Yes, petrol is now expensive enough, that it's worth the risk to steal it from someone else.
On friday night, some bastard cut the fuel lines of all 4 cars parked outside our house. We are probably the only people on our street who don't park behind an electric gate, because our driveway only has space for my parents cars on the property. My car lives on the council-owned part of our driveway.
I found out because my sister (who'd been visiting to use our Internet connection) broke down on the way home. With her car, this is perfectly normal, and to be expected. I went out to tow her home (she was only about a 500m away). I couldn't find the tow hook on my car (my Golf has removable tow hooks, and somebody once broke into my car and stole the jack-set containing the removable hook), but I did notice that my car was trailing a line of petrol... odd... I went back to borrow my father's car (with a tow-bar), and towed her home with that.
She was going to borrow my mother's car (she usually does that when my mother is away, and her car breaks down), but noticed that there was a pool of petrol under it, too. Very odd...
At this point, I put 2 and 2 together, and found that all of the cars had cut lines. In the case of my father's car, they hadn't got a fuel line, but had god a brake sensor line instead. (Apparently VWs all have the fuel lines on the outside for safety, so they are the easy targets). On my car, they had only cut the fuel return line, so it could still drive, but would trail petrol.
The police were quick to come, but not very helpful: they said they'd never seen anything like it. They were thinking vandalism or neighbour issues. The questions were "Do you have a dog?" "Do you get on with your neighbours?" etc. You can tell what the normal problems in our area are :-)
The AA refused to come and help or tow the cars to my mechanic, saying the damage was an "insurable risk". I thought most car problems were "insurable risks" and the reason one has AA membership is to sort things out afterwards? This refusal by them is unacceptable, what if it had happened when I was parked somewhere else? Would I have to get my car home by myself?
Fortunately my grandmother's car was in storage in her garage, and I could rescue it. My sister stole her mother's car, too. But I've now got a whole lot of paperwork to sort out, and 4 dead cars to get repaired... As I said, "Bastards!"
- None of the cars have empty tanks, so if they were trying to steal petrol, they didn't succeed.
- The damage came to R500 for the VWs, which isn't bad at all. (Replacing the lines would be a mission, my mechanic repaired them). Excluding many hours of towing, phone calls, e-mail, and SMSs, though.