In recent weeks we have seen headlines warning van drivers about all manner of thefts taking place. From motorway pirates finding ingenious ways of pulling up alongside vans on motorway service station car parks and A-road lay-by cafés to criminals breaking and entering to rid commercial vehicles of entire exhaust systems for resale in the capital to satisfy the need for low-emission output in the London Low Emission Zone.
That doesn’t rule out the more straight forward robberies, with plenty of unguarded vans being targeted for the potential loot they have in the back by opportunist thieves. Whatever the method, the resulting effect on the drivers’ once-cheap van insurance has been the same: loss of no claims bonus and higher premiums, plus the ball-ache of having to await repairs or replacement kit. And that’s assuming that goods in transit / tool cover has been taken out on top of the base cheap van insurance policy.
The one aspect of many of these reports has been the fact that they have, in the main, taken place in largely urban, sprawling communities, such as Manchester, Birmingham and in the North East. However, it would appear that van thieves are no longer letting the class divide decide who will make good targets as there are more reports of break-ins coming to our attention, this time from the rather upper-class area of Newmarket.
One of the lessons that police and insurance companies try to instil in us is always leave your car locked, fit security devices as both a deterrent and a method of lowering your van insurance quotes, and never leave valuable items on display to put temptation in front of the opportunist who’s in no way averse to making a score down the local boozer for your laptop, regardless of the fact that it may have cost you closer to a grand.
As has been the case with the two Astra vans that have been the victims of break-ins in the race course town, both vehicles having access gained through windows, the goods stolen can physically be replaced, providing you have the appropriate ancillary cover. What cannot be replaced is all of the information on the hard drives of laptops or tools that you had personalised or honed to suit your style of working, perhaps over a number of years.
If you want to keep you van insurance cheap, do not leave valuable goods on or under your van’s front seat; keep them locked away out of sight. Or better still, take valuable items with you and invest in labels that clearly state all valuables are removed, thereby protecting your no claims bonus, thus keeping your van insurance as cheap as possible. Protect your tools, don’t be one!