Bike Shortage During the Pandemic: How to Keep Yours Safe

2 Sep 2020

If you’re thinking about buying a bike, be prepared for a long wait. According to Fox Business, we can expect a bike shortage to continue through 2021.

As Covid-19 spreads throughout cities in the U.S. and discourages the use of subways and buses, many people are starting to turn to a different mode of transportation – bikes.

Nationwide bicycle and equipment sales and repair services have increased twice as much as this same time last year. Some sales statistics that same month include:

  • Fitness and commuter bikes increased by 66%
  • Children’s bikes increased by 59%
  • Leisure bikes increased by 121%
  • Electric bikes increased by 85%

A lot of distributors and stores, by the end of April, had sold out of low-end consumer bicycles. Now, the U.S. is facing a serious bike shortage as global supply chains scramble to meet this demand surge due to the COVID outbreak disruption.

Increase in Bike Theft – How to Keep Yours Safe

With this national bike shortage comes the threat of theft. In New York, bicycle theft is 18% greater year to date. There’s an increase of 53% of bike thefts worth $1,000 and this causes more demand. The shortage began in January and is international. This was when COVID shut down East Asia factories which is the center of the bicycle industry’s supply chain.

When these factories and countries shut down, no bicycles were being made industrywide.

You’re urged to take extra precautions during the COVID-19 pandemic due to the increase in thefts in what seems to be secure locations.

Some things you can do to keep your bike safe are:

  • Avoid cable locks as these can be chopped easily with wire cutters. While they may deter potential thieves, they’re not effective against more experienced thieves.
  • Bring your bicycle indoors at night.
  • Lock up your saddle and your wheels too. Hex bolts and quick releases make it simple for thieves to grab components like these.
  • Make sure your bike is locked up, even if you store it in your garage and ensure it’s locked to a rafter pipe or another fixed point.
  • Invest in GPS tracking for your bike so if it does get stolen, you can easily track down its location and have the authorities recover it and catch the thief

Taking extra precautions can help keep your bike out of the hands of potential thieves. While you can’t prevent theft from occurring, by taking a few extra steps, you could deter thieves from trying to steal your bike.

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