Warning to secure outbuildings to prevent theft of quad bikes, farming equipment, power tools and gardening equipment in rural Hart
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Do you have sheds, barns, garages or outbuildings containing valuable equipment such as quad bikes, power tools, gardening equipment or farm machinery?
Please be on your guard after a series of recent burglaries across Hart District.
We are also warning people not to confront suspects. Call the police on 999 immediately if a crime is in progress.
Neighbourhood Inspector Jen Lovegrove said: “We have seen a series of burglaries of outbuildings occurring overnight and in the early hours of the morning in rural districts. The suspects are targeting farm machinery, quad bikes and All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs) and anything of value such as power tools.
“This is not something that is unique to Hart District, it is also happening across county borders and right across the UK.
“We believe many of these thefts are connected to organised crime groups who are exporting stolen quad bikes abroad. This shows a level of planning by the criminals, so being aware and reporting suspicious vehicles and people is really important.
“I would like to assure residents and landowners that we take this type of crime extremely seriously. We are conducting patrols in rural areas but we would urge anyone to ensure as far as possible to secure and alarm their buildings and property mark their equipment. Consider installing CCTV, tracker devices, automatic security lights and intruder alarm systems.
“Rural crime is a priority for us and we will continue to relentlessly pursue suspects. The community are our eyes and ears and we encourage you to report all incidents as soon as you are able to by calling 101 if it’s not an emergency. If it’s happening there and then, always call 999.
“You can also report suspicious activity online (if it’s not an emergency) by visiting our website www.hampshire.police.uk or clicking on this link: https://www.hampshire.police.uk/ro/report/
Incidents over the last seven days:
At 5.30am on November 11, a resident was leaving for work and was confronted by three suspects at a property in Church Lane, Dogmersfield. The man, who is in his 50s, was struck with a metal pole. Thankfully, he was not seriously injured and the suspects made off in a small vehicle. The suspects had damaged two gates to get into the property but had not gained access to the outbuildings so nothing was stolen.
On November 10, at 11.05pm, a resident spotted four men standing on his driveway in Elvetham Road, Fleet, and shouted at them. One of the suspects threw a brick towards the window, which caused damage but did not hit the resident. They then made off in a vehicle.
Between October 30 and November 2, suspects have gained entry to an industrial unit in Alton Road, South Warnborough and stole a number of tools and equipment including two concrete mixers, a Hayter Harrier 56 lawnmower, two Stihl Cutting saws, Stihl hedge cutters, Stihl back pack blower and Stihl chainsaw.
If you have any information about the above offences, call 101 and quote reference 44200436641. You can also call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. If you are offered goods in suspicious circumstances, always report it by calling 101.
Please take note of the below crime prevention advice in relation to quad bikes:
• Keep good records of your quad bikes or ATVs. Take colour photographs from the side, front and behind. • Photos should include serial/chassis numbers, model numbers and distinguishing features • All quads should be security marked with your postcode, followed by letters of your property name or number • Register your quad at www.immobilise.com • Park as close to your premises as possible, ideally in a locked outbuilding with CCTV and security lighting, preferably out of sight from nearby roads. • Secure with wheel clamps and/or locking posts, and store in a secure building. Consider using ground anchor plates and chains for extra security • Consider investing in a bespoke quad security device (look for those approved by Secured by Design and Sold Secure) • Fit a GPS tracking device • Remove keys when not in use and do not leave them near the quad
Help deter theft and aid recovery of agriculture equipment with CESAR
The CESAR scheme was designed by police officers working in partnership with the construction and agricultural industries to provide police with a quick and effective way to identify all manners of machinery and equipment. CESAR can be fitted to all types of self-propelled and trailer mounted construction and agricultural equipment.
The registration database is accessible 24/7 to provide support to officers who are making enquiries at the roadside about equipment stopped in suspicious circumstances with persons they suspect may have stolen it.
CESAR uses Datatag ID technology, with both visible and covert markings, making it a real deterrent and an invaluable aid to recovery. Many insurance companies offer discounts of up to 20 per cent on premiums and reduced excesses for cover on CESAR-marked machines. For more information visit: www.cesarscheme.org.