Gauteng Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  06 Oct 2010

INSURANCE: Remotes Can Interfere with Your Vehicle Immobiliser


Recent Gauteng Business News

Short-term insurer Santam is urging South African motorists to double-check that their vehicles are locked after they have pressed the immobiliser button. There have been recent reports of thieves using remote devices to counter a vehicle’s locking action.

“In order to avoid falling victim to this latest criminal technique, motorists should take heed. Even if they hear the tell-tale beeping sound that confirms that the vehicle has been locked, the doors may well still be open, which allows thieves unrestricted access to your car and valuables,” advises Shehnaz Somers, Santam’s head of personal lines underwriting.

“With theft of property inside a vehicle on the increase, it is always better to be safe than sorry, so double check your vehicle and make sure that you don’t leave any valuables exposed as temptation,” says Somers.

According to the SAPS crime statistics released this month, theft of property inside a motor vehicle increased by 8.9% for the period 2009 / 2010. Of all the provinces, the Western Cape had the highest increase, with 16.1%, followed by Limpopo (15.5%) and Mpumalanga (14.4%). The Northern Cape and Free State were the only two provinces that recorded decreased levels of theft of property inside a vehicle.

Some tips on ensuring that you and your vehicle are safe:

• Double check that your vehicle is locked by testing the doors after pressing the immobiliser button.

• Make sure you test all immobiliser devices and security systems at regular intervals. If there are any faults, an authorised service provider should be contacted to fix or replace the faulty system with a recommended device.

• Personal items such as sunglasses, cell phones and even groceries should not be visible in the vehicle and should rather be stored in a locked boot, thereby reducing the temptation to steal. Some insurance policies specify that items need to be locked in the boot when unattended, so train yourself and your family to do so on a permanent basis.

• Santam provides optional cover for claims on stolen groceries and household goods from cars. The car however needs to have been locked at the time of the theft.

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