EXTRA police patrols have been drafted in to crack down on an increase in car break-ins in Glasgow's South Side.

Officers are warning vehicle owners to take more care as thieves become more brazen, breaking into cars to snatch valuables left on display.

Police in Govan say there has been a sharp rise in the number of cars being broken into and valuables being stolen in Ibrox, Plan­tation Park, Springfield Quay, Tradeston, Bellahouston and Govan.

Cars parked at the Southern General Hospital have also been targeted in a flurry of break-ins in recent weeks.

Inspector John Haynes is asking vehicle owners to be more vigilant.

He said: "When parking, car owners should ensure all valuables are removed from the vehicle or, at the very least, hidden from sight.

"Park in a populated area where there are more people and vehicles passing and in areas with good lighting and CCTV cameras nearby.

"These simple actions should help stop a thief from targeting your vehicle."

Vehicle windows are being smashed or doors forced by thieves who then steal items left on show inside the car.

Items such as satnav devices, mobile phones, laptops, chargers, rucksacks and gym bags are being stolen.

However, on some occasions no items are left on show and the glove compartments has been searched with items stolen.

Inspector Haynes warned that this tends to happen more when satnav holders are visible or the suction marks have been left behind on windscreens - a telltale sign for would-be thieves that valuables may be hidden in the car's glovebox.

The majority of thefts are taking place during weekdays between 10am and 6pm, but also Saturday evenings into Sunday afternoons.

Inspector Haynes also requested that residents and employees in these areas call police on the non-emergency 101 phone number to report any suspicious activity surrounding vehicle crime.

stef.lach@ heraldandtimes.co.uk