LV= reports one in four motorists have been a victim of a car break in

LV=, the UK insurance provider, has found 80% of drivers have left valuables in their cars. This carelessness has lead to an increase in the number of cars being broken into, with one in four motorists saying that they've been a victim of a car break in.

According to a report from LV=, high value items such as mobile phones, clothes and even wallets are regularly left inside vehicles whilst parked on UK roads. The value of goods left by men is generally much higher than that of more safety conscious women. In fact, according to the research carried out amongst 2044 adults, the average value of goods left in cars by men is £380. Younger drivers are similarly lax about their belongings with drivers aged 34 or under admitting to leaving an average of £334 worth of goods in their vehicle. This compares to a national average of £283.

Cars are most at risk of being broken into whilst parked on residential streets, with 40% of all thefts now taking place whilst the car is parked directly outside the owners' home with a further 18% of thefts taking place whilst the car is parked in other residential areas. Less than one in ten (9%) car break-ins take place in commercial car parks, despite the perceived higher risk.

Emma Holyer, spokesperson for LV= Car Insurance, said: "These figures show a casual attitude amongst motorists when it comes to leaving their belongings in their car. The fact is that most car break-ins are by opportunist thieves who would probably not bother to break into the car if it looked as though it didn't contain anything to steal."

The research from LV= found that the most frequently stolen items from unattended cars are detachable car stereos and radios, CDs, wallets and purses and satellite navigation systems.

"Some car insurance policies will cover contents so motorists should ensure they have this cover so that if the worst happens they are not out of pocket," Ms. Holyer continued. "However, to avoid the hassle of having your car broken into, we'd advise people not to leave any visible valuables in their car in the first place, as this will massively reduce the likelihood of any break in."

6 November 2008 Staff

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