A study by Česká pojišťovna – a Czech insurance company – has shown that on average it takes less than two hours for unlocked bicycles to be stolen on Czech streets. The company left bikes unattended in 14 towns and cities; the aim was to draw attention to theft as well as the importance of theft insurance. The incidents in which bikes were taken were measured by stopwatch and captured on camera. The quickest theft took place in Hradec Králové, where the bike was stolen in just four minutes. In Prague, the unlocked bike disappeared after an hour, in Brno after 26 minutes, and in Ostrava in 52 minutes.
By contrast, bikes left unlocked in České Budějovice, Jihlava and Pardubice were not stolen at all; the insurance company will donate those to charity. Some 8,000 bikes were reported stolen in the Czech Republic last year.
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