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Hauliers left reeling after lorry theft

PUBLISHED: 12:32 16 August 2002 | UPDATED: 12:28 03 March 2010

FELIXSTOWE hauliers were reeling today after police revealed details of another lorry raid - the eighth container to be stolen from their yards this year.

FELIXSTOWE hauliers were reeling today after police revealed details of another lorry raid – the eighth container to be stolen from their yards this year.

Many companies have already spent thousands of pounds on improving security, but say the thieves are becoming more daring and prolific.

One haulage boss told the Star: "We are doing everything we can and so far our firm has been lucky, but it is all extra cost at a very difficult time in this business.

"We just wish these thieves would leave us alone."

The latest theft happened at a yard in Hauliers Road, just a few yards outside the secure 700-acre port complex.

The thieves broke into a locked depot at around 1.20am and took an articulated lorry cab, trailer and a container loaded with hammer drills and attachments worth tens of thousands of pounds.

It was driven north and the cab unit was later found abandoned at Kirkby on Merseyside, but minus the trailer and its cargo.

Police believe the hammer drills would have been split up and sold on to a network of dealers countrywide within hours of arriving in the north-west.

Officers investigating the theft – which happened on Sunday – are already following up a number of leads.

They are also appealing for anyone with information to contact Felixstowe police on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

So far this year containers of bed linen, crayons and wooden trays, hi-fi systems, beer, vodka, clothes and other items, worth in total around £2 million, have been stolen from yards around the port and also from the port complex.

In the most serious incident, a security guard was kidnapped at the Pentalver yard in Blofield Road when a gang stole three boxes on one night.

The Road Haulage Association says more than £500m of trucks and goods are stolen each year, with more than 3,000 loads never recovered.

Police believe that the thefts are far from random and feel sure many of the thieves are acting on inside information, and carrying out their own surveillance.

It has been suggested that CCTV cameras could be installed on the busy A14 to help police combat the thefts.

Meanwhile, truckers and haulage companies are advised to increase security at their premises, employ security guards, improve fencing and gates, install cameras, fit vehicles with immobilisers and anti-hitch devices, and park containers back to back to stop them being opened.

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