Insurer says Brits leave £1b worth of valuables in car

According to one provider of discount car insurance quotes, drivers in the UK collectively leave in excess of £1 billion in valuable items in unattended vehicles.

Motor car insurance provider Zurich recently discovered that Brits make themselves easy targets for thieves, with more than 50 per cent leaving valuables overnight in their cars – sometimes right in plain sight.  The insurer also uncovered that far too many motorists undervalue the items they leave unattended in their vehicles, with the average estimate of valuables left overnight standing at about £85, even though the average value of items stolen from cars is closer to £200 according to The British Crime Survey.

Steve Gilbert, a representative for the insurance provider, said that the experience of finding someone has broken into your car can be quite distressing.  In addition to any financial losses, motorists may also end up having to cope with the loss of a sentimental or irreplaceable item as well, Mr Gilbert added.

The insurance expert said that car owners need to not leave their possessions on show when they leave their vehicles unattended.  Criminals don’t need any added incentive to break into your vehicle, he added, so he counselled motorists to not do them any favours.

77 per cent of drivers leave sunglasses in the car, leading the item to be the item most commonly found within vehicles.  Shoes and clothes were the next most common item, at 28 per cent of respondents indicating that they did so, while other valuables included MP3 players, mobile phones, and satnavs, with several drivers admitting to leaving £20 or more in cash inside their vehicles.

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