We've put together some seasonal crime prevention tips for you and your home.
Spring is when most people get out in their gardens. Things to consider:
- Keep garages and sheds locked while using tools and ensure you put them away after use.
- Make sure garage doors are closed and secure
- Make sure fences around your home are secure and not broken
- Planting defensive hedging and plants may help to deter criminals
- If you get home after dark, light timers can be used to give the impression you are home
- If you are planning a holiday, ask neighbours to watch over your home and to ensure that post is pushed completely through the letterbox
Things to consider over the summer:
- If you are going on holiday, ask neighbours to keep an eye on your home while you are away
- If you are going to be away for a long time, consider letting your local beat team know
- Light timers set in different areas of your home can help to give the impression that someone is at home
- Ensure windows and doors are securely locked whenever you leave your home - even if you are just nipping to the shops, but especially if you are going away
- Anti-social behaviour can be more of a problem during the school holidays, so ensure you know where your children are
- Keep garages and sheds secure and put valuable tools and toys away
- Make sure you property mark valuable items
- Don't discuss your holiday dates in public where you could be overheard
- Don't leave calendars on display marked with 'Holiday - two weeks'
Autumn brings with it longer nights as well as Halloween and Bonfire Night. Things to consider:
- Light timers can be used to give the impression that you are home
- Be aware of your neighbours, especially more vulnerable people. Make sure they are locking their doors and windows properly and that their possessions are stored securely
- Ensure you know where your children are on Halloween, accompany younger ones and check that older ones know what acceptable behaviour is and what isn't
Winter brings cold weather and long nights, Christmas and the New Year. We'd suggested you consider:
- Light timers to give the impression you are home
- Not displaying your Christmas trees and presents by open windows, which can tempt a would be thief
- When shopping for gifts, do not leave them on display in your car
- Dispose of wrapping and boxes that show what you have bought discreetly
- Watch out for vulnerable neighbours, make sure they are not the target of con men or bogus callers
- When you go out to the car to get something have a quick check up and down your road to make sure all is in order
- Make sure you tell your neighbours if you have a holiday over the Christmas period
- Don't just hide away of an evening when you get home, take a quick look out of the window as you go past to make sure your neighbourhood is okay
For further information, you can also contact your local neighbourhood watch co-ordinator or get in touch with your local beat officer by calling 101.