We as the local Police Team are happy to give free crime prevention information and home security advice to anyone on the ward. Please contact us using the details in my signature at the bottom of the email.
Below is A LOT(!) of information but I think with the rise in Burglaries we've had in the area it's well worth taking a few minutes out to inform ourselves of these security tips. We are getting new NHW members on a regular basis so apologies if you have received the info below. It is all still very relevant………
Secure your perimeter
1. Keeping your front gate closed sends a psychological message of privacy, so consider investing in a gate spring.
2. Ensure that side access to the rear garden is secured with a 2 metre high fence and gate. You can fix trellis topping to your fence as it makes climbing difficult.
3. Ensure ladders are put away and bins can’t be turned into climbing aids
4. For a perimeter fence by a public path or other vulnerable area consider defensive or prickly shrubbery on your side of the fencing.
5. An outdoor light operated by sensors can be used to make intruders feel vulnerable and observed.
6. Illuminate areas such as the front, side and rear of your home
7. Make sure passers-by can see the front of your home by cutting your shrubs and bushes to 1m so burglars can’t work without being seen.
How to secure your doors
· When buying a new a door it is better to buy a new “door set”, the complete assembled frame and door, certified to British Standard PAS 24-1 ‘Doors of Enhanced Security’.
· If refurbishing a door check that the frame is firmly fixed and sturdy. If it is weak or rotten, replace it.
· Check that the door hinges are sturdy and secured with strong, long screws.
· For added security fit hinge bolts or security hinges. These help to reinforce the hinge side of a door against force and protect the hinge if your door opens outwards.
· If fitting locks to a standard wooden door fit a 5-lever mortise lock plus a night latch or rim lock both tested to BS 3621. These are a minimum insurance requirement.
· If your door is uPVC or Composite then it should be fitted with a Multipoint lock meeting BS 3621.
· Europrofile cylinders used on uPVC and Composite doors should meet TS007 and for additional protection use a security door handle.
· Consider fitting a cage or restrictor on your letterbox to prevent thieves from putting their hands or gadgets through the letterbox.
· If fitting an external letterbox make sure it is tested to TS009:2012 as this covers free standing or surface mounted letterboxes.
· Fit a door viewer so you can identify people before opening the door.
· Door chains can stop callers pushing their way in, but must be securely fixed to avoid screws being pulled out. They will not help secure a locked door against burglary.
How to secure your windows
Many people focus on securing their doors and forget about their windows and secondary doors in their homes.
· When buying new windows, install windows which are certified to British Standard PAS 24: Enhanced security performance requirements for doorsets and windows in the UK.
· Window locks are essential on ground floors and above flat roofs. They can be retro fitted to many windows.
· Glazing may be protected from being smashed with the addition of accredited adhesive window film.
· Patio doors and conservatories are vulnerable so if not secure install additional locks and security blocks to stop lifting or forced entry.
· When buying patio doors ask for the sliding section to be on the inside and for anti-lift blocks. Multi-locking systems are recommended or have mortise security bolts with removable keys at the top and bottom of both doors.
Secure the inside of your home
A home that looks empty is more likely to be targeted by a burglar, use automatic timer-switches to turn on a light and perhaps a radio when it goes dark, even for just a couple of hours.
· Take photos of your expensive items and keep copies of them with your insurance policy.
· Think about fitting a small safe.
· For electronic or larger items, use a commercial or forensic marker which identifies the item as yours to increase your chance of getting it back if it’s stolen.
· Do not close your curtains during the daytime; this can suggest your home is empty.
· A pile of post on the doormat is a clear sign that you are away. Ask a trusted neighbour to clear your post away, or use Royal Mail’s “keepsafe” service; they will keep your mail for up to two months.
· Beware of bogus callers; use your spy hole and a door chain until you have seen their ID and are satisfied you want to let them in.
· Never discuss your security requirements or existing arrangements with a doorstep caller or salesperson.
Home security alarms systems
Home security alarm systems can be used to strengthen physical home security measures. They can be used as a deterrent and a means of summoning help if somebody breaks into your property.
When investing in an intruder alarm it is advisable to have it professionally installed. Do not consider cold callers or telesales inquiries and avoid when it comes to choosing your alarm company. If you have serious doubts about the legality or sales techniques contact the Police or Trading Standards for advice.
There are two main types of alarm systems to consider for your home:
· When the alarm is activated it operates an internal and/or external siren to call attention to the property.
· These systems can be DIY or professionally installed
Remotely Monitored System
· When the alarm is activated it sends a signal to a central monitoring station who in turn will automatically call a key holder of your choice, and if you require it, the Police
If you choose a police response alarm it must be installed and maintained by a company that conforms to the ACPO security systems policy, and whose business is subject to inspection by a UKAS accredited body.
Currently only two such organisations are accepted by the Police. These organisations will give you details of member companies who operate in your local area.
Choosing your alarm:
· Check the address and credentials of the company and proof of identity from their representative
· Obtain written quotes from at least two companies
· Ask if they can supply you with a list of police rules for monitored alarmed premises
· Request a written confirmation that they are registered with the Police force in your area
· The company needs to operate a 24-hour call-out service and emergency attendance within four hours
· Obtain written quotes from at least two companies
· If the installation of a security system is an insurance requirement, check that the security company is acceptable to your insurer
Operating your home security alarm system:
· Make sure the installer explains the operation of your system
· Read the instructions and ensure you, and those who use the system are familiar with the alarm
· Arrange for a responsible person to hold keys to your home and be able to operate the alarm
· Where audible-only systems are installed, neighbours should be aware and agree to report any activation that appears to be accompanied by criminal or suspicious activity
· False alarms should be investigated and the cause corrected or the system modified
· External sirens and bells should not operate for more than 20 minutes. Excessive noise and frequent false alarms can irritate neighbours and lead to complaints
PC 560 Simon Stamp
Email - Coombe.Hill.firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel - 020 7161 8111