From December 2018 to November 2019, 3,245 vehicles were stolen in Winnipeg, according to CTV.
Believe it or not, that’s actually a sharp decline from where we were 15 years ago. Winnipeg used to be the auto theft capital of Canada – fortunately, Winnipeggers have been much more conscientious about anti-theft measures.
Of course, we’d love the number of auto thefts to be 0. You can help prevent auto theft by keeping some best practices in mind. We’re going to take a look at some of the ways you can prevent theft for free, as well as some tools you can purchase to keep your vehicle out of thieves’ hands:
Theft prevention that won’t cost you a dime
The first rule? If you’re not driving, keep your keys away from your car. That means no spare keys in the glove compartment, and definitely no keys in the ignition while you’re away from the vehicle.
Now, we all like to keep our cars warm in the winter – but if you leave your vehicle running and unattended, it’s going to be a beacon for thieves. Have someone wait in the car.
This probably goes without saying, but make sure your vehicle is always locked, and that all of your windows are rolled up. The easier it is for thieves to get into your vehicle, the more likely they are to steal it.
You should also avoid leaving valuables in your car – if you must leave something expensive in your car, try to keep it out of sight. Even something as low value as change in your cup holders can be attractive to thieves – don’t give them any additional reasons to break into your car.
Finally, you should try to park in well-lit areas. When you park away from streetlights, it’s easier for thieves to go unnoticed. You should also avoid parking if you see suspicious activity near your parking spot.
Purchasing theft protection
For an added layer of protection, you can buy a car alarm. We all know the old tale that car alarms annoy people more than they deter thieves, but trust us – they deter thieves very effectively.
You can also purchase a vehicle recovery system, which can send police the GPS coordinates of your vehicle when it has been stolen.
For a lower tech option, get a steering wheel lock. Thieves are always looking for vehicles that are easy to steal, and the extra time it will take them to break off the lock could be just enough to stop them.
Those of you who park in high theft areas may also consider using a parking garage instead of parking on the street. Parking garages are monitored, so thieves will generally stay far away.
Even after taking all of these precautions, thefts can still happen. Fortunately, MPI offers a degree of coverage for theft. Need insurance for your vehicle in Winnipeg? Get in touch with us.