Increase in police Cycle Task Force means thieves face harder times

photo M Cavenett The next issue of LCC's London Cyclist member magazine looks at the Cycle Task Force



Ten more officers have been drafted into the Metropolitan Police Service's Cycle Task Force to help improve cycle safety and crack down on errant road users.

The Cycle Task Force, funded by Transport for London,  was introduced in June not long after LCC's 2Beat The Thief" campaign highlighted the massive increases in cycle theft in recent years.

Since its launch in June this year, the MPS Cycle Task Force team, which tackles the problem of stolen and vandalised bikes in London, has already cycle security marked nearly 5,000 bikes, made nearly 20 arrests for bike theft and reunited some  Londoners with their stolen bikes.

In the summer, the Task Force ran a six-week operation to target road users who disobeyed traffic signals, encroached on advance stop lines, cycled carelessly, or used their mobile phones on the two pilot Cycle Superhighways.

Over 900 Fixed Penalty Notices of up to £60 have been issued to drivers and motorcyclists, with several hundred going to cyclists too.

Mike Cavenett said, "20 arrests might not sound that many, but a lot of these people are likely to be professional thieves, each one of which could be responsible for hundreds of bike thefts.

"LCC welcomes the Cycle Task Force being strengthened with extra officers."