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Trick or Treat: Precautions on Halloween Night

Category:obd2 gps tracker

smarketingOctober 20, 2023

The origins of Halloween night can be traced back more than 2,000 years ago to the historic Celtic festival of Samhain. It was when the boundary between the living and the dead got blurry. On October 31st, the spirits of the departed returned to our world in search of worldly stuff, but the more sinister ones enjoyed a night full of criminal acts.

Things have not changed much since. Today, most folks throw on costumes and eat candy. A few others, though, will wreak havoc. With an increase in the number of crimes and drunk drivers on Halloween, there are many dangers you should be aware of. After all, it is worth the trouble to familiarize yourself with the risks to make your Halloween as fun-filled and safe as possible.

Statistical data on Halloween car theft

The National Insurance Crime Bureau is a non-profit group of insurance companies that monitors car thefts reported to the police. This establishment published a report claiming more vehicles were stolen on Halloween than on any other holiday and special day in the USA. Recent data from five years ago points to 2,275 cars stolen by thieves on Halloween, compared to 2,199 vehicles stolen on average each day that year. These miscreants tended to be quietest on Christmas (1,447 cars), followed by Thanksgiving (1,698), Independence Day (2,071), and New Year's Eve (2,122). Things were worse on Memorial Day and Labor Day, at 2,167 and 2,235 thefts, respectively.

It is not surprising at all, considering the population density and the number of registered cars, that California topped the list for all holiday car thefts. The states that followed included Texas, Florida, Washington, and Georgia. Usually, instances of thievery rise and drop with the seasons, with 2018's lowest monthly average car thefts coming in December (2,038) and its peak in July (2,314). NICB further states that the annual thefts amounted to 802,605, a 1% drop from 2017. Nonetheless, it is still 5% higher than in 2016 and 13% higher than in 2015.

Among all the cars stolen in 2017 and the latest per-model data available, there is a high possibility that a thief will successfully steal a two-decade-old Honda Civic than a brand-new Audi R8. In fact, the Honda Civic was the most stolen car in 2017, with 45,062 reported thefts. 6,707 of these were for the most frequently stolen model year, the 1998 Civic, followed by the Accord, with 43,764 stolen. The 1997 model was the most popular among thieves, with 6301 taken. However, new and late-model Toyota Corolla, Toyota Camry, GMC Sierra, and Nissan Altima models were all among the top 10 stolen models of the year. The NICB mentioned that many thefts, particularly of new cars, occur because owners leave their vehicles unlocked with the keys inside. Even underage Halloween revelers work harder than these thieves to claim their loot.

Tips to protect cars from thieves

What is the primary cause behind the spike in auto theft? It is because drivers leave their key fobs in their cars! Car owners using keyless start technology also face the same problem. These vehicles attract more thieves.

While there are a few solutions to stop cars from being stolen, the most important one is that the owner has to be aware of the risks associated with the convenience of this technology.

  1. Sound judgment
  2. Remove the keys from the ignition, close the windows, lock the doors, and park the car in a properly lit area every time. That is what NICB recommends. Also, never leave the keys inside the vehicle, even if you hide them.

    It sounds obvious, simple, and easy enough to follow, right? Unfortunately, very few people actually do it. In 2018, keys were used to steal over 80,000 vehicles. That was almost 5% more than 2017, according to NICB.

    Never get out of the car while the engine is running, even for a brief moment, because it is enough for a thief to jump in and steal the car.

  3. Warn them
  4. There are several ways to deter thieves. For instance, you can install steering wheel locks or audible alarms. You may also etch the VIN (vehicle identification number) on the windows. It lowers the car's overall value to thieves because they spend money and time removing it before reselling it.

  5. Use immobilizers
  6. You may also install an immobilizer device, such as a fuse cut-off, kill switch, or ignition disabling system. These can prevent the vehicle from starting until a hidden button or switch is activated.

  7. Tracking devices
  8. If a thief gets a hold of your car, an OBD-II GPS tracker may prove instrumental in getting it back. This device will notify you of its location when the vehicle is stolen. You can use this information to inform the police and even aid them in recovering your car before it is smuggled out of the country or stripped.

    Vyncs is one such vehicle tracking device with a “tamper alert" feature that alerts the car owner when the device is unplugged and plugged back in. Also, the “vehicle-tracking" feature allows car owners to retrace the route taken by the thieves and where the car was ultimately left.

All tricks and no treats

Whether it is a wallet or a car, instances of theft generally happen in an environment that distracts you and makes you inattentive, absent-minded, or careless. There are no shortages of distractions on Halloween, with parking in a new location, getting kids in and out of the car, and leaving the engine running. As such, it is easy to forget the simple stuff, like locking the doors and observing the surroundings.

Thankfully, you can always resort to the Vyncs GPS tracker, an OBD-II tracking device that uses GPS technology to track the location of the vehicle it is connected to. Vyncs tracks location data in real-time and allows users to monitor their cars from afar through a designated mobile application. Vyncs is easy to set up, affordable (does not require a monthly fee), and offers peace of mind.

Sources:

  1. https://www.forbes.com/advisor/car-insurance/halloween-claims/
  2. https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2019/07/31/how-to-prevent-car-theft/1771034001/
  3. https://www.msj.edu/news/2022/10/survive-the-night-dangers-of-halloween.html#:~:text=According%20to%20The%20National%20Highway,to%20the%20average%20of%2029%25.
  4. https://www.nicb.org/news/blog/halloween-fright-night-car-thieves
  5. https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a24434864/halloween-car-break-ins-theft/
  6. https://www.autoevolution.com/news/halloween-is-perfect-for-trick-or-treating-and-car-theft-138682.html

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