MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ - Community Alert: There have been reports of four car burglaries in the vicinity of the dog park area at Echo Lake Park and Springfield Avenue. No suspects at this time.

As police investigate the vehicle burglaries, they are reminding residents of some basic precautions they can take.

Lock your doors

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While this may sound like common sense, most motor vehicle burglaries occur to unlocked vehicles. Even if your vehicle is parked in your driveway, the contents within it are still open for the taking. Simply locking the doors will deter those who might just be looking for an easy target.

Keep it tidy
Any personal items that are visible from the outside, even an empty shopping bag, could be seen as a valuable or a carrier of valuables.

Conceal all your Property

Don't leave any bait out for thieves; put your electronics and accessories well out of sight.  Better yet, bring it in with you. The evidence alone might be enough to get the interest of thieves, so hide that too, including power plugs, telltale iPod adapters, or nav-system windshield suction-cup mounts, and even put the cigarette lighter back in place.

Completely close windows and sunroofs

No, it's not just because thieves might reach in through the gap and open your locks with a coat hanger. Open windows will disable the pressure sensor in some car alarms, leaving the vehicle more vulnerable to break-in and potentially giving thieves more time before the alarm sounds.

Park for visibility

Park in a busy, well-lit area, and avoid concealment from larger vehicles, fences, or foliage. Except for the most brazen thieves, the greater the chances are that someone might see a crime in progress, the lower the chances are that the potential thief will attempt it.

Police stress that it is important to contact them if you see any suspicious activity.

If you see a suspicious person or vehicle in your neighborhood call the Mountainside Police Department non-emergency number (908) 232-8100, to have it investigated further.

These calls and tips help solve crimes, police said.

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