It’s scary to think that your classic car could be stolen. There are steps you must take to prevent such a thing from ever happening, but you should also know what must be done if you are a victim of vehicle theft.
Car thefts are all too common, and this is reason enough for you to be extra careful about where you leave your classic car. In early July this year, two classic cars, belonging to a businessman, were stolen in Oklahoma, where they were parked at his place of business. The thieves had apparently driven or rolled the cars out, after crawling in through a window!
Protect your classic car
Time is very crucial to a car thief, which is why the more time it takes to get a car to move, the harder it becomes to steal it. Although fewer classic cars are stolen in comparison to new cars, it not something you can shrug off. For one, vintage cars do not have anti-theft devices, which make them an easy target. In the early 1970s, cars were installed with devices that locked the steering wheel and transmission lever. With time, cars embedded with chips were introduced, which led to increased security.
Since a classic car has none of these new-age technologies, it is important to focus on “layering” to guard your car. Create as many layers between your car and a thief to protect it from getting stolen. Thinking that your classic car is not fancy enough to attract attention from thieves is the biggest mistake. On the contrary, believing that you need to protect your classic car is the first layer.
Other important layers include:
Lock your cars and take the keys with you—whether you are just stepping away from the car to pay for gas or parking the car in your garage that’s locked up.
Park your car in a high traffic or secure area—look for well-lit spaces at night.
Install an alarm system that more than just calls for attention by going off—ideally, get one that pages you when it goes off.
Use parking brakes and turning wheels to the left or right to make towing difficult, even impossible.
Lock the steering wheel.
What to do when your classic car gets stolen
In 2012, the FBI reports that motor vehicle theft went up by 1.7%. So, if the unimaginable does happen, what do you do?
If you find your classic car missing from a public space, don’t panic and call the cops immediately. Your car may have been impounded for being improperly parked. So, check with the local impound lots first.
Next, collect your vehicle’s identification information—license plate numbers, make, model, year, color and VIN. Finding your car and reporting to the cops is easier when you have all the information on hand. If you have one, carry along your car’s photograph.
File a police report and provide them with all the collected information about your classic car. Remember to keep copies of the filed report for your vehicle insurance company.
Inform your classic car insurance company about the theft and provide them a copy of the police report.
It is very important to choose insurance specific to your vintage car as classic car insurance protects you against financial losses when your precious vehicle is stolen. At Classic Auto Insurance, be assured of the assistance you will get when dealing with the loss of your cherished car. For information, speak to our insurance experts at 888-901-1338 or get an instant vintage car insurance quote online.
About the Author
Drew Yagodnik is Vice President of Classic Automobile Insurance Agency, Inc. Classic Automobile Insurance Agency has been protecting collector, classic and exotics since 1992.