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Thefts of the Land Rover Defender have spiked following the end of the iconic vehicle’s production in February 2016.

 
Theft claims have increased by 8 per cent in the 2014-2015 period.
Theft claims have increased by 8 per cent in the 2014-2015 period.
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Owners called to ramp up security after surge in thefts of Land Rover Defender

Defender owners urged to step up security measures

Owners of the vehicle have been urged to ramp up security measures to reduce the risk of theft following an 8 per cent increase in claims costs over the 2014/15 period – taking the total to £1.8 million.

NFU Mutual rural affairs specialist Tim Price said thieves were aware ’how easy’ they were to steal, meaning they were able to break them down and export the parts relatively quickly.

He urged owners to keep the vehicles locked in a building out of sight.

He said: "The level of thefts has increased and we are likely to see another big jump, especially in the livestock area of the countryside and leisure land areas in remote settings.

"The problem is the Defender was never designed with security in mind. Now that they are out of production and have ’classic’ status thieves are finding a ready market for vehicles and spares."

Top 5 regions of Land Rover Defender theft claims 2015

 

It came as a father and his two sons were found guilty of two counts of conspiracy to steal Land Rover’s and other agricultural machinery between July 7 2015 and January 5 2017.

Exeter Crown Court heard the gang usually struck overnight at unattended farm buildings across Devon and Cornwall and have since racked up at least £200,000 worth of goods during 28 raids.

Prevention

Mr Price said the worst hit areas covered the North East, Midlands and the North West, with the Yorkshire Dales being a particular robbery 'hotspot'.

NFU mutual urged Defender owners to take steps to increase vehicle security: including only buying car parts from established dealers to help prevent short-circuit thefts.

Where possible, Mr Price encouraged owners to also try to keep their Defender locked up in buildings or off the road where they are out of sight.

He added: “Owners should also look to fit after-market security such as improved locks and an old fashioned crook wheel lock which acts as a good deterrent.”

RHA rejects scapegoating of HGVs

20th February 2017

The UK’s road haulage industry has been made the scapegoat to cover the decades of under-investment in road maintenance by infrastructure providers.

Commenting, RHA chief executive Richard Burnett said: “Many of our worst roads have little or no HGV traffic while many of the best are used by HGVs all the time.

“Local authorities have failed to maintain their infrastructure. Maintain roads properly and repair them after the installation of pipes and cables, and there will be little problem with pot-holes. Failure to do so will see problems multiply, along with the cost of repair and associated congestion. However, where additional wear and tear is as a result of overloaded vehicles, the RHA strongly supports effective enforcement.

“Road hauliers move 85% of the UK economy, delivering food, clothing, houses and jobs. The roads are their main place of work and the industry is doing its job. We expect infrastructure providers, working with central government, to get their act together and do theirs”.

Many other European countries have far better road surfaces despite facilitating the movement of hundreds of thousands of HGV.  In addition, there are an increasing number of 60-tonne lorries operating on continental roads causing very little, if any damage to the road network.

Richard Burnett continued: “Our lorries now are no more damaging to our roads than they have been for many years, in fact quite the opposite. However, the damage to vehicle suspensions and tyres as a result of poorly maintained roads costs the haulage operator thousands of pounds each year”.

- See more at: https://www.rha.uk.net/news/press-releases/2017-02-february/rha-rejects-scapegoating-of-hgvs#sthash.0xlkk61C.dpuf

Freight Crime

Road freight crime is a common problem across Europe and costs the UK economy at least £250 million annually, although this figure is drawn from reported crimes only. Freight crime causes huge economic loss and disruption to the haulage industry and its drivers. 85 per cent of Hauliers have fleets of six vehicles or less. Thefts of tractor units, trailers and engineering plant have forced some smaller operator's completely out of business.

Lorries and their trailer loads are often very valuable. Criminals know this and so will seek to target vulnerable vehicles and loads. In the past year, there have been 1,400 reported incidents of theft of road freight vehicles and engineering plant and 2,700 reported incidents of theft from LGV's. TruckPol have stated that there are several national hotspots for freight crime, which include the A1, A34, A19 and the A40.

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