A WARNING has been issued to residents after a string of burglaries and car fires in Southampton and Eastleigh.

Police are urging residents to make sure their homes are secure following the incidents, which began on September 25.

On each occasion a key safe was pulled off the wall of a building before car keys, cars, wallets, and electrical items were stolen.

As reported by the Daily Echo, one incident saw a Ford Grand C-Max stolen from Poole Road, Southampton, before being found burned out in Napier Road on Wednesday.

The crimes have happened in Netley Abbey, Bitterne, and Peartree.

In total two stolen cars were found abandoned, while a further two were left burned out.

Daily Echo:

Southampton East Neighbourhood Inspector Sharman Wicks said: “Key safes are generally a reassurance, and not a concern, however we are worried that keys safes fixed on walls next to front doors are more likely to be targeted than those round the back or in a more obscure location.

“To protect your home and belongings, consider relocating the key safe to somewhere less obvious and contact the company that makes your key safe and ask how it can be made more secure.

“We understand that key safes are vital for some people in the community, however some of us might have them as a helpful back-up system for when we or members of our family lose keys. Consider taking the key out when you know you won’t need it, like at night when these burglaries have occurred.

“To protect your home further against burglary, we would always recommend installing security lights, alarms and CCTV."

Residents in Napier Road, Southampton, said they heard very loud bangs just after 6.30am on Monday.

A resident, who asked not want to be named, said: "I was in bed and I heard three very loud bangs.

"It sounded like gun shots, like and explosion.

"I looked on Facebook and I saw there was a fire.

"It was loud but it sounded faraway.

"When I came outside I realised it was here."

Another resident added: "As the fire brigade were putting it out there was another bang."

A Hampshire Constabulary spokesman said: "If you see anyone acting suspiciously, please call 101 or 999 if it’s happening now."