Thieves target charity minibus

PUBLISHED: 13:10 29 November 2013 | UPDATED: 13:25 29 November 2013

The manager of TRIP Community Transport, Neil Hurlock, with the charity's minibus before it was targeted by thieves.

The manager of TRIP Community Transport, Neil Hurlock, with the charity's minibus before it was targeted by thieves.

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Wheel nuts removed from community transport vehicle in Honiton.

Callous thieves could have put the lives of community transport passengers at risk after removing wheel nuts from a charity minibus in Honiton.

The vehicle, which belongs to TRIP Community Transport Association, had all the chrome wheelrims stolen and the wheel nuts were discarded on the ground.

TRIP manager Neil Hurlock said: “The fact that someone undid the wheel nuts is worrying because it could have put people’s lives at risk as the vehicle could have lost a wheel at speed.”

The incident is believed to have occurred overnight last Thursday when the vehicle was parked in the former British Legion Club car park.

Luckily, the theft was spotted by one of the charity’s volunteers who noticed the missing wheel rims and then discovered the wheel nuts on the ground - 16 out the 24 wheel nuts were removed leaving only two on each wheel.

The minibus had to be taken to a nearby garage to be repaired.

Mr Hurlock added: “The vehicle was out of use for the day as we had to get replacement wheel nuts. We were able to find another vehicle to cover for the day but it could have deprived a group of people from going on a day out.

“All our vehicles are inspected prior to use.”

Anyone with information is urged to call police on 101 and quote crime reference number KH/13/926.

TRIP Community Transport Association, which is based in New Street, provides a ring and ride and voluntary car service to passengers. For more information call TRIP on 01404 46529.


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