Police in Lincolnshire have urged the public and businesses to take steps to improve the security of their heating oil after a spate of thefts in the county.
The latest incidents took place over in the west of Lincolnshire Police but the thefts can take place anywhere, and police have urged people to protect their supplies from would-be thieves.
“We are urging residents and businesses with heating oil tanks to look at ways of improving their security,” said a spokesperson.
“Theft of heating and diesel oil has been a problem for many years and the police have always noticed an increase in this type of crime whenever the price of crude oil rises.
“A rise in the price of fuel at the petrol pump inevitably leads to a rise in the cost of heating oil. This makes oil a more attractive proposition for the thief and they are now actively targeting fuel tanks at farms, transport depots and domestic properties.
“The thief may be using the oil for their own central heating or selling it on at a handsome profit.
“These tanks can contain many thousands of pounds worth of oil and it is therefore it makes good sense to take a few precautions to protect them.”
Tips include putting thought into where the tank is located, and the installation of electronic switches which control the flow of the oil and can turn the supply off when not in use.
Police also advise the use of locks, electronic oil gauge alarms which sound audible warnings when the level in the tank falls, lighting around the tank, CCTV cameras and defensive planting.
Click here to see the police’s full advice.