Police in Causeway Coast and Glens are asking residents to make home security part of their daily routine as part of efforts to reduce and prevent burglaries.
Chief Inspector Rory Bradley said: “This time of year can see an increase in burglaries with criminals using the darker evenings to their advantage. There are three things however that everyone can do to help us prevent more people from becoming victims of burglary.
“Firstly make sure to close, lock and check all windows and doors before you leave the house or go to bed. Get into the habit of doing this every day and make sure to get everyone in the house involved. The more you make this part of your daily routine, the less chance you have of being targeted by opportunistic burglars.
“Secondly, if you see something on your street or in your neighbourhood that doesn’t look right then let us know. Don’t wait. Pick up the phone and give us the information as soon as you can. We have caught burglars in the act because someone called us straight away. We have stopped vans with stolen goods on-board because someone called us straight away. The sooner we know, the faster we can respond and the safer your neighbourhood will be.
“Lastly make it your business to check in on an older neighbour or family member. Sadly burglars will target those who are more vulnerable in our community so if you know someone who lives on their own then please make contact in whatever way you can.
“We have lots of information on home security on our website (www.psni.police.uk) and our crime prevention officer is available to provide further assistance via our non-emergency number 101. We also work closely with our Policing and Community Safety Partnership and Neighbourhood Watch partners to ensure that advice and support is available to all our residents.”
PCSP Chairperson Darryl Wilson said: “I would urge all citizens across the Borough to take heed of this invaluable advice. It is imperative as we approach the darker evenings that we remain vigilant within our own homes, and that we keep an eye on our neighbours also, especially the most vulnerable in society.”
If you are interested in setting up a scheme or if you would like further information on the Neighbourhood Watch or PCSP, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 028 703 47034.