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Fuel theft rises

3 August 2022

Fuel theft rises

The Scottish Partnership Against Rural Crime (SPARC) and Police Scotland are reporting a significant rise in fuel theft in recent months across the whole of Scotland, affecting domestic and commercial locations, particularly from forestry sites and HGVs in rural areas. 

Doubtless the situation is the same in other parts of the UK.

Crime groups will sometimes target oil delivery vehicles and follow them, for both domestic oil and red diesel to farms and rural properties, as well as targeting forestry, wind farms and construction sites.

Thieves might also use Google Maps to find satellite images of fuel tanks, so the organisations say that managers should consider locating tanks behind a garage or shed and away from roads. Tanks can also be located inside a fence, security gate or cage.

Other measures include fitting alarms to external gates surrounding fuel tanks, or to the inside of a shed or outbuilding that houses them. Quality locks, locking fuel caps and anti-siphoning deterrents can also be used. Locks with a CEN or BSEN 12320 Grade 6 classification indicate maximum security (Grade 1 is the least secure). 

Site managers can also install outdoor security lighting and low-energy dusk till dawn lights, and CCTV might also be considered together with signage to highlight the security measures that have been taken as a deterrent. 

‚óŹ Advice on fuel theft prevention and secure storage is available on the website of SBD (Secure by Design), the official police security initiative that is owned by the UK Police Service. It works with builders, developers, local authorities and manufacturers to design out crime. 


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