Vehicle Theft Prevention Month logo that says protect your vehicle from theft, what you should know

July is vehicle theft prevention month, so it is important to protect your transit vehicle and not make it a target for theft. Over 720,000 drivers are victims of vehicle theft each year. In fact, in the U.S. a vehicle is stolen about every 43 seconds.  Vehicle theft is often due to driver errors, so it is important to always take your vehicle’s keys with you, close all windows, lock the doors, and park in a well-lit area if it is dark out.

If there is ever a situation where someone does steal your vehicle, it is important to know what your agency’s specific policy is. General rules of thumb to follow though include:

  • Immediately contact the police and file a stolen-vehicle report. The insurance company will likely need a copy of the police report.
  • Contact the insurance company and file a claim within 24 hours of discovering a vehicle was stolen.
  • If the vehicle is located before authorities find it, contact the police and your insurance company immediately.

There are preventative antitheft measures that can be taken to deter criminals and ensure that vehicles will not be stolen. Audible and visible devices include alarms, steering wheel locks, and theft deterrent decals that warn thieves to stay away. Immobilizing devices makes it nearly impossible for thieves to hot-wire vehicles. Lastly, vehicle recovery systems allow law enforcement to tap into the vehicle’s transmission technology to locate it.

Download a printable infographic.

Vehicle Theft Prevention Month infographic:
In 2019, there were 721,885 vehicles stolen nationwide.
In 2019, thieves stole more than $6 billion in motor vehicle value.
In the United States, a vehicle is stolen every 43.8 seconds. Nationally, nearly 44% of stolen vehicles are not recovered.
Prevent vehicle theft: park in well-lit areas; put away valuables; lock cars and windows. Do not leave keys in card. Never leave your vehicle while it's running.
Logo of U.S. Department of Transportation National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
NHTSA logo
For more information on vehicle theft prevention and NHTSA, check out NHTSA.gov/theft

About Author

Nebraska Public Transit is a program administered by the Nebraska Department of Transportation. NDOT’s Local Assistance Division is responsible for coordinating public transportation activities in Nebraska’s 93 counties and provides technical assistance as requested. NDOT receives money from the Federal Transit Administration and state transportation funds to fulfill requirements set forth by Nebraska Revised Statute 13-1204.

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