Motorists whose vehicles are stolen now stand a greater chance of getting them back following the installation of updated technology to Police Scotland’s helicopter and road policing units.
The high-tech equipment, supplied by ‘Tracker’, detects signals given out by stolen vehicles fitted with the company’s device, typically placed in a hidden location.
So far this year, five stolen vehicles have been recovered by officers using the equipment in the helicopter alone, and there is now an increased chance of stolen vehicles being detected and recovered with the enhanced equipment also fitted to road vehicles.
Inspector Darren Faulds said: “Once someone discovers their vehicle is missing and informs the company, the device is switched on and begins emitting a signal.
“The advantage of the helicopter is that being at height, it can see this signal over a much wider area than units fitted in cars where the range can be restricted due to nearby buildings if it is in an urban environment.
“If the helicopter picks up the signal it can follow the stolen vehicle without the thieves being aware, and also direct other units such as motorcycles or dog units to the exact location, so ground-based officers can stop the vehicle, apprehend the driver and any passengers, and recover it back to the owner.
“We have been using this type of equipment for many years and this upgrade means it remains a powerful tool in the fight against vehicle crime.