MOTORISTS in Carmarthenshire are being warned not to leave their Christmas presents in the car.

While out Christmas shopping, the advice is not to leave anything in unattended vehicles and keep shopping with you until you return to your car.

But if that is not possible, always lock items securely in the boot and park in a busy, well-lit area. Never leave items on show on seats or in the foot wells of vehicles as this is an open invitation to thieves. Never leave wrapped Christmas presents in an unattended vehicle.

But it’s not just presents that are at risk. Purses, phones and cash are continuing to be stolen from cars, often when doors are left unlocked. So advise to hide valuables, don’t leave them in sight.

Motorists are advised to keep their car in the garage if they have one, or on the driveway. If they don’t have a driveway they should park on a well-lit area of street.

Make sure all windows are closed and doors locked, and do not leave the Sat Nav on the screen. Do not leave shopping in sight. When out park in well-lit areas or safer car parks.

The advice comes from Carmarthenshire Safeguarding Communities’ Acquisitive Crime Action Group, which has representatives from the police, fire and rescue service and County Council.

Dyfed Powys Police are also running a scheme to remind motorists to keep their cars safe and secure.

The vulnerable vehicle scheme sees neighbourhood policing officers target cars where a window had been left open or valuables were left clearly on display inside. They send a letter to the motorists concerned giving security advice.

Chair of the acquisitive crime action group Inspector Richard Janas said: “Don’t let criminals spoil your Christmas. Never leave any Christmas presents or other valuable items on show in an unattended vehicle. Lock your car at all times and where possible park in a garage or well area.”

Council executive board member for community safety Cllr Cefin Campbell said: “I would urge people to follow the advice on not leaving Christmas shopping or valuables in view in the car and keeping them with them or hidden in the boot.”

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