Serious crashes highlight dangers involving stolen vehicles

News source from CTV News

Two serious collisions involving stolen vehicles just hours apart are highlighting the risks on the road.

Winnipeg police said the first crash happened around 3 p.m. Friday on a residential street near the Moray Bridge. The second, around 9 p.m. on Talbot Avenue, not far from Gateway Road.

“Stolen vehicles present a significant risk to the public – as demonstrated by the serious collisions in each of these incidents,” said Const. Jay Murray in an email to CTV News Saturday.

The crash on Talbot Avenue caused significant damage at two homes. People living on the street said the man at the more seriously damaged house wasn’t home at the time of the collision.

A woman at the other damaged house next door told CTV News she was home. She said she was getting ready to go to sleep when she felt the bang of the crash on the wall next to her bedroom.

It’s a close call that has her and others living on the block shaken.

“I’ve never see anything like it in my life,” said Tina Lussier.

“All of a sudden, I heard this huge boom and the whole house shook, and I go look outside and there was a car in the house across the street.”

READ MORE: Woman crashes stolen vehicle into Talbot Avenue homes causing significant damage

“Heard this roaring outside”: witness

Hours earlier across the city on a residential street in the Birchwood neighbourhood, there was another scare with a stolen vehicle.

“I was sitting in my living room reading my paper and I heard this roaring outside. Looked up and this white and green vehicle flew by on the street and then I heard a crash.”

Rick Prince lives a few door down from the crash and called 9-1-1.

He said he believes the vehicle was traveling around 100 km/hr at one point.

“Good thing it was at two in the afternoon and school was still in. There’s usually kids out here on bikes and scooters and everything else,” said Prince.

Read more: Man arrested after crashing stolen vehicle near the Moray Bridge

“The theft of the vehicle involved in the Moray incident occurred after the keys had been left in the vehicle,” said Const. Jay Murray.

A manager from the Holiday Inn tells CTV News it’s a careless mistake and the hotel will be speaking with employees.

The manager said he met with residents, commends them for their help and it’s a good thing no one was hurt.

Keys left in vehicle number one cause of auto theft

Police and Manitoba Public Insurance said In January the number one reason for auto theft is the use of keys.

In 2018, they reported more 3,100 vehicles had been stolen and 90-per cent of those thefts involved the use of keys.

The Winnipeg Police Service recommends people never leave vehicles unattended while keys are in the ignition, never leave spare keys inside vehicles and never leave valuables on display.

Other ways to prevent theft include installing a remote starter to warm up or cool down your vehicle, getting a steering wheel lock and installing an alarm system.

“Most property crimes are preventable. Take away the opportunity and help keep your vehicle and contents safe, ” said Murray.

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