What the stories of these 5 Indians teach us about car safety

Finding a 1.5-ton car is still easier than finding a wallet or a laptop stolen from the car. So, are you doing enough to protect your car from break-ins?

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What the stories of these 5 Indians teach us about car safety

Did you know that motor vehicle theft is one of the least-solved crimes in India? In 2018, out of over 44,000 stolen vehicle cases in Delhi, less than 20% were solved. But what’s surprising is that more prevalent than car thefts are car break-ins. Why? Because finding a 1.5-ton car is still easier than finding a wallet or a laptop stolen from the car. So, are you doing enough to protect your car from break-ins?

Where do you park it?

Amar’s house in Malviya Nagar only had enough space for a motorcycle so he parked his car where he did every night – on the road, right across the house. He thought it’s so close to his house so nothing would happen, but his neighbourhood’s thieves had different plans.

Lack of enough parking space in residential areas leaves you with no other choice but to park by the road which is one of the major factors behind increasing car thefts and break-ins. So, the first step to avoid a break-in is to either park your car in secure, and hopefully guarded parking lots, or at least well-lit areas.

Are your valuables visible?

Col. Pathak only needed to deposit a cheque in the bank, so he decided to leave his briefcase in his car for 10 minutes. But that was enough time for somebody to break the window and take it.

Now think from the thief’s perspective. They saw a briefcase that could have contained anything- money, a wallet, a recent withdrawal of jewellery from a bank, or even ID proof documents. The thief felt this was a safer bet than most other cars, because they could see the loot! And that’s what made the car such a hot target. Another common mistake is leaving your phone charging on your car’s USB chord when you step out.

If you can’t take these things along with you, hide them in the glove compartment or under the seat, and cover it with your floor mat to disguise it further.

Are you careful at the traffic signal?

Jayesh had always been caring towards others so when someone asked him for directions at a traffic signal, he didn’t think to ignore them. But when he rolled down his driver’s side window, his passenger’s side window came down as well. The buttons were so close together that he didn’t even realise it when it happened. And that’s when tragedy struck.

This is quite a common scam at traffic signals now. While an accomplice distracts you on one side, with a request or something they are selling, the thief clears out the other side of the car while you’re distracted. Even if you realise it immediately, it can be too late by the time you get out of the car in the traffic and try to chase the perpetrator, especially if you are at a busy traffic signal.

Are there any security systems installed?

The first thing Shashank did after he bought his car was to get a car alarm installed in it. And it paid off when the car alarm caught the attention of his society’s security guard while someone was trying to break in.

You don’t need anything fancy to discourage thieves, just a car alarm would do. But make sure that you somehow make it apparent that your car has one. For example, you can put a sticker for it on the rear window. If the thieves know there’s an alarm, they know their chances of getting caught are higher, and thus they are more likely to avoid breaking in, which can save you money in damage repair. This is the same reason CCTV cameras in very visible locations help reduce crime. Their sheer presence deters criminals.

Pro tip: Did you know you can also lower your car insurance premium by installing a security system in your car?

Does your insurance cover break-ins?

Shashank really had thought of everything. While the thief couldn’t really take anything, he did manage to rough up the lock beyond repair. But even that didn’t upset Shashank because he knew his car insurance would take care of that.

Finally, the last level of protection should ensure that if someone does manage to break into your car or even steal it, you can minimise your financial loss. A comprehensive car insurance with own damage coverage can help you get the price of your car reimbursed if it’s stolen. Similarly, add-ons such as ‘Key Replacement’ can also cover the cost of replacing locks and keys if it gets broken into.

If you own a car, you own the risk of someone breaking into it. So, #ThinkAhead and protect it now. While taking these measures can help you keep it safe, a plan like Tata AIG Auto Secure Private Car Package Policy can help you minimise the financial implication if something does happen to it.

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2008, Tata AIG General Insurance Company
Limited, all rights reserved.
Registered Office : Peninsula Business Park,
Tower A, 15th Floor, G.K.Marg, Lower Parel,
Mumbai - 400 013, Maharashtra, India.
CINNumber : U85110MH2000PLC128425.
Registered with IRDA of India Regn.
No. 108. Insurance is the subject matter
of the solicitation.
For more details on benefits, exclusions,
limitations, terms and conditions, please read
sales brochure / policy wording carefully
before concluding a sale.
Toll Free Number : 1800 266 7780 / 1800 22
9966 (only for senior citizen policy holders).
Email Id – customersupport@tataaig.com.
Fax Number – 022 66938170