They’re Out To Get You!

With the economy in it’s present condition I’ve seen a rash of vehicular theft like
never before.  Not a week goes by that someone doesn’t come in with a broken
window (someone smashes it to get the $2 item someone left on their seat).  There’s
also an abundance of all types of missing body parts i.e. mirrors, headlights, grills, tail lights, radios and we even had someone come in with a missing battery last week.
Of course as you know I’m in NYC so it’s easy to think it’s a big city thing but it’s just
not the case. I have many customers with houses upstate in the country and they
come in with similar stories. There’s theft happening right in people’s driveways
including loss of the entire vehicle.  It also happens a lot in mall parking lots and
this holiday season will be rife with it.
What’s to be done about all this has no simple cure but I’m here to remind you that
it’s happening and happening big. One simple rule to follow would be to
NOT leave anything on view and I mean anything.  I’ve seen many broken
windows where they didn’t even take anything but saw the junky headphones
and thought there might be something else. I’ve spoken to people who simply
left the attachment to the GPS  on the dashboard only to return to a broken window
and a ransacked glove box where they thought the GPS itself must be.

Then there was this recent scenario, a customer jumped out of the delivery truck to  deliver something and someone jumped right into the still running
vehicle and took off with it. The truck was found later that day in the same neighborhood and upon further investigation it was determined it had been
used to run some errands around town, making various stops along the way.
They also kindly emptied it out completely while they had it, including taking the
radio with them.
The best thing you can do is to just be hyper aware.
When you park your car, take a last look into it and see if you’ve left anything
laying out. If you have, DON’T pick it all up and go right around to the trunk and dump
it in there (very common rookie mistake that thieves love). Try to always
park in well lit areas, it will deter a few and don’t forget to set that alarm.

All I can really offer you is some good luck, because if someone is looking for your particular mirror there isn’t much you can do to deter them. Also, don’t forget to
call your insurance company after, you can’t believe what some of those mirrors cost!

About dontgetwrenched

Elayne Kling, was the owner of a downtown Manhattan auto repair shop for 25 years and recently in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Elayne knows the particular ins and outs of the auto repair world and keeps up her blog because people will always need help navigating the potential pitfalls of that world. Due to the crazy NYC real estate market she has since closed down her shop and started a new business called Projects Unlimited Inc., helping other small businesses.
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1 Response to They’re Out To Get You!

  1. Donna says:

    Excellent advice! Thank you. I keep an old black sweatshirt on the back seat of my *black* interior car. Black absorbs light and I’ve found that I can toss just about anything ~ purse, briefcase, bags of purchased goods ~ on the floor of the passenger seat and cover it neatly and smoothly with the sweatshirt making it virtually disappear. A glance into my car by a would-be thief is met with an empty looking interior. And I can do it while I’m driving or very unnoticeably once parked. Looks like I’m just folding my jacket before I get out of the car.

    Black interiors ROCK. I chose my latest car’s colors with just that in mind.

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