July is Vehicle Theft Prevention Month

The metro-Atlanta area is known as one of the highest-trafficked U.S. cities. Unlike other large cities, the use of mass transportation is limited in and around the Atlanta area, which has led to a dense population of motor vehicles. Because motor vehicles are such crucial parts of our daily lives, the sudden disappearance of a vehicle would make our daily routines much more difficult. In an attempt to prevent vehicle theft around the nation, the NHTSA will be launching an annual Vehicle Theft Prevention Campaign in July.

Each year, an estimated $4.1 billion worth of vehicles are stolen throughout the United States. Georgia has the fifth highest motor vehicle theft rate. The month of July ranks highest in number of vehicles stolen as compared to any other time of the year. Unfortunately, research by the NHTSA has found that nearly half of all vehicles are stolen when drivers fail to take some simple precautions. Here are steps you can take to prevent your vehicle from being stolen:

  • Park in a well-lit area. Garages are the safest places to park.
  • Take your keys with you. Don't leave them in or on your car.
  • Never leave your vehicle while it's running.
  • Close and lock all windows and doors when you park.
  • Never leave valuables in your vehicle, especially in plain sight. If you have to, lock them in the trunk.
  • Install an anti-theft device on your car.

If you find yourself in the unfortunate situation where your vehicle has been stolen, stay calm and take these simple steps:

  • Contact the police immediately and file a stolen vehicle report.
  • Get in touch with your insurance company as soon as possible to submit a claim.
  • If you find your vehicle before the authorities do, be sure to notify the police and your insurance company right away.