November sucks: Bike vandalism in plain sight

Don't show these brutal images to your bike.

Well, since it’s already a miserable month here in Finland and my derriere is starting to look like I had a skin graft from Barney the purple dinosaur, I might as well add to the misery. We were just coming home from the opera and I finally had a camera to take a photo evidence of something I see way too often: Bikes vandalized pointlessly in bike stands in public places. These photos were taken from our nearest train stop.

There were three whole bikes here earlier. Now there are hardly parts for one.

This causes several problems. The biggest of them is the fact that since these mutilated bikes are not being cleaned from the stands and stay there for weeks, they promote this kind of violence and scare people from commuting to the train station with a bike, since it will obviously face a certain destruction in a short time.

The most direct effect is of course to the person whose bike has been ravaged: They don’t have a bike anymore. If it’s been a cheap bike to start with (ie. worth more than it’s actually worth) and worth less than your insurance premiums, your enthusiasm to get a new bike is very low.

5 meters away from the previous crime scene.

I’ve had so many bikes stolen/mutilated/mauled from me that of the tens of bikes I have had, I’ve only sold one. And that one I kept inside constantly.

So, if you see anyone harass bikes, please ask them to stop – without risking your own safety of course.

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By Markus Sandelin

Markus is a bike commuter gadget freak who is learning the ropes of the bike world, you can find him all around the web - but you can start with his twitter at @banton.