Police has appealed public owning Mazda Demio cars to take significant steps to ensure their vehicle safety as these cars are being easily broken into, stolen, used for robbery and burglary offences and then discarded after being damaged.

Police has asked to take some precautions that might deter offenders from stealing and damaging them.

Manawatü has experienced in the last week a significant increase in the unlawful taking of motor vehicles, the vehicle of choice being the older model Mazda Demio.

While many of these vehicles are taken and later recovered almost all are recovered damaged, with either broken windows or damaged ignition barrels.

The vehicles are often driven poorly and crashed causing more damage. 

Manawatü police deploy in a prevention role to the geographical areas where the vehicles are often stolen from, attempting to dissuade the thieves or catch them, but we cannot be everywhere.

Mazda Demio recovered in damaged state by Police

Owners of any Mazda Demio car can assist in the prevention role in a number of ways:

-Use a steering lock
Use a steering lock (a device which you fit to your steering wheel and lock in place), a good option as they are relatively cheap being purchased from any of the auto parts stores for $30 - $70.

Car Alarm or Immobilizer
There are more expensive security options such as a car alarm or immobiliser (which stops the car from being started even if the thief damages the ignition switch).

Park in a well-lit area
If possible park in well-lit areas or streets with high foot traffic as people passing by are great security and can report to Police if people are seen behaving dishonestly.

Do not leave attractive items in clear view
Do not leave attractive items in your car on view, as these attract dishonest people and they will take what you have worked hard for. Handbags, laptops, cameras, sports bags, radar detectors and the like are all easy to sell commodities, so please don't make it easy for thieves.

Lock valuable Items
Either lock your valuable items away or take them with you.

If you see or suspect any suspicious activity in progress, call Police straight away on 111.