Motorcycle Thefts Down in 2009

Motorcycle Thefts

The last report from the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) shows that motorcycle thefts in 2009 are continuing their downward trend. A total of 56,093 motorcycles were reported stolen to law enforcement in 2009, down from 64,492 reported in 2008, a 13 percent drop.

The top five makes stolen last year were: (1) Honda, 13,688; (2) Yamaha, 11,148; (3) Suzuki, 9,154; (4) Kawasaki, 5,911; and (5) Harley-Davidson, 3,529. Combined they accounted for 43,430 thefts, or 77.4 percent of the total.

The top five states with the most motorcycle theft activity were: (1) California, 6,273; (2) Texas, 5,526; (3) Florida, 5,009; (4) North Carolina, 3,045; and (5) Georgia, 2,067. These five states accounted for 21,920 thefts, or 39 percent of the total.

While overall thefts are down, reflecting the continuing decline in thefts of passenger vehicles and light trucks, another possible factor contributing to the decline is that there are fewer targets to steal in the first place.

According to the Motorcycle Industry Council, motorcycle sales between 2008 and 2009 were down 40.8 percent. Likewise, the Japanese Automobile Manufacturers Association reported a 47.4 percent decrease in motorcycle production in 2009 from 2008 figures.

Not surprising, the summer months of July (6,319); August (6,079); and June (5,672) saw the most theft activity while the fewest thefts were recorded during the winter months of December (2,927); February (3,100); and January (3,570).