Don’t let light fingers spoil your holiday plans.
You can invest serious coin into a new 4WD and camper trailer, what with the base price of a 4WD coming in excess of $50k. Throw in a few after-market modifications and the combined cost of your rig could be nudging $80k or even more. Yet our attitude to safeguarding our leisure activities investments at home or at camp can be surprisingly cavalier. According to Insurer National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council, as many as 70 per cent of automotive thefts happen at the hands of the owners’ keys – with many acquired from unsecured premises. Yikes!
For better or worse, a large proportion of theft is opportunistic so even the simplest of measures can reduce your risk.
Getting friendly with your neighbours at home and travelling with friends are excellent ways to safeguard your holiday gear. And if your camper is parked at home or offsite, dropping the stabilising jacks as part of your long-term storage routine will make your camper appear difficult to move. (Parking your camper so the a-frame faces away from the street helps too).
Other simple ‘old school’ measures that work well out on the tracks include running a chain around your camper chassis to a pole or tree. While low-cost barrier style security measures such as wheel, tow hitch and coupling locks can also help.
And, if you’re willing to spend a little more, you can even try set up a mini security system at complete with detectors and sensor lights and CCTV with the added benefit of securing your home!
Happy-hour camaraderie aside, no-one wants to feel compelled to stand guard at camp, otherwise what would be the point? Thankfully, a little bit of high tech gear or DIY ingenuity will go a long way to improving your odds.
High GPS tracking devices and micro-dot technology can help recover your rig if it is stolen. Or, if you fancy a little MacGyver-style DIY, try fitting a discrete battery-powered trail camera fitted with infra-red sensors to your car. Farmers, ecogolosts and hunters have used these for years to monitor animal populations; but, if you position one above the hitch it will not only catch your thief, but also the rego of their tow vehicle as well!
Better still, if you can deter a would-be thief in the first place. Barn owl pest deterrents fitted with motion sensors and alarm will unsettle nervous campsite intruders. Or, you can try a stainless steel alarmed cable lock by Alarm It, which emits a 120 decibel alarm when cut. What’s more, it’s mere appearance will stop many opportunistic thieves in their tracks.
Of course, if a professional thief wants your stuff, they’ll get it. But a combination of all of the options identified above (and others you may think of) will make it a little harder!
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