- Recent Model Hondas Most Popular Targets
- 50,000 Air Bags Stolen Annually
- Florida, New York City, Washington, D.C. and Northern Virginia Are Major Hot
Spots for Air Bag Criminals
Law enforcement authorities across the country, especially in major markets that include Miami, New York City and the Washington, D.C. metropolitan region, report a flurry of air bag thefts.
Criminals appear to be targeting the devices in the steering wheels, particularly of newer Hondas, for apparent resale to unscrupulous repair shops or unsuspecting online customers.
According to a recent article in USA Today, the National Insurance Crime Bureau estimates that about 50,000 air bags are ripped out of vehicles each year.
The massive air bag recall created a significant financial incentive for thieves in a lucrative black market for the safety device. Stolen bags sell online for just $200 to $300, far below the roughly $1,000 price tag of a new air bag and $2,000 to $3,000 replacement cost, states the federal government’s National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center.
While the center notes that the black market air bags don’t typically infiltrate the legitimate supply chains of dealerships and reputable repair shops, we at NAAA want our members to be aware of this growing trend in car break-ins that could pose a threat to your business.