The OPP “Lock it or Lose it” initiatives is a proactive crime prevention program designed to encourage vehicle owners to take a few simple precautions to prevent thefts from vehicles. Here are few tips and reminders:
- Always lock the doors: It may seem unnecessary to lock your car when you’re just popping in to pick up a pizza. But taking 5 seconds to do it can save you from weeks of headaches and paperwork and really, 5 seconds is all it takes to jump in and drive away
- Never leave your vehicle unattended while it is running: Leaving your keys in the ignition is like sticking a “Steal Me!” sign on your car. Same for leaving your car idling.
- Park in a well-lit area: Parking in well-lit areas is safer for you and your car. Since light makes it easier for car thieves to be spotted and identified, odds are they’ll be less likely to mess with a car that’s parked under bright lights. Motion lights and video cameras outside your home may help act as a deterrent.
- Roll up your windows and close the sunroof: Leaving them open, even just a crack, encourages break-ins. If you’re worried that your car will get too hot, invest in windshield sun shades.
- Avoid leaving valuables in your car: Shopping bags, suitcases, laptop accessories, GPS devices, and smartphones entice thieves. Keep all packages and other valuables in the trunk if you have to leave them in your car.
- Consider anti-theft devices: Car alarms are just one way to deter theft. Steering wheel locks and protective steering columns, as well as car-disabling locks for the ignition, fuel, and other systems, also make theft more difficult. And if your car is stolen, installed tracking systems can help the police locate your car and improve the chances of recovery.
- Use a smart key: When car shopping, look for models with smart keys, which have unique computer chips that can’t be duplicated or altered. A driver needs that key, and that key only, to start the ignition.