The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) is reminding Texans that vehicle thefts and vehicle burglaries tend to increase during the summer months – especially July and August – and is encouraging individuals to take necessary precautions to protect their vehicles from potential thefts.

“The summer months in Texas typically are one of the busiest times for vehicle thefts, and DPS is urging Texans to take preventative measures to secure their vehicles and avoid possible thefts and burglaries,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “Individuals can do their part to help ward off criminals this summer by always locking their cars and keeping valuables out of sight.”

DPS offers the following tips that Texans can follow to help guard against vehicle theft:

  • Never leave your car running unattended, even for a quick visit to a business or store.
  • Never leave keys in the car or ignition, inside a locked garage, or in hide-a-key boxes.
  • Always roll up your windows and lock the car, even if it is parked at your home.
  • When possible, always park in high-traffic, well-lighted areas.
  • Install an anti-theft device that locks the steering wheel, column or brakes, especially if your vehicle is considered to be at increased risk for theft.
  • Never leave personal documents, vehicle ownership title or credit cards in your vehicle.
  • Always keep valuables or property hidden out of sight or locked in the trunk.

If your vehicle is stolen, report it to the police immediately. DPS also encourages individuals to keep a copy of their license plate and vehicle identification number on hand in case of theft, since police will need this information to take a report.

For more information about auto thefts and burglary, see http://www.txdmv.gov/motorists/consumer-protection/auto-theft-prevention.