A LOCAL PARTNERSHIP formed to tackle metal theft in Hull and East Yorkshire is appealing to the public to look out for suspicious behaviour involving the removal of metal.
Humberside Police is working with communications providers KC and BT, Hull City Council and local scrap metal merchants to combat metal theft in the region.
The number of metal thefts has dramatically increased across the country in recent years, with the rising price of metals like copper and lead being blamed for the problem.
Metal theft has far-reaching consequences for communities and businesses, as the missing metal can cause train delays, power cuts and phone and broadband service problems.
Sgt Julian Hart, from Humberside Police, said: “Metal theft isn’t a victimless crime. It causes damage to properties and disruption to vital services.
“Members of the community have an important part to play in tackling metal theft too, by reporting any suspicious behaviour, which might include someone pushing a wheelie bin or barrow filled with metal, or witnessing people in unmarked vehicles and clothing working in manholes or on roofs. All reports are taken seriously and welcomed by the police and partner agencies.”
In February 2012, 1,600 homes and businesses in Tickton and Thorngumbald were left without phone and broadband services when thieves stole underground cables from communications providers BT and KC.
Cable thefts have also led to train delays locally, and even a Hull KR Super League match at Craven Park was put at risk last year when thieves stole floodlight cable from the grounds.
By sharing intelligence and working together to raise awareness of the consequences of the crime, the metal theft partnership hopes to reduce its impact in Hull and East Yorkshire.
To report a crime in progress, call the police on emergency number 999.
To report suspicious behaviour or give general information on metal theft, processing or handling, call the Humberside Police on 101 or Crimestoppers confidentially and anonymously on 0800 555 111.
You can also go to any police station to report a crime or give information about someone you know who has been involved in theft or handling stolen goods; approach an on-patrol police officer or PCSO.
For more information about contacting Humberside Police, visit the force’s website.