A recent spate of thefts of oil and petrol has led local police to give guidance on measures we can take:

Measures to consider for vehicles

• Keep vehicles in a secure area, preferably a garage, shed or outbuildings, wherever possible.

• Do not leave keys in or near a vehicle where they can be easily found.

• Consider the use of locking fuel caps.

• Re-fuel vehicles just before the planned journey rather than leaving a vehicle fully fuelled overnight.

• Park vehicles in areas that are well lit so they can be observed easily.

• Arrange for checks of vehicles and premises outside of normal working hours.

• Use secure parking areas or compounds when vehicles are parked overnight, particularly when not parked at their operating base.

• Consider the use of alarms. This could be on the vehicles themselves or for the perimeter of the parking/storage area. Improve lighting and focus on vulnerable areas.

For Storage Tanks

• Fit anti-siphoning devices.

• Install or confirm existing CCTV is fit for purpose and train a camera on tanks and vulnerable vehicles.

• Install cages and/or improve security that surrounds fuel storage tanks.

• Consider using 'bunded' fuel tanks if your existing storage facility is not of that type.

• Consider the deployment of fuel dyes.

• Commercial companies could consider fuel cards rather than storing fuel on site.

• Use defensive parking techniques, wherever possible park vehicles against solid objects on the fuel tank side to prevent access.

• Remove portable storage from site (barrel and drums etc) or make them secure.

• Consider installing fuel cap alarms - wireless transmitters can be placed inside the screw cap of the fuel tank. A magnetic switch on the device sets off an alarm if the cap is opened or tampered with.

• More advanced systems can be linked to security lighting or send a text message to the owners or security provider.

• An isolation switch allows authorised access to the tank for refuelling.

• Make sure gates and compounds are locked and secured, consider fitting an anti-attack cover for the lock.

• Agricultural sites should consider portable refuelling systems that can be locked in secure storage areas and not left in fields or stock yards.

• Use appropriate signage at the entrances where security devices are being used. It will act as a deterrent.


Should you witness suspicious activity and you believe that immediate police attendance is required, please dial 999. Any other non-urgent information or intelligence can be passed to police by calling 101 or via email to 101@devonandcornwall.pnn.police.uk

If you wish to remain anonymous you can pass any information or intelligence to CRIMESTOPPERS on 0800 555 111.