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Latest stats Gardaí warn 60pc of thefts from vehicles occur when parked for outdoor activities

According to gardaí, between 2pm and 7pm is the most likely time for thefts to occur with thieves most commonly stealing catalytic converters, cash, electronics, jewellery and tools

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Motorists are being warned to be vigilant when parking for outdoor activities such as swimming and hiking as 60pc of vehicle thefts occur here in the summer months. 

According to gardaí, between 2pm and 7pm is the most likely time for thefts to occur with thieves most commonly stealing catalytic converters, cash, electronics, jewellery and tools.

The average value of property stolen per incident is €660 with the average amount of cash being taken per incident at €330.

Just over €36m in value was stolen in theft from vehicles in Ireland between 2016 and 2020. However, thefts from cars were down by 22pc in 2020.

Crime prevention officer Sergeant Ber Leetch said although theft from car incidents has reduced in the last 12 months, he anticipates the relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions will see increased opportunities for criminals to take advantage as many will holiday here in Ireland this summer.

He added: “If you are travelling with your car to coastal and scenic areas this summer, plan your journey before you go. Check online if the location has a website or app with safety tips for visitors.

“Leave the expensive property at home if not required. Choose well serviced and well lit car parks where possible.

"Avoid carparks with signs of public disorder or criminal damage, such as broken glass. Park legally, do not obstruct vehicles or entrances.

“When you are leaving your car in remote locations, take your keys with you. It goes without saying that things like handbags, jackets, wallets, laptops, and shopping should never be left on view in the vehicle.

“A good idea is to leave an empty glove box open, showing would be criminals that there is nothing for them to steal.

“As you leave double check that your doors and windows are locked. Don’t be tempted to leave the windows slightly open.

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