8 Holiday Safety Tips
Don’t Let Thieves Steal Your Holiday Memories
File # 2019 Holiday Safety tips
The holiday season is a busy time of the year for everyone, including criminals. Statistically, property related offences increase significantly during December. Many of the crimes committed are considered crimes of opportunity and are preventable. By incorporating just a few of the following crime prevention tips, you may prevent having your Kodak moments ruined by petty thieves.
1. Let’s Start with Home Security
Criminals are on the prowl and they’re looking for the
low hanging fruit to exploit. Lock everything up which means, your windows, doors, including sheds. That also includes the side door to your garage, which is often overlooked. Did we mention bikes? They’re a hot commodity and need to be locked and registered with the 529 Garage app.
2. Suspicious People and Activity
Get to know who belongs in your neighbourhood. Criminals will often seek out their next target and go through your neighbourhood in a taxi, on foot or by vehicle. They’re looking for the homes that do not have a fence around the property, look unkempt, have no security or flood lights, and especially, no signs of a dog. They will also check out the
flow of the neighbourhood. This means they will look to see which vehicles leave in the morning, who the dog walkers are, when do home owners return at the end of the day, who turns light on etc.
If you see someone who doesn’t belong, simply saying
Hello may be enough to have them move on. A wave could work too. If you get an odd reaction or no reaction at all, this is something you should share with your neighbours.
Some of us dread the thought of spending all day in Mall with a thousand other shoppers. Others look forward to it. as do criminals who are just waiting for the opportunity to ruin your day by stealing your gifts, getting your PIN number, breaking into your vehicle or getting their hands on whatever they can get away with.
Before you park your vehicle and walk into a Mall or nearby store, take a moment to look around and see who you are sharing your space with. Is there someone sitting in a nearby vehicle that seems to be interested in you? Does it make you feel uncomfortable? If so, don’t ignore it and move on to another parking spot. Don’t leave anything of value in your car and always remember to lock it up. Unlocked vehicles account for fifty percent of all break ins.
Place them in the trunk and ensure there is no access from the interior of your vehicle. Also, take a look around before doing so to see if anyone is watching you.
6. Making Purchases
Be wary when using your credit card, criminals like to stand nice and close to pick off your PIN number. Always cover it up and do not discard those receipts in local waste bins. Criminals are betting on this.
Women – make sure your purse is secured when not in use and men, your back pocket is a prime location for pick pockets. Think about moving it.
7. You Survived the Day and Made it Home
Gifts – don’t leave them in the vehicle. There have been situations in Nanaimo where criminals have watched as purchases were made, then followed unsuspecting targets to their homes. The criminals then watched to see if the purchased items stayed in the vehicle. If so, they later broke into the car.
Close your blinds at night-this keeps prowlers at bay so they don’t know what you have in your house and possibly under your tree.
8. Alarms – if you have one, use it!
If you have information on individuals involved in crime in our community, call the Nanaimo RCMP no-emergency line at 250-754-2345.
Cst. Gary O’Brien
Media Relations Officer
Community Policing Services, Nanaimo
303 Prideaux St, Nanaimo, BC V9R 2N3