Advice to drivers from police to remove valuables from vehicles following series of thefts in West Suffolk

Police are reminding drivers to remove valuables and secure their vehicles when leaving them unattended.

It follows three incidents in Kentford, Mildenhall and Brandon overnight (Wednesday, November 29 into Thursday, November 30).

A further five incidents took place in the Studlands area of Newmarket on Wednesday, November 8, and Thursday and Friday, November 23 and 24. All the incidents involved the thieves targeting vans to steal power tools and associated equipment.

Officers are keen to hear from anyone who may have noticed any unusual activity or suspicious vehicles in these areas over the past week. Anyone with information is asked to contact Suffolk Police on 101.

If you are offered tools in suspicious circumstances, please do not buy them and let police know immediately via 101.  You can also contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Police are urging motorists to lock their car and remove all valuables, no matter whether you park on, or off road. Thieves will enter private properties, public carparks and garages to look for insecure vehicles. Van owners are also advised to register their tools for free at by taking note of the serial numbers and models, and to use ultraviolet pen to (invisibly) mark their property, which increases the chances of having them returned to you in the event of being lost or stolen.

Van drivers should also consider the following measures to reduce the risk of being a victim of crime:

• Always lock all doors & shut windows, physically checking van doors are locked.
• Park in a garage or secure area where possible.
• Park with the doors against a wall.
• If you park on your driveway consider installing motion activated CCTV.
• Be particularly aware when unloading.
• Remove tools from the van if possible.
• To increase the security of tools, you can bolt either a cage or box to the base of the van which should be secured with a sturdy close shackle padlock to reduce and deter further incidents.
• Setting an alarm or immobiliser will make it more difficult for the offender.
• Consider upgrading locks/fitting additional protection.

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