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Saturday, July 4, 2015

Cars get stolen because doofus drivers leave keys in them !!!!

The Package Policy [earlier Comprehensive Policy] in Motor is a named perils Policy – covering loss of or damage to the vehicle insured arising out of ‘named perils’.  ‘by  burglary, housebreaking or theft’- is one of the perils insured against.  Hence a loss of vehicle due to theft would be within the purview of the    Insurance policy. 


An  article in Bloomberg titled – ‘At Least 44,000 Cars Were Stolen Last Year Because Doofus Drivers Left the Keys in Them’  makes an interesting reading !Bloomberg reports that the number of car thefts in the United States has declined in recent years, perhaps because of security devices such as smart keys. But while keys may be getting smarter, it appears that Americans in general are getting dumber, as evidenced by an increase in the number of vehicles that are being stolen after drivers simply leave their keys inside their cars and walk away:

U.S. car thefts with keys left inside jumped 14 % from 2012 to 2014, reaching 44,828 last year, according to a study issued by the National Insurance Crime Bureau. The actual number is probably higher because some people don’t admit their carelessness to police or their insurer, the NICB said.  All those sophisticated theft-prevention devices won’t save your car if you leave the keys inside, a lesson that more Americans are learning the hard way.

“Stealing a vehicle is very difficult with today’s anti-theft technology and leaving the keys in the vehicle is an open invitation for the opportunistic car thief,” NICB Chief Executive Officer Joe Wehrle said in a statement.Criminals are otherwise having a harder time stealing cars because of devices like smart keys and fuel pump disablers designed to prevent hot wiring of vehicles. About 660,000 cars were stolen in the U.S. last year, according to NICB, which uses data from the FBI. That’s an 8.5 percent decline since 2012.

The NICB advised drivers to stay with their cars when giving the vehicles time to warm up on winter days, and to bring the keys along even on short trips to convenience stores. Some people who leave keys behind may be hoping to have their car stolen to collect the insurance, the group said.Car thieves nabbed the most vehicles with keys in the metro areas of Las Vegas, Detroit, and Atlanta from 2012 to 2014, according to the NICB. None of those cities cracked the top 10 in overall auto theft in 2013.California led the nation in thefts with keys during the three-year period, with more than 19,000. The cars tend to be older models, according to the NICB, possibly because those vehicles can’t be warmed up remotely.

The largest U.S. auto insurer is State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., followed by the Geico unit at Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. The NICB, based in Des Plaines, Illinois, is an industry group dedicated to detecting and preventing fraud and auto theft.

Doofus : [noun] :  a  stupid person.

The key clause  in Burglary / Cash policy exclusion no. would read:. ‘loss or money and/or property abstracted from any safe following the use of the key to the said safe or any duplicate thereof belonging to the Insured, unless such key has been obtained by assault or violence or any threat thereof’.

Another general condition makes  it a duty on the Insured to take all reasonable precautions to prevent loss and damage and to keep all locks, bolts, protective devices in full operation when premises are left unattended or closed. There is another condition which imposes that all keys shall be removed from the premises or placed within a locked safe or strong room.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

26th June 2015.

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