The West Midlands is the most dangerous place after London for car crime, according to police statistics revealed this week.
Vehicle thefts or thefts from a vehicle topped more than 27,000 incidents in this region in 2019, way ahead of third-placed Yorkshire with 18,422. Only London with 98,177 saw more.
And worryingly, for those affected, a suspect is not located or identified in 93 per cent of cases in the West Midlands, with only 0.2 per cent of cases nationally seeing an offender given a community sentence, caution or sent to jail.
With January statistically the worst month for such crimes due to the darker nights, motorists are being warned to be extra vigilant and take as many steps as they can to protect themselves and their vehicles.
The police statistics have been analysed by number plate provider Click4Reg which discovered there were more than 375,000 vehicle crimes nationally in 2019. Just 255 offenders were jailed, with 82 fined.
The rise in incidents has been partly blamed on the increase of keyless car thefts as criminals use increasingly sophisticated technology to gain access to cars.
Thieves use radio signals to unlock the vehicle in a much quicker and quieter way than smashing a window. In many cases residents found their cars had been stolen in seconds.
A spokesman for the Association of British Insurers said professional thieves were becoming more sophisticated in the technology they use to steal unattended vehicles and more brazen and violent when targeting vehicles when the driver is present.
Sutton Coldfield based home security company, Protect and Serve, admitted car crime was difficult to stop but said there were certain measures homeowners could take to avoid it, including fitting a monitored alarm to their property.
“A house alarm will stop thieves in their tracks if they try to break in to steal car keys,” they say. “Of course, keyless cars can be stolen without the thieves coming into the property, but a good security system could be the difference when they are identifying addresses to target.”
“A home alarm – linked directly to a monitoring station, plus added extras such as a security light and a CCTV system, can all act as deterrents.
“At Protect and Serve we are always happy to provide a free quotation on the best way to protect your home, your property and your family.”
For more details contact Protect and Serve on 0333 666 2121 or email firstname.lastname@example.org