A CAR that was found almost entirely underwater off a rural lane was believed to have been stolen.
A concerned resident called the police after discovering a car had been submerged in water off Kent Lane in Harbridge, just off the A338.
Police previously received reports of two abandoned Land Rovers in the Ringwood area that had been ‘stolen’ overnight from different addresses in the New Forest.
One of the Land Rovers ended up in the water with just the roof showing.
Multiple emergency services, including the police, ambulance and fire service, attended the scene to check if anyone was trapped in the car.
This wasn’t the case and a rescue operation of the car could commence on Tuesday morning.
A spokesman for Ringwood Police said: The second vehicle was called in by a concerned member of the public who has found the vehicle almost fully submerged in a body of water.
“Thanks to our colleagues from the ambulance and fire services we were able to ascertain that nobody was trapped inside the vehicle and it could be recovered from the river to be returned to the owner.”
He added: “Old style Land Rovers are a vehicle that we see being stolen far too often but there are steps you can take to protect your vehicle such as using a steering wheel lock, installing a tracker to your vehicle and keeping your vehicle in a locked garage.
“Thankfully the first vehicle was located on a main road by a member of the public and was able to be returned to the owner with minimal damage whilst further enquiries are currently ongoing.”
A spokesman for Hampshire and Isle of Whight Fire and Rescue Service said: “Firefighters were called to assist police after a vehicle was found submerged in water on Kent Lane in Harbridge, shortly after 11am on May 30.
“Water rescue trained firefighters were able to enter the water and search the vehicle, with no one found inside.”