Ulster Unionist Party MEP Jim Nicholson has backed calls from the Ulster Farmers’ Union urging those in the farming community to be vigilant as PSNI statistics show a definite increase in the level of rural crime.
In the period from 1st June to 30th July 2017, PSNI statistics have highlighted a 10% increase in rural crime, with many rural crimes still going unreported. Quad bikes and other mechanical vehicles were among the most likely items to be stolen.
Mr Nicholson said: “Unfortunately in this day and age there are those out there with no due respect for others or their property and insist on committing rural crime. Therefore, I back the calls from the UFU for farmers and rural businesses to remain vigilant, especially as the darker evenings are beginning to draw in.
“Serious rural crime can have an immediate effect on farm businesses, with major revenue being lost and huge stress being put on individuals.
“Therefore, even the most simple measures put in place can help deter any potential rural crimes. Ensuring gates are securely locked, and tools and expensive equipment are locked away can go a long way.
“Also, by ensuring your farmyard has motion detecting lighting or other forms of good lighting can also prove to deter potential criminals. Common sense and a little bit of careful thought can go a long way in preventing rural crimes.
“Do not give criminals an excuse to try and steal from your farm. Look after your farm business and look out for your neighbours.”