Spate of thefts from industrial estates

PUBLISHED: 13:19 06 March 2008 | UPDATED: 21:24 31 May 2010

FIRMS based on industrial estates in Uttlesford are being warned to be cautious following several recent thefts from industrial premises in the district. In Saffron Walden, more than 250 litres of diesel was stolen from a dustcart at the Uttlesford Distri

FIRMS based on industrial estates in Uttlesford are being warned to be cautious following several recent thefts from industrial premises in the district.

In Saffron Walden, more than 250 litres of diesel was stolen from a dustcart at the Uttlesford District Council depot on the Shire Hill Industrial Estate. A similar theft occurred in Thaxted Road a fortnight ago.

A company in the Chelmsford Road industrial estate in Dunmow lost £250 worth of measuring equipment when thieves searched through its vehicles. The criminals then moved onto another firm at the same location, but left empty-handed after being disturbed by an employee.

Essex Police crime reduction officer for the district, Peter Caulfield, warned that similar thefts may well occur in the future and that companies should take steps to minimise the risk of falling victim to opportunistic thieves.

He said: "Simply locking company vans in a yard is not enough. I realise that it's not always practical or possible to remove tools and equipment, but if you can lock them away, you should do so."

Mr Caulfield also pointed out that fuel thefts could be avoided by applying some simple lateral thinking. "If you have a fleet of vehicles, park them side-by-side so that the fuel caps are protected," he said. "Alternatively, park close to a wall or building to shield the fuel tank."

There are also a number of security products available to make life harder for thieves.

He said: "Consider fitting a 'VanSafe', a secure steel cabinet that will store a large amount of equipment on board."

There are many other products that make a big difference to the security of industrial premises, many of which can be obtained without serious expense.

For more information call Peter Caulfield on 01376 556233.

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