A single-day spike in auto thefts in Burnaby earlier this month included two vehicles stolen with valet keys, according to police.
On May 1, Burnaby RCMP got six reports of stolen vehicles.
The thefts occurred overnight all over Burnaby, according to police, and two cases – one in the Burnaby Mountain area and one in Cascade Heights – saw cars stolen using valet keys.
Valet keys can usually unlock the driver’s-side door and start the car but can’t unlock the trunk or the glove box.
Many drivers are unaware these keys are in their cars – tucked into owner’s manuals or stored in tool kits in the trunk.
But thieves know, and that’s when thefts from vehicles end up thefts of vehicles, according to Burnaby RCMP.
“Police are asking that drivers check their vehicle to see whether or not it may contain a valet key without their knowledge,” stated an RCMP email. “Never leave anything of value in your vehicle or anything that will assist thieves in stealing it.”
Police are also urging residents not to leave garage-door openers or spare keys for other vehicles in their cars.
Six car thefts on one day is unusual in Burnaby.
Car thefts in the city have gone down compared to 2017 but have increased since last year.
The most cars are stolen in the southwest district, which includes Metrotown.