July is Top Month in Texas for Car Theft, Car Burglary

You may have some days off in July, but studies indicate car thieves and car burglars will be hard at work all month, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

Figures compiled by Allstate insurance show July is the single worst month of the entire year when it comes to car burglary and car thefts, even bigger than December, when lots of people have brightly wrapped and very attractive presents in their cars.

Kristen Freis of State Farm in Texas says a main reason for the spike in the summer is the hot weather, which prompts us to leave the car window open 'a crack' when we park, and occasionally even leave the a/c on when we run into the store 'for just a second.'

"It can be tempting here in Texas, especially with our hundred degree days, to leave the car running and run in for 'just a few minutes'," she said.

She says since we are more likely to be out and about in the hot summer weather, we also park in places where we might not venture during the school year.

"Lights, cameras, and law abiding citizens are really big turnoffs for thieves," she said.

Freis says the rise of 'smart keys' has also helped thieves, because some people leave their key fob in the car so they don't have to root around in their pocket or purse to find it, and that opens the door, literally, for thieves.

Another plus for car burglars is the decline of the standard sedan and the rise of the SUV, which, unlike the sedan, doesn't have a 'trunk,' and frequently SUVs don't have a place which is completely invisible from the outside where items can be stashed.

Freis says when you put your items out of view, do it when you leave home or leave the office, not when you arrive at your very public destination.

"Not when you get to the gym popping the trunk and sticking the purse in, because then a thief can see you."

She says this is also a good time to check out your coverage.   Comprehensive auto insurance typically covers vandalism to your vehicle or replacement value for the stolen car. Generally, that’s only if what’s stolen was factory-installed. Personal property inside or on the car- bikes, cell phones, backpacks-is typically covered by homeowners, renters or condo policies. 

Apartment dwellers can find themselves unprotected if they don’t have renters insurance.

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