Police Connect - Communities urged to secure their homes & vehicles this autumn
by Alan Comber
Members of the public are being urged to increase their vigilance around home and vehicle security this autumn.
This reminder comes following a number of break-ins reported in the west and south of the county over the last month.
Dark evenings can provide the perfect cover for burglars but by carrying out a few simple crime prevention steps, householders and motorists can thwart opportunist criminals.
The force recently launched a new crime prevention initiative, known as 1st Principle, which highlights that simple, inexpensive measures can easily be undertaken by anyone in the community.
As part of the initiative, an online suite of bespoke, easy to follow crime prevention documents are available to view and download on the constabulary’s website for free. Visit: https://www.suffolk.police.uk/advice/crime-prevention-z
Anyone with information about thieves operating in their area should contact Suffolk police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.
- Lock all doors and remove the keys before leaving the house.
- Keep front doors locked even when you are at home and especially if you are in the back gardens.
- Close all windows fully before you leave the house, lock downstairs windows and remove the keys.
- Use window limiters to allow air in instead of keeping windows fully open, even when you’re at home.
- Install window locks on upstairs windows that can be easily accessed by a flat roof.
- Lock back gates using a sturdy lock such as a closed shackle padlock to no less than CEN 3-4 security grade or 5 lever lock.
- Make your home look lived in – use timer switches if you’re not home.
- ‘Dusk-to-dawn’ sensored security lighting is a cheap, low cost way of making sure the front of your home or shed/outbuilding is well-lit.
- Visible burglar alarms can make burglars think twice; get specialist advice and consult your insurance company.
- You could also consider installing a doorbell camera in order to potentially film an opportunist burglar in action.
- Hedging and shrubs to the front of your property should be pruned to no higher than 1m and trim trees up from the ground to 2m. This will allow a clear line of sight across your property and will stop the garden being used as a hiding place.
- Keep your valuables, jewellery, cash, passport and deeds to your property in a safe.
- Never leave spare keys in an open place. Be aware, burglars know all the usual hiding places so never leave a spare key under the doormat or under a garden gnome.
- Keep dustbins and wheelie-bins away from fencing/gates as these can be used by thieves to climb into windows or used to escape.
- Make sure valuables are property marked. Take photographs and keep a note of any serial numbers.
- Don’t leave equipment and tools lying around that can be used by burglars to break into your home, such as hammers, shovels or gardening tools. Keep ladders locked away and out of sight.
Help us keep our communities safe.
Police advice on a variety of subjects can be accessed via https://www.suffolk.police.uk/advice
To report something, or to otherwise contact Police, use the link http://www.suffolk.police.uk/contact-us
To report something anonymously call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or visit www.crimestoppers-uk.org
Alternatively call 101 for non-urgent matters.
Always call 999 in emergencies, or if an immediate police response is required.
Police Connect Team