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diesel emissions claimsAccording to a new study by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, there has been a marked rise in tool and equipment theft from vans across the UK from 2020/21 to 2021/22.

In 2020/21 the rate of tool and equipment thefts from vans was around one in four but in the latest figures, this has jumped to one in three.

According to VW, with an average value of tools kept in vans coming in at £2,500, this works out at replacement costs of £4.4 billion each year. 

The regional figures for tool theft were interesting in that, despite London having the greatest percentage of thefts, the latest figures dropped – 47% in 2021/22 from 55% in 2020/21 – this was the only region where a fall in tool and equipment thefts from vans was recorded over the two 12-month periods.

The region with the greatest rise in tool thefts was Wales where thefts rose from 4% to 36%. This was closely followed by Yorkshire and the Humber where the increase was 31%. The lowest increase was in the West Midlands where the rise was a mere 3%.

What do thieves steal from vans?

The research found that, unsurprisingly, the most commonly stolen items from vans are tools (66.7%). However, items of general equipment, such as ladders, storage items and units and van safes, are the second most commonly stolen items (55.6%). Personal items, came in third (41.7%) while electronic devices ranked fourth (25%).

Thieves will also steal goods, customer supplies, van equipment, van parts, cash and, to be honest, just about any other item they can easily remove.

How to safeguard your tools and belongings in a van

First and foremost, it's advisable to leave as little as possible in your van, especially when the van is parked out of your sight and at night.

Likewise, thinking carefully about where you park your van is important too – it may sound obvious, but parking your van in a high visibility, busy place when you're working, but out of sight of passing opportunists when at home is possibly the best method for keeping your van and its content safe.

If you must leave items in your van, then making sure you lock it fully, close all windows and enable any security devices are also key if you want to stop thieves stealing your possessions.

 Van insurance with tool theft cover

Lastly, having adequate business van insurance cover in place is essential if you are at risk of theft from your van. Some van insurance providers will include personal possessions cover as standard, but you should check the small print to make sure that the entire cost of your tools and equipment would be covered in case of theft.  

 Get a quote with iVan today to get the cover that you need.  Powered by City Insurance, we work with the UK's top van insurance providers to make sure you can choose the van insurance policy that's right for you and your business.