Miami, PWC popular targets for boat thieves in 2011
In 2011, personal watercraft were the most commonly stolen boat type, while Florida ranked first for number of thefts, more than doubling the second-place state, according to a National Insurance Crime Bureau report.
Florida, which had more than 900,000 registered boats in 2010 according to National Marine Manufacturers Association data, reported 1,322 thefts in 2011, 38 percent of which were recovered. California was second with 550 thefts and a 48-percent recovery rate, according to the report. Texas, Washington and North Carolina rounded out the top five, respectively.
Personal watercraft were the most common stolen boat type, with 1,219 thefts. Runabouts were second with 992 thefts, and utility boats were third with 437 stolen. The least common target for thieves was yachts, eight of which were stolen in 2011, four of which have been recovered since.
The most popular manufacturers among boats reported stolen were Yamaha (537 thefts) and Bombardier (522 thefts). Both have recovery rates of approximately 34 percent. Kawasaki finished a distant third with 196 boat thefts.
Miami recorded 210 boat thefts in 2011, the most in the country and nearly double Fort Lauderdale, Fla., which finished second at 59 thefts. Of the more than 200 stolen boats in Miami, 28 percent were recovered. The top four cities for boat thefts were in Florida – Marathon and Tampa finished third and fourth, respectively.
More boats were stolen on Friday, averaging 940 thefts nationwide, and Saturday, 917 thefts on average, than any other weekday. Of the 917 boats stolen each Saturday, only 228 were recovered in 2011 on average.
June and July was the most common month for boat thefts, while January and December recorded the least, according to the report.
More than 6,000 boats were stolen in 2011, but approximately 40 percent were recovered. In the first hours after a reported theft, 13 percent of all recoveries occurred. About 11 percent of total recoveries were made one day after the theft. Only 2 percent of recoveries were made one week following the theft, according to the report.