Terrace RCMP are spearheading two separate campaigns this holiday season, to first keep drivers safe on the road, and secondly to keep valuables in their car secure when parked.
Following their Cram Cruiser event this Saturday, Dec. 16, RCMP, Auxiliaries and volunteers will be cruising parking lots in search of unlocked vehicles, especially those containing valuables and garage door openers, or are sitting empty with unlocked doors and open windows.
Notices will be left on the windshields either advising owners on how to deter auto theft, or thanking them for good practices.
“One of the easiest ways to protect yourself from becoming a victim of theft this holiday season is to lock your doors,” Cst. Crystal Evelyn, Terrace RCMP’s community liaison and crime prevention officer said in a press release. “We want to help make sure that happens by providing a simple reminder through the Lock Out Auto Crime initiative.”
The educational initiative is backed by ICBC to highlight high rates of thefts from vehicles.
For the next few weeks the RCMP will also have more officers on the road checking and ticketing for several offences, including distracted driving, driving while impaired, or driving with too many passengers. Failing to fully stop at stop signs and red lights and other risky driving behaviour will be closely targeted.
“You don’t want to start your vacation with a ticket or worse, an accident,” Evelyn said. “Pulling over to take a call or check a text, coming to a complete stop at a stop sign or red light – these are things that only take a second to do. Take the second to do them right,” Evelyn said. “You may think no one else is in the area, but if you’re handed a ticket by a police officer, it will serve as a good reminder that others are. The rules are there for a reason; they save lives.”
10 Tips to Avoid Auto Crime
1. Keep your spare keys in your wallet, not in your car.
2. Invest in a good anti-theft device.
3. Close windows and lock doors. Take your possessions with you.
4. Avoid parking behind fences or hedges.
5. At home, light your driveway all night. Elsewhere, park in well lit areas near pedestrian traffic.
6. After opening an automatic gate to underground parking, watch out for thieves waiting to slip inside.
7. Wait for the gate to close behind you.
8. Engrave your stereo and other onboard valuables with your driver’s license number.
9. Install an anti-theft device to protect your stereo or buy a unit that is removable and take it with you when you park.
10. If you see any suspicious person or activity near a vehicle, call the police immediately.
If you have information about crime contact the Terrace RCMP at (250)638-7400 or anonymously through Crime Stoppers by telephone at 1-800-222-TIPS, online at www.terracecrimestoppers.ca or by texting keyword TERRACE followed by your message to 274637 (CRIMES).