LOCK UP: Thieves have discovered retirement villages are a fertile ground for finding unlocked cars, garage openers and keys in plain view.
LOCK UP: Thieves have discovered retirement villages are a fertile ground for finding unlocked cars, garage openers and keys in plain view. photobac

Time to change the way you store your car keys

DON'T assume that living in a retirement village means your car will be safe from thieves.

There was a time when you could park and leave your car unlocked, and it would safe. Not anymore says Detective Senior Sergeant Daren Edwards of the Queensland Police.

Thieves have discovered retirement villages are a fertile ground for finding unlocked cars, garage openers and keys in plain view inside a house.

"They can go into those communities and it's generally not a place where you have police circling around or a lot of people movement," Det Sgt Edwards said.

"People also leave their remotes in the car and then the crooks use it to unlock the garage, and then they are in the house.

"And everyone used to have a key rack for their keys. Offenders just look through the window and see the keys sitting there."

"We recently had a chap loose his vehicle while it was parked in his retirement village in Noosa," Det Sgt Edwards added "He had left both the fob keys on the floor of the car."

Det Sgt Edwards also wants seniors living in rural areas or on acreage to stop being lax about their car's and potentially their own security.

He recommends to all seniors it's time to change our habits -

  • Park your car inside the garage, rather than on the driveway.
  • Lock your car when parked inside your garage or the carport, or on the street.
  • Leave the car keys in a safe place and out of sight, not in the car.
  • Put a message in your mobile phone, such as a phone contact called Car, with the location of where you have stored your car keys.
  • Tell a friend, family member or neighbour where you are now safely storing your car keys, in case you forget their hiding place.
  • Put your keys at the back of a draw, not in the front where a thieve can easily see them.

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