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Sutton Bridge farmer speaks out after spate of machinery thefts



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A Sutton Bridge farmer has revealed the true cost GPS thefts can leave with them after a spate of incidents in recent days.

Lincolnshire Police has confirmed that 13 thefts were reported between September 17 and 19, with thousands of pounds worth of equipment being taken from sites across southern parts of the county.

Sutton Bridge farmer Simon Booth has given an insight into the impact the thefts can have on business and the struggles all farmers face.

A Sutton Bridge farmer has revealed the true cost GPS thefts can leave.
A Sutton Bridge farmer has revealed the true cost GPS thefts can leave.

He said: “It’s terrible and it has such an effect on farmers when it comes to replacing the GPS units and then insurance costs shoot up.

“The information which they then lose is devastating because a lot of field data is stored on these devices and even once a new device has been installed you’ve got to start again from scratch unless you’ve downloaded it all on to a USB stick and kept that locked up.

“It’s just like having a laptop stolen.”

GPS devices are worth thousands of pounds, ranging anywhere from around £1,000 for a basic unit up to around £20,000 for a top of the range unit due to accuracy.

Simon explained that farmers can face serious issues and delays if the units are stolen.

He said: “ Sprayers are reliant on GPS units because they help to make it efficient and can control the sprayer a lot more than if you were to do it manually.

“The problem is that you don’t know how many days you’ll be out of action if this happens.

“With COVID, everything is moving slower and you don’t know how long it will take for the manufacturer to get another unit down or when you’ll be up and running again which is a real problem for everyone.

“I’m not blaming the police at all, but they need more officers so they can try to get it dealt with.”



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