Watch out for these five scams on French and Spanish motorways | Car

Every year, French police warn motorists on the motorway to watch out for thieves who use tricks to rob unwitting holidaymakers or extort money.

According to the VAB – the Belgian ANWB – the most common trick is that thieves on the motorway signal to holidaymakers that something is wrong with their car. They often do this right in front of a parking lot along the highway or a gas station. The thieves’ henchmen are waiting there. As soon as motorists get out, valuables are stolen from the car. Thieves also pretend they are unlucky themselves, so you pull over along the highway to help. The majority of the reports come according to the VAB, by the way, from Spain.

‘Italian’ scam

The first trick to be aware of in France is commonly called the “Italian scam”. Thieves deflate one of the tires of a car left unattended in the parking lot. Then they wait for the driver to return. He then normally goes to the luggage compartment of the car to look for a spare wheel or a repair kit.

Thieves take advantage of victims forgetting the car is unlocked, after which they quickly dive into the car to steal valuables such as a phone, sunglasses, wallet, or luggage. They take advantage of the lack of vigilance if their victim goes for help or is not careful when changing tires.

It is not known if the trick received the addition “Italian” because it was mainly Italians who specialized in it. To avoid falling victim to this simple trick, it is necessary to first lock the car in case of a puncture and remove all valuables from view or place them in a (lockable) glove compartment.

“Irish” scam

Two years ago, the French police had already warned of the so-called “Irish scam”. Additionally, vacationers are approached in the parking lot by a haggard-looking man or woman, who explains in perfect English that he or she and their family have just been stripped naked by unscrupulous thieves. As a result, they cannot return to their own country, so they ask if you can lend them some money. Of course, the victims never get the borrowed money back.

Another technique that occurs is that thieves ask if you want to make a debit or credit card payment for them because they only have cash and their credit card is not accepted. Never accept such a transaction because you will be paid with counterfeit notes.

Beware of bluetooth detectors

To prevent targeted burglaries, according to the police, it is also necessary to completely switch off laptops, smartphones, tablets and the like while parking the car, for example, in a parking lot on the way. As this equipment is often on standby, WiFi and Bluetooth detectors allow thieves to see exactly which car windows they should touch.

Egg on the windshield, true or false?

A well-known flight technique in the Netherlands used once, but according to Facebook videos also in Spain applied is that of an egg thrown against the windshield of your car. When you activate your windshield wipers, your view becomes limited and you tend to get out of your car to remove grime, after which “helpers” steal your car. While this trick probably doesn’t exist according to fact checkers, at least now you know not to activate the windshield wipers if an egg is thrown on your windshield and keep driving until you can park safely.

Check out our videos on cars and mobility below:

Check Also

House Speaker Johnson Continues to Push Forward on US Aid for Ukraine and Allies Amid Republican Oppositio

House Speaker Mike Johnson is in the spotlight as he faces criticism from fellow Republicans …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *