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Protect your ride and what's inside

Posted Dec. 11, 2018

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If motorists aren’t careful, some of the best deals this holiday shopping season won’t even be inside the store — they’ll be sitting right out front in the parking lot.

The Auto Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority (ABTPA), a division of the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles, offers these simple precautions to combat theft and keep your holiday shopping season joyous:

  • Hide valuables from plain sight. This holiday season is already looking like it could be a cold one, so it may be wise to pack a blanket, which can also provide a great cover for gifts when you aren’t able to get home quickly with your purchases. Another tip that’s often overlooked: keep your cellphone cords and other device accessories out of sight. Burglars are willing to break a window or try a door when they see a cord because there’s a chance that a device will be in the vehicle.
  • Park in well-lighted areas or attended lots. Car thieves and burglars use the cover of night to avoid witnesses and detection. The same goes for unattended parking lots. If you have to do your shopping after the sun goes down, be sure to park in a well-lighted area. Be aware of your surroundings. If you’re alone and it’s late, consider asking the store security to accompany you to your parked vehicle.
  • Don’t leave sensitive documents in your car. A car burglar may take your sensitive information to commit identity fraud. Instead of keeping this in the glove compartment of your vehicle, keep it in your wallet or purse.
  • Never leave your car running while unattended, even if you’ll only be gone for a minute. Vehicles are commonly stolen at convenience stores, gas stations, ATMs, etc. Many vehicles are also stolen on cold mornings when they are left unattended to warm up. Leaving your key in an unattended motor vehicle is a crime in Texas.
  • Lock your vehicle. While it’s the most obvious bit of advice, reports from specialized auto theft investigators indicate that far too many motorists forget to lock their vehicles. In some areas, investigators report that about half of burglaries and thefts are directly attributed to unlocked vehicles.

To learn more about how to protect yourself, visit the ABTPA webpage.

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Canceled Walking Town Hall: 9 a.m. March 23, 2019; Diamond Hill Community Center, 1701 NE 36th St, Fort Worth, TX 76106.

Spring Carnival at Chisholm Trail Community Center: 10 a.m. March 23, 2019; Chisholm Trail Community Center, 4936 McPherson Blvd.

Worth Heights Field Trip - The Star in Frisco: 2 p.m. March 23, 2019; Worth Heights Community Center, 3551 New York Ave.

Rolling Town Hall: 3 p.m. March 24, 2019; Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Institute, 2901 Acme Brick Plaza.

Building Standards Commissions Pre-Meeting: 9 a.m. March 25, 2019; City Hall, second floor, City Council Confrenece Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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Building Standards Commission Meeting: 9:30 a.m. March 25, 2019; City Hall, second floor, City Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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Trinity Metro Board of Directors Meeting: 3:30 p.m. March 25, 2019; Intermodal Transportation Center, Second Floor Conference Room, 1001 Jones Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76102.
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Loving Avenue Channel Improvements Project Meeting: 6 p.m. March 25, 2019; Diamond Hill Community Center, 1701 N.E. 36th St.

Stop Six / Rosedale Area Sewer Improvements Project Meeting: 6 p.m. March 25, 2019; Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Church, 1901 Amanda Ave.

City Council Work Session: 3 p.m. March 26, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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City Council Meeting: 7 p.m. March 26, 2019; City Council Chambers, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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Metropolitan Area EMS Authority: 10 a.m. March 27, 2019; MedStar Mobile Healthcare, 2900 Alta Mere Drive, Fort Worth, Texas 76116.
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City Plan Commission Work Session: noon March 27, 2019; City Hall, Second Floor, City Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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City Plan Commission Public Hearing: 1:30 p.m. March 27, 2019; City Hall, Second Floor, City Council Chambers, 200 Texas Street.
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Park & Recreation Advisory Board: 4 p.m. March 27, 2019; Fort Worth Botanic Garden, Deborah Beggs Moncrief Garden Center, 3220 Botanic Garden Boulevard, Fort Worth, Texas 76107.
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Bonnie Brae Improvements Project Meeting: 6 p.m. March 27, 2019; Bonnie Brae Elementary, 3504 Kimbo Road.

Tarrant County Adult Education & Literacy Consortium Meeting: 9:30 a.m. March 28, 2019; Workforce Development Board Office, Large Conference Room, 1320 South University Drive, Suite 600.
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Water and Wastewater Capital Improvements Plan Citizens Advisory Committee: noon March 28, 2019; Fort Worth City Credit Union, 2309 Montgomery Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76107.
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WORKSHOP: Code Compliance 101: 6:30 p.m. March 28, 2019; Northside Community Center, 1100 NW 18th St.

View the full city calendar and current meetings.