Fresno auto thefts rise, will insurance costs follow?

FRESNO, Calif.

"When you have a region that has high auto theft rates then the potential is for insurance rates to go up for everyone in that geographical area."

The chief is right but the current stealing spree isn't likely to mean an increase in your car insurance rates any time soon.

More than 22-hundred cars have been stolen so far this year, up 50 percent compared to this time last year. But, things have been much worse. In 1994 13,580 cars were stolen in Fresno and Insurance Agency Andy Bergrstrom notes insurance rates have come down since then.

"They actually have. The comprehensive coverage has dropped and that is an indicator one of the pieces of that vehicle theft has gone down."

Bergstrom says if auto theft rates continue to surge there could be rate increases, but it's far too early to say. It's more likely that if you drive a car that's popular with thieves, your premiums could rise.

"If there's a vehicle which has had a much greater activity level of being stolen it's eventually going to filter down into the premium for that."

However, the most popular vehicles to be stolen are Honda's and Toyotas from the mid-90's ... which aren't worth much and don't cost much to insure. The most expensive vehicles to insure are the most expensive vehicles.

Auto theft is a huge problem and police efforts to crack down on thieves is paying off. In the past month the daily theft rate has dropped from 17 per day, to 11.

Chief Dyer said, "Our number one goal is to prevent people from becoming victims of auto theft of any other crime."

If your car is stolen insurance companies, by law, can't raise your rates.

Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.