NHTSA: Vehicle theft rate down

November 8, 2011 12:00 AM

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has released data on vehicle thefts from 2009, as it takes the agency some time to compile all of the reports from across the country.

The agency calculates the rate according to the number of vehicles produced in a year, and only tracks cars that were made in that year, according to The New York Times. In 2009, there were 1.33 thefts of 2009 models for every 1,000 cars produced. That represented a 21 percent decrease from the previous year's rate, which was 1.69.

The group also tracks the most stolen vehicles. Due to its popularity, the Toyota Camry had the highest number of incidents - although not the highest rate. That dubious honor belonged to the Audi S8, with 8.81 thefts for every 1,000 made. The car was actually only stolen twice, but since only 227 were made, it bumped the rate up.

Anyone who has ever had their car stolen knows that not having a set of wheels can be a major inconvenience. There's only so much that drivers can do to deter criminals, but when it comes to staying on the road, paying careful attention to car maintenance can make a big difference. Drivers should be sure to take their vehicle in to a certified expert and pay attention to critical areas of the car, such as the brakes or engine.

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