Over the past month a number of farm-related thefts have been reported to Taranaki police. These thefts have mainly been of petrol from on-farm tanks.
Taranaki rural area commander Inspector Frank Grant says other items have been taken as well, including chemicals and farm equipment.
"Remaining vigilant and being aware of any suspicious activity in your area can save you a whole lot of stress and worry in the long run. Things that appear business as usual to farmers, such as leaving your farm bike down by a shed while you are off elsewhere, provides an easy target for opportunist offenders," he says.
There are simple steps to prevent thefts on rural properties:
Make sure your house, vehicles, sheds, and fuel tank storage are secured at all times.
Secure items of value close to your house rather than in distant sheds.
Mark your property so it can be easily identified if recovered.
Let your neighbours know you are going on holiday or leaving your home overnight.
Take notice of who is out and about and talk to them (particularly if they aren't locals), lock your house, remove keys and close access gates.
Your first concern should always be your own safety and that of others with you. Never take the law into your own hands. If there are intruders, call the police. Incidents can quickly get out of hand.