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SA car theft: Here's how to prevent your car from being stolen

2017-07-05 12:53

BE ALERT: With vehicle crime constantly on the rise in SA, motorists should always be cautious and vigilant. Image: iStock

Cape Town - Car theft is still one of the three biggest vehicle crimes in South Africa, and according to South African Police Services and various car tracking companies, the numbers increase each year.

'Prevention is better than cure', is a saying that holds much truth in every day life and is no different when applying it to vehicle safety.

How thieves operate

Earlier in July, Wheels24 reported on some methods thieves use to steal cars - -from stealing keys from your home, hot-wiring and even duplicating VIN numbers. 

READ: Has your vehicle been stolen? Here's how car thieves operate

Australia's Car Trackers Club looked at ways on how you can avoid being a victim of car theft with a few pointers that would no doubt be of a benefit to car owners in South Africa.

Here are some tips to avoid being a statistic of vehicle crime in SA: 

1 Be vigilant when parking

Park in a well lit and secure area when in public. At home, park your car in a garage if possible, as it would be out the eye of inquisitive thieves as well as being protected from anything that can damage your vehicle.

Lock your garage at night and an alarm system can only be beneficial. When parking in public, always make sure you park in the full view of the public.

Read the original article here.

2 Steering wheel locks

Having steering wheel locks is one step away from warding off thieves as it is seen as precaution that is hard to break through. It is also easily seen, thus having a good visual deterrent and could scare thieves away at first glance.

It would usually take a bolt cutter or hacksaw to disable a steering wheel lock and with that, thieves would therefore not want to waste unnecessary time. 

3 Protect your belongings 

Ensure that your items are not visible to prying eyes when stopping at traffic lights or in a parking lot. Don't give away clues that you might have valuables in your car such as satnav holders or auxiliary cables. 

Items such as handbags or sports/gym bags, and electronics should be covered or taken out of the vehicle completely. 

READ: Robbed in seconds: Car-jammers in SA

4 Know where your keys are

Signal jamming is becoming more and more prevalent, so when using the immobiliser to lock your car, manually check if the car is locked via the door handle before walking off.

Here are some more tips: 

  • Never leave your keys in easily accessible areas. (Close to windows etc)
  • Don't leave your keys in the ignition while running short errands. 
  • Never leave your jacket in public places with your keys in it.
  • Lock your keys away along with your possessions when going to gym.
  • When driving, lock your doors. 

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