IRMI Tip of the Month: Protection Against Auto Theft

photo by forwardcom via freeimages

photo by forwardcom via freeimages

Every 26 seconds, a motor vehicle is stolen in the United States. According to the FBI, there are over 1.2 million motor vehicles stolen every year. The odds of a vehicle being stolen are 1 in 190, odds that are especially higher in urban areas. The following tips may prove helpful in reducing the chances that your vehicle or property in it may be stolen.

       When temporarily leaving your vehicle, never leave it running or with the keys in the ignition.

       Always lock your car and roll up the windows, even if it is in your driveway. If you have a garage, park your car in it and close and lock the garage door.

       Park in busy, well-lit areas.

       When purchasing auto stereo equipment, choose items that can be removed and locked in the trunk.

       When using valet parking or taking your car in for repairs, leave only the ignition key with the attendant.

       Turn your wheels sharply toward the curb when parking since this makes it extra difficult for thieves to tow the vehicle. Always use your emergency brake and leave the transmission in park or in gear.

       Look into various anti-theft devices for your auto. Ask about auto insurance discounts for anti-theft devices such as alarms, window etchings, and anti-hot-wiring products.

Get more personal lines insurance and risk management tips and ideas from IRMI.

Copyright 2008, International Risk Management Institute, Inc.