Auto theft happens fast. An expert auto thief can break into and steal a car in less than a minute. An unoccupied car, with it’s engine running, can be taken in seconds. Motor vehicles are the primary mode of transportation for most of us, and often, an indispensable part of our lives. But what would happen if yours suddenly disappeared?
The top ten reported stolen vehicles from NHTSA’s 2010 theft rate data compilation are:
|1. Dodge Charger
2. Pontiac G6
|3. Chevrolet Impala
4. Chrysler 300
|5. Infiniti FX35
6. Mitsubishi Galant
|7. Chrysler Sebring
8. Lexus SC
|9. Dodge Avenger
10. Kia Rio
A MOTOR VEHICLE IS STOLEN EVERY 44 SECONDS IN THE UNITED STATES.
WHAT ATTRACTS A CAR THIEF?
- Leaving your car unlocked or the windows down.
- Leaving your keys in the car or a spare key hidden in the car.
- Leaving your car unattended.
- Parking in poorly lit places with low visability.
- Leaving valuables and packages in your car.
- Cars not protected with an anti-theft device.
HOW TO PROTECT YOUR CAR:
- Don’t leave your keys in your car.
- Close your windows and lock your doors whenever you leave your car, regardless of how long you plan to be gone.
- Park in well-lit areas.
- Keep your car in a garage if you have one.
- Park in lots that have attendants.
- Use an anti-theft device whenever you leave your car .
- When parking your car, turn your wheels toward the curb to make it more difficult for a thief to “tow” your car.
- Use your emergency brake when you park.
- Engrave your driver’s license number preceded by the state letters or your car’s Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) on any removable equipment in your car.
- Replace “T-shaped” door locks with straight locks so thieves cannot grab them with an implement through a crack in the window.
- Immediately report any suspicious activity to the police
USE COMMON SENSE WHEN PARKING AND EXITING YOUR VEHICLE.
- Take your key; don’t leave it in or on your vehicle.
- Close and lock all windows and doors when you park.
- Park in well-lit areas – in a garage, if possible.
- Never leave valuables in your vehicle, and specially in sight.
THIEVES WANT PARTS AND VALUABLE ITEMS, TOO.
Radios and wheel covers aren’t the only popular stolen vehicle parts thieves take. They want whatever sells, from the mandated labeled parts to those that aren’t. Among some of the most popular parts or items left in vehicles are: engine, transmission, air bags, radios, GPS units, iPods, laptops, and purses.
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