Bicycles are part of a rare category of vehicles that do not possess an identification number — effectively making them more susceptible to being stolen as, more often than not, there is no way to link a bike with its original owner. With the rise in popularity of bicycles, and notably electric assisted bikes, here’s a breakdown of the situation and our plan to combat it!
Since 2015, the number of reported bike thefts is on the decline all over Canada. Yet, it doesn’t stop thiefs from trying their luck at a quick pay day. Vancouver is the canadian city with the most bike thefts per capita as of 2021 with 334 bicycles stolen per 100 000 citizens. The combined police records from the biggest cities in Canada lists Calgary and Winnipeg right below Vancouver in that same category. Some may point to Project 529 as a reason for this decline. Indeed, this program dating back to 2013 offers an online platform where cyclists can register their bikes using their serial numbers to increase their chances at retrieving their bike.
In Quebec, a Vélo Québec study affirms that 15 000 to 20 000 bikes are stolen in Montreal every year. Yet, this problem also extends to other cities in the province, most notably its capital, Québec City. In fact, bike thefts have become so frequent in Québec City that citizens created a FaceBook page named “Vélos Volés - Québec” to help track down stolen bicycles and bring them back to their rightful owners. This group counts over involved 2 800 members. In 2020, Québec City police reports having received over 600 complaints from citizens whose bike had been stolen.
For the past few years, electric bicycles are becoming more and more mainstream. In Quebec, 8% of all bikes on the road are electric bikes and amount to 26% of all bicycles bought in 2022. With such a demand for these products, consumers are right to worry about the safety of their newly bought e-bike. Velec’s solution to this epidemic is the introduction of a new program, the VAA: Velec Antitheft + Assistance.
The VAA protects new Velec owners from theft by replacing their bike following such an event. Upon presentation of the original receipt and a police report, registered users will be able to make a claim and receive an equivalent bike to the one they bought. VAA also includes roadside support. In case of a mechanical problem far from home, ALL Velec users can call a toll free number and are eligible for pick up. The VAA team will take you up-to 35km away from where you originally call before charging for the extra distance.
Feel free to read more on our VAA program and how Velec can bring you Peace of Mind on this page.