NHS Workers’ Bikes Marked After Being Targeted by Thieves29 Jun 2020
Dozens of NHS workers were offered free bike marking during lockdown – after they were targeted by thieves.
Northumbria Police launched Operation Monty after a number of hospital workers at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle had their bicycles stolen. It was launched by the Newcastle City Centre Neighbourhood Policing Team to offer reassurance to NHS workers and help safeguard their property.
The undercover sting operation led to 12 suspected thieves being arrested after officers planted a bicycle in the grounds of the hospital.
It was launched by the Newcastle City Centre Neighbourhood Policing Team to offer reassurance to NHS workers – and help safeguard their property.
Now the same team have revealed they have also been offering bike marking to hospital workers in a further bid to deter thieves.
The operation was led by PC Jonny Bell and CSO Community Safety Officer Caroline Codd, who security marked all the bikes and handed out free D-locks to those who needed them.
PC Bell said: “I was more than happy to help our NHS heroes and make it more difficult for thieves to target their property. Not only did we assist staff in registering their bicycles using the BikeRegister scheme, but we also handed out some sturdy D-locks free of charge.”
He added: “This preventative work has already proven to be extremely successful in deterring thieves from stealing pedal cycles and assisting us in recovering stolen property. We encourage any bike owners to come along to get their bikes registered and talk to us about how they can keep their bikes safe.”
Transport and travel advisor David Malone, of the Newcastle- upon- Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, has also offered his thanks to police. He said: “This is a great example of partnership working to ensure our staff can get to work sustainably, which supports our climate emergency and local air quality improvement aims, and we would like to thank the police for all their support in keeping their bikes safe.”
Meanwhile in Gloucestershire, Police have also been helping hospital staff to protect their bikes after a number ofseveral thefts during the Covid COVID-19 pandemic.
Gloucester Neighbourhood Policing Team hashave been at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital and Cheltenham General Hospital during the past few weeks, to mark and register bicycles owned by NHS staff.
A total of 80 bikes have been marked and a number of bike locks have also been sold. Due to the success so far, Oofficers will continue to regularly attend Gloucestershire Royal Hospital for bike marking events.
From 23 March to 26 June this year, four bikes were taken from Gloucestershire Royal Hospital; the figure is identical to the same period in 2019.
Earlier this month, a 46-year-old man from Gloucester was sentenced to 16 weeks in prison for stealing a nurse’s bike from Gloucestershire Royal Hospital during the Covid COVID-19 pandemic.
Sergeant Grant White said: "There have been a number of incidents of bikes being stolen from Gloucestershire Royal Hospital and Cheltenham General Hospital during the height of Coronavirus and the lockdown.
"It is shocking that, at a time like this, criminals have been targeting our hospital workers.
"Since those incidents at the hospital, Josh Griffiths, our PCSO who is linked to the hospital, has been doing a lot of work around security to ensure that NHS staff can feel confident that their belongings are safe."
Overall,, bicycle theft in Gloucester has gone done year- on- year. There were 32 incidents reported across the city between 23 March and 4 June this year, compared with 73 in 2019 and 77 in 2018.
In Glasgow, local community officers from South West Glasgow Police marked over 40 bikes belonging to NHS staff at Queen Elizabeth University Hospital. The event was held in partnership with the NHS Transport Division who carried out maintenance on the cycles to ensure they were safe to ride.
For further information and images contact: Angela Singleton, Press Officer for Selectamark.
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