POLICE have teamed up with Bradford City to tackle the problem of car crime on matchdays this season.
They are urging fans who travel to Valley Parade in their own vehicles to remove anything from view that might appeal to a thief – and to ensure their vehicle is locked before leaving it unattended.
Last season, despite a publicity campaign run by the club, there were a number of instances where gangs targeted cars parked in side streets around Valley Parade.
Now, in the hours leading up to kick-off at every home match this season, officers in the Bradford West Area Neighbourhood Team will be joined by Special Constables and police volunteers to hand out leaflets to fans who park their vehicles in the surrounding area.
Ahead of tomorrow’s visit of Coventry in City’s League One opener, Sergeant Graham Dyson said: "No-one wants to lose on matchday, and we hope that fans taking cars to the game will spare some extra time to make sure their vehicles are locked and all valuables are removed or hidden from view.
"Leaving your vehicle unlocked or leaving valuables where they can be seen is like giving an opportunist thief an open goal.
"A thief can be in and out of your vehicle in less time than it takes to score a goal. Always check the door handle to make sure your vehicle is locked and that valuables are removed from view."
A Bradford City spokesman said: “We ran a publicity campaign during last season to highlight the problem of thefts from cars during home matches and West Yorkshire Police made great strides in that period to tackle the problem.
"We are delighted that West Yorkshire Police are going even further for the new season, however, supporters can help themselves greatly by removing valuables from their cars before they leave home or, where that is not possible, by making sure any valuables are out of sight when they park their car for the game.
"Unlocked cars or valuables in full view make easy pickings for thieves who target the area, knowing drivers will not be returning until after the game - please do everything you can to avoid this happening to you."