In winter, burglaries increase by 25%, An Garda Siochana has advised homeowners and has drawn up a helpful list of checks people can do to help reduce the risk of a burglary.
Over 40% of burglaries in winter occur between 5pm and 11pm and the Gardai says that burglars like easy opportunities and if they have to make a lot of noise, spend a lot of time or risk being seen, the chances are they won’t bother.
Earlier this year, the Gardai issued a great infographic on burglary prevention tips over the winter.
It has compiled a check-list for homeowners over winter – how many have you ticked off?
- Are all your external doors properly fitted and equipped with appropriate secure locking systems? (i.e. 5-lever mortice locks for wooden doors, multi-point locking for uPVC doors etc.)
- Are your spare keys kept with a trusted neighbour and never left under an external mat, flower pot etc.
- Do you lock your external doors when away from home, no matter how short a time?
- Have you automatic timers on some lights when your house is vacant and does your home always look like someone is at home?
- Are your car/house keys kept in a location not visible from the outside?
- Is there sufficient external lighting outside every door to illuminate visitors?
- Have you a reliable neighbour whom you can notify of your travel plans and give a key to, with a request for a periodic house check?
- Do you have an intruder alarm system or CCTV system fitted and do you use it?
- Are machines, tools and other high value items stored in garages or sheds securely padlocked or chained to prevent removal?
- Have you trimmed all hedges and shrubs so they can’t hide a burglar at work on the windows and doors?