Police top tips for keeping cars safe as car theft figures rise in the West Midlands

Police seized a stash of stolen car parts after raiding a West Bromwich junkyard

Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed that West Midlands Police recorded 3,989 vehicle theft offences.

A West Midlands Police spokesman said: “Vehicle theft has risen by a third in the last year, fueled by a global shortage of car parts, and we suspect many cars end up in junkyards where they are dismantled for of spare parts”. urging people to support our campaign against car crime by reporting any suspicious behavior in garages or industrial units that could indicate they are acting as junkyards.

“Vehicle crime is currently one of the top priorities for the force.”

The statistics emerge as a number of car breakers in the West Midlands were found with stolen vehicles and stolen car parts found inside properties, and now West Midlands Police are urging people to support the campaign and report any suspicious behaviour. in garages or industrial facilities. units that could indicate that they are acting as junkyards, where many stolen vehicles end up.

In the past few months alone, there have been several raids on salvage yards in the region, all of which were found to have stolen vehicles or parts.

Police were able to track down a stolen Range Rover which led them to the site.

Three men were arrested in April after a cache of stolen car parts was seized in a police raid on a Black Country junkyard in Kelvin Way, West Bromwich.

These arrests were made based on intelligence information that suggested the site was running and disarming stolen vehicles.

Vehicle theft is rife not only in the West Midlands but across the country, and the police have provided steps owners can take to do everything they can to prevent their vehicles from being stolen.

On Thursday July 14, five masked men attempted to steal an Audi S3 from a driveway using the viral key scanning method, but once that method failed, the thieves attempted to enter the property but were deterred once that the house security sirens began to sound.

Meticulously planned operations have taken place in the city, with many areas, including Goldthorn Park and Penn in particular, being targeted for vehicle theft.

After the thieves failed in their attempts to remove the Audi from Honor Avenue, it was later discovered that three vehicles that were also thought to be stolen were used in the operation and seven people were involved.

Car thieves attempted to carjack an Audi in Wolverhampton but failed after being dissuaded by home security systems.

Police officers who attended the scene praised homeowners for going to great lengths to have CCTV and sensitive security alarms in the house, but also said there is little homeowners can do to deter burglars.

West Midlands Police have launched a campaign called the ‘Car Crime Campaign’ urging people to support them and heed their advice on steps to take to deter car thieves.

The steps provided by the West Midlands Police are:

  • Make sure ‘your key fob has done the job’ and that passengers haven’t left a window or door open, even slightly.

  • Consider using a Sold Secure tested and approved steering wheel lock that ideally provides full coverage of the steering wheel.

  • To protect your passive entry vehicle from a relay attack, visit the Secured By Design website to search for products using the search keyword ‘car key shielding’. Also remember your spare keys.

  • Verify with your primary dealer that regardless of the age of the vehicle, all recalls have been completed and the software and firmware have been updated.

  • Check with your main dealer which latest security measures can be retrofitted to older vehicles. This may cost less than your insurance excess, in the event of a claim.

  • Explore what aftermarket security products are available from third parties. You can look for them on the Thatcham, Secured By Design and Sold Secure websites.

  • Some vehicles have tracking as standard today but you can fit an approved aftermarket vehicle tracker, search the Thatcham website for independently tested products.

  • Keep full control of your keys. Valet parking, car washes, and even some garages have been found to copy keys.

  • Do not leave anything visible in the vehicle. Sat Navs/dash cams, loose change, and bags are all attractive to thieves.

  • When parking, always choose a well-lit place with natural or electronic surveillance. Use a car park, where possible, that has been awarded the ‘Park Mark’.

  • At home, if you have a garage, use it. Consider installing security lights or CCTV to improve deterrence.

  • Think about where you leave the keys when you are at home. Don’t leave your keys near the front door, no matter how easy it is. Never take them to bed with you either.

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