Sleeping lorry drivers stung by fuel thieves

LORRY drivers slept in their vehicle’s cabs as thieves drained more than £1,000 worth of fuel from their tanks in overnight raids.

The majority of the stolen diesel was siphoned from an articulated lorry parked on a small industrial estate on Meadow Way, Swinton, between 10pm on Sunday (26) and 6am on Monday (27).

Its unsuspecting driver was asleep in his cab, just feet away from the HGV’s fuel tanks, when the thieves struck.

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A second lorry driver, parked at Kilnhurst Road, Rawmarsh, leapt from the cab lorry in the early hours of Monday (27) morning after hearing a noise at the back of his lorry and found a siphoning hose near to the fuel tank.

Police believe the incidents may be linked and are now issuing warnings to drivers and businesses in the area.

Crime reduction project officer Pc Andy Robinson said: “We’d urge drivers to use secure truck stop facilities which will be well lit, have CCTV and ensure that they will be parked alongside other lorry drivers, rather than in a lay-by or close to their drop off point.

“The nearest truck stop in Rotherham is at Hellaby.”

Pc Robinson said that drivers for local hauliers should avoid filling their vehicles with fuel at night as this might make them more of a lure to thieves.

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He added: “I’d encourage business people to spread this message to delivery drivers because if thieves can steal fuel from a wagon, they could also potentially steal the load that’s being carried.”

Anyone with information about the incidents of fuel theft at Swinton or Rawmarsh should contact South Yorkshire Police by dialling 101.