Police patrols will continue to be stepped up this weekend as they look to crack down on ram raiders across Cambridgeshire.

Ram raiders target the county at least 10 times a year, according to crime data analysed by Cambridgeshire Police, with Huntingdonshire the most affected by ATM thefts.

The district recorded 30 offences in the past 10 years.

Detective Chief Inspector Chris O’Brien, said ram raids are more likely to take place between September and January as nights become darker.

“We believe ATM thefts are likely to increase in the coming months and are launching a proactive policing response,” he said.

“We will also be working with partner agencies to target suspects and educate businesses with ATM machines about potential risks, and any protective measures they can take.”

Officers in Cambridgeshire have asked the public to:

  • Ensure their vehicles have working trackers installed - especially owners of high-performance cars, ‘heavy vehicles’ such as transits and flat beds which could be used to ram an ATM and plant;

  • consider installing video doorbells or CCTV;

  • report anything suspicious, for example people scoping houses or tampering with number plates;

  • report any instances of people appearing to be paying attention to ATM machines, including taking photos or unauthorised people attaching ‘out of order’ signs to give an impression the machine is not working properly;

  • raise concerns about anything that doesn’t feel right involving high performance cars, ‘heavy vehicles’ or plant travelling in the vicinity towns and villages during darkness;

  • report high-performance or ‘heavy’ vehicles that are not usually in the area and appear to have been left parked for a few days.

In January, ram raids were reported in Walsoken, Chatteris, Cambridge and Yaxley, causing havoc to businesses and residents.

Det Chief Insp O’Brien said the police force is determined to make it harder for thieves to target shops and ATM machines.

“But we can’t do it alone,” he added.

“We need the public’s help to report anything suspicious or anything they see that might not seem quite right, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem.”

Any concerns or information can be reported through Cambridgeshire Police’s web chat page or by calling 101, quoting Op ATMosphere.