Are You Really Safe in Your Own Home?
The Police and Ministry of Justice would like us to believe that burglary is on the decrease when in fact this isn’t quite so true. For starters, due to the public’s lack of confidence in the Police, many crimes are now going unreported.
This being said, even reported crimes are on the rise with statistics showing that burglary has rose by 6% in England and Wales while the number of criminal charges faced by offenders dropped by 33%.
They want our confidence yet how can they expect that when firstly they are failing to catch those responsible and secondly they are trying to cover the truth up.
So, crime is rising but the sad fact is that the offenders seem to be getting younger with many crimes being committed by children that are below the age of criminal responsibility.
Police officers don’t want to be having to deal with the large amounts of paperwork that they are supposed to fill in with every crime, it is ridiculous. Who is really in the handcuffs, the criminals or the Policeman?
If you are burgled, there is nationally less than a one in ten chance that the burglar will be caught, let alone be sent to prison. You can not rely on the state to protect or defend your home. It is up to you!
The cornered animal syndrome can be a very dangerous position for a homeowner. If you find an intruder in your home and they are cornered and confronted, they WILL fight to escape and they won’t care about the consequences. These types of confrontations usually always end in injury or even death (usually to the homeowner thanks to us not really being allowed to protect ourselves in the UK).
It is down to YOU to do what you can to avoid becoming another statistic and we hope that the tips below will help you to feel safer in your own home.
When it comes to protecting your property, the best approach to take is what is known as the layered approach.
Layer One – First line of defence. The boundary and outbuildings
You need to make sure that any fences or walls are in a good state of repair. If you do not have fences or walls around your property, you can still protect your boundary with hedges. Preferably you would want any plants or hedges that has thorns that no burglar is going to want to take on. Also Make sure that you install good quality locks and bolts to any gates.
The next step is to ensure that any sheds, garages and outbuildings are secure. Consider fitting an audible alarm to them and never leave any tools, ladders or valuable equipment on show.
Layer Two – Lighting
Burglars don’t want to be seen and as such, they want shadows and not light. Strategically placed lighting is a very good addition to the overall security.
Security lighting can be dusk ’til dawn or passive infrared motion detection controlled. It can also be interfaced with an intruder alarm system that would turn on all the lights if the system was triggered.
Layer Three – General Security
Fit all doors and windows with good quality locks. If you’re planning on going away, ensure that any milk and paper deliveries are cancelled until you return. Ask a neighbour to park in the drive so that the property looks occupied. Have internal lighting on a timer and ask a neighbour to check for post sticking out of the letter box or have it held at the post office until you get back.
Layer Four – Intruder Alarm
There are many good intruder alarm systems available but make sure that you have them professionally installed. A good company will do a security survey of your property to ascertain which system is best suited to your requirements and the risk factors involved. Systems range from simple “bells only” to full GPRS Police response. The new modern systems ensure that you have efficient and false alarm free security for your home.
Layer 5 – Panic Buttons / Social Alarms
These devices can be either fixed or portable. If pushed the device will activate the alarm and alert the central monitoring station regardless of the On/Off status of the main alarm system. These can then communicate directly with you to see if you are in need of help.
Layer 6 – CCTV
CCTV is not cheap and will probably be the most costly security addition to the property but if you feel the need, it would be well worth it. Again, have it professionally installed and have a survey done so no area gets left out.