Lancashire TelegraphLancashire police in new campaign to prevent ‘drive-off’ petrol scam (From Lancashire Telegraph)

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Lancashire police in new campaign to prevent ‘drive-off’ petrol scam

Lancashire Telegraph: Lancashire police in new campaign to prevent ‘drive-off’ petrol scam Lancashire police in new campaign to prevent ‘drive-off’ petrol scam

THE number of ‘drive-offs’, where drivers fill up with petrol and leave without paying, has promped a new crime-fighting campaign by Lancashire police.

Last year saw 1,323 reported instances of ‘drive-offs’ in the county, up from 974 in 2012 – a 19.3 per cent increase.

There have been 270 cases reported since April this year alone.

Posters warning that it is a criminal offence to fill up and drive off without paying have been put up across the county’s petrol stations. Pre-payment pumps have been installed at targeted locations and CCTV has been improved to make the criminals easier to identify and detect.

As part of a new county-wide policy to ensure these measures have a positive impact, all garages have now been given the same guidance for dealing with incidents, speeding up police investigations and helping make sure the businesses recover their money.

Clive Grunshaw, Lancashire police and crime commissioner, said: “Garages across the county were seeing more and more drive-offs – and owners clearly wanted to work more closely with the police to reduce this growing trend.

"Now, I've worked with the constabulary to develop a policy which will help not only businesses but also reduce demand on the police, cutting wasted time while hopefully ensuring more criminals are caught and brought to justice.

“Those who deliberately drive off from petrol stations are often involved in wider criminality – it's important procedures are put in place to give officers the best chance of successfully tracking the culprits down.

“This policy is an excellent example of what can be achieved when businesses and the Constabulary work together.”

The new policy encourages garages to immediately make use of the Forecourt Watch scheme to record incidents and capture evidence.

Where the incident is classed as a civil dispute, there is a linkin with the British Oil Security Syndicate (BOSS) to recover the money owed.

The police say they have also ‘streamlined’ their processes to ensure officers are not deployed unnecessarily to incidents which turn out to be accidental.

Comments (7)

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10:13am Wed 18 Jun 14

Keen O to Get Kean Out says...

I wonder which scamsters started this down blackburn, wasting police time and taxpayers money, now wonder we are a third world town
I wonder which scamsters started this down blackburn, wasting police time and taxpayers money, now wonder we are a third world town Keen O to Get Kean Out
  • Score: 13

12:42pm Wed 18 Jun 14

Bluelizzy says...

There would be less of this if the punishment was more suitable ie. you lose your car and it's contents on the spot, compulsory 12months bad plus min £1k fine.
There would be less of this if the punishment was more suitable ie. you lose your car and it's contents on the spot, compulsory 12months bad plus min £1k fine. Bluelizzy
  • Score: 9

12:52pm Wed 18 Jun 14

GracesDad says...

Posters warning that it is a criminal offence to fill up and drive off without paying have been put up across the county’s petrol stations.

Yeah that'll stop 'em right?
Posters warning that it is a criminal offence to fill up and drive off without paying have been put up across the county’s petrol stations. Yeah that'll stop 'em right? GracesDad
  • Score: 13

2:04pm Wed 18 Jun 14

BelTower says...

Hardly a "scam" just plain theft
Hardly a "scam" just plain theft BelTower
  • Score: 7

4:46pm Wed 18 Jun 14

boynesider says...

how can theft be "a civil dispute"? confiscate their car..and jail them
how can theft be "a civil dispute"? confiscate their car..and jail them boynesider
  • Score: 4

5:57pm Wed 18 Jun 14

zabby says...

GracesDad wrote:
Posters warning that it is a criminal offence to fill up and drive off without paying have been put up across the county’s petrol stations.

Yeah that'll stop 'em right?
The thieves already know it's a offence,they just don't care
[quote][p][bold]GracesDad[/bold] wrote: Posters warning that it is a criminal offence to fill up and drive off without paying have been put up across the county’s petrol stations. Yeah that'll stop 'em right?[/p][/quote]The thieves already know it's a offence,they just don't care zabby
  • Score: 3

10:11pm Wed 18 Jun 14

Moonblue says...

What on earth does that second to last paragraph mean?
What on earth does that second to last paragraph mean? Moonblue
  • Score: 0

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