ONE third of residential burglaries last summer involved entry through an unsecured door or window, with summer burglaries more likely in the afternoon than winter burglaries, gardaí in Clare have revealed.
With summer holidays on the horizon, gardaí in Clare have issued advice to homeowners on ways to protect their homes from burglars.
Crime Prevention Officer Sergeant Triona Brooks says, “Operation Thor summer burglary campaign is ongoing with targeting of organised criminal gangs.
“Operation Thor and ongoing community engagement has resulted in dramatic drops in burglary. Less residential burglaries are reported in the summer than in the winter.
“Residential burglaries during the summer are more likely to occur in the afternoon than winter burglaries.
“An unsecured door or window is a more common entry point in the summer than in the winter and one third of residential burglaries last summer involved entry through an unsecured door or window.
“As we come into the summer months, we want to remind people to be continually vigilant with the security of their homes.
“Homeowners, neighbours and communities can prevent burglaries, through good habits, observance and reporting suspicious behaviour.”
Detailing home security advice she said, “Whether at home or going out, turn on some lights, use timer switches. Lock all doors and windows, almost one in four summertime burglaries involve entry through an unsecured access point. Use your house alarm.
“Store keys safely away from windows and letterboxes. Record details of valuables and don’t keep large cash amounts at home.”
When it comes to vacant houses she advised, “Ask a trusted neighbour or family member to carry out frequent checks of the property at different times of the day.
“Ensure the house alarm is set. Check all doors and windows are secure. Use deadbolt locks if property is to be vacant for long periods. Install timers on internal lights and motion detectors on external lights to make the house appear occupied and offer natural surveillance of the property.
“Ensure that the building doesn’t look neglected. Cut the grass, trim hedges etc. Ask a neighbour to collect post or if you are going to be away for longer periods arrange a ‘mail minder’ service with An Post to retain post for collection and place a ‘No Junk Mail’ sign on letterbox.
“Inform the local Garda station about the premises being vacant to afford passing attention on patrols.”
If you are going on holiday and your home is going to be vacant, she said to be mindful of what you post on social media.
“Even if you have enabled strict privacy settings, your holiday plans could be shared.
“Don’t post status updates about your holidays while you’re still away. Don’t post pictures while you’re away.”