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Fortunately theft is unusual in Dunbar Harbour but some attempts have been made recently to steal small tenders and outboard motors. What can you do to help prevent this?
The only market for stolen propellers, anchors and outboards is likely to be selling them on to the boating public. If you are offered any of the above which you suspect to be stolen please report this matter to the Police. Anyone buying good equipment at low prices is almost certainly encouraging marine theft.

Some tips to help prevent theft or aid recovery

  • Note all the serial numbers of your equipment.
  • Take photographs to help identify items which may be stolen
  • Paint or engrave the equipment and personalise them with some obvious mark, boat name, etc.
  • Lock as much of your equipment away, chain and padlock the outboard
  • Further security measures include marking the engine somewhere with your own unique mark such as a post code and also taking photographs.
  • Complete the form below and retain in your records to assist recoveryIf possible, ensure that it is not easy to access your boat/ cabin.
  • Have a good quality lock or locking mechanism on the main entry
  • Ensure that all hatches are locked and cannot be easily opened from the outside

A collective effort is required by all concerned to be observant and alert and to report any suspicious activity immediately to the police.

As awareness of the rise of outboard motor thefts increases among owners any steps taken will make thieves think twice before they strike.

The above are all sound measures individuals can take to prevent theft. However, to prevent this type of theft increasing, local collaboration between residents, boat owners, other sailors, insurance advisors and the police is the kind of effort now required to produce a robust response to this potentially worsening problem.

What Dunbar Harbour Trust will do

  • Dunbar Harbour Trust will share information with other local harbours regarding stolen items or attempts at theft and will ask for their co-operation in sharing their issues.

  • Dunbar Harbour Trust will keep the harbour under constant CCTV security surveillance and work closely with Police Scotland to follow up on any reports of suspicious activity.

  • Harbour staff will be extra vigilant when on duty and will do everything possible to monitor your boat.

  • Dunbar Harbour Trust are exploring a number of security upgrades that may include the installation of additional security cameras

  • Dunbar Harbour Trust invite residents, harbour users and visitors to be vigilant and report any suspicious behaviour in the harbour to us on 01368 238022 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with any suspicious behavior which we will then post on social media. That’s proved to have an efficient deterrent effect in other harbours

    Use this document to record the details of your boat and equipment. In the event of a theft, your Insurance Company, the police or a Marine Investigator will ask you for this information.


    Make of vessel: ________________ Model: ____________________ Length: _____________

    Name: _______________________ Colour of Hull: _____________ Colour of Deck: ________

    Colour of Superstructure:____________ Colour of Antifouling (underwater): _____________


    Make of Engine: _______________ Model: __________________ Serial no: ______________

    Gearbox or outdrive – Make: _____ _________________________ Serial No: _____________

    Transom shield serial number (If applicable) – Serial No: ____________________________

    NB    You should find your engine serial number on a plate on the swivel clamp of an outboard or on the top of the engine on a sticker if it is an inboard engine. Gearbox serial numbers are usually on a plate on the gearbox whilst outdrive and transom shield numbers are marked on stickers on the casing usually.


    Make of trailer: _____________________________________ Serial no: _________________

    2/4 wheel: ___________________ Braked/unbraked: _____________

    Colour of mudguards: ___________ Colour of chassis: _____________

    Additional Equipment

    Make Model Serial number


    _____________________ _____________________ ____________________

    _____________________ _____________________ ____________________

    Remember to take photographs of your boat and equipment and then store

    the photographs safely away from the boat, together with any purchase

    receipts and other relevant documentation.



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