Auto thefts decline - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Auto thefts decline

August 24, 2005

Albany - Auto thefts are down nationwide and the trend is holding true in South Georgia.   Many new vehicles, like the Chevrolet pickup truck, comes equipped with anti-theft devices and they are apparently paying off.

 The Checy truck is protected by the latest security which is activated by a phone call.

 "The key is for the person to pull over and try to cut the truck off to try and cut the alarm off, and when they cut the truck off it will not start again," says David Wilson of Auto Necessities.

The truck also has a GPS tracking device to find it within seconds. 

 In 2003, 345 autos were stolen in Albany.  In 2004 the number fell by ten.

When your insurance agent calculates your auto rate, that's important. 

"The insurance companies will look at these statistics, and will use them to determine what rates people in Dougherty County, Lee County, and the surrounding areas should be charged," says insurance agent Lydia Livingston. 

Police say most car thefts happen when drivers make themselves an easy target.

"When people happen to go to convenience stores, they pull up and leave the car running, thinking they are going to be inside just a minute. Leave the keys in and that is just an opportunity for someone to come take the car," says police lieutenant Tracey Barnes.

Computer chips in new ignition keys keep cars from being hot wired. Top of the line security systems with tracking devices and engine shutdowns are recommended for cars worth more than $30,000.

 "A $700 investment for a security system for your peace of mind and your protection is well worth it," says Wilson.

 In Georgia, the most stolen car last year was the 1994 Honda Accord. The Chevrolet full size pickup is number two. Third is the classic box car, the Chevrolet Caprice. The Oldsmobile Cutlass and the Jeep Cherokee round out the top five targets of Georgia car thieves.

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