Crime Prevention Advice by luckboy


Crime Prevention Advice

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									Taunton Deane Borough Council Crime Prevention Advice

Property Safety Be a good neighbour If you see anyone acting suspiciously in your neighbourhood, call the police and consider joining a Neighbourhood Watch Scheme, or if there isn't one in your area you can start one up. Call your local Neighbourhood Watch Administrator for further details on Tel: 01823 363348. Mark and record your property Marked property can deter burglars because it's harder for a thief to sell and can help the police to return it if found. Use an indelible identification showing your postcode and the number of your house or flat or the first two letters of its name using a permanent etching tool or an ultraviolet marker pen. Please note however, that a UV pen marking can fade with time and there are many other types of marking systems available. Record your property by taking pictures of all valuable items like jewellery and silverware and write down the serial numbers of your TV, video, hifi, home computer and camera equipment. If you have many valuable items, fit a safe. Following this you can contact Taunton Police Station on Tel: 0845 4567000 for 'postcoded property' stickers to display in the front and back windows of your house. Look through a burglar’s eyes Ask yourself some questions: • Are there any places where they could break in unseen? • Have you fitted strong locks on your doors and windows? • Would they have to make a lot of noise by breaking glass or walking across gravel? • Are there any valuables in sight? • If you are going away on holiday or are out at work, is it obvious that you are not at home? • Can you get a friend or member of the family to look after your home when you are away for a few days, by collecting your post, drawing your curtains at night and generally making the place look lived in? Promising to return the favour is often enough to get help. Secure all doors and windows If your front and back doors are not secure, neither is your home. Make sure the doors and frames are strong, in good condition and at least 44 mm thick. Glass panels on or around the door are especially vulnerable, so replace them with laminated glass if possible. Fit back and front doors with a five-lever mortice deadlock - and use it! Make sure door locks are approved to BS3621 standard. Fit all exterior doors (apart from the final exit) top and bottom with bolts. Remember to fit all security devices with strong screws or bolts. Get specialist advice on fitting locks to patio doors. Fit both french doors, top and bottom, with a security mortice lock and mortice bolt.

If you are thinking of buying PVCu or metal framed windows or doors, make sure that they come with good built-in locks and a fitted chain, which can be very difficult and expensive to add retrospectively. Only use local locksmiths who are members of the Masters Locksmiths' Association. Make sure doors are approved to PAS23/24 standard, and windows are approved to B7950 standard. Over a third of burglars get in through a back window. Easily visible locks may deter some thieves as they mean they would have to break a window and would risk attracting attention. Most DIY shops sell inexpensive key operated locks. Louvre windows are especially vulnerable because the slats can be removed easily from the frame. Glue the slats in place with an epoxy resin and fit a special louvre lock. Better still, replace them with fixed glass. If you are burgled Do not go in or call out – the intruder may still be inside Go to a neighbour’s or a friend’s house and call the police Safe and Secure Project Although crimes against an elderly person is rare, Taunton Deane Borough Council works in partnership with Age Concern to bring pensioners on limited incomes help to pay for security equipment, such as door and window locks and door chains. This allows elderly people to live independent lives in their own homes for as long as possible. To find out more information about the scheme, telephone Age Concern on Tel: 01278 785921. Remember • Check credentials and beware of unexpected callers • Never leave spares keys in convenient hiding places, such as under a doormat • When moving house consider changing front and back door locks as others may still have keys that fit • If your house is next to a side passage consider an alley gate • Keep garden sheds in good condition and well secured with locks and reinforced glass • Make sure there are no weak points along your boundary where access is easy • Good lighting can deter a thief • Fit security items on your car, such as immobiliser, a removable or security coded radio, steering wheel locks or lockable wheel nuts, and make sure you display a sign stating the vehicle is protected • Do not leave your bike in an isolated place and always use bike lock

Personal Safety The changes of yourself, or someone you know, being attacked in Taunton Deane is fortunately very low. However, there are still ways you can minimise the risk: • Only use your first name and initial in the telephone directory so your gender is not revealed • If you receive an abusive or threatening phone call, put the receiver down beside the phone and walk away. Come back a few minutes later and replace the receiver without listening to hear if the caller is still there. Don't say anything. If the calls continue tell the police and the operator and keep a record of the date, time and content of each call. • If you often walk home in the dark, get a personal attack alarm and carry it in your hand so you can set it off immediately to scare off an attacker • Carry your bag close to you with the clasp facing inwards, and if someone does grab it, let it go. Your safety is more important than your property • Carry your house keys in your pocket so the thief will not be able to gain access to your home • If you think someone is following you, check by crossing the street. If you are still worried after this, go to the nearest place where there are other people • If you regularly jog or cycle, vary your route and time. Stick to well-lit roads with pavements and if you go onto parklands, keep to main paths and open spaces • When going out in the evening try and book a taxi in advance for your return journey. Keep reputable taxi firm number with you • On public transport try to stay away from isolated bus stops, especially after dark. On buses, sit near the driver or conductor, and on trains sit in a carriage where there are several people • Always try to carry money and a if you do not have a mobile phone keep some change or a phonecard handy • Do not pick up hitchhikers • Keep doors locked when driving, especially late at night, and do not leave valuables in obvious places • Self defence and safety awareness classes may help you feel more secure. Contact your local Police Station on Tel: 0845 4567000 to find out what courses are offered in your area • Always try to consider how your behaviour may appear to others and whether there are vulnerable people around you who may feel threatened in some way

Useful Links Avon and Somerset Constabulary Tel: 0845 456 7000 or in an emergency dial 999 Web: Home Office Home Office Crime Reduction Safer Homes in Somerset Somerset County Council Crime and Disorder Reduction

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