Nelson's County Marine Covers and Norfolk Leathercraft
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Theft of Outboard Engines Rise - Simplicity Wins

From the various trials to address the thefts it was clear that any new ideas needed to be simple, cheap and above all else hassle free.

From this need the idea of the replacement cowling was born which then developed into the engine cover now in use. This was not one person's idea but a collective response developed by a number of people whose enthusiasm in tackling the problem continued to drive the project forward.

The basic idea was simple, remove the outboard engine cowling or cover and replace it with a flexible cover that would protect the engine from the elements but would not allow the engine to be started or used. The cowling, once removed could then easily be carried back and forth as the boat was needed.

Should the engine then be stolen its commercial value would be considerably reduced and would necessitate the sourcing of a replacement cowling. These are expensive items, especially when purchased from dealers, and such purchases would inevitably increase the risk of identification of the thief. Local chandlers and marine engine manufacturer's agents were informed of the plan and were encouraged to report any suspicious enquiries for the purchase of replacement cowlings, not items that would normally be carried in stock by dealers.

Simple Concept

The concept is to reduce the attractiveness of your outboard to a thief by devaluing it by removing the cowling. It is likely to cost at least £100 to replace the cowling and increases risk for the criminal by increasing the chances of detection through recovery /conviction. The simple locking point is designed to help to reduce casual vandalism and the chances of it being damaged or lost through our local weather conditions.

The cover is not designed to be used whilst the engine is running and is not designed to be used in preference to other crime reduction methods. As is usual it is designed as a crime reduction method to be deployed along with other measures dependant on your assessment of the risk. We still recommend that the best policy is to remove your engine from your boat when / if possible and to use additional traditional and/or high tech crime reduction methods along with the cover whenever possible.

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