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Bike Thieves are Stealing Citi Bikes – And Here’s How…

citibike thievesInteresting article in the Post this morning, and a good warning for Citi Bikers out there.

It turns out that Citi Bikers aren’t the only ones aware of Citi Bike’s dock problems. Bicycle thieves are too. Seems that they lie in wait to find Citi Bikes that aren’t secured into docks, take joyrides with them, and then dump them in Brooklyn. The nice thing about Citi Bikes being so ugly and conspicuous is that at least they can’t sell them on eBay nor disassemble them to sell for parts (at least no one’s thought of that yet). I thought it was hilarious that one thief tried to paint his stolen blue Citi Bike orange and thought he’d get away with it.

The Post got something wrong though–the problem is not Citi Bikers who “improperly dock a bike”. The problem is with the damned docks. I’ve documented in past posts how Citi Bike will give you a “false negative” where you’ll put your key in the dock and the yellow light will go on and either stay on or go dark. Perhaps 15, perhaps 20, perhaps 30 minutes later, the dock will finally go “green” in which case anyone walking along can just take it. I’ve already showed you how other people have ridden bikes I’ve unlocked and I’ve ridden bikes other people unlocked.

I haven’t heard of anyone actually getting billed for the $1200 that we’re supposedly accountable for if a bike that’s unlocked with one of our keys. But if that ever does happen, that person would have every right to be hopping mad. And I, for one, would be thrilled to join in on an outcry to them to figure out how to get their docks working right once and for all.

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