Presuming that insurance protection against the theft of automobiles will continue to be furnished, the author considers ways and means of restricting the losses to an extent that will permit the protection afforded by insurance to be provided at non-prohibitive cost.
The use of the word “retard,” in contrast to “prevent” or “protect,” is emphasized because the property of mobility is a primary essential of the automobile and, speaking generally, the prevention of theft while mobility persists is not possible. This has been recognized by classifying automobile locking devices as “theft retardants,” it being believed futile to proceed on the theory that prevention is practicable. The automobile-theft problem from the insurance viewpoint is stated and theft retardants described and commented upon.
Theft and other forms of automobile insurance are discussed, the relation of design to insurance is outlined and the schedule method for automobile fire-insurance classification is presented. The automobile fire-hazard from the viewpoint of design is reviewed briefly.