Thefts of heating oil

Brechin Police have warned residents to increase security of domestic oil tanks following the theft of domestic fuel from two rural properties in the Inveresk area.

Up to 500 litres of heating oil have been taken from the two isolated properties, both of which had minimal security of the outside oil tanks.

PC Iain MacPherson said: “Residents should review the security of their tanks. Security lights and alarms should be fitted.”

With the recent increase in the cost of fuel, domestic heating oil is becoming a target for thieves across the country.

“These thefts come at a time when there is an increase in thefts of fuel nationwide,” continued PC MacPherson.

“If you see any suspicious activity try and note the registration number of the vehicle and call the police.”

To help improve the security of your oil tanks Tayside Police have suggested using a number of the following security measures:-

Consider erecting a metal cage round your tank with a secondary lockable access hatch to the filler cap. Any padlock should be the highest quality you can afford and be of the closed hasp design;

Position of the tank is important. If it is out of view of your house windows and near a path or road then it is easier for the thief to target;

Security lights can have a positive effect and deter thieves. Movement detectors which operate security lights can also activate alarms;

Oil level gauges which are remotely operated are now available which set off an alarm if the oil level in a tank suddenly drops or falls below quarter full;

Check the oil level in your tank regularly for any spilt fuel, marks on your lock or any suspicious object alien to your garden nearby;

CCTV can be deployed to watch over your tank and is a deterrent to thieves;

Tanks can be stored inside outbuildings but there are strict regulations which must be followed and advice could be sought from the fire service.