Seattle-Tacoma Area Reports 2,100 Stolen Cars in September


A social media trend showing how to steal certain Hyundai and Kia models continues to cause problems.

Officials in the Washington counties containing Seattle and Tacoma reported a total of more than 2,100 vehicles were stolen in the month of September alone---an average of 71 per day.

The Puget Sound Auto Theft Task Force said 705 vehicles were reported stolen in Pierce County and 1,431 in King County.

The task force said apartment complexes are a top target for thieves, as are Hyundai and Kia models not equipped with engine immobilizers, thanks to a social media trend showing how to use a USB cable to start the vehicles.

Hyundai and Kia released a software upgrade for the vehicles, but the task force said even owners of cars that have gotten the upgrade should use a steering wheel lock as a visual deterrent.

“Otherwise, you may end up with a shattered window and a damaged ignition before the thief realizes your car can’t be stolen,” the task force said. “Multiple theft attempts are reported each day.”

They also suggested leaving a GPS tracker, such as an Air Tag or Tile, in vehicles so they can be tracked if stolen.

So far this year, 31,011 vehicles have been reported stolen statewide in Washington.

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