POLICE have stepped up patrols across Wealden District following a sharp increase in thefts from cars parked around beauty spots.
The patrols have been increased following a report of thefts increasing during this Summer period.
The Wealden District Police Commander, Chief Inspector Richard Coates, was concerned about the increase and warned residents to take precautions when parking cars.
Chief Insp Coates said: “In previous years we have seen a small increase in thefts from cars in areas like the Ashdown Forest.
“With this in mind I have dedicated resources to patrolling these areas to stop any criminality occuring.”
The Police Commander did not want to stop residents and visitors enjoying the sights and sounds of the region - but he did want people to take sensible precautions to stop any would-be thieves.
He added: “I don’t want to deter people from visiting these areas, as Wealden has some of the most beautiful places in the country to visit.
“However I would ask anyone that does leave their vehicles unattended, to remove all valuable items and report anyone acting in a suspicious manner.”
Sussex Police has previsouly issued this advice on preventing thefts from cars and other vehicles such as when they are parked in beauty spots:
First, do not leave anything on view in your vehicle. Thieves are opportunists, say police and they can break into your vehicle very quickly to steal any goods.
Close the windows and sunroof, lock the doors and activate any security devices when leaving yourcar unattended to got a walk in any beauty spot.
Never leave your keys in your vehicle - even for a second, warn police.
Take your portable Sat-Nav with you when leaving your vehicle along with the support cradle and suction pads.
Remember to wipe away any suction pad marks on your windscreen or dashboard – do not leave clues to thieves, say police, make it harder for them.
Consider leaving your glove box empty and open, showing thieves there is nothing to steal from inside the glovebox. Switch off the light to avoid draining your battery when leaving the vehicle.
Last, leave your wing mirrors folded in and aerials down when leaving your vehicle to avoid criminal damage from any vandals who might be lurking in beauty spots.
If you see any suspicious behaviour in any beauty spot, or near cars, hroughout the region contact Wealden police immediately by phoning the non emergency ‘101’ or emergency: 999.