Hounslow Borough Highest For Vehicle Fuel Theft

Police say it is mainly diesel stolen from lorries near airport


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Hounslow Borough is the worst in London for theft of fuel from vehicles, according to the latest figures. The borough had a total of 175 reports between 2009 and 2012 but only five prosecutions.

Police in Hounslow said the high figure was mainly due to theft from commercial vehicles, and was mostly diesel taken from lorries near Heathrow Airport.

Inspector Rob Weir of Hounslow said: "Hounslow Borough hosts significant transport hubs in relation to the haulage industry servicing both Heathrow airport and central London.

The majority of the thefts are from commercial haulage firms and the increase in this type of crime has coincided with the increasing cost of diesel in recent years.  Parking goods vehicles in areas with good lighting and CCTV is the most effective way of reducing opportunities for thieves to steal diesel."

Greenwich, Lewisham, Southwark and Merton emerge in the top five boroughs for fuel theft according to the figures from the Metropolitan Police which were obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.

The number of fuel thefts reported to the police across London increased by a third in three years totalling 2,044 in four years. The reports increased from 389 in 2009 to 510 in 2012 though figures for the previous two years were higher, at 565 in 2010 and 580 in 2011.

The total Prosecutions for fuel theft were 14 in 2009 and 2010, 18 in 2011 and only 11 in 2012.

The AA says fuel is usually siphoned out through the petrol cap or cars are drilled from underneath, which causes considerable damage. The motoring organisation said on average it attended one fuel theft a week and had noticed that it was on the increase. High fuel duty has been blamed for the increase in fuel theft by some motoring organisations.

March 8, 2013