Local motorists are being warned to ensure their vehicles are left locked with no property on display following a series of thefts in North Lancashire.
Over the last month, thieves targeted 64 vehicles in the Lancaster, Morecambe and Wyre areas. Of those, 33 were committed in the Wyre area and many occurred as a result of people leaving property on display including sat navs, laptops and cash.
Patrols are being increased in hot spot areas and members of the neighbourhood police teams have been speaking to motorists and residents to raise awareness of the importance of locking their vehicles.
“If a passing thief sees something that may be of value inside a car they will take their chances," says Inspector Neil Drummond, "especially if people have made it easy for them by leaving their vehicle unlocked.
“Make sure that you wind windows up and lock the doors when you get out of your car – even if you are only popping into a shop. Don’t leave items on display – you may think that the few pence you’ve left out isn’t worth taking but anything can prove to be temptation for a thief.
“Remove valuables from the car and get rid of any signs – such as suction marks on the windscreen or MP3 cables – that show that valuables have been in the car as a thief may assume you have stored them in the glove box.
“Ten of the offences in Wyre involved vans being broken into with expensive power tools stolen," he notes. "I'm urging people to make sure they empty their vans of any valuables and keep accurate records of any tools they own.
"Van owners should make a note of any serial numbers, keep receipts and if possible mark the property with a unique code - preferably a post code which should be hidden so it cannot be removed.
"Taking photographs of tools is another step people can take to help reunite them with their property if they are unfortunate enough to be targeted.”