December 20, 2009 19:00 ET

Swinton Offers Motorists Ice Bandit Warning

MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Dec. 20, 2009) - Watch out for opportunistic thieves while temperatures plummet this week as organised car thieves will be roaming the streets, looking for innocent motorists attempting to defrost their cars, warns Swinton.

With a bitterly cold front forecast to sweep over the UK this week, some areas are facing temperatures as low as minus five Celsius.

Motorists who leave their cars unattended to de-ice windscreens give thieves an open invitation and worse still, invalidate insurance policies says the UK's leading high street car insurance retailer Swinton. Swinton is warning drivers that car insurance providers are unlikely to pay out if their car is stolen as a result of leaving keys in an unattended vehicle.

Steve Chelton, Insurer Development Manager at Swinton said: "We are predicting a hike in these type of attacks during the cold snap this week. Year after year we see at least a 20% hike in the theft of cars by opportunistic ice bandit type thieves during winter. On frosty days it's incredible how many drivers leave their car running and nip back inside to finish getting ready - an open invitation for thieves."

On frosty winter mornings Swinton recommends that drivers cover their windscreen with a shield or newspaper to keep the frost off and use de-icer and an ice scraper on the windscreen.

About Swinton

- With 580 branches nationwide Swinton is the largest high street insurance broker.

- Unlike many other companies in the financial services industry, Swinton is committed to keeping its branches open for business, and part of the community.

- Swinton provides a one-stop-shop for the insurance and related needs of its clients, offering home, car, caravan, business, holiday, motorbike and even classic car insurance

- With a dedicated team of advisors on hand at every branch to search a panel of insurers to offer quality cover at competitive rates

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