At about 12.30am today a member of the public called North Yorkshire Police to report a number of suspicious vehicles, including a quad bike, being driven along the B6160 in the Yorkshire Dales, north of Skipton.
Officers responded immediately and a quad bike was found abandoned on the roadside. Meanwhile, a Ford Transit failed to stop for police, and was pursued onto the A65. The vehicle was stopped at 12.50am and a second quad bike was found inside.
The driver, a 27-year-old man from Shipley, was arrested on suspicion of motor vehicle theft, driving without a licence or insurance, cannabis possession and burglary. He has been released under investigation while enquiries continue.
PCSO Sally Breen, of North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Taskforce, said: “I am urging anyone who owns a quad bike – and particularly if they live in a rural area – to take extra steps to ensure their vehicles are left safe and secure.
“It’s much better to spend a bit of time and money now on better security than to go through the inconvenience and upset of having your vehicle stolen. Members of the public act as our eyes and ears in rural areas, and so if you are aware of any suspicious activity, don’t hesitate to contact us, and we will take action.”
North Yorkshire Police are also continuing to urge people in rural areas to be vigilant, and report any suspicious activity to the police, as part of its Call It In campaign.
Quad bikes and all-terrain vehicles are among the items most likely to be stolen in rural areas. In light of this incident and other recent thefts of such vehicles, police are urging owners to:
• Park as close to your premises as possible, ideally in a locked garage or well-lit open space, preferably out of sight from nearby roads
• Remove keys when not in use, and do not leave them near the vehicle
• Fit wheel clamps and/or locking posts, and consider an alarm
• Mark or customise your vehicle so it is easily identifiable
• Consider fitting tracking devices for high-value vehicles
• Keep a record of all vehicles, including photographs and serial numbers