Dublin’s bicycle theft hotspots revealed

Hotspots for bicycle theft in Dublin have been revealed by a survey of 1,500 people who cycle in the capital.

The Dublin Cycling Campaign found that most of the main hotspots were in the core city centre, including Trinity College, St Stephens Green/South King St, Georges St, South William St, and Drury Street.

Other hotspots included: Connolly Station, Smithfield/North King St, North Princes St, Parnell St and Rathmines Road.
However, the survey shows that bicycles were more commonly taken from car parks and people’s homes. Open streets  are seen as less secure but came in as only the third most common place for bike theft.

How people secure their bikes is a major issue — the survey results states: “Over half of the people, (55%), who had bikes stolen either hadn’t locked the bike at all or had a totally inadequate lock such as a cable lock.”

The Dublin Cycling Campaign says that, among survey respondents, only 4% of people who had a bike stolen recovered the bike and only 15% of bike theft victims had their bikes insured.

Keith Byrne, chairperson of Dublin Cycling Campaign, said: “We will continue to lose large numbers of cyclists if we don’t tackle the growing problem of bicycle theft. A co-ordinated, multi-agency plan to tackle bicycle theft is required if we are to reach the Government target of 10% of journeys by bicycle by 2020.”

According to the survey, one in six people who have had a bicycle stolen do not return to cycling, and a further 26% reduce their cycling habits as a result of theft.

The campaign estimates that 20,000 bikes are stolen annually in Dublin alone, a 100% increase since 2008.

“We were surprised by some of these results but not by others,” said David Timoney, the campaign researcher.

He added: “Like most people we assumed that the street was the most risky place to leave your bike, not car parks or at home. This type of data is very useful however and will help us work with The Gardai and the City Council to deal with the specific nature of the problem in Dublin”

Dublin Cycling Campaign is calling for a multi-pronged approach along the lines of the successful “Project Cycle Ops” in London, a partnership between London Police, Transport for London and the Mayor`s office, which succeeded in reversing the upward trend in bike theft.

The campaign wants to see:

  • The establishment of a ‘working group’ coordinated by Dublin City Council to develop and pilot a scheme to reduce bike theft in the city.
  • In the longer term, the establishment of a state co-ordinating body on bike theft, to drive forward an agreed system, which reduces bike theft.
  • A big increase in secure bicycle parking throughout Dublin.
  • More action by the Gardai to detect and deter bicycle theft.
  • A tighter code of practice for buyers and sellers of second hand bikes on-line.
  • More responsibility taken by cyclists through buying better locks, recording the bike serial number, not buying stolen bikes and always reporting stolen bikes to the Gardai.

Full results of the bicycle theft survey, will be presented at the campaign’s monthly public meeting at 8pm on 9th February, in the Central Hotel, Exchequer St, Dublin 2.


  1. If cars were being stolen at this annual rate there quite rightly would be uproar.
    Is it another case of ‘cyclists don’t count’?


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