Motorists warned of a spike in caravan thefts this year due to vehicle shortages

Matt Baker runs into trouble after parking his caravan

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Drivers are being warned to take extra precautions to protect their caravans and leisure vehicles, according to experts at Tracker. The recent shortage of stock and increased demand has caused the price of second-hand caravans to grow dramatically, with the average touring model increasing by between £500 and £700 at the start of the year.  

With costs not looking to decrease anytime soon, caravans are becoming a fresh target for criminals.

Clive Wain, Head of Police Liaison at Tracker, said: “Demand for UK staycations and lack of overall supply inevitably means the average caravan price is set to increase throughout the year.

“Whilst caravans have always been a popular target for thieves, the demand has created a knock-on effect with the availability and price of parts for second-hand caravans, creating an opportunity for criminals.

“We have seen so many cases where professional criminals have been able to quickly cut through barriers, locks and other physical deterrents in order to get to a caravan.”

A number of physical deterrents are often enough to put a potential criminal off from targeting a caravan or vehicle.

The most common deterrents include secure storage facilities, hitch locks, wheel clamps, alarm systems and deadbolts will reduce the chance of theft.

However, only a tracking device will improve the chances of recovery if criminals get past these barriers.

Mr Wain continued, saying: “We work very closely with UK police forces recovering stolen caravans nationwide.

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“Just recently Tracker, along with Cheshire Police, recovered a Elddis Camino Tourer caravan within two hours of it being stolen from a secure storage site.

“The caravan was recovered close to Ellesmere Port so if the thieves had been successful, it would have been on its way to either Europe, the Middle East or Africa.

“The thieves had also gone to big lengths to access the caravan; they removed a padlock on a gate to gain entry to the secure storage site where the caravan was kept.

“[They] then went to work on two locking wheel nuts and a hitch lock, disarmed the alarm and towed the caravan across a recently harvested field to exit through a gap in the hedge they had made earlier.” 

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