Theft of motor vehicles is increasing in residential areas. Most vehicle thefts occur out of opportunity when a driver has not taken reasonable steps to secure their vehicle. It is important not to become complacent when it comes to securing your vehicle in residential streets, and in your driveway and carport/garage.
Council is working pro-actively to raise awareness of and minimise vehicle theft issues within the community.
Throughout 2010-2012, Council has been the successful recipient of funding from the National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council (also known as CarSafe), to raise awareness of vehicle theft prevention in Frankston. Each year, the funding included $20,000 worth of engine immobiliser vouchers, $10,000 in promotional activities, and $5,000 in CarSafe materials.
Council distributed hundreds of engine immobilisers through various sources including - Seaford VicRoads, Frankston Police and advertisements in the Local newspapers targeting individuals who were most at risk of vehicle theft. Council promoted vehicle theft prevention through stalls held in Karingal Centro and Bayside Shopping Centres; Cinema Advertisements and Variable Message Boards placed in Frankston, Seaford, Langwarrin and Carrum Downs.
Reducing the risk of your car/vehicle being stolen
- Always lock your vehicle, regardless of whether you will only be away from your vehicle for a minute
- Do not leave your keys in the ignition
- Wind up your car windows
- Protect your vehicle keys at all times
- Do not leave any valuables in your vehicle, regardless of whether it is parked in a car park, in your street or on private property
- If you have a steering wheel lock, use it every time you park
- If you have an older vehicle, have an immobiliser installed
Engine immobilisers are effective in preventing vehicle theft. Immobilisers have become a 'standard' in vehicles manufactured from 2001.
Vehicles at risk
Commonly stolen vehicles include:
- Holden Commodore 1979-1994
- Ford Falcon 1983-1990
- Ford Laser 1981-1990
- Hyundai Excel X3 1995-1998
- Mazda 626 - 1979-1991
- Mitsubishi Magna 1985-1999
- Toyota Corolla 1976-1995
- Toyota Hilux 1984-1999
- Toyota Land Cruiser 1982-1997
Buying a second hand vehicle
Reduce the risk of buying a second hand vehicle that is stolen, has been written-off, or is financially encumbered:
- Check the vehicle's identifiers for signs of tampering
- Cross-check the vehicle's identifiers with those on the registration certificate
- Ask for evidence of the vehicle's history including proof of purchase and receipts for major services
- Ask for identification from the seller to ensure they are the owner of the vehicle
- Consider a professional inspection
- Contact the Vehicle Securities Register, phone 131 171 to check if the second hand vehicle you are buying has been registered as stolen, written-off or financially encumbered
- Obtain a detailed receipt for the sale
Number Plate Theft
Number plate theft has increased in Australia due to rising petrol prices. The number plates are used in the theft of petrol from service stations. Anti-theft screws can be obtained through most major hardware stores. The screws secure your number plate as they are only able to be removed with a particular tool not available in shops.
Theft of Vehicle Contents
Also increasing is the theft of other items from vehicles, such as car stereo equipment, mp3 players, wallets, mobile phones, GPS units, even loose change and other valuables. Ensure your car is cleaned out every time you park and take your valuables with you. If you are unable to take your valuables with you make sure you secure them out of sight, such as in the boot.