Beat the burglar and keep your home safe
We’re warning householders that darker nights can lead to desolate days if burglars strike to steal your treasured possessions.
While people in the region must have a different Halloween - due to the Covid-19 restrictions - we are urging everyone to remain the same in guarding against opportunist thieves.
The months of November, December and January are a notorious peak period for burglars who try to use the darkness to their advantage.
Across the three months in winter 2018 and 2019 combined there were 11,468 reports of burglary. This compares to 9,928 in February, March and April in 2018 and 2019 together.
Criminals are continuing to strike during the pandemic and we’re urging residents to help protect their homes to avoid being a victim.
They are prepared to strike even when you’re at home and unaware of their presence - if they sense an opportunity.
Our advice is:
- Dark evenings can provide perfect cover for burglars who can easily spot an open window in an unoccupied room, see your valuables through open curtains or blinds, or try their luck with an unlocked door while you’re distracted. Try to make your house look as occupied as possible when you are not there.
- Don’t leave your house and vehicle keys in the lock or on a side table in view of a window making it easy for a thief to fish them through your letterbox.
- Don’t leave items in open porches that could be used to enter your home, for example, curved-handled umbrellas to open doors or keys through letterboxes.
- Always lock your front door from inside - in particular UPVC front doors that have handles, as they are often left unlocked when people are in their house. Burglars know this!
- Check your UPVC or Euro cylinder door lock to see if it is snap resistant. It should be stamped with a three star Kite Mark. If it is not, you should get the lock changed to either a SS312 Diamond Approved Cylinder, TS007 3 Star Kitemarked Cylinder, or a 1 Star Cylinder with 2 Star handle for maximum protection.
- Cancel newspapers and milk if you’re going away for a few days and ask a trusted friend or neighbour to keep an eye on your property, pushing post sticking out of the letterbox inside fully.
- Play our interactive game 27 Station Road where you are the detective at the scene of a house burglary. Explore the property and uncover clues about how the burglar broke in - and what the householder could have done to keep them out. Exploring the game will help users review their own security and put measures in place to prevent a burglary happening in their own home.
More details here: https://www.west-midlands.police.uk/campaigns/ darker - nights /burglary