CQ driver security lax

CAN we get any more complacent?

We don't lock our cars while driving, we leave our valuables on display, we don't bother to check security features when buying a car and most of us couldn't care less about being broken into.

This is Central Queensland's latest report card on car crime and security, which is based on research by insurance provider AAMI.

The research, released today, suggests that Central Queenslanders are lax when it comes to car security and are confident they won't be a victim.

AAMI's Queensland corporate affairs manager Mike Sopinski said one in six CQ drivers knew someone who had experienced car invasion, but few were concerned it would happen to them.

"Only 21% of CQ drivers say they lock their doors while driving, which is the lowest rate in the State and 14% below the national average.''

Mr Sopinski said while CQ drivers were confident they lived in the safest part of the state, basic deterrents were still being ignored.

"One quarter of CQ drivers admit they sometimes leave valuable possessions visible in their car after leaving it.''

He said three in 10 CQ drivers didn't always lock their car when leaving it and one-third of drivers had no security features at all on their cars, such as an alarm, immobiliser or securitycoded stereo.

Just 39% of CQ residents have immobilisers on their vehicles, although 11% regularly leave them switched off.

"Half of CQ drivers believe car manufacturers should do more to reduce car theft, yet it is clear that they don't make these features part of their buying decision.''

Across Australia, 65% of us were more likely to ignore car alarms because they go off accidentally and one in 10 people carry an object in their vehicle for protection.

r The 2004 AAMI Car Security Index is based on an in-depth analysis of AAMI's claims data and a survey of 2400 Australians conducted by Sweeney Research.

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