During the period Jan. 1, 2015, through Dec. 31, 2017, 1,592 snowmobiles were reported stolen — 506 in 2015, 549 in 2016 and 537 in 2017.
That’s according to a report by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB). Law enforcement agencies in 32 of the 50 states reported at least one snowmobile theft during this period with Minnesota reporting the most with 314. It was followed by Michigan (207), Wisconsin (129), Alaska (128) and Washington (109).
There are only four manufacturers of snowmobiles in North America: Textron/Arctic Cat, Bombardier/Ski-Doo, Polaris and Yamaha. Polaris machines were the most stolen during this period with 566, followed by Textron/Arctic Cat (418), Bombardier/Ski-Doo (416) and Yamaha (153). Another 39 thefts were unable to be identified by manufacturer.
While some snowmobiles are stolen while unattended, most are taken while they sit on transport trailers either in transit to trail riding areas or stored during non-use in publicly-accessible locations.
Officials say that once snowmobiles are stolen, they can be easily hidden in garages or in storage units, which makes recovery more difficult. That helps explain why 57 percent of the snowmobile thefts in this period have not been recovered.
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