Car Theft: It's everywhere.

(1) Car theft Totals for: 2013 - 52,508: 144 per day 2014 - 50,186 2015 - 52,000 2016 - 55,571: 153 per day

(2) Most stolen cars 2015/16: Holden Commodore VE, VT, VX, VY, VZ Toyota Hilux MY05-11 and MY12-15 Toyota Land Cruiser and Land Cruiser 80

Among the vehicles most stolen are popular cars such as Holden Commodore (VN, VL, VT, VS, VP, VR, VX, VK, VY 1,978), Ford Falcon (EA, XF, BA, AU, EF 631), Ford Laser (KE, KC, KF 346), Toyota Camry and Hyundai Excel (X3 234). (1)

There have been spikes in Car Theft in Australia:

Victoria 33%, Queensland 16%, Western Australia 17%, New South Wales 26%, ACT 2%, Northern Territory 2% and Tasmania 3% ( 2015).

There have been major spikes in areas in each Australian state.e.g. Melbourne's West, 30% rise (Whyndham Leader 1/4/2013). Townsville, 118% since 2010 (Townsville Bulletin 23/3/2013). Higher disturbing Spikes are occurring in many different regions and areas too numerous to mention individually. The growing overseas black market for stolen car parts and scrap metal has driven the spike in car thefts nation-wide (News Limited Network 13/4/2013). Similar spikes continue to 2017.

Where Does Car Theft Occur?

Data from insurance companies indicates that the geographical spread of car theft leaves no suburb immune with thefts recorded right across Australia. The data indicated that 58% of cars stolen were from the home or the surrounding streets around the home and 27% were from public car parks. Areas with little off-street parking and minimal street lighting were often targeted. Other frequent locations for car theft included car parks at shopping centres and railway stations. Poorer economic suburbs often recorded greater thefts as there are more older cars with inferior security systems which are easier to steal. Shopping Centre car parks are higher car theft locations. Popular car theft locations include railway station car parks and is fairly wide spread, tending to move around.

Which Cars are Stolen?

RACV Insurance data indicated that cars insured for less than $6000 are the preferred target for the opportunistic thief, accounting for more than half the car theft claims lodged. Recent RACV Insurance claims data shows the number of thefts increases with the age of the vehicle. Cars more than nine years old are the most popular with thieves with more than half of thefts being cars more than 16 years old. The number of older cars being stolen was a reflection of the fact that they possess fewer built-in security features.

Theft From Vehicles

RACV Insurance figures indicate that cars valued above $26,000 are more likely to have items stolen from them.

Among the most popular items being stolen from cars are wheels, hubcaps, bags/briefcases, tools, GPS units, MP3 players and DVD entertainment systems.

Suburbs with the highest number of thefts from cars were Melbourne, Richmond, South Yarra and St Kilda.

The number of car thefts has been decreasing over the past few years but the recovery rate of stolen autos has fallen.

Theft from vehicles is on the rise with valuables being left unattended in cars more frequently.

It's Our Responsibility

Every single Australian bears the billion-dollar cost of vehicle theft through higher insurance premiums and the cost of the criminal justice system.

Car theft is extremely costly and inconvenient and tragically each year lives are lost in stolen vehicle accidents.

The responsibility to reduce car theft lies largely with the vehicle owner, the demands they make from new vehicle manufacturers and the various actions they can take to reduce their risk of car theft.

1. National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council (NMVTRC) comments, Today Tonight, 21/6/2013