GET TIPS ON PREVENTING VEHICLE THEFT DURING 2012 WASHINGTON AUTO SHOW Visitors to the 2012 Washington Auto Show will be able to do more than just check out the latest in new automobiles and accessories. They can also get valuable information and resources on how to protect their vehicles from theft. The safety tips are courtesy of the MPD. The Washington Auto Show runs from Friday, January 27, through Sunday, Sunday, February 5, in the Washington Convention Center. Members of the MPD’s Auto Theft Unit and the Washington Area Vehicle Enforcement (WAVE) team, as well as other area law enforcement agencies will be passing out safety tips and information on how to reduce the chances of your vehicle being stolen. In 2011, 3,820 vehicles were reported stolen in DC, according to preliminary statistics. While that was a seven percent decrease compared to 2010, far too many cars are stolen each year. To help protect automobiles from theft, motorists are encouraged to follow some steps to make your car – and the valuables in it – less attractive to thieves. The common-sense approach to protection is the simplest and most cost effective way to avoid would-be thieves. You should always secure your vehicle, even if you’re parking for “just a minute.” Do this by: removing your keys from the ignition; locking all of your doors; closing all of your windows; parking in a well-lit area; and never leaving your engine running and vehicle unlocked while you run into your home, a convenience store or anywhere else. Also, a visible or audible device will alert thieves that your vehicle is protected. Popular devices include audible alarms, steering wheel locks, steering column collars, theft deterrent decals, and tire locks. ONLINE SERVICE REQUEST CENTER