Florida leads boat thefts

Wed Sep 14 2011, 11:14 AM

The Sunshine state accounted for nearly a quarter of all watercraft thefts in the US

A report by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) said there were 16,115 reported watercraft thefts in the US from January 1, 2009 through May 31, 2011. Nearly 40 per cent of those vessels were eventually recovered.

The report, gathered from data compiled by the National Crime Information Center (NCIC), said that Florida had the highest number of thefts (3,940 watercraft reported stolen), with Miami topping the list of cities at 668. Tampa, Florida was second with 202 thefts. Eight other Florida cities rounded out the country’s top 10 list of cities.

After Florida, California, Texas, North Carolina and Michigan were the next highest-ranking states for boat theft. The top five for recoveries were Florida, California, Texas, Washington and North Carolina.

The most popular type of vessel stolen fell into a miscellaneous category that included canoes, dinghies, dories, johnboats, kayaks, lifeboats, paddleboats, sculls, and skiffs. After that, the most popular boat categories among thieves were, in descending order, personal watercraft, runabouts, utilities and cruisers.

The report noted that there was an 11 per cent decrease in thefts in 2010 (6,663) compared to 2009 (7,485). The full report is available at www.nicb.org.