City of Vernon issues tips to protect yourself from vehicle theft - InfoNews

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City of Vernon issues tips to protect yourself from vehicle theft

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October 25, 2016 - 10:53 AM

Vernon residents have noticed an increase of thefts from vehicles in residential areas in the past two months. RCMP files indicate that the majority of thefts from vehicles are due to vehicles being left unlocked. Primary targets of thieves are purses, wallets and electronic devices.

ICBC estimates that the cost of a single theft from a vehicle can average $1,000 plus the cost of the deductible based on thefts from vehicles in past years. This does not include the inconvenience of filing a claim or taking a vehicle for repairs.

The cost and the time spent on repairs or replacement of stolen items can be reduced by following these simple steps to help mitigate the risk of thefts:

  • Remove all valuables from your car. Never leave anything on display when you leave your vehicle. This includes loose change, cigarettes, cigarette lighters, sunglasses, CDs, cell phones, stereos, cameras and clothing—if your belongings can be seen, they can be stolen.
  • If you must store valuables in your vehicle for a short period of time, lock them in a trunk or, where your vehicle does not have a trunk, cover them as discreetly as possible.
  • Opportunistic thieves will often rummage through any type of vehicle they find unlocked seeking valuables in your car. Prevent this type of theft by always keeping your vehicle locked or within a locked garage.
  • Do not leave your garage door opener in your car. This will give thieves access to your residence.
  • When parking at home, always use your garage if you have one, and lock both your vehicle and your garage. If you don't have a garage, try to park in a well-lit, open place.
  • When parking at work or your local mall, park in a well-lit, open place.
  • Remove portable accessories. Removing stereo face plates and locking them in
  • the trunk or taking them with you will deter thieves.
  • Use a steering locking device every time you leave your vehicle. A vehicle that is well secured is more likely to deter thieves. If you need a steering locking device, please contact the Crime Prevention Coordinator for information.
  • If your valuables have been stolen from your car, report the theft to police—no matter how unimportant or inexpensive the items may seem. The RCMP need every opportunity to be able to catch the person responsible. Your theft could be part of a string and needs to be recorded.
  • Report stolen wallets, purses and credit cards immediately to the RCMP and cancel your cards.
  • Keep a copy of your license plate, vehicle identification numbers and registration. If your vehicle is stolen, report it immediately.

For more information on preventing theft from vehicles or contributing to neighbourhood safety, please contact Regan Borisenko, Crime Prevention Coordinator, by calling 250.550.7847 or emailing rborisenko@vernon.ca.

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