Last month West Midlands police arrested more than 100 people for car related crime and report that vehicle crime has dropped.
The West Midlands saw a 4% decrease in vehicle crime over the last year (July 2020 – June 2021) according to the latest data from the Office for National Statistics.
However with frosty mornings back and the dark nights drawing in, you may be busy planning for Christmas, but car criminals will have other plans in mind.
Here’s what we’re doing to keep your car safe:
- Last month we arrested 119 people for car related crime – 92 arrests were for theft of vehicle and 27 people were arrested for stealing from a vehicle.
- We have closed down more than 100 chop shops – where stolen cars are broken down for parts – in the past 18 months and continue to run operations targeting the organised gangs behind these illegal businesses.
- We work with car manufactures and the vehicle security industry to keep finding the best ways to protect your vehicle.
- We proactively patrol the streets, increasing our visibility in areas where we know thieves often operate, and heighten public awareness on vehicle safety.
Car criminals and persistent offenders will still try to take advantage of unsuspecting people.
Most car theft happens near people’s homes and there are some simple security measures you can follow to help.
Top 10 tips to help keep your car safe:
- Check that you’ve locked your car – even if you’ve just gone to pay for your petrol.
- Make sure all windows are closed before leaving your vehicle.
- Use a Sold Secure approved steering wheel lock on your car. You can search for suppliers on Sold Secure or Secured by Design.
- Keep valuables out of sight when leaving your vehicle, including on roof-racks, tailgate racks, roof boxes or items on display inside such as sat navs.
- Register all valuables in the car, such as radios and sat nav systems on Secure Asset Register.
- Store car ownership information at home, not in your car.
- Speak to the main dealer, even if your car is older, as they can tell you how best to protect your vehicle especially from keyless theft.
- Did you know 85% of thefts happen during the night? Avoid parking in dark and secluded areas if possible. We know that can be difficult, but try to park in well-lit areas and busier streets if you can.
- Keys should be kept out of view and away from front doors, and never taken to bed with you. Faraday pouches can add an extra layer of security for people with keyless cars. Also keep your spare keys safe, and store those in a protective Faraday pouch or box.
- Secure number plates with anti-theft screws available from car accessory stores.
Get inside the mind of a thief via our interactive car park. Here you can see what criminals lookout for and find out how to better protect your car: https://www.west-midlands.police.uk/stealer-street
Click here for additional tips to help keep you and your vehicle safe this winter.