Across England and Wales, it’s been largely reported that vehicle thefts are on the increase – with reports saying vehicle theft rising by a fifth over the past three years. With vehicle
Last year the DVLA reported that 56,288 vehicles were targeted by thieves last year. That number of vehicles stolen equated to one being stolen every 9 minutes or 154 vehicles being stolen every day.
Which vehicle is stolen the most?
One leasing company (Rivervale leasing) conducted their own investigation and looked at a decade of government data and found that Ford Fiestas were the most targeted vehicle – with 2,384 being stolen last year. They also listed Range Rover, Volkswagen Golf, Ford Focus and BMW 3 series being on the top 10 list for most stolen vehicles in the UK (you can see the full list here)
Premium cars are the most targeted vehicles to be stolen and out of every 5 cars stolen, only two are returned to their owners – with 75% of them being damaged and 22% of them being completely written off.
And it’s not just the vehicles that criminals are targeting, it’s also their parts. With the recent lockdown, many manufacturers of car parts had stopped operations amid worries about their staff safety, leading to a gap in the market for vehicle thieves to target cars for their parts.
Rivervale Leasing found that 34.7% of popular items stolen are exterior fittings such as bumpers, lights, and grills, with 16.5% of electrical equipment being stolen, other vehicle parts being 9.5% and wheels being 2.2%.
Also, recent reports have revealed that there has been an increase in the number of catalytic converters being stolen – with 1,000 being stolen each month in places like London. Insurers have also seen a 600% increase in claims involving catalytic converters – costing an average of £1,000 per claim.
It’s not just a financial impact
Having a vehicle stolen doesn’t just cause a financial impact on a person or business, it can also affect the owner’s mentality with 84% of drivers saying that they have been emotionally affected by their vehicle being stolen.
But is it just personal vehicles being targeted?
No, it’s not just personal vehicles that are being targeted, commercial vehicles are too. Parkers (a van distributor) conducted their own research and found that between 2015-19 van thefts increased by 45% with 10,000 van thefts in 2018/19. During lockdown many abandoned or closed offices, factories or construction sites have also been targets for theft- with construction sites seeing a 50% surge in criminal activity.
Is it opportunist or organised criminal behaviour?
Both. Although many personal vehicles are victims of opportunistic thefts, many vehicles that are kept within compounds such as a construction site, fleet yards or car showrooms are victims of more organised crime (due to security measures). You can see our blog on Car Showroom security here.
So, what steps can you take to ensure the safety of your vehicles?
Many businesses like yours would have CCTV in place to monitor the perimeter of your business but they can only see so far. If you have vehicles that are parked in front or a parked in a compound close by, it is worth investing in further CCTV to ensure that blind spots are covered and you or your security staff can easily monitor and look out for any suspicious activity close by.
If you have multiple vehicles within your business, installing vehicle tracking allows you to track and monitor their location. So, if a vehicle is stolen from your property or whilst out on-site, it can be easy for you or the police to track its location and apprehend the thieves.
Perimeter fencing and gates
Whether you park your vehicles outside your building or in a compound close by, having perimeter fencing and gates will provide extra protection for your vehicles. However, it is important to choose sturdy fencing and gates as some fencing and gates can become easily damaged by criminals trying to get in.
Invest in physical security
To some physical security guards can seem like an expensive investment but actually it can save you money in the long run. Outsourcing your physical security to us means that you don’t have costly uniform, training or vetting fees to look at and allows you to get on and run your business, whilst we effectively protect your business and your vehicles with our manned guards and mobile patrols.
Although having manned guards to protect your work vehicles may seem excessive to some, they are an effective way to deter criminals. Manned guards can be used to monitor CCTV camera’s 24/7 for any activity close to your business or vehicles and quickly respond to any disturbances of any attempts to damage or steal your vehicles. Manned guards can also be placed in front of main gates to monitor activity coming in and out of your property or vehicle compound, ensuring that only authorised personnel are allowed access to your vehicles.
Mobile patrols are another effective deterrent against criminals and compliment our manned guarding services. Whereas manned guards can be used to monitor activity via CCTV or being stationed by main gates and access points, mobile patrols guards can patrol single or multiple areas – depending on the size of your property – at regular or irregular intervals and can quickly respond to any disturbances that are located at a different location.
Both our physical guard services can greatly benefit your business and are effective deterrents against criminals looking to target your vehicles.