Are Shuttled Vehicle Keys Secure?

Are Shuttled Vehicle Keys Secure?

Each year hundreds, or if not, thousands of vehicles are shuttled downstream the Bow River for the convenience of anglers and paddlers to arrive at their destination, knowing that their vehicle is safely delivered to a takeout point. Keys are most likely left with one of the shuttle companies that operate on the Bow River so that the cars or trucks can be moved between designated river access points independent of river recreation activities. The question of vehicle and key security has rarely been a problem. But that all changed in 2023!

In December 2023 one of the commercial shuttle companies had a vehicle stolen that included the client’s keys that had not been secured for the winter months. The exact number of stolen keys was unknown, and clients were unaware of the theft until they planned to use the shuttle service in 2024. Clients’ vehicles were exposed to possible theft over the winter months and may still be at risk. The option to alleviate the problem is to change the keys and lock assembly at a cost exceeding $1500, or have the keys reprogrammed for $200 which will still allow entry into the vehicle but not drive it away.

The latter option was taken by a regular river user, but on the first trip in 2024, the vehicle was opened before the shuttle driver arrived and the vehicle registration and insurance had been stolen. This opens up greater security risks for the vehicle owner’s residence and property are now exposed.

The lesson to be learned: If your keys are currently in the hands of a shuttle company, check if they are still there. If not take appropriate action to secure your vehicle as soon as possible. And discuss with the shuttle operator what key security issues are planned for in 2024