DARIEN, Conn. – Darien’s commuters will soon have a more secure way to leave their bicycles at the town’s two train stations, with the help of some local Boy Scouts.
Darien will install new bike racks at the Darien and Noroton Heights train stations this Saturday. The equipment was contributed by the Norwalk Transit Authority, with only 5 percent of the cost coming from the Darien public works budget.
Boy Scout Troop 35 will help install the new equipment this weekend under the direction of Darien High student Nicholas Cohen, who volunteered to spearhead the project as part of his Eagle Scout service requirement. The Department of Public Works and the Darien Police will supervise the installation.
Darien Police called bike theft at the train stations a “recurrent problem." For example, two commuters reported bike thefts from Darien’s train stations last week.
A red and black Cannondale road bike was reported missing from the Noroton Heights train station on Oct. 11. That same day, a blue 21-speed Rally-brand mountain bike was also stolen from the Darien train station. In both cases the bikes were locked in the morning and discovered missing by the evening.
Six bicycle thefts have been reported at train stations in Darien so far in 2013, and 40 had been reported over the previous three years. But Darien Police Sgt. Jeremiah Johnson notes that those figures do not cover all thefts in the town over that time period.
“Unfortunately, it’s one of those crimes that’s probably under-reported,” Johnson said.
The new bike racks are designed for “double-locking,” or securing the bicycle at two separate points using two different styles of lock. For example, police suggest using both a chain-style lock and a firmer “U-lock,” connected to both the wheel and body of the bike.
Investigations have shown that suspects rarely carry to different types of tools to potential crime scenes, Johnson said.
“Double-locking is one of the best ways to protect your property,” he added. “These bike racks will help to encourage that.”
The volunteers and town workers plan to install the bike racks this Saturday. Both the northbound and southbound sides of the Darien and Noroton Heights stations will each get a new apparatus. New signs will also be installed to promote proper locking practices.