Top five suburbs for car thefts in Albany

Tim Edmunds and Rourke WalshAlbany Advertiser

Spencer Park experienced twice as many motor vehicle thefts as any other suburb in Albany last year.

Figures from the National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council revealed 68 vehicle thefts were recorded across the 22 suburbs in Albany, with Spencer Park recording 15 thefts.

Orana (seven), McKail (six), central Albany (six) and Centennial Park (five) were the next worst suburbs for vehicles stolen over the 12-month period to September, 2017.

Vehicles stolen in Albany suburbs almost doubled from the 2015-16 period, which recorded only 35 thefts.

NMVTRC executive director Ray Carroll said vehicles were most commonly stolen by thieves gaining access to the owner’s keys.

“Some data analysis we have done indicates that around seven in 10 cars are now stolen with the keys,” he said.

“There are obviously many ways they do this — some are simply opportunistic thefts where the owner has left the keys in the car unattended. In some cases, threats are used to make the owner get out.

“Others may steal handbags or keys from gyms.

“But by far the most common method is by house burglary, where the thief breaks in with the intention of finding the keys in order to steal the car.”

Mr Carroll said the key to avoiding becoming a victim was always to lock cars, to make sure if it was an older model that it had an immobiliser installed, to keep valuables out of sight of potential thieves and to keep keys secure at all times.

“Thieves often target homes to steal car keys of secure vehicles, so enhancing your home’s security is one way to prevent that occurring,” Mr Carroll said.

“Always store car keys out of view and away from external doors and windows.”

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