As the use of electric scooters rises, so does the incidence of theft. From multiple conversations with owners who experienced theft and sometimes recovered them, I realized that not everyone knew how to act in that moment.
In this guide, we will go through everything you need to do if your scooter is stolen.
What to do if your eletric scooter gets stolen?
If your electric scooter is stolen, talk to the police, file a report, and inform others. Check local e-scooter stores and pawn shops. Proper storage, strategic parking, and strong security gear are key precautions to deter theft.
Tips on what to do if your e-scooter gets stolen
If your scooter gets stolen, follow these steps for the best shot at recovering it.
Keep your cool and act fast
Staying calm is crucial after a frustrating event like your e-scooter being stolen.
Panicking won’t improve the situation or retrieve your scooter.
The good news is you’re unharmed, and acting swiftly increases the chances of recovery. Stay calm to think rationally and take the next crucial step…
File a complaint
Immediately contact the local police to report the theft.
Provide essential details like when, where, and how it happened, along with the scooter’s serial number and description. If registered, it aids tracking and includes all available documentation.
Submit a photo of the stolen scooter to the police, along with any evidence left behind, like a piece of the lock. For a quicker report, use online filing from your phone or computer.
In fact, once my Xiaomi scooter got stolen and at first I didn’t know what to do. Luckily, my friend suggested filing a complaint and after one week the police found my scooter.
Track your electric scooter with a tracking device
If your e-scooter has a GPS tracker or an AirTag, your chances of recovery increase.
These devices allow tracking even after the theft. If you locate your scooter, involve the police instead of attempting retrieval yourself to avoid conflicts.
If your scooter lacks GPS or tracking, contact the police for assistance.
Check local pawn shops
Visit local pawn shops to check for your stolen e-scooter, as thieves often sell them there for quick cash.
Additionally, check local e-bike shops, online marketplaces, and the civic center, where stolen electric vehicles may be found.
Inform local e-scooter stores about your stolen scooter
Sometimes thieves aren’t that clever.
The person who’s stolen your scooter will likely drop by some of the local e-scooter stores at some point to get some accessory for “their” ride.
Inform your local e-scooter shop staff about the theft and provide them with flyers to heighten awareness.
Get the word out
Text your friends about the stolen e-scooter to increase vigilance, especially if it’s registered and they know its identification mark.
Make an insurance claim
If your electric scooter is insured, call your insurance company after filing a police report.
If recovery efforts fail and you have comprehensive coverage, the insurance company will provide a check for the present value of your scooter.
Additionally, if you’ve already obtained homeowner’s insurance, know that this policy may provide additional vehicle theft coverage too.
Now, if you’ve been lucky and never found yourself in this type of situation, but you worry that your e-scooter might get stolen, just keep reading.
Tips on how to prevent your electric scooter from getting stolen
There is no guarantee your ride won’t get stolen, but you can minimize the risk with adequate security precautions.
Here are the simplest and wisest ones:
- Take your scooter inside as often as possible
- Keep it under video surveillance
- Avoid patterns
- Don’t keep your scooter outdoors overnight
- Be careful where you park it
- Lock it
- Lock it using two different locks for maximum security
- Lock the scooter’s motor or steering column
- Install an anti-theft alarm
- Don’t leave it unattended for longer periods
Take your scooter inside as often as possible
While easier said than done, bringing your e-scooter inside is the best security measure.
If you use it for commuting, keep it under your desk or in your office to keep it in sight. Avoid parking your electric scooter on the street in front of your house, even for a few minutes.
Professional thieves can act quickly. Store your scooter indoors, especially if theft is common in your area.
Keep it under video surveillance
Installing a pair of CCTV cameras that will watch over the main entrance to your house as well as the entryway to your storehouse can be quite helpful.
Surveilling your e-scooter deters thieves and provides evidence in case of attempted theft.
Scooter thieves come in two types: opportunists and planners.
The former act on impulse, grabbing unattended scooters, while the latter strategize. If you consistently park at the same spot and time, you’re providing a roadmap for the planners.
Disrupt their plans by varying your parking routine—change spots and departure times to keep them guessing and protect your scooter.
Don’t keep your scooter outdoors overnight
To prevent theft, don’t leave your electric scooter outdoors overnight.
Avoid parking it in dark alleys or less-crowded areas at night, as these provide thieves more time to outsmart your defense system
Be careful where you park it
Keep your electric scooter hidden outdoors to reduce the risk of theft. Store it in a garage or storage room instead of leaving it unattended on the street when not in use.
When you can’t find such safe areas, park your electric scooter in highly frequented places or ones monitored by security cameras by securing it to a bike rack or post.
Park your e-scooter in well-lit areas if left overnight.
Additionally, position it near more attractive and sophisticated scooters to make yours appear less tempting to thieves.
Using a high-quality security lock isn’t a guarantee that someone will never attempt to snatch your ride. There’s simply no lock out there that a professional thief can’t defeat.
A strong security lock makes stealing more difficult and time-consuming for the thief, acting as a deterrent.
A skilled thief can recognize a strong lock and may be deterred if they lack the equipment or knowledge to break it, prompting them to target an easier scooter.
Lock it using two different locks for maximum security
Since there have been many instances of thieves stealing e-scooters already secured with a lock, I’d advise you to use two different locks!
If you prefer a chain lock, use an additional one like a U-lock or disc lock for added security, especially in high-crime areas.
Securing your ride this way will certainly disappoint and deter a potential thief from walking off with your scooter since they’ll most probably neither have the equipment nor skills needed to get rid of both locks at once.
Lock the scooter’s motor or steering column
Not all e-scooters come with these features.
But if you own one that offers you the option to lock its steering column or motor, do that when you need to leave it unattended.
This won’t prevent someone from lifting and taking your ride, but it stops them from pushing it down the street and riding it later without hacking it.
If you have an expensive e-scooter, check whether it comes with a specific lock app that you can install on your mobile phone and lock your scooter through it.
Install an anti-theft alarm
An anti-theft alarm will start producing a loud noise when someone is tampering with your e-scooter. So, not only will this discourage a would-be thief from stealing your ride, but it will also alert other people.
Don’t leave it unattended for longer periods
There will be many instances where you’ll need to leave your electric scooter unattended.
But whenever possible, avoid doing so. Not being around your ride for a few minutes could be everything a thief needs to make off with it.
So, when you’re going to a shopping mall, restaurant, or gym and you know there won’t be a safe parking spot for your e-scooter, it’s best to leave it at home rather than leave it somewhere unattended and take unnecessary risks.