The Nanaimo RCMP say over the last month, officers have responded to more than a dozen vehicle theft calls near Nanaimo River Road.

Police say in most cases the cars were parked overnight while their owners headed into the backcountry to camp.

The RCMP says the road is becoming a hotspot and on one occasion, three cars were targeted in one night.

“One vehicle had every single window smashed out. The owners reported the vehicles had been rummaged through with items of limited value being taken, explained Cst. Derek Balderston with the detachment. 

The RCMP says the thieves are smashing the windows regardless of whether valuables are visible or not.

The detachment says Nanaimo River Road is rural, largely unlit and sees limited use during the night making it an ideal area for thieves to target. 

The Nanaimo RCMP is encouraging outdoor enthusiasts heading to the backcountry overnight to consider being dropped off to avoid leaving their vehicle undefended.