Another excavator has fallen prey to North Vancouver’s industrious worksite thieves. This time their target was a golf course.
Burglars broke into a maintenance yard on Northlands Golf Course Monday night and drove off with a Bobcat excavator worth $44,000. It was the third piece of heavy equipment of this type to vanish from a North Vancouver site in recent months.
It appears the culprits knew what they were doing, said Cpl. Richard De Jong, a spokesman for the North Vancouver RCMP.
Bobcats and similar pieces of equipment have a universal ignition, he explained. To protect the machine from theft, owners often install a second electronic device that has to be activated with a key or fob before the engine will start. The thieves somehow bypassed that second line of security in this case.
“Somebody had intimate knowledge of all this,” said De Jong. “It was certainly well planned out.”
They also managed to enter a locked compound without being detected, and likely brought along a trailer or flatbed truck to haul the vehicle away, he noted.
Excavators are being targeted because of the high price they can fetch on the black market, said De Jong.
“Province wide, there’s certainly a demand for stolen industrial equipment,” he said. “A lot of this stuff ends up up north or at other industrial sites. . . . It’s no different than power saws, skill saws or jackhammers that are stolen from job sites quite regularly and sold through pawn shops or the back of a guy’s truck.”
In June, thieves made off with a 14-tonne excavator worth almost $180,000 from a construction site on West 15th Street. Another similar machine was taken from a North Vancouver site earlier this year.
The white and red S630 Bobcat stolen Monday was marked with serial number A3NT11682. Anyone with information is asked to contact the North Vancouver RCMP.