Police warn tradesmen in Uttlesford to safeguard tools in vans

POLICE are appealing to van owners to be extra vigilant following a spate of thefts from vans last weekend.

Two vans in Elsenham and two in Stansted were targeted by thieves who stole tools worth many hundreds of pounds.

Uttlesford crime reduction advisor, Peter Caulfield says the victims were all professional tradespeople who rely on the tools and equipment to earn a living.

“These are callous crimes that could ruin small businesses. If a tradesperson is unable to work, their customers will look elsewhere for the services they need. The effect on their business could be devastating,” he said.

The victims of this recent spate of crimes were a carpenter, a floorlayer, a builder and an electrical engineer. The tools stolen ranged from drills and electrical testers to chainsaws.

Mr Caulfield has some practical advice to offer: “Always try to remove your tools from your van, but if you can’t, consider installing a purpose-made van safe (a lockable toolbox, bolted to the van). Park as close to your house as you can and reverse up to a wall if possible, to prevent entry via the van’s back doors. You could also consider installing a movement-activated, battery-operated shed alarm inside the van.

“Tools should be visibly marked with your postcode, and it is worth reviewing your vehicle’s security - would it benefit from having additional locks fitted?”

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For detailed information about suitable security products and services, Mr Caulfield can be contacted on 101 ext 395387

Uttlesford Neighbourhood Watch sells robust shed alarms on their website at uttlesfordnhw.org.uk.