In 1999, Statistics Canada reported that there were approximately 92,485 break and enters reported to police, however, some of these crimes remained unreported. Property crime losses ranged from little or nothing of value to materials costing hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Unfortunately, burglars can do much more than steal your possessions. They can commit rape, robbery, and assault if they are surprised by someone coming home or pick a home that is occupied.
“If you have been a victim of a burglary, chances are that you will be vulnerable to a burglary a second time,” explained Patrice De Luca, V.P. of Marketing and Business Development for Protectron Security Systems. “The burglar will know how easy it was the first time they targeted your home. This experience will forever change your life. However, for a small amount of time and money you can make your home more secure and reduce your chances of being a victim.”
According to De Luca, many burglars will spend no longer than 60 seconds trying to break into a home. That’s why good locks and good neighbors who watch out for each other are big deterrents to burglars.
De Luca also suggests these following tips:
• Thieves don’t like bright lights. Install outside lights and keep them on at night.
• Keep your yard clean. Prune back shrubbery so it doesn’t hide doors or windows. Cut back tree limbs that a thief could use to climb to an upper-level window.
• A high percentage of burglaries involve the theft of newly purchased items, such as, new electronic equipment, computers and TVs. “Thieves are always on the lookout for homes with big cardboard boxes at the curb highlighting new purchases,” added De Luca. “It’s important to eliminate or break up these boxes into unrecognizable pieces not to advertise new purchases to the neighborhood.” Also, don’t leave valuables in sight through windows, where they will tempt burglars.
• If you travel, create the illusion that you’re at home by getting some timers that will turn lights on and off in different areas of your house throughout the evening. Lights burning 24 hours a day signal an empty house.
• Leave shades, blinds, and curtains in normal positions. Don’t let your mail pile up, call the post office to stop delivery or have a neighbor pick it up.
• Alarms can be a good investment, especially if you have many valuables in your home, or live in an isolated area or one with a history of break-ins.
• Alarm systems are an effective deterrent. Nine out of ten convicted burglars agree they’d avoid a house protected by an alarm system.
• Security system decals and signs are also an effective deterrent.
• Make sure your security system includes a loud inside alarm, detectors at all exterior doors, and motion sensors in the master bedroom and main living areas.
For more information on home security visit http://www.protectron.com.
Mistakes In Home Safety
We all want to feel more secure in our homes, especially in terms of protecting ourselves and our loved ones from harm and in preventing the loss or damage to our personal property. There are several areas in which people invest to make themselves feel more secure in their homes, but in doing so there are also several glaring mistakes that are made. Here are some of the areas in which home owners frequently trip up win the effort to feel secure.
The worst mistake that any home owner can make in protecting their homes is to feel overconfident in the measures they have put into place. Most of us cannot afford the time or the money it takes to install a foolproof security system, and only commercial properties with a vested interest would want to attempt this anyway.
Therefore, any measures undertaken to secure a home will come with their limitations. Many security measures can act as prevention only in the deterrence of the entry of an unwanted person onto your property. Home security cameras are a good example here; if a potential thief sees a camera scanning your property, the odds are very good that he will not attempt foul play.
However, in the case of a very determined or professional criminal, a camera may do nothing to dissuade him from entry. In this event, the camera will serve no better purpose than to record events as they happen in order to allow for the authorities to better track the criminal down after the event, they will do nothing to actually protect your property.
So do not be too secure in your electronic installments; even home alarm systems may not always deter thieves (actually, if you go for a home alarm it is better to use the silent variety, as the criminal will not realize that help is on the way).
In the event that a criminal enters your property while you are still there, do not remind them that you have cameras or that you have seen their faces. It could lead to far worse circumstances. It is best not to act belligerent, but instead remember that once the person leaves you will be in control and the odds are good that they will be caught. The best method is co-operation.
One of the biggest mistakes in home security that people make is purchasing a gun for that purpose. More people are hurt or wounded because of guns in the home for security than are hurt while attempting to carry out a crime in the home of a firearms owner.
Safe storage of your firearm dictates that it be stored unloaded and far away from any ammunition, especially if there are children in the home. Such a measure will render the fact that you have a firearm in your nightstand drawer useless in the event that someone breaks in. In addition, many criminals are familiar with firearms, much more so than the average home owner. Threatening a criminal with a firearm will likely worsen the situation, and not help you out.
Tips On Avoiding Home Safety Risks
Now that you’ve weathered the winter, the door is open for you to focus on the maintenance of your home-not only the inside of your home but outside, too, making sure the house is safe and properly maintained. Doing this will help to prevent safety risks and costly repairs in the future. Dan Steward, president of Pillar To Post, North America’s largest home inspection service, offers these suggestions:
Inspect the deck: Wooden decks can become damaged and corroded from the harshness of winter. See if nails or screws are popping up. Clean the deck and seal it.
Check electrical outlets and extension cords: Replace any loose-fitting plugs or frayed extension cords to prevent a fire hazard.
“Degrease” the garage: If the family car has been leaking oil or other fluids onto the garage floor all winter, now is a great time to clean it up. A greasy garage floor is slippery and potentially a fire hazard. Use nontoxic, nonflammable, biodegradable degreasers such as Simple Green. Pour the concentrate on liberally and scrub with a nylon brush. Cover the area with about an inch of kitty litter and let it sit for 24 hours. Sweep away the kitty litter for a clean floor at low cost.
Improve the yard with size in mind: Look to see how plants and trees have grown during the past year. They may be too large and could cause damage to the home’s structure. Leave enough space between the house and those baby shrubs you’re planting to allow 12″ between the plant and wall. This provides adequate ventilation and reduces the risk of future damage.
Clean the A/C: Use your garden hose to rinse off the evaporator coil fins on your A/C condenser unit.
Check the garage door: The garage door can weigh up to 400 pounds. Springs and balancing mechanisms can fail over time, which can cause great damage to the door and harm to people around it. Now’s a good time to take a close look at the springs.
To avoid safety risks and expensive repairs down the road, it’s always a good idea to get a complete home inspection from a reputable and established company such as Pillar To Post.
Inspect smoke, radon and carbon monoxide detectors: Test them and change the battery every three months or as needed. Be certain there is a detector on each floor of the home.
Home Safety Tips For Seniors
Did you know that in Canada, every day approximately 1000 people celebrate their 50th birthday?
As time goes on, more and more Canadians are staying in their homes longer. Feeling a sense of security is an important part of our decision on whether to continue to live in our own home or moving in with children, other family members or deciding to change our residents to a retirement community.
The fear of being burglarized, the concerns of having a fire or the panic of not being able to reach the telephone during a medical emergency can make this a very difficult decision. The anxiety of making a choice to give in to our pride and vital independence is one last thing we tend to want to hold on to as long as possible.
Today there is new home security technology available that can make this choice easier for yourself and your family. There are many home security companies available to choose from, however you want to select a company and a technology that is best suited for your lifestyle. According to Patrice De Luca, V.P. of marketing and business development for Protectron Security Systems, it’s important the company and the technology are reliable 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year.
“Choosing a company that looks after burglaries, fire response and medical emergencies will certainly give you a peace of mind knowing that all your needs are handled by one company,” De Luca added.
Time is crucial when it comes to security he stressed. For example, it takes the average person approximately 7 minutes before they have an opportunity to call the fire department to notify them of a fire. In some cases, an entire house can be fully engulfed with fire within 4 minutes.
Fire statistics report that 8 out of 10 fire deaths occur in the home. Lets assume you have a medical emergency and can not get to the telephone, what will you do? “We offer a necklace, which has an emergency panic button that will trigger the emergency dispatch processor immediately.”
Safety begins at home
Here are a few home safety tips seniors should consider according to De Luca:
- Install and use good locks on doors and windows.Don’t hide keys under the doormat, in the mailbox or in a planter … leave an extra set with a neighbor.
- When service or delivery people come to your door, ask for ID, and check with their company if you’re still not sure.
- Make sure the street number on your house is large, well-lighted and unobstructed so emergency personnel can find your home quickly.
- If you decide to install an alarm system, consider one that is monitored for burglary, fire and medical emergencies.