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Police warning after oil thefts in west Dorset
4:00pm Saturday 2nd February 2013 in Latest
POLICE have issued a warning to homeowners after an increase in oil thefts.
Lyme Regis Safer Neighbourhood Team has been dealing with a number of incidents, particularly in rural areas.
Neighbourhood beat manager PC Kirsti Ball said: “There has been an increase in the incidents of the theft of oil from oil tanks at people’s homes especially in the more rural parts of our area.
“As we are now in the winter months and with the price of crude oil remaining high, fuel oil tanks can be rich and easy pickings for thieves.
“Farms, transport depots, domestic properties and holiday homes can all be targets. However, by taking a few simple precautions, you can help protect your oil.”
Police have offered advice to help prevent oil thefts, including locking gates and creating obstacles to deter would-be thieves.
“The simple act of keeping your garden or drive gates closed and securely locked can prevent a theft,” said PC Ball.
“Ensure that all gates and fences are in good repair.
“Plant pots and general garden paraphernalia can be placed in the path of any potential intruders.
“They will make noise and waste time moving the items or navigating around them.”
PC Ball said limiting the amount of fuel in a tank and locking the tank are also good deterrents.
“Full tanks are a more popular target, so consider limiting the amount of oil that you have in your tank at any one time,” she said.
“Use a good quality, alarmed padlock or install lockable caps with crop proof fittings. Where possible fit hardened flexible casings to any vulnerable fuel hoses so that they are harder to cut.”
PC Ball is urging homeowners to install security lighting and CCTV and to report anything suspicious.
She said: “Lights don’t only warn you of an intruder but also alert neighbours and passing police patrols.”
For advice on the security of a property contact the Lyme Regis Safer Neighbourhood Team on 101 or email email@example.com