Anyone's home could be a target for burglars, but there are some things people can look out for to deter crooks from breaking in.
They're little things many people may not even think about. For example, when people buy big-ticket items, like computers. How they dispose of the boxes it come in, could be a signal to burglars about what's inside the home.
"Even discarding boxes for garbage day out in front of the driveway," Lt. Robert Levendoske said is not a good idea. "[For instance] you've got the new flatscreen, 27 inch T.V. box, and you put it out there, and it's pretty easy to tell that it's new."
Levendoske says it's also a good idea to make it look like someone's always home.
"Don't make it obvious that you're not here. Leave the lights on. Leave lights with timers on," Levendoske said.
If you own a home, Levendoske says keeping your shrubs trimmed back so you have a clear view of your house as soon as you pull into the driveway is another safety precaution. Finally, the lieutenant says you should always make sure your doors are locked, and install a deadbolt if possible.
For a more complete list of safety precautions, you can go look on the Wood County Sheriff's Department Web site at www.tznet.com/wcsd/crime.htm
wsaw.com: Extended Web Coverage
Home Invasion Protection Tips
- Make sure that both your front and back door are made of solid wood or metal. Install one-way peepholes at eye level.
- Reinforce all doorframes so that your doors can't be kicked in. Your local locksmith can offer advice.
- Keep your doors locked and windows secured, even when you're at home.
- Cover windows and glass doors with security film or install Plexiglass on the inside. Both materials are very durable and can withstand several blows before collapsing.
- Prune or remove trees and shrubs that hide your windows and doors from view or give criminals places to hide.
- Criminals like working in the dark; so leave lights on, both at the front and back of your home. This will only cost you about $0.75 a month.
- Make sure your outside lights are out of reach. Protect bulbs so they cannot be broken or removed.
- Install motion sensors and keep them activated.
- If you live alone, try not to let anyone know. Make your home appear as though many people live in it. Put out toys and work boots in the yard.
- Change your routine. Don't be predictable.
- Keep a cordless phone handy when at home in case you need help or spot something suspicious.
- Get a dog. Or keep a dog dish outside your door and place a Beware of Dog sign in the yard.
- Consider getting an alarm system. Make sure it works properly, and teach everyone in your home how to set it and cancel it properly. Talk to friends who have alarm systems.
Source: www.pssg.gov.bc.ca/publications/home_invasion/ contributed to this report.