As safe as we all make it

Vehicle Crime

The Community Safety Partnership takes Vehicle crime seriously and over the last 4 years has worked hard to reduce this crime type. You can see from the chart below that ‘Vehicle taking’ has seen a dramatic reduction over the last 4 years. However, following a huge 16.53% reduction in 2004/05 for Theft from Motor Vehicles, this crime type is now beginning to show a steady increase and as a result the Council and the Community Safety Partnership are committed to keeping this Crime type a high priority.

What we’re doing about vehicle crime?

Most vehicle crime is opportunistic and therefore preventable. By following some straightforward advice, and working together, we can ensure that this type of crime keeps falling.

Vehicle Crime Performance

Number of reported crimes per Crime Type

April 03 to March 04

April 04 to March 05

April 05 to March 06

April 06 to March 07

% Change 03/04 to 06/07







Vehicle Taking






Theft from a Vehicle






Spreading the Secure Your Motor message

The Secure your Motor campaign aims to help you avoid becoming the victim of car crime by alerting you to the danger of opportunistic car thieves. Adverts have run on the radio, bus adverts featuring the GMP Wicked campaign as well as posters and messages on car park tickets have been distributed in the Borough.

Keep it hidden

If a car park attendant, street warden or Police Community Support Officer sees a car in a public place with anything left on view; the vehicle's owner is sent a letter and leaflet offering advice on how to outsmart the criminal. It's best never to leave anything in your car, but if you have to, lock it in the boot where it is out of sight.

Keep your vehicle safe

Since 1997, vehicle crime has fallen by 51% so it's not all doom and gloom, but we mustn’t get complacent. Follow our vehicle safety information, and make sure you don't become a statistic. Some of the advice may sound obvious, but it could make all the difference if you follow it consistently. Read our top ten tips to find out more.

Don't leave items on display

Never leave anything on display when you leave your vehicle. Even an old coat or a plastic bag can tempt a thief.

Use Car Alarms Electronic Engine Immobilisers

Preventing your vehicle from starting and alerting you when it is being tampered with are the best ways to stop thieves. You should only buy security devices or services that are approved by either the Motor Insurance Repair Research Centre 0870 550 2006 , Thatcham or by SOLD Secure ( 01327 264 687 ).

They should be professionally fitted - either by your car dealer or by an installer approved by the Vehicle Systems Installation Board.

Park safely

When parking at home, always use your garage if you have one, and lock both your vehicle and your garage. If you don't have a garage, try to park in a well-lit, open place.

Use Park Mark® car parks

When parking outside, always try and park your car in an attended car park. Try to look for a public car park which is part of the police approved Safer Parking Scheme and displays the Park Mark® brand.

Buy a steering wheel lock

Use a steering wheel lock every time you leave your vehicle.

Get an alarm fitted

Alarms can deter thieves not only from stealing your vehicle, but also from taking items from it. You can get more information about alarms, immobilisers and other security devices by phoning the Vehicle Security National Helpline on 0870 5502006 or the Sold Secure Helpline on 01327 264687 .

Secure your wheels

Locking wheel nuts are cheap, easy to fit and stop thieves from taking your wheels.

Etch your vehicle identification number onto surfaces

Have your vehicle registration number or the last seven digits of your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) etched onto all windows, both windscreens and your headlamps.

Mark your equipment

Mark all your equipment, like your car stereo, with your vehicle registration number. You can even reduce the appeal to steal, by property marking your items and registering them free on line by logging on to (External link)

Check before buying a used vehicle

Before buying, check whether the car you are interested in has been reported stolen, seriously damaged or is still subject to finance. More information can be found on the DirectGov website (External link). It is up to you to make sure the vehicle you want isn't stolen, if you do end up buying a stolen vehicle you could:

  • lose all your money
  • lose the vehicle
  • inherit whatever problems the vehicle had (unpaid tickets, penalties etc).
  • risk police interest in your actions

So don't take the chance, check it out first!

If you have any suspicions, notify the police immediately.

How is the Council and the Partnership trying to reduce Theft from Motor Vehicles in 2007/08?

  • We’re monitoring the top ten hotspot locations for Theft from Motor Vehicles. By working with these establishments and offering crime prevention advice to improve their security and prevent further crime. If they do not respond then our policy is to raise public awareness through the press/media by naming and shaming these premises so that people are aware about parking in that establishment or location.
  • We’re reviewing on Street lighting in Theft hotspots with a view to improve, repair or replace lighting columns.
  • We’re working with second hand goods retailers to check the types of goods being received to gather intelligence in respect of sellers in order to determine if these items have been stolen.
  • We’re working with local retailers to give out vehicle crime safety awareness literature as well as promoting the registering of property onto a free website.
  • We’re writing out to offer target hardening advice to owners of targeted vehicles over 3 years old

It’s important to remember

The risk of becoming a victim of crime is falling. In 1995 the risk was 40% but by 2005 it had fallen to 23%, the lowest level since the British Crime Survey began in 1981 (according to the Crime in England and Wales 05/06 report ).

But we aim to reduce this level even further. And to reduce fear of crime which has risen, despite the drop in crime. For instance, only 3.2% of households become victims of burglary, but 13% live in fear of it. This is something as a Partnership we need to - and will - address.

If you have any information in respect of Vehicle Crime – please call

Crime Stoppers anytime in confidence on 0800 555 111

Together we can make a difference!

As Safe as We all Make It

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