To combat the rise in recent motor vehicle thefts, the Wheaton Police Department is providing steering wheel lock devices (commonly referred to as a club) to owners of eligible Hyundai and Kia models being targeted by thieves. The devices were donated by the Hyundai and Kia Motor Companies.
Affected models include all 2011-2021 Hyundai and Kia vehicles that use a turn-to-start key ignition system and are not equipped with a push-to-start button. Because these vehicles do not include a key anti-theft device that is included on other vehicles, they are more vulnerable to theft.
To qualify for the program, residents must meet these requirements:
- You must have a 2011-2021 Hyundai or Kia vehicle with a turn-to-start key ignition system (not a push-to-start button)
- You must be a Wheaton resident and show proof of residency via a government-issued ID, and
- The vehicle must be registered to you at the Wheaton address.
To obtain a steering wheel lock, please contact the Wheaton Police Department either by using the City’s online Service Request Form (select “Request a Steering Wheel Lock”) or by calling 630-260-2161 and asking to speak with the Traffic Unit. Once your eligibility is determined, Wheaton Police will set up a time for you to obtain your steering wheel lock club.
Hyundai is rolling out a free anti-theft software upgrade to help prevent certain Hyundai vehicles from starting during a method of theft recently popularized on TikTok and other social media channels. For more information, please visit https://www.hyundaiantitheft.com. Hyundai owners may also bring their vehicles to a local Hyundai dealer for the purchase and installation of a customized security kit.
Kia owners should contact their local Kia dealer or look for more information coming from the automaker regarding anti-theft software upgrades that it will make available in the coming months.
Safety tips that all vehicle owners should follow to help prevent theft:
- Never leave your unattended car running.
- Do not leave valuables where they can be seen; lock them in the trunk or take them with you. (Including purses, shopping bags, electronic devices, and firearms).
- Close and lock the windows and doors.
- Park in a well-lit area.
- Use an anti-theft device if possible.