19 July 2016
Dorset Police is thanking the public for their help in driving down burglary in the county, but are reminding residents to stay vigilant in the busy summer months.
The Force typically experiences a peak in the level of dwelling burglaries during the summer months, but figures from June this year are already showing improvement, thanks to the combined effort of the police, partners and the public.
In the period from 2012 to 2015, the average number of dwelling burglaries in June was 148. Last month, June 2016, the Force experienced 93.
The warmer months have previously shown a higher number of dwelling burglaries than other points in the year, but the statistics show that there has been a consistent improvement in this area. From April to June 2012, there were 496 incidents. In the same period in 2014 this had decreased to 398 and the figures for 2016 show 309.
Though recognising and valuing this success, officers are still encouraging members of the public to familiarise themselves with crime prevention advice and to continue following simple steps to keep their homes safe.
Detective Inspector (DI) Andy Dilworth, of the Dorset Police priority crime team, said: “It is fantastic to see the number of dwelling burglaries in Dorset steadily decreasing, but there is still plenty of work to be done.
“You can stop your home from becoming a target for criminals by following our crime prevention advice this summer, whether you are spending it at home or away.
“If you are going away, let your neighbours know and ask them to keep an eye on your property or park their car on your drive to give the impression your property is occupied. Also, be sure to cancel any regular deliveries such as milk or newspapers.
“You can also use a light timer, which will help to deter burglars from targeting your property.”
It is not just the increased likelihood of residents going on holiday which has previously driven up burglary statistics in the county during the summer months.
DI Dilworth continued: “Warmer days and evenings mean people are more inclined to leave windows and doors open, or to enjoy their back gardens out of sight of the front of their properties.
“Remember to always lock your doors and windows wherever possible and to keep the front of your house secure if you are around the back.
“Burglars may use any opportunity to gain access to your property, so don’t give them the chance.”
Always keep your windows and doors closed and locked where possible, even if you are inside or near your property.
Use a light timer switch when you know you will be away from your home when it is dark.
If you are going on holiday, ask a friend or neighbour to park on your driveway, make sure any post is put through your letter box properly and put in and take out your bins. If all other bins in your street are out, it is easy to spot which properties are unoccupied.
Cancel regular deliveries, such as milk or newspapers, if you are going away.
Fit a burglar alarm and make sure it’s set when your property is unoccupied.
Register valuable property online at http://immobilise.com, mark your property with your postcode or keep an inventory including description, serial number and photograph of each item.
Install tracking apps on your mobile devices such as phones, tablets or laptops. These apps make it easier to locate stolen property.
Sign up to your local Neighbourhood or Home Watch Scheme and ask them to keep an eye on your home while you are away. You can sign up to your local scheme via Dorset Alert (https://www.dorsetalert.co.uk) or find out more information on the Neighbourhood Watch website (http://www.ourwatch.org.uk)
More crime prevention information is available here.
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