This summer, police have received reports of several car break-ins.
Many of these thefts were petty thefts, where small change and cell phone chargers were stolen, but the majority of the car theft victims left their vehicles unlocked.
I know what it’s like to live in a small town where you want to leave your car doors unlocked, with your keys in the cup-holder because God forbid you block someones car in and have to wake up early and move it.
I lived in Muskoka, Ontario where this was the norm.
Where I lived, I didn’t lock my front door for three months. It was unnecessary.
Even though we all desire that small town feeling, and that ease of being able to trust others not to steal your possessions, the Elk Valley community is not as small as we think it is.
There are still young adults who have nothing better to do than peruse cars for spare change, and as much as we want to trust the community, the fact of the matter is, we can’t.
Bikes have also been reported stolen, and it’s doubtful that someone actually spent their Friday or Saturday night walking around with chain cutters.
Again, it is more than likely that the bike thefts were a result of bored young adults walking around downtown with nothing else to do.
People need to start locking their bikes up and locking their car doors in order to avoid these thefts.
It’s as simple as that.
I’m not saying these thieves are justified in breaking into cars or stealing bicycles, but we need to make it more difficult for them.
The RCMP has warned the community about car break-ins in Sparwood, Fernie and Elkford, and advised people to not only lock their doors but to keep valuable items out of sight.
It’s up to us to take these warnings seriously and respond appropriately.
With the long weekend coming up, Elk Valley locals need to take extra precautions. We all know that things tend to get rowdier on long weekends, with rates of public intoxication increasing.
It’s likely that the amount of petty thefts will also increase over the long weekend.
Be extra cautious, and avoid making your vehicle or your bicycle a target for thieves.
We all want to have fun on the long weekend but that doesn’t mean we should let our guards down.