s not the first time such news has hit the headlines. Just over two months ago, it was reported that police had finally developed new ramming tactics to take out bike criminals.
A trial of DNA tagging has commenced in Wrexham
This week Wrexham police have decided to try and fight bike crime with a softer approach. Using a DNA ‘tagging spray’ which can not be removed, it allows the police to identify criminals quickly.
Officers will be able to use invisible dye to mark bikes, clothes and skin. The genetic material in each canister has a unique code contained within it. This code will help identify arrested individuals as well as any motorcycles recovered.
The scheme will be expanded to the whole of North Wales
At the moment, the system is being trialled within Wrexham. However, if the DNA spray is proven to see success, it’s possible that it will be rolled out across North Wales. It is hoped that the new scheme will dramatically reduce motorcycle crime. It has proven to be hugely successful when implemented by the Metropolitan Police in their fight against moped crime. However, officers will need to receive proper training to use the spray.
The DNA spray came about as a result of continuous complaints made by illegal bikes in the Caia Park area of the town.
The spray is permanent and can not be removed
The North West Police have stated that the spray is a water-based product. This means it will not cause any harm or irritation to individuals sprayed with it.
However, the product is permanent and cannot be scrubbed off. It is visible by UV light.
“Even a drop of DNA spray will mark riders and their bikes for a long time,” said Sgt Simon Williams, of the Neighbourhood Policing Team. “This tactic will undoubtedly lead to seizures and prosecutions.”