Motorists urged to secure their vehicles

Police are urging motorists ahead of the bank holiday weekend, to remove belongings from their cars and ensure their vehicles are secure.

Although vehicle crime has decreased overall in Dorset by 12.4% in recent months, over 75% of current thefts from vehicles are occurring as result of cars and vans being left insecure – either unlocked or windows left open.

Inspector Ernie Henley said: “Empty your vehicle whenever you leave it unattended.

A thief will take the opportunity to steal anything from a vehicle that they can keep or sell on; this includes Sat Navs, CDs, clothing, sport bags and tools. It is not enough just to hide them out of view.

“Also, make sure that you leave your vehicle locked and secure, by checking the doors and windows before you walk away.

“Central locking is a great tool but can you be sure when you ‘blip the fob’ or ‘turn the key’ that all the doors including the boot did actually lock?

“Reducing vehicle crime is a priority for Dorset Police. Most vehicle crime is opportunistic and therefore can be prevented. We are working hard to address the problem but we need members of the public to take simple steps to help keep themselves and their property safe.”

Dorset Police is issuing some useful tips to help prevent vehicle thefts:

  • Remove everything from the car – don’t hide things in the boot or glove box
  • Take removable stereos, sat nav equipment and bags with you and wipe off any marks left behind on your windscreen
  • Ensure all your windows and doors are secure before you walk away
  • Double check the central locking has worked and your car is secure
  • Leave a ‘no valuables in this car’ sign on display in your vehicle
  • Keep driving documents and personal correspondence at home
  • Where possible, park your vehicle in a busy, well-lit area
  • Never leave your keys in the vehicle, even if you are just leaving it for a few seconds

Inspector Henley continued; “By taking these simple steps, your vehicle becomes a lot less attractive to the opportunistic thief. The cost of repairing your car can be substantial, so don’t give criminals a reason to want to break into and steal from your vehicle.”

Further crime prevention advice and our ‘no valuables in this car’ sign can be found on this website, within the Crime Prevention Portal

Issued: 20 August 2013

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