Burglary in South Yorkshire is now on the decrease. This is partly due to the work South Yorkshire Police are doing to catch the proficient criminals, but is also due to individuals taking just a few steps can make a big difference in keeping your home safe from burglary.
Here are a few tips to keep your homes secure:
• Keep your door and windows locked at all times, even when you are home. Sneak-in burglaries occur when you are in another room and your car keys or purse can be taken quickly.
• Keep your doors locked when you are in the garden – criminals can access your front door when you are in the back garden• Keep all door and car keys out of sight. Never leave a key under a plant pot or in a safe place – it is the first place they will look• Ensure you have a visual burglar alarm • Install good outside lighting with night lights and mobility sensors• Get a trusted neighbour to keep an eye on your property
• Leave radios or lights in your house on a timer to make the property appear occupied• Make sure the fences around your garden are in good condition
• Secure bikes at home by locking them to an immoveable object inside a locked shed or garage• Keep ladders and tools stored away; don't leave them outside where they could be used to break into your home• Ensure side gates are locked to prevent access to the rear of the property
• Improve natural surveillance at the front of your property i.e. trim high hedges• Mark your property with postcode and house number and register your property for free with Immobilise• Consider joining or forming a Neighbourhood Watch scheme• Remove valuables from view of ground floor windows
• Store any high value items in a properly secured safe or bank vault
Doors and windows are the primary route of entry and exit for most burglars, so it’s vital that you know what the safest kinds of doors and locking systems are. Remember to take this guide with you if you are considering buying new ones.
If you replace doors, ensure that they have been tested to withstand attack and meet one of the following standards: PAS 24:2012, STS 201 or LPS 1175 SR2.
Tips and Advice
• The door should be fitted with a 5 lever mortice deadlock.
• Ensure that the frame is strong and will support the door, hinges and lock.• Make sure the door is suitable for external use and is a minimum of 44mm thick.
• Consider fitting a London Bar or Birmingham bar to provide additional support to the door frame.• Letterboxes should have an internal cover plate.
• Fit a door viewer at the user height [consider several heights to accommodate all occupants
]• Do not leave house keys in or near the door as they can get removed through the letterbox.
A distraction burglary is when a criminal enters your home under a false identity and steals from you. Elderly and vulnerable people are more at risk as people claiming to be from the water board, police, builders and other tradesmen gain access to your property by the homeowner.Once inside your home, one will claim to be checking a tap, water supply, boiler etc. whilst another one will look for valuables and quickly steal them without you noticing.
Tips and Advice
• If you are even slightly unsure never let anyone have access to your home• Always ask for identification• Ask for a number to call for their organisation
• Ask for their head-office to call you to make an appointment
• There is no such thing as the water board anymore• Your energy suppliers will never ask to enter your property without a pre-arranged appointment• If they claim to be from the police ask for their warrant number
• Call 101 if you are suspicious
Going away on holiday
Make your home look like someone is living in it:• Use automatic timer-switches to turn your lights and radios on when it goes dark
• Cancel any newspaper or milk deliveries• Use the Royal Mail's 'keepsafe' service - they keep your mail for up to 2 months while you're away. Mail sitting on your doorstep is a sign that you are away
• Trusted neighbours may be able to help you by collecting your post, opening and closing curtains and they could park their car on your driveway
• Avoid adding holiday pictures and posts to social media websites when your home is empty