The cold, wet weather during the winter months keeps many people indoors; but in some cases not even this is enough to keep criminals at bay.
There are a number of practical measures that can be followed to improve your safety and that of your loved ones and belongings. Martin Kriel, Managing Director of ADT Security, East Coast Region said the first step is to be more aware of what is going around you, especially in the mornings and evenings when it’s dark outside.
“When leaving home, at any time of the day, always ensure that all doors and safety gates in your home are properly locked and that you have activated the alarm system before you shut the door behind you. If you are going out alone, possibly to the shops or the gym, it is important that you let someone know when you expect to return.”
Another good idea is to never let your home appear to be empty, regardless of whether you are at home or not.
“Visibility can be drastically reduced on grey, gloomy days and crooks could take advantage of this to try to enter your property or burgle your home. Turn on the lights in one or two rooms; possibly one at the front and another at the rear of the house.”
“Also, never leave the driveway gate open – even if someone is home, if it is pouring with rain or if you plan to only be away for a short while – because criminals could see this as an invitation to come onto your property.”
Kriel added that exercising caution when driving into or out of your property is equally as important. He said grey conditions or heavy rainfall could divert your attention from what is happening around you, leaving you vulnerable to being caught off guard by criminals.
“If you have an electric gate, open it before you turn into your driveway; this will prevent hijackers from boxing you in and allow you the chance to get away. If you have to manually open the gate, leave the key in the ignition and the motor running. However you must take the key with you if you have a child in the car. In this kind of hijacking situation the key is a valuable negotiating tool; they want your car and you want your child.”