July 2023 has been designated as National Vehicle Theft Prevention Month by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). This event is intended to raise awareness of the potential for motor vehicle theft.
According to data from the NHTSA and the National Insurance Crime Bureau, more than 1 million motor vehicles were stolen in 2022, with more than 25 percent of those thefts being reported to law enforcement in the 4th quarter alone.
Some general tips for preventing vehicle theft include:
- Never leave your vehicle unattended while it’s running.
- Never leave your keys in the vehicle or ignition, even inside a locked garage.
- Always roll up your windows and lock the vehicle, even if it is in front of your home.
- Always park in a high-traffic, well-lit area, if possible.
- Copy your license plate and VIN numbers on a card and keep them on you with your driver’s license. If your vehicle is stolen, police will need this information promptly
In addition to taking general steps like these to prevent auto theft, the use of vehicle telematics, especially in commercial fleets, can play a crucial role in preventing auto theft and improving overall vehicle security. By integrating advanced technologies such as GPS tracking, real-time monitoring, and remote immobilization, telematics systems offer robust protection against theft.
One of the primary features of vehicle telematics is GPS tracking, which transmit real-time location data to a central monitoring system. This information allows owners or designated managers to monitor the location of vehicles and take appropriate action if a vehicle is turned on without authorization or moved beyond a designated boundary. Additionally, in the event of a theft, owners can alert the authorities who can then track the vehicle’s precise location. This feature significantly increases the chances of recovering stolen vehicles promptly.
Some vehicle telematics systems also offer remote immobilization capabilities, allowing authorized personnel to remotely disable the engine or fuel supply of a stolen vehicle. By remotely immobilizing the vehicle, thieves are prevented from escaping or continuing to use the stolen asset. This capability not only aids in recovering stolen vehicles but also acts as a deterrent, discouraging potential thieves from targeting vehicles equipped with such systems.
For more helpful information or workplace safety training, please contact Western Growers Insurance Services.
Western Growers Insurance Services is a full-service insurance brokerage offering a suite of insurance products and tailored risk management solutions to agribusiness and related industry members. For more information or assistance, please contact Ken Cooper, Director Risk Strategy for Western Growers Insurance Services, at KCooper@wgis.com.