In Africa and elsewhere, car theft happens so often that it is barely reported in the news. From parking lot break-ins to highway hijackings, there is something for every motorist to worry about. A single day cannot pass without a car theft incident, taking a part in the top stories of the day. Car thieves do not target any particular model. On the contrary, they will steal any car which is available as long as it meets their intended purpose.
You can get ahead of car thieves by employing the following tactics:
- Have your car installed with security features or better still buy one with such elements. Some people avoid cars with extra features because of the high price tag attached to them. Some of the security features that you should consider include an auto locking mechanism, which locks the car as soon as you close it. A lock on the steering wheel, immobilizers, fuel-kill switches and glass sensors are some of the other features that can keep thieves at bay. These devices and systems produce enough sound to scare a potential thief and alert the public which can you apprehend the criminal.
- Always lock the car door. It sounds obvious though, but it needs to be emphasized. Regardless of whether by the time you are parking your car the park guard is nearby. And you must close the door. It also goes without saying; you should not leave your car keys in the car or allow the engine to keep running, even if you are dashing to grab a snack in a roadside shop. Leaving the car to “warm up”, is like placing a 100-dollar note on the road. The truth is even those who are not professional thieves will not avoid the temptation of a running car.
- Remember to park in the open places. It is natural to feel that you can save a few bucks by parking in the parking lots behind buildings. Know that thieves target such areas since they are aware that the locations are not under strict surveillance. Anytime you are looking for a place to park, let it be an open place. A car thief will not dare steal in an open car park, where they know they can be nabbed easily.
- Ensure your vehicle identification number is placed in a very obvious area. This will deter the thieves, since they are aware of the implications of stealing such a car. The VIN on your car will prevent them from selling it in the black market.
- Install an automobile tracking device. If you use the GPS-based system, it will be easy to track your car if it is stolen, before it gets into the hands of unscrupulous businesspersons. Remember not to label the system, since a professional car thief, will detect it upfront, and work towards deactivating it.
- If you come from a city that teems with hijackers and robbers, you need to learn some defensive driving techniques. Fortunately, many driving schools offer this course and it doesn’t take you long.
The above ways of deterring car thieves can exempt your car from becoming a candidate of rampant auto theft. Nothing can be more disappointing than having your car stolen when you have not even cleared the loan.