SCRAP metal thieves are being targeted as part of a police crackdown in North Lancashire.
Police have stepped up patrols after a spate of thefts with items such as bicycles and stainless steel kitchen sinks being stolen. Exhaust systems, catalytic converters, a metal trough and road work signs have also been targeted by thieves in the last few weeks.
Officers are working with the Environment Agency, the Department for Work and Pensions and VOSA to carry out checks on vehicles across the area.
People are being urged to secure their property and ensure any property which could be targeted by scrap metal thieves is locked away.
Inspector Dave Vickers said: “This activity is aimed at disrupting scrap metal thieves whilst sending a positive message to the community that the police, working in partnership with other agencies including the Environment Agency, VOSA and the DWP, are working hard to make our neighbourhoods safer.
“We work closely scrap metal dealers to check vehicles entering the yards are safe and road worthy.
“I urge people to contact us if they see any goods type vehicles acting suspiciously, particularly in isolated rural areas or farms. If they can provide a description of the vehicle and the registration number, we will try to trace the vehicle as soon as possible to ensure everything is above board.
“I also urge members of the public who see people acting suspiciously near to parked vehicles to contact the police and would ask that garages with a large number of vehicles in stock to check their security measures.
“We hope to educate scrap yard workers and waste carriers whilst targeting those who seek to profit from crime by cashing in at local dealers. Anyone found in possession of stolen scrap metal can expect to be dealt with robustly.”
Anyone with information about scrap metal theft or who sees anything suspicious is urged to contact police on 0845 1 25 35 45 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.