Cop’s tip to stop your mo­tor be­ing nicked

Evening Express (City Final) - - Front Page - BY DALE HASLAM

CORO­NA­TION Street can save your car from thieves, a po­lice chief has said.

An Evening Ex­press in­ves­ti­ga­tion found Aberdeen res­i­dents leave one in four ve­hi­cles un­locked – and some are leav­ing their front doors open and car keys by the door. Af­ter send­ing out of­fi­cers to check car doors in re­cent days, po­lice bosses are now urg­ing peo­ple to do their bit – par­tic­u­larly as the clocks go back to­mor­row, bring­ing darker nights that al­low crim­i­nals to op­er­ate in the shad­ows. “We do have a par­tic­u­lar prob­lem with peo­ple leav­ing their ve­hi­cles and homes un­locked, which is an open in­vi­ta­tion for thieves,” said In­spec­tor Dave Cowie, who over­sees the West End and Ha­zle­head Com­mu­nity Polic­ing Team. He added: “A lot of the time, it is about en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to get into a rou­tine of check­ing things are locked up at a par­tic­u­lar time of night, such as af­ter peo­ple have fin­ished watch­ing their favourite TV show, like Coro­na­tion Street or East­end­ers. We want peo­ple who have just fin­ished watch­ing their favourite soap to think; ‘Have I made sure every­thing is locked? Is the car locked and the alarm on? Is the front door locked? Are the car keys away from the front door? “If peo­ple have nightly rou­tines, such as watch­ing Coro­na­tion Street, it helps to in­cor­po­rate that se­cu­rity check into that rou­tine. Coro­na­tion Street could save your car.” In May, the Evening Ex­press joined po­lice in Cults and Westhill as they tried to open car doors. The op­er­a­tion came af­ter four ve­hi­cles worth a to­tal of more than £100,000 were stolen in the north-east in just one night – and three of them had been left un­locked. At the first prop­erty of­fi­cers tried dur­ing the op­er­a­tion, two cars worth a to­tal of £90,000 were left un­locked – and the keys were within easy reach be­hind the un­locked door. Po­lice then knocked on the door to share crime preven­tion ad­vice with res­i­dents. Dur­ing the op­er­a­tion, of­fi­cers opened 23 of 92 car doors with ease – and also opened 10 un­locked front doors. Insp Cowie said: “Just a few sim­ple steps can keep your prop­erty and ve­hi­cles safe. “If you watch Coro­na­tion Street or an­other show in the evening, get into the habit of get­ting up at the end of it and check­ing every­thing is se­cure. It can make all the dif­fer­ence. “We are shar­ing this ad­vice now be­cause, with the clocks go­ing back tonight, nights are darker and the dark pro­vides more cover for crim­i­nals.” He also en­cour­aged res­i­dents to con­sider us­ing light timers, to lock away all gar­den tools, use out­side se­cu­rity lights, use good qual­ity locks on sheds and to make a note of se­rial num­bers of prop­erty. Mean­while, po­lice launched an ap­peal af­ter a white Citroends3 car was stolen from Park Street in Aberdeen. The ve­hi­cle, with the reg­is­tra­tion X13 FSR, was taken be­tween 4pm on Thurs­day and 8.20am yes­ter­day. Any­one with in­for­ma­tion should call 101 quot­ing ref­er­ence num­ber CF0263561018.

Po­lice found many peo­ple in had left their car doors un­locked

Po­lice check­ing cars in Westhill to see if they are locked

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