Van owners urged to be vigilant after Letchworth and Baldock break-in spate

PUBLISHED: 06:59 20 November 2017

Police have urged van owners to be vigilant after a spate of break-ins in Letchworth and Baldock.

Police have urged van owners to be vigilant after a spate of break-ins in Letchworth and Baldock.

Archant

Van owners in Letchworth and Baldock are being urged to be vigilant after a spate of vehicle break-ins.

Between Thursday, November 9, and Tuesday, November 14, five vans were broken into in Letchworth on Swanstead Road, Highfield, Bursland, Bittern Way and Fleetwood.

During the same period of time three vans were also broken into in Baldock on Coachman’s Lane, South Road, and Mansfield Road.

Sgt Al Clarke from the Letchworth and Baldock Safer Neighbourhood Team said: “I am appealing for anyone who believes they saw anything suspicious in these areas in the past week around vans to contact Hertfordshire Constabulary via the non-emergency number 101.

“I’d also like to remind motorists to secure their vans as much as possible, remain vigilant and report any suspicious activities around vans to us.

“There is some simple crime prevention advice that van owners can follow to help protect themselves from becoming victims of crime including ensuring vehicles are always properly secured when left unattended and always removing valuables and tools from vehicles at night.”

Herts police offers the following crime prevention advice:

· It might sound obvious, but make sure you lock the doors and shut the windows whenever you leave your van unattended.

· Never leave any valuables visible – keep ALL possessions out of sight. Even if you know that there is nothing valuable in your jacket pocket or file left on the seat, a thief may try their luck.

· Remove tools from your van when left over night

· If removal of tools is not possible, fit a tool safe and ensure it is fully secured with good quality locks.

· Consider parking your van close to a hedge or wall in order to restrict access for anyone trying to get inside.

· Engrave or mark tools and their boxes with your postcode and house number.

· Fit additional locks external locks to van doors.

· Use an approved steering lock or gear clamps, and remember to set your immobiliser and alarm if you have one.

· Fit a dual band tracking device that works on VHF/UHF and GPS to ensure that one tracking system is still functioning if criminals use GPS blocking techniques to avoid detection. Purchase devices to ‘Thatcham’ and ‘SBD’ approval to combat this type of vehicle theft, as vehicles equipped with a tracking device are often promptly recovered.

· Use a “Pedal Box Guard” to encase the pedals when the vehicle is not in use.

· Fit an on-board diagnostic (OBD) safe device, a secure lockable device that fits over the vehicle’s OBD port, inside the cabin, to prevent additional keys being coded.

· Police recommend products that are “Sold Secure” – see soldsecure.com – or “Secured By Design”, see their website at securedbydesign.com.

Hertfordshire residents can get a 10 per cent discount on vehicle security products through protectavan.co.uk.

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