WELL over a hundred metal signs have been stolen from the roadside in Thurrock in 2011 alone.
Thieves have targeted 44 different sites across the borough, stealing everything from bend and roundabout chevrons to the lower panels of large interchange signs.
The council’s cabinet member responsible for transport and road safety is Cllr Andy Smith and he told Wednesday (19 October) evening’s meeting of the council that Thurrock was now using plastic signs to replace the stolen ones — and they are still being taken!
The new signs even have writing on them informing thieves that they are of no scrap value, but this does not deter them.
Cllr Smith was responding to a question from Cllr Danny Nicklen asking about “road signs and traffic furniture” in “the Stanford bypass area” and asking: “Will the portfolio holder ensure that steps are taken to replace these?”
Cllr Smith explained it was a borough-wide problem and that the council was doing all it could to keep up with replacing the stolen signs.
Speaking afterwards, he said: “This is a tremendous problem especially in these difficult financial times.
“It’s hard to believe we replace these stolen signs with ones which have no scrap value and yet they still get nicked. You have to ask yourself are these people just doing it to cost the council tax-payer money?”