By Chuck Mai, AAA
Summer is the peak season for many things in Oklahoma, such as travel, temperatures and auto theft. According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, July and August are historically the top months for this crime. One reason is the heat. Sometimes in our desire to leave windows “cracked,” we inadvertently leave too wide a gap, leaving the car vulnerable to sneaky ol’ thieves. To help you protect yourself against auto theft, here are my Top Seven Anti-Theft Tips.
1. Always lock your vehicle with the windows closed. Even if you park your vehicle in a garage, this simple measure is added security.
2. Never leave belongings out in the open in your car as they could tempt thieves.
3. Never leave your keys in your vehicle or leave your vehicle running any time you are not in it. Not even when you’re just running into 7-Eleven for a sec.
4. Keep your vehicle in secure, well-lit areas. When possible, park in a locked garage. If you park outside, consider installing a motion-activated floodlight that illuminates the place where your car is parked.
5. Remove spare keys from vehicle. Never hide a spare ignition key in or around your vehicle. The old days of hiding a spare key in a small magnetic box under a fender are gone.
6. Use anti-theft or automatic tracking devices. If your vehicle wasn’t equipped with an alarm or hidden tracking device when purchased, have one installed.
7. Install a cut-off switch. If the thief really wants your car, given enough time, he’ll get it. All you can do is slow him down. A cut-off switch hidden beneath the dash will do that. So will installing a metal crossbar that disables the steering wheel, such as “The Club.”