THIEVES who dragged a cash machine out of a post office and then forced it open had a nasty shock - it was empty.
The machine had only just been installed at Oakes Post Office on Acre Street, near the Bay Horse roundabout, and had no money in it.
The thieves stole a small white Ford Escort van from Victory Avenue in Paddock to use in the raid at 5am yesterday.
They smashed a large window at the post office, tied a rope around the machine and then used the van to drag it out.
They pulled the machine along Reinwood Road - possibly narrowly avoiding a crash at the Bay Horse roundabout - and forced it open further down the street.
They abandoned the van in nearby Millfield Close and then fled in another getaway vehicle.
Pc Dave McSweeney, of Huddersfield police, said: "The machine had only just been installed and had no money at all in it.
"We are appealing for witnesses, in particular anyone who may have seen the second getaway vehicle."
Pc Neil Dunne, of Huddersfield CID, added: "There is a suggestion that the van almost collided with another vehicle at the roundabout while it was dragging the cash dispenser. It is vital this other driver comes forward."
The raiders are believed to be two white men.
Pc McSweeney added: "Any businesses which have cash machines should review their crime prevention procedures in the light of this offence and seek advice from police crime prevention officers."
Crime prevention specialists Pc Gerry Gallagher and Pc Mick Longden can be contacted on 01484 436839.
Anyone who saw the cash dispenser raid or the thieves making their getaway should call Pc Dunne on 01484 436582.