PEOPLE are being urged to keep a lookout for thieves stealing drain covers following a spate of thefts.

Eight gulley covers have been removed from the streets of Belvedere and Crayford in recent days, creating a major safety hazard for pedestrians and drivers.

Last year more than 100 covers were stolen from across the borough, costing more than £25,000 to replace.

The industrial cast-iron grids are used to cover surface water drains in the roads but thieves take them to sell for scrap.

Bexley Council is concerned that if the culprits are not caught quickly, someone may be seriously injured by falling or driving into an exposed drain.

The council recently sprayed all its gulley covers with permanent blue or green paint, so they can be easily identified if someone tries to sell them.

To report further incidents call the Council on 020 8303 7777.