Motorists warned as Havering vehicle crime soars
HAVERING drivers are being urged to be motor savvy following a recent rise in vehicle-related theft in the borough.
Thefts from cars rose 19.7 per-cent in the 12 months to the end of November and the thefts or taking of motor vehicles rose 4.9 per-cent during the same period.
Cllr Geoff Starns, cabinet member for community safety, said: “Although car crime is still lower than it was a few years ago – we have seen a sudden rise this year. Make sure you remove all possessions from view – no matter how low you might think their value is. Anyone who got a Sat Nav for Christmas should ensure they remove it and any cradle or suction mounting from their car.”
Vehicles parked in streets are far more vulnerable than those on driveways so owners need to take extra care when leaving them.
One in two thefts from vehicles are from cars parked in the street, compared to one in five on a driveway.
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Cash, valuables and laptops account for 20 per-cent of all such thefts. Thefts of tools prove to be the most expensive losses.
Detective Inspector Chris Kreille, of Havering Police, said: “It is important that we get the assistance of the residents of Havering in the fight against motor vehicle crime. “Making sure valuables are secure, thinking about parking location and making sure that the vehicle is securely locked every time are imperative. Thefts from vehicles left insecure are on the rise.”
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Advice from the authorities is:
• Always close car windows; engage steering locks and lock doors, checking they are actually locked.
• Do not leave any valuables in your car.
• Park in a well lit area or a park mark accredited car park.
• Ensure car SAT NAV devices are taken indoors when not in use. Remove suction mounted fitting from the windscreen as this gives potential thieves a strong indication that the car has a SAT NAV device which may be in the car somewhere.
• When de-icing your car in the morning, do not leave your car unattended/unlocked with the keys in the ignition and the engine running. You will not be insured if your car is stolen.