Crooks stole half a dozen gas canisters from a property near Woodham Mortimer.

The suspects entered the property in Burnham Road at around 9pm on Sunday, October 28.

Within five minutes of the incident, a person dialled 999 to report the six missing 47kg canisters.

A spokesman for Essex Police said: “Suspects used an implement to cut a lock securing a cage in which gas canisters were stored. Once entry was gained to the cage, the suspects removed six 47kg canisters.”

Advice from Essex Police made clear the dangers involved in handling canisters such as the items stolen.

A report from the police added: “Pressurised cylinders are potentially hazardous items. The greatest physical hazard represented by the compressed gas or oxy-acetylene cylinder is the tremendous force that may be released if it is knocked over or damaged.

“Fire and rescue should be advised of any incident where pressurised cylinders are involved and a 200m cordon, should be put in place and remain until fire and rescue advise otherwise.”

If you have any information that could help Essex Police recover the stolen canisters, call 101 and quote crime reference 42/157277/18.