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How to report a stolen bicycle to the police

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It’s not something that anyone really likes to talk about but as unfortunate as it is, bike theft is of course a subject always at the forefront of our minds. The numbers are staggering. One bike reported stolen ever seven minutes and a total of 77,148 bikes stolen during 2022/2023. Let’s also bear in mind that these figures only account for reported thefts and exclude the countless others which fail to get reported. You don’t need to be an insurance expert to deduce that those statistics are quite frankly shocking. Sadly, only a tiny percentage of bikes are ever recovered.


Why do I need to report the theft to the police?

Create a record

Reporting the theft to the police creates an official record of the theft, which is essential for legal or insurance claims. This documentation is needed for proving the theft and seeking compensation. Many insurance companies (us included) require police reports to process claims for stolen property.


If the police don’t know your bike is stolen, who are they ever going to help recover it? Police can enter the stolen bike’s details into a national database, increasing the chances of recovery.

Prevent future theft

Reporting thefts allows the police to track crime patterns and allocate resources effectively. In most instances, an increase in theft will prompt police forces to implement preventive measures, such as increasing police and PCSO presence and surveillance in an attempt to make the area less appealing to thieves.

a cut lock on pavement

How do I report bike theft?

Depending on your local area, there are typically three ways to report the theft. If the theft has taken place and there thieves have already vanished, this would not constitute an emergency. You therefore either:

  • Call 101
  • Register the theft online with the local police force
  • Visit the local police station

If the theft is ongoing, you are in danger or you are witnessing the crime in progress, call 999.

What do Pedal Cover need from me?

As soon as you have reported the theft to the police, please login to your Pedal Cover account and

Hit the ’Make a Claim’ button

In addition to your bicycle and lock purchase receipts, you’ll need your crime reference number and proof of correspondence with the police.


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