Nanaimo RCMP says thefts from and of vehicles is on the rise, and are advising residents to be vigilant to curb the success of criminals in the city.

April is Auto Crime Enforcement Month and police are asking vehicle owners to adopt a “9 p.m. routine”, checking your vehicle each night to ensure they are secured and all valuables are removed.

From 2017 to 2018, theft from vehicle cases are up in B.C. 4.2 per cent and Nanaimo RCMP says the largest increases are on Vancouver Island with an 18 per cent jump of cases in the city, with 2,202 reported thefts last year to 1,803 the year prior.

The increase is 14.3 per cent on Vancouver Island.

After a 34 per cent decrease in thefts of vehicles from 2016 to 2017 in Nanaimo, that number shot up 26 per cent last year, with 153 incidents to 114.

RCMP credit increased use of bait vehicles and other anti-theft devices for a 13.2 per cent vehicle theft drop province-wide.

Police say an unfortunate habit people get into is leaving their vehicle doors unlocked and valuables are left in plain sight.

Some tips to remember to keep your vehicle safe include leaving nothing out to be seen, remove all valuables, lock and secure your car and make a habit to do so every night by 9 p.m.

If you have any information on anyone involved in vehicle crimes, you can call Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

CHEK News