A video posted to Facebook seems to demonstrate why Montreal is such a hotbed for bicycle theft. Each year, police estimate 20 000 bikes are stolen in Montreal, and this video gives us a clue as to why…
On Friday, the “Spotted: Montreal” Facebook page posted a two-minute clip of a man stealing a bike from a street post on Chapleau Street, in the De Lorimier district. They claim the theft happened around 5:00 a.m. The man is seen clumsily stepping onto a large garbage bin to unscrew the parking signs atop the post. Once he succeeds in removing the signs, he then clips the bike upwards off the post and rides away into the dawn.
The whole scene takes an almost comical twist a few times; the man is seen stumbling and falling off his garbage bin as he attempts to free his prize.
This video illustrates just how easy it is to steal a bicycle in Montreal. The owner should probably have locked his front wheel to the frame of the bike as well as to the post, which would have prevented the thief from riding away… But still, this theft was WAY too easy.
Not Enough Infrastructure
The video quickly went viral after being posted Friday, and now has over 450 000 views on Facebook. The incident was also covered by mainstream media (among others, La Presse). In the wake of the incident, cycling advocates have called for better bicycle parking infrastructure to be installed around the city to curb theft. They say this theft could not have happened on a traditional bike rack.
However, in many neighbourhoods, those types of racks are few and far between. It’s illegal to park a bike on a parking post like this person did, but people often have nowhere else.