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Van drivers urged to keep vehicles secure
VAN and truck drivers in the Forest are being urged to property mark tools and secure vehicles to deter thieves.
Concern has been raised by Hampshire Police and the Safer New Forest Partnership after a spate of thefts from vans parked in towns and rural and residential areas with tools left inside.
Cllr Jill Cleary, New Forest District Council portfolio holder for housing and communities,said: “While the police are aware of the problem and doing a lot to combat it, the owners of trade vans and trucks should ensure they keep their property as secure as possible.
“While it’s preferable to remove all valuable tools from a vehicle after work each day, sometimes lack of storage or time makes it easier to leave them in situ.
“Thieves are likely to ignore a sign saying: ‘No tools are stored in this van overnight’, so owners must protect their vehicles by investing in a good quality security devices, such as immobilisers, alarms and deadlocks. These act as a great deterrent – when thieves see the extra security precautions, they may move on in search of an easier target.”
The Safer New Forest Partnership also recommends parking trucks and vans where thieves can’t reach them.
If possible, leave vehicles in a locked garage or secure depot overnight – it may be worthwhile paying extra rental for this facility to avoid the potentially large costs and disruption to business that a break-in can cause.
The partnership also urges tradesmen to security mark valuable tools as this will discourage thieves from selling them on. By marking property with a postcode and house number, the police will be able to return stolen goods.
Security marking kits include UV ‘invisible’ marking and DNA-based forensic marking. Crimestoppers sells a property protector kit which marks valuables with a unique code. Find out more at crimestoppers-uk.org.