YUMA, Ariz. - In this week's Home Grown segment we hear from local law enforcement on what they do to help prevent tractor theft.
We have reported on this in the past. Tractor theft has been a recurring problem here in our region.
It's a problem that is important to address because if farm equipment gets stolen it could delay harvest, affect the crops and our local farm businesses.
Law enforcement works together with farmers around the clock to decrease AG theft
Here locally, they have installed gates on the levee to prevent tractors from being taken into Mexico, which was a big problem in 2006.
“We’ve seen a decrease of things with the gates and we’ve seen the Sheriff's office out there working and volunteer units as well at night time to go patrol and sit around the fields and look at things and we worry about this especially during the winter time when there is so much agriculture equipment out in the field," Alfonso Zavala with Yuma County Sheriff's office told 13 on Your Side.
In the past, farm equipment from Yuma has been traced all the way to Russia, where parts were disassembled.
Tips for farmers to keep this from happening to them are to remove keys from the equipment, hide vehicles in a locked garage, report crimes as they happen and continue to maintain a relationship with local law enforcement.
Some tractors cost between one quarter to a half a million dollars. Most of the time tractors are left out in the middle of fields. If you see any suspicious activity at night around tractors or other farm equipment contact local law enforcement.