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Province of Ontario Introduces Measures to Address Stolen and Salvage vehicles
 

The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) introduced new measures aimed at promoting road safety, reducing insurance fraud, stabilizing insurance rates and increasing consumer protection. As of July 27, 1998, insurers will begin to report to MTO the status of written-off vehicles as either ``irreparable'' or ``salvage''. Vehicles branded as such will not be licenced for use on Ontario roads. 
New inspection standards for rebuilt vehicles are also being introduced as part of this initiative. A vehicle declared ``salvage'' can be re-registered as ``rebuilt'' if it can meet these new standards. Rebuilt vehicles can then be licenced for use on Ontario roads. 

This new branding information will be clearly visible on vehicle history records, vehicle registration permits and the Used Vehicle Information Package. Consumers will then be more fully informed when making their vehicle purchase decision. Vehicles that are declared stolen to the police, and which have not been recovered will be flagged as ``stolen'' in MTO records. No transfer of ownership will be permitted. 

These measures will eliminate the possibility of vehicle identification numbers (VINs) from wrecked vehicles being transferred to stolen vehicles. In turn, this will reduce the number of stolen vehicles and insurance fraud, and help reduce insurance premiums.

This initiative follows on a commitment under the Insurance Rate Stability Act to introduce anti-fraud measures. It has strong support from the insurance, collision repair, car dealer and auto recycling industries, and from law enforcement agencies and consumer protection advocates.

How to Prevent Being Carjacked
  • Stay alert, don’t drive on autopilot. Watch your mirrors for any car that might be following you. Keep an eye out for any suspicious characters at intersection
  • At intersections, try to leave yourself enough room to escape if you see someone approaching and you sense danger. Don't box yourself in.
  • Try to avoid unlit or unfamiliar areas. When you park your car at gas station or shopping center, stay in well and populated areas.
  • Buy a driveway sensor that will illuminate your driveway or garage area when you pull into it. Buy a timer for the lights in your home so that you can illuminate the inside after dark, whether or not someone in the home.
  • Don't keep valuables in your car seat... Purses, portable cellular phones, luggage, anything that a potential thief might reach into your car for.
  • Keep your windows closed and the doors locked when driving.
  • Don't keep your house keys on the same ring with your car keys.
  • Don't keep your registration in the glove compartment... Keep it on your person. The law only requires you to provide it when asked by an officer if your car is stolen and subsequently stopped by the police before it has been reported, they will get away with it.
  • Beware of "Bump" and Run" scam artists and car thieves. Don't get out of your car if you have been bumped unless you are in a public area... And better yet, drive to a police station never hand anyone your wallet for licence or registration info. Always take it out of the wallet, other wise, your credit cards and cash will disappear.
  • Don't pull a weapon!! it is illegal to carry a loaded gun or a concealed weapon in car and it will get you killed or hurt when most carjackers really only want your car.
  • If confronted with a weapon, if someone wants your car... Don't resist give it to them and get away as quickly as possible and then call the police. There is no cat or material possession with is worth risking your life on it.
  • When buying a new vehicle, consider something that is not conspicuously "rich"
  • Equip your vehicle with an anti-theft device such as a "lo-jack", "tele-trace" or a "kill switch", etc.
  • Being under the influence of any drug or alcohol (even one drink) will make it less likely you will react quickly.
  • Try to develop non-panic skills. Do you freeze up in a pinch or do you use your wits? Clear presence of mind can give you an advantage. There are ways to develop these skills. Seek out books, seminars and support group on this subject.
 
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