Police are advising householders and business owners to be aware of heating oil thefts, as many people are now ordering a fill of oil during the Autumn months.
Although heating oil thefts are rare and are becoming less common as the value of heating oil plummets, caution is still advised by following a few preventative measures:
- Installing a Smart Guard which permanently monitors your oil level. A Smart Guard detects any unusual drop in level it will automatically send you a text and email if required, alerting you to the fact that either a theft is in process or you have a leak. In either scenario this alert means you can take action, even if you are not at home. For more information on Smart Guards click here.
- Lock your gates: The simple act of keeping your garden or drive gates closed and securely locked can prevent a theft. Ensure that all gates and fences are in good repair.
- Disguise your tank: Consider fencing, trellis and defensive planting. The planting of thorny bushes around your tank and boundaries can provide extra protection.
- Create obstacles: Plant pots and general garden paraphernalia can be placed in the path of any potential intruders. They will make noise and waste time moving the items or navigating around them. You would still need to ensure an access route for deliveries. Remove and secure any tools or ladders which could be used as an aide to commit crime.
- Lock your tank: Use a good quality, alarmed padlock or install lockable caps with crop-proof fittings. Where possible fit hardened flexible casings, to any vulnerable fuel hoses, so that they are harder to cut.
- Industrial or farm tanks: Can be protected by using a protective cage, improved fencing and a review of general yard lighting, CCTV and working practices. Your local Crime Prevention Officer can offer further advice – please call 101.
- Lighting: Consider fitting sensor lights to brighten up dark areas around your home, particularly areas around the oil tank.
- Don’t forget be a good neighbour: Check on older neighbours or relatives who could be vulnerable to this type of crime.
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