Within just 36 days at the beginning of the year, nearly 9000 vehicles were stolen across the UK. This equates to one being stolen every 6 minutes, according to a report from AVCIS, the Association of Chief Police Officers Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service. These statistics were released just ahead of AVCIS’s national Car Crime Awareness Week, which is being held between the 13th and 19th of June.
The main aim of the initiative is to raise the public’s awareness of the methods in which vehicle crime takes places to try and drive down the number of crimes committed. The new data shows that 50% of vehicles were stolen when they were either at the owners home or very close by, 17.6% of these were taken after the house had been broken into to obtain the keys.
1/3 of vehicles were stolen when they were away from home and 4% of the crimes during the 26 day period were by opportunist thieves who jumped in when the car was left with the keys in the ignition or nearby. These shock statistics effectively mean that the owners could prevent 3400 car thefts annually through heightened awareness.
“These figures demonstrate that vehicle crime continues to be an issue across the UK,” said Detective Chief Inspector Mark Hooper, Head of AVCIS. “Criminals will use a variety of means to steal cars, from towing them away or simply driving them off when owners leave the keys in the ignition to burgling houses and sophisticated attacks on manufacturers’ security systems.
“Our aim is to increase general awareness, including encouraging motorists to take simple precautions and advise manufacturers of criminals’ methods so they can continue to help drive down vehicle crime.
In the lead up and during Car Crime Awareness Week AVCIS will release information on the current state of vehicle crime relating to freight vehicles, agricultural equipment, caravans and motorhomes, as well as to the general motorist.
For more information on vehicle crime and AVCIS visitwww.avcis.police.uk or the Car Crime Awareness Week Facebook pagewww.facebook.com/CarCrimeAwarenessWeek.
Number Method of theft
2,916 (33%) Home address or vicinity where the owner claims to have the keys
2,824 (32%) Unattended away from the home where the owner claims to have the keys
1,555 (17.6%) Car key burglary
1,037 (11.7%) Unrecorded details/unconfirmed loss/vehicle not stolen
342 (3.9%) Unattended with keys
98 (1.1%) Direct robbery of vehicle
54 (0.6%) Acquired by fraud
*Statistics have been generated from the Police National Computer using keywords. Additional offences may have occurred and are not identified within this report.