AVCIS revealed that almost 9000 cars have been stolen in the beginning of 2011
Almost 9,000 vehicles across the UK were stolen in just 36 days at the beginning of 2011, equating to one stolen every six minutes, reports the Association of Chief Police Officers Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service (AVCIS).
The statistics have been revealed ahead of AVCIS' Car Crime Awareness Week, which takes place on 13-19 June 2011. The initiative aims to raise the public's awareness of vehicle crime methods in order to drive down offences.
This new data illustrates that 50 per cent of thefts were made when a vehicle was left at the owner's home address or close by, including 17.6 per cent through the burglary of properties to obtain car keys.
A third were stolen when vehicles were away from the home and four per cent of crimes during the 36 day sample were made by opportunist thieves, where keys were left in or within easy reach of the vehicle. Shockingly, this would mean that annually 3,400 thefts could be easily prevented 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 motor homes, as well as to the general motorist.