According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Uniform Crime Reports, a motor vehicle was stolen in the United States every 26.4 seconds and two vehicles are stolen every 60 seconds. Annually there are over 1.2 million vehicles that end up in the hands of thieves. Carjacking occur most frequently in urban areas. . You can probably google the cities with the highest auto theft rates. They accounted for only 3.0 percent of all motor vehicle thefts, based on Department of Justice data from 1993 to 2002. If you leave your car unlocked you have a 1-in-30 chance of having you cars stolen. While the victim loses their car, guess who really pays for it. You guessed it, all drivers do in the form of insurance premiums that compensate for the claims of stolen auto claims. The great news is about 62% of stolen cars are recovered, but usually with lots of damage. The remaining 38% can be shipped overseas, end up in chop shops and stripped for parts, or resold to unsuspecting car shoppers.
Every June the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), published a report that ranks the places with the most per-capita vehicle thefts in the U.S. First place in the latest survey: Bakersfield, Calif. Eight other California locations appear on the list, along with one in Washington state.
2013 Ranking 2012 Ranking
1. Bakersfield, Calif. 3.
2. Fresno, Calif. 2.
3. Modesto, Calif. 1.
4. San Francisco/Oakland/Hayward, Calif. 6.
5. Stockton-Lodi, Calif. 4.
6. Redding, Calif. 10.
7. Spokane-Spokane Valley, Wash. 9.
8. Vallejo-Fairfield, Calif. 8.
9. San Jose/Sunnyvale/Santa Clara, Calif. 7.
10. Yuba City, Calif. 31.
While the United States overall recorded car-theft decreases of around 3.2% over the previous year, the west (dominated by California and Washington) is still popular with car thieves.
Don’t get burned. Whether you live near an auto-theft hot spot or not, you can use the NICB’s four “layers of protection” to help stop thieves in their tracks.
Common Sense – Among other safety precautions, always remove keys from the ignition and keep doors locked when your vehicle isn’t in use AT ALL TIMES
Warning Device – Install anything from an audible alarm to a steering-column collar to tell car thieves your car is protected.
Immobilizing Device – Use smart keys, kill switches and other tech tools to prevent a thief from bypassing the ignition and hot-wiring your car.
Tracking Device- Install this to send a signal to police or a monitoring station if your vehicle is stolen. In a few states, it could even qualify you for an additional discount on your auto coverage.
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