Drivers are advised to check their car insurance policy and remain vigilant in the event of theft

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) – Montgomery County Sheriff Derrick Cunningham is urging drivers to check their insurance policy before their car is stolen.

“If you don’t have full, comprehensive insurance, they won’t cover it,” Cunningham said.

An Alabama attorney recently told WSFA 12 News that some insurance companies don’t cover vehicle theft when there’s no evidence of jumpstart wiring or tampering.

“You could walk to your car after a [Montgomery] Cookie game, someone could hit you in the head with a crowbar, take your keys and then take your car and there would be no coverage for you,” said Aaron Luck, attorney at McPhillips Shinbaum.

The Alabama Department of Insurance said drivers with liability-only coverage aren’t covered if their car is lost to theft. The sheriff adds that the same goes for auto parts.

“It just covers you in the event of an accident, not theft or any kind of theft from inside your vehicles — stolen tires and things of that nature,” Cunningham said.

This is why it is important to consult your policy for more details.

Additionally, the Sheriff warns drivers that car theft often occurs when your vehicle is left unattended with the keys inside.

“However, the majority of the ones we’ve seen recently are people getting out of cars at convenience stores, letting them run, and people jumping in the car and driving off,” Cunningham said.

This is especially common when it gets colder and people get out to start their car and turn on the heater.

“Thieves look for opportunities,” he said.

Drivers should be aware of their surroundings, always turn off the car and lock those doors so criminals are less tempted to steal.

Sheriff Cunningham adds that you should also bring any valuables you have inside to reduce the risk of car-related theft. This particularly applies to firearms.

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