Secure your yards and garages to decrease thefts

A recent press release from Red Deer RCMP shared the following information to help reduce theft and to remind everyone that July is ‘Theft from Yard Awareness Month’. Local Mounties are offering some tips to help homeowners keep their property and belongings safe.

Garages, sheds and yards continue to be popular targets for property thieves and RCMP is suggesting residents secure to avoid becoming a victim of theft.

“Unlocked gates and open garage doors are easy targets for thieves, especially when valuable items like tools or sports equipment are visible and easily accessible.”It doesn’t take much to secure your property and lock these items away, and it could be what prevents a significant loss of property.” - Inspector Mark Groves

The summer months are traditionally some of the busiest for thieves. RCMP recommends homeowners take the following steps to secure their properties:

· Keep garage and shed doors closed and locked when not in use

· Ensure bicycles and sports equipment are put away and not left in the yard

· Use padlocks or combination locks to secure fence gates and shed doors

· Record serial numbers of bikes, lawnmowers, tools and other valuable equipment

· Lock all unattended doors to your home, even when you’re home

“It might seem like overkill to close your garage door when you are outside working or relaxing in the yard but those are the types of opportunities thieves look for and take advantage of. When you are gardening or working in the yard, a thief can quickly take off with an armful of valuables or keepsakes in a matter of seconds.” Inspector Groves

In addition, RCMP recommends homeowners make use of CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design) principals when building and maintaining their property, including:

· Clearing obstructions and ensuring sight lines of windows and doors, particularly basement

· Keeping windows closed and locked when you’re away from home

· Installing anti-theft devices on window tracks and sliding patio doors

· Pruning shrubs and trimming trees to avoid giving thieves a place to hide

· Utilizing exterior lighting and motion lighting to deter thieves

· Maintaining landscaping and lawn mowing to communicate active presence

More information on CPTED principals and tips for securing your home and property are available through the Central Alberta Crime Prevention Centre.

Red Deer RCMP Press Release adapted for July 22, 2020 @ 12:24 PM

Wendy Rairdan, Editor