Hundreds of screws have been found scattered across two roads, causing thousands of pounds worth of damage to drivers’ cars.

Stonards Hill and Alderton Way in Loughton were both targeted last week, with members of the public believing the perpetrators are going out at night to stay undetected.

Many drivers have had burst tyres because of the screws, with one Audi owner reportedly having to replace three at the cost of £750.

Chris Hodgson, 58, of Alderton Way, has taken hundreds of screws off the road.

Several of his neighbours have been affected and he said he has “no doubt” that the acts are criminal.

Mr Hodgson said one theory about the crimes is that a frustrated resident hopes to hit back at drivers using the roads as “rat runs”.

They need to consider the potential consequences of their actions, he added.

“They might think ‘Clearly, it is just going to damage the tyres’.

“But if someone doesn’t realise their tyres are like that and then goes on the motorway, it could end up killing people.

“It is not an innocent little thing like the person thinks it is.

“With all the cars on the motorway before Christmas, it could be a real killer.”

Addressing the perpetrator, he said: “I would like them to think twice really, because they could end up killing somebody.

“Especially in an area where there are lots of kids, you don’t know who is in the car.”

A similar thing happened last year, he added, with cars also damaged at the time.

After being contacted by the Epping Forest Guardian, Essex Police confirmed they are treating the latest incident as criminal damage.

They also said nails were found among the screws in the road.

A spokesman said: “Police were called just before 7pm on Wednesday, November 23 to reports a vehicle was damaged… the victim, a man in his 30s, reported receiving three punctures.”

Have you received a puncture because of screws in the road, or have you spotted them on the ground? Get in touch with our reporter Joseph Flaig by phoning 07795 316 211.