Thieves target garages and sheds in Netherton

Police news
Police news

Thieves have been targeting garages and sheds in Netherton.

Police have received four thefts in the area overnight on Monday evening/Tuesday morning.

Amanda Large, crime prevention officer, said: “We have had four offences of thefts from sheds/garages reported to the police that occurred overnight May 21/22.

“The majority of these have had power tools and cycles taken. We need residents to take steps to ensure the security of garages and sheds is sufficient.

“The areas that have been targeted in Netherton are Lyme Walk, Denham Walk, Kirby Walk and Vine Walk.

“Don’t leave valuable property in a shed or garage that is either unlocked or so run-down that it’s no obstacle to a thief. If you suspect it might not stand up to attack by a thief then don’t leave valuables such as a lawnmower or bicycle inside.

“Fit quality locks to your shed door. The fittings should be bolted through the shed door and reinforced at the back with a steel plate. Any hasp should have concealed screws.

“Padlocks used externally should be no less than 6cm wide and made of hardened steel. A ‘closed shackle’ type is best, as thieves cannot get the likes of a crowbar through the shackle to break it. Thieves have been using bolt croppers to remove padlocks.

“For sheds that have exterior door hinges - replace existing screws with security screws. They are designed so that they cannot be unscrewed once they are screwed in. Or alternatively bolted through as with the door lock.

“Chicken wire or welded metal grilles fixed to the inside of shed windows with wooden or steel batons will deter the burglar.

“Don’t be fooled into thinking your garage is any more secure than your shed. Many up-and-over style garage doors are easily overcome, but a padlock with a hasp and staple on the inside is an effective way of improving security.

“Consider adding a mortice lock to double garage doors with a rim latch.

“Another option to secure an up-and-over garage door is a garage defender lock. This is a heavy-duty metal arm, padlocked to a base plate that is bolted into the concrete outside the garage door and prevents the door from being opened.

“If your garage door is attached to the main house, ensure any connecting doors are also made secure.

If your gardening equipment or tools are especially valuable, consider using special security devices inside your shed or garage. Items can be locked down using chains through eyebolts secured to the floor or walls. There are a number of specialist systems available for this purpose.

“Considering fitting security cages inside sheds or garages and keep valuable equipment inside them. It’s well worth locking down ladders and tools that could be used to break into your house. Best not to encourage an opportunistic thief.

“Mark all your garden equipment and tools with your postcode and house number/name and consider using immobilise, a free database used to register your valuables. This helps police to reunite stolen property with their owners and can assist with prosecutions. www.immobilise.com.

“Check with your household insurance company that your policy includes cover for items stored in garages, sheds and outbuildings and remember, if you fail to put your equipment away or lock-up, your insurance company probably won’t pay up anyway.

“If you want any crime prevention advice or have any concerns, then please contact crime prevention officers Helen O’Driscoll and Amanda Large via 101 to request a visit or call back.

“Anyone with information regarding any of these crimes should call police on 101 or visit www.contactcambspolice.uk/Report/. Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111 or via www.crimestoppers-uk.org.”