An increase this year in the number of cars being stolen in White Rock has prompted an offer to residents with vehicles identified as high-risk.
Crime prevention co-ordinator Julia Everett said owners of pre-2000 vehicles are invited to turn out to the White Rock Community Centre between 10 a.m. and noon or 2 and 4 p.m. on Oct. 21 to receive an anti-theft club free of charge.
Those with vehicles identified as on a top-10 high-risk list – which includes Honda Civic CRX, Ford F150, Acura Integra and more – are also eligible for the device.
“It’s not just older vehicles that are at risk,” Everett noted.
In the first nine months of 2015, 48 vehicles had been reported stolen in White Rock – just 11 fewer than that stolen in all of last year. There were 38 stolen-vehicle reports in 2013.
“One month (this year), we had 14 – that’s big for White Rock,” Everett said.
According to ICBC, auto crime across the province saw a decade of consistent decline prior to last year, when police data showed a 31 per cent increase in the problem.
Older vehicles are easier targets for thieves because they are less likely to have security features such as built-in immobilizers.
White Rock residents planning to take advantage of the Oct. 21 offer are asked to bring their vehicle’s registration. The clubs – sponsored by the Semiahmoo Volunteer Community Police Society, which raised an estimated $30,000 for community policing programs at its annual Red Serge Gala and Auction Oct. 1 – will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Those who qualify for a club but are unable to make it to the event may contact Everett at 778-593-3611.
The community centre is located at 15154 Russell Ave.