COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTVN) -- The number of vehicles stolen in the state of Ohio has decreased in 11 of the state's 14 largest metro areas. Only Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Springfield saw the number of thefts over the first 6 months of 2013 increase from the same time frame a year earlier.
"The newer vehicles that are coming out have much better anti-theft devices on them. Hopefully that is one factor that is contributing," said Mitch Wilson with the Ohio Insurance Institute.
Cleveland remains the top Ohio city based on its auto theft rate of over 300 vehicles stolen per 100,000 in population. It ranks 52nd on the National Insurance Crime Bureau’s national list.
Toledo ranks 105th nationally with the second highest auto theft rate in the state, followed by Dayton at 112th. Rounding out Ohio’s top five cities based on auto thefts for 2013 are Columbus at 114th and Springfield with a national ranking of 130th. Of these five, Cleveland and Springfield reported increases in auto thefts between 2012-13 while the others experienced theft decreases.
Cincinnati was 7th in the state, with a rate of 152 thefts per 100,000 people, but it saw a sharp increase in the number of vehicles stolen from year to year. While there were 2,981 stolen in the first part of 2012, that number jumped to 3,263 in the first half of 2013.
There are some steps you can take to prevent auto theft. Wilson suggests parking in a well-lit area. He also says one of the biggest causes of thefts is something that's very simple.
"There's still a high number of thefts from individuals who have left the keys in the car," Wilson said.
Nationally, auto-theft rates were down 3.2 percent in the first six months of 2013.