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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Bye-bye bicycles

Rebecca Marie Sasnett
Rebecca Marie Sasnett / The Daily Wildcat Material Science and Engineering junior Ryan O’Connell locks up his bike in front of the Park Student Union on Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014, in Tucson, Arizona.

With the beginning of a new school year, several students will navigate their way around campus via bicycle, which may lead to bicycle theft for some unlucky students.

Elliot Montgomery, a UA alumnus, conducted research ranging from 2006 to 2013 regarding bike thefts at residence halls across campus. His most recent research is a follow-up study on bike thefts that he conducted in 2012. This study includes the bike theft during the years 2012 and 2013 that he is still working on.

In Montgomery’s data, he noted that residence halls are a prime spot for bicycle theft, particularly at the beginning of fall semester, experiencing nearly 40 percent to 50 percent of their thefts in August, September and October.

According to Montgomery’s study, the Manzanita-Mohave Residence Hall experiences the most bike thefts. Approximately 31 percent of bike thefts at Manzanita-Mohave occur in September, followed by 13 percent in August and 12 percent in March. Since 2006, the most reported bike thefts occurred in 2009 and 2010, with 16 reported thefts per year followed by 13 reported thefts in 2012.

However, that number decreased with only one reported bike theft in 2013. Montgomery points out that while there was only one theft in 2013, that was the only reported theft, and that there was likely to have been other stolen bikes that were not reported at Manzanita-Mohave. That is an average of 8.375 stolen bikes per year since 2006 at that residence hall, according to Montgomery’s study.

Ricky Maciel, an astronomy and physics junior, experienced residence hall bike theft last year. In September 2013, Maciel’s bike was stolen off of the bike racks in front of the Árbol de la Vida Residence Hall overnight after his roommate had locked it up.

“My roommate [who was borrowing the bike] locked the bike through the tire to the rack, instead of locking the body of the bike to the rack,” Maciel said. “So the person just took the bike and left the tire that the lock was on.”

Maciel was using a U-Lock to secure his bike to the bike racks around campus. The U-Lock is also the bike lock that the University of Arizona Police Department sells to students. UAPD also encourages students to register their bikes within the UA Parking and Transportation Services in case they are ever stolen.

There are also other resources around campus that can secure one’s bicycle. There is bike valet parking throughout the semester in front of the Nugent building on the UA Mall for no cost, as well as different stations set up by PTS that offer free bike tune-ups and registration.

Follow Adriana Espinosa @adrianae_dw

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