Fleet News

Princess Royal backs crime fight

PRINCESS Anne used a keynote speech to call for a joint effort involving the police, vehicle manufacturers, insurance companies, businesses and local authorities to step up action to tackle car and van crime. While she acknowledged that vans were not stolen as frequently as cars, she told delegates at a conference called 'Putting the Brakes on Vehicle Crime' that the cost of thefts to businesses was too high.

She also pointed out that although newer vehicles, because of improved in-built security measures by manufacturers, were at lower risk of crime, today's new company cars were tomorrow's used vehicles. As a result she urged action to combat the growing risk of thefts of and thefts from older cars.

'Vehicle crime costs everybody, not just insurance companies in terms of increases in premiums, but also to the criminal justice system,' she said. 'Progress has been made to improve vehicle security and has resulted in a reduction of thefts of new vehicles, but vehicles over four years old are still vulnerable.'

Latest crime figures show that reported theft of vehicles fell from 508,094 in 1995/6 to 358,541 in 1999/2000, while reported thefts from vehicles fell from 809,922 to 641,776 during the same period - a year-on-year fall of 7% and 6% respectively. The conference was supported by Autoglass which has led a high-profile campaign on vehicle security since 1994.

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