EXPOSED: The Darling Downs' most burgled communities
TOOWOOMBA has been named one of the worst regions in southwest Queensland for home burglaries.
RACQ research has revealed the Toowoomba region has one of the highest ratings of homes most likely to be burgled, just behind the Southern Downs region which takes in Warwick and surrounds.
Using a claims theft incident rate formula of all RCQ policy holders in southwest Queensland, RACQ executive manager insurance communications Mike Sopinski said the 4350 postcode had the second highest rating in terms of burglaries and home intrusions.
The figure is based on the number of theft claims made per 100 policies held by RACQ customers, and reveals the 4350 postcode has a burglary rate of 0.14 per cent, Mr Sopinski said.
The sprawling Southern Downs postcode of 4370 topped the list with 0.27% while the 4352 postcode, which skirts the northern areas of Toowoomba, came in at third with a rate of 0.08%.
Mr Sopinski said research revealed home break-ins and thefts were mainly opportunistic but forceful home intrusions accounted for 36.9% of all reported burglaries.
"We are finding thieves are targeting specific items in the home such as jewellery, handbags, wallets and iPhones (and are) also targeting car keys," he said.
"The majority of thefts occur in the home or garage."
Disturbingly, he said thieves were entering homes with residents inside to get car keys in order to steal cars
"Modern motor vehicles are particularly difficult to steal because of advanced immobilisation," he said.
"Offenders know they are home if they can see the car in the drive way.
"The main location where vehicles are being stolen is the home drive way and the garage.
"Our research, over the past several years, shows people are entering homes to gain access to keys."
Worst post codes for home thefts in southwest Queensland and their suburbs:
1) 4370: Southern Downs region taking in Warwick, Cunningham, Bony Mountain, Allan, Clintonvale, Freestone, Gladfield, Glengallan, Leslie Dam, Loch Lomond and Rosenthal Heights.
2) 4350: Toowoomba and its suburbs
3) 4352: Blanchview, Condamine Plains, Geham, Glencoe, Highfields, Meringandan, Murphys Creek, Peranga, Withcott, Wyreema and surrounds.