At least a dozen petrol caps were forced open last weekend. / sur

Wave of petrol thefts from cars in Malaga as prices reach record highs

People living in the La Princesa and La Unión neighbourhoods are calling for a greater police presence at a piece of waste ground they have to use as a parking area

FRANCISCO JIMÉNEZ Malaga

With petrol more expensive than it has ever been before, it is especially annoying to fill your tank and then find that somebody removes it all from your car. But that is what has been happening recently to people from La Princesa and La Unión districts of Malaga city who park on a piece of waste ground between Calle Agustín Martín Carrión and Avenida de Juan XXIII. They say the petrol caps of at least a dozen cars were forced open last weekend.

“There is no security and no street lighting, so people are taking advantage of that to steal the fuel,” says the vice-president of La Princesa residents’ association, Francisco Rodríguez, and he believes the problem is bound to get worse as the price of petrol rises.

The association is calling for a greater police presence in the area, and is also urging people to call the police if they see anyone acting suspiciously near the cars.

This is practically the only place to park a car in this area because so much building work is going on. In fact, the construction of new apartment blocks has forced the council to stop using the provisional car park which it opened a year ago to make up for the loss of spaces while the works in Carril de la Cordobesa were being carried out.

The municipal car park company (Smassa) says it has plans to turn a plot of land over the railway tracks into a temporary car park with 195 spaces for local residents, until an underground car park with room for 400 vehicles can built.