Break-ins usually go up in summer months – so lock your house properly, and ask your neighbours and friends to keep an eye on your property in your absence.
That’s the advice from police and security experts in the Central West.
Chifley Police District acting crime manager Chris Reay says criminals observe more than people might think.
“For example, a household may go on holidays and a criminal notices and takes advantage,” Mr Reay said.
“People may leave a premises less secure than they otherwise would in the cooler months, making entry to a premises simpler for an opportunistic criminal.”
Data from the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research showed that there had been a hike in break-in incidents in the Bathurst, Orange and Dubbo regional areas during summer months in the past five years.
The total break-in incidents in a year (October-September), however, have been on the decline in Bathurst, Orange and Dubbo for the past three years.
Cameron Humphries, the managing director of Macquarie Alarm and Security, said his business definitely sees an increase in confirmed break and enters during the warmer months.
“In particular, there is an increase in opportunistic break and enters to homes while people are at work,” Mr Humphries said.
“Apart from the better weather making it more comfortable for would-be thieves to be out and about participating in crime, it is also a time where homeowners tend to open up their homes to allow air flow through to cool things down or they are out in their yards, leaving their homes unlocked.”
Macquarie Alarm and Security provides services in Orange, Dubbo, Bathurst, Mudgee, Parkes, Forbes and most Central West cities.
Mr Reay confirmed there had been break-in incidents when people opened their doors and windows for fresh air.
“We have seen instances of this occurring and while we don't want to see people trying to live in a fortress and suffering due to the heat, police would ask residents to turn their minds to the security of their premises, especially if heading out for the day,” he said.
Advice from Macquarie Alarm and Security:-
- Lock security doors and windows, even when at home.
- Install window locks with a “fresh air” setting.
- Remove keys from the locks, including window locks.
- Lock the meter box.
- Install security lighting
Mr Humphries said the most effective thing to do is to install an alarm system that includes highly visible warning stickers and an external siren.