Gardaí issue warning over theft of caravans and camper-vans due to increase in staycation holidays
13 caravans have been stolen since March.
Gardaí have warned owners of caravans and camper-vans that their vehicles are under threat, likely due to the increase in staycation-style holidays in Ireland this year.
Speaking on Wednesday, Crime Prevention Officer Sergeant Ber Leetch said: "With ‘staycations’ expected to rise this year, and more people using caravans and campervans, there is a need to be extra vigilant with their security.
"As a campervan owner myself, I always make sure we have the hitch lock on when we are parked up for the evening or when it’s not in use. We have also invested in a tracking device, they can be purchased for around €150, so if our camper-van was ever stolen there is a better chance of getting it back."
Gardaí say that 13 caravans have been stolen in the past four months, and 43 in total have been stolen since 2019. The warning forms part of the Gardaí's Park Smart campaign, which notes that €30million worth of valuables have been stolen via auto theft over the last four years.
The following advice has been issued for caravan-owners:
- Get an alarm fitted if one is not already in place.
- Keep valuables out of sight and remove when not in use.
- Ensure windows and doors are locked.
- Park in a well-lit area. Keep a light on if leaving unattended overnight.
- Use a cover when not in use. This may deter thieves as pulling off a cover can be noisy and add to the time taken to steal the caravan.
- Keep good records of all serial numbers, unique markings, image of the caravan/campervan etc. Keep documents secure.
- Consider voluntarily registering your caravan with the Central Registration and Identification Scheme.
- Ensure a good quality hitch lock and wheel clamps are in place and that the caravan is locked to a secure point.