POLICE chiefs have launched a crackdown following a spike in vehicle part thefts in East Staffordshire.
Staffordshire Police moved to raise awareness of the issue after noticing an increase in calls related to the crime in the area.
Thieves are targeting vans and Land Rovers to steal valuable parts which are then sold on or used as parts for other vehicles up and down the country.
Chief Superintendent Jon Drake spoke to the Mail about why it was ‘imperative’ for people across Burton and the surrounding areas to stay vigilant.
He said: “Many vehicle parts thefts are preventable, with the offenders targeting insecure vehicles.
“It is imperative that motorists make sure their vehicles are secure and parked in areas that would make it difficult for a thief to have the time or opportunity to remove parts from the vehicle.
“We urge motorists to be vigilant and report anyone acting suspiciously to us via our non-emergency number 101, or in an emergency 999.” The force revealed that it was being inundated with calls relating to incidents where thieves are targeting unlocked vehicles, as well as those parked in poorly lit or quiet areas.
Posters are being distributed to petrol stations, garages and supermarkets to advise motorists to take extra precautions.
Officers hope this will help limit the chances of people becoming a victim of vehicle parts theft.
Risks can be minimised by ensuring that:
l vehicles are securely locked, even if it’s just left for a few minutes;
l alarms and immobilisers are switched on;
l cars are parked in well lit or busy areas; and
l vehicles are stored in a garage if possible.