Car theft is a common problem all over the world, and Australia is no exception. According to the latest statistics, a car is stolen every 10 minutes in Australia. Losing your car to theft can be a stressful and traumatic experience, but it’s important to know what to do in such a situation. In this article, we’ll discuss what to do if your car is stolen in Australia, step-by-step.
Step 1: Report the Theft to Police
The first step you should take if your car is stolen is to report it to the police. Call the emergency number 000 (triple zero) and provide them with all the details, including the make and model of your car, registration number, and the location where it was stolen. You’ll also need to provide your contact information and driver’s license number. The police will give you a crime reference number which you should keep safe as you’ll need it for insurance purposes.
Step 2: Contact Your Insurance Company
As soon as you’ve reported the theft to the police, you should notify your insurance company. Provide them with the crime reference number and all the details about the theft. They’ll ask you to fill out a claim form and provide any supporting evidence such as a copy of the police report. It’s important to be honest and provide all the necessary information to avoid any potential issues with your claim.
Step 3: Check for CCTV Footage
If your car was stolen from a public place, there’s a chance that there’s CCTV footage of the incident. Ask the police to check if there are any cameras in the area, and if there are, request a copy of the footage. The footage can be crucial evidence in identifying the culprit and recovering your car.
Step 4: Spread the Word
Spread the word about your stolen car as much as possible. Share the information on social media, notify your friends and family, and put up posters in the area where the car was stolen. The more people who know about the theft, the better the chances of someone spotting the car and reporting it to the police.
Step 5: Monitor Online Marketplaces
It’s common for thieves to try and sell stolen cars on online marketplaces such as Gumtree or Facebook Marketplace. Keep an eye out for any listings that match the description of your car and report them to the police. You can also set up alerts for your car model in these marketplaces to receive notifications if someone tries to sell a car that matches your stolen vehicle.
Step 6: Be Vigilant
While it’s natural to want to recover your stolen car as soon as possible, it’s important to be patient and vigilant. Keep in touch with the police and your insurance company for updates on the investigation. You should also be cautious of any suspicious activity around your home or workplace as there’s a chance that the thief may attempt to steal another car.
Step 7: Consider Preventative Measures
Finally, it’s worth considering preventative measures to reduce the risk of your car being stolen in the future. This includes installing a car alarm, immobilizer, or GPS tracking device. You can also park your car in a secure garage or well-lit area, and never leave your keys in the car or valuables visible inside.
In conclusion, having your car stolen can be a stressful experience, but by following these steps, you can increase the chances of recovering your vehicle and minimizing any potential losses. Remember to report the theft to the police and your insurance company, spread the word, monitor online marketplaces, be vigilant, and consider preventative measures for the future.
Will my insurance policy cover the theft of my car?
- Generally, comprehensive insurance policies cover car theft. However, it’s important to read your policy documents and speak to your insurance company to ensure that you’re adequately covered.
How long does it take to recover a stolen car?
- The recovery time depends on several factors, including the police investigation and the condition of the vehicle when it’s found. It’s important to be patient and work closely with the police and your insurance company.
Can I file a claim if my car was stolen while parked at my home?
- Yes, you can file a claim if your car was stolen from your home. However, it’s important to ensure that your insurance policy covers theft from your home.
What should I do if I spot my stolen car?
- If you spot your stolen car, do not attempt to recover it yourself. Contact the police immediately and provide them with the location and any other relevant details.
Can I prevent my car from being stolen?
- While it’s impossible to completely prevent car theft, there are several preventative measures you can take to reduce the risk. These include installing a car alarm, immobilizer, or GPS tracking device, parking in a secure garage or well-lit area, and never leaving your keys in the car or valuables visible inside.