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Christmas Tips to keep everyone safe

Alert message sent 02/12/2021 18:35:00

Information sent on behalf of Neighbourhood Watch

This is a message from Val McPherson  Area Neighbourhood Watch Representative for Aylesbury Vale.

Hello Co-ordinators, members and all

First I would like to thank all Co-ordinators for continuing to pass crime and other messages to your members and friends  on safety tips, advise on scams or anything unusual happening in the  area, by keeping me informed so that in turn I can send out an Alert message  so everyone is aware of a potential problem in order to keep safe and not become a victim of crime.

As we now  are on the run up to Christmas, although a number of you have either finished your Christmas presents or are just starting here are a few tips not to have uninvited guests, as these opportunists are always looking at ways to take advantage when houses are left unattended whilst out shopping for Christmas.

Some useful tips:

Do not advertise your home to burglars on social media sites, by putting up on any social media when your home is going to be empty as you are visiting family or friends  or uploading pictures of Christmas gifts as it gives the thieves a catalogue of your shopping and which houses to visit just by going into your Facebook profile.

Festive Lights: You may think that running a few lights outside is perfectly safe, well it is, providing you do not feed an extension lead through a partially opened window. Criminals are certainly on the look out for this.
Be careful when you throw away boxes or old gift wrapping packaging. The dates and times change when we get our Christmas and New Year rubbish taken away, so check  with Buckinghamshire Waste Dept. for Aylesbury Vale areas when your rubbish will be collected, then put out the extra packaging just before it is due to be collected.
If you leave your packaging out early, it gives unwanted visitors information about the expensive gifts you received at Christmas and can be found at your home.

Keep your curtains closed at night, not only does it make your home feel cosy it also ensures that any valuable items are kept out of sight. Get timer switches and place around your home to give the illusion of someone at home when you are out. 

Protect your identity. Make sure you shred your gift tags and receipts after Christmas. Keep the warranty details stored safely away.

Do not hide spare keys under rocks, plant pots, door ledges or doormats. Burglars know the preferred places to store your spare keys. Give to a trusted neighbour.

Do  not leave a message on your answer phone advertising you are away for the Christmas holidays. This is  ideal for a burglar as they know that no-one will be in the house for quite a while and they have plenty of time to ransack your home. (You may laugh but some people still do this)

Check your windows, sheds, garages and your locks for any weak spots. Installing a few dead-bolts and new window hinges  if necessary, it is not too expensive and could increase the security of your home.

And lastly do not place your presents under the Christmas Tree where it can be viewed from a window. Leave until Christmas Eve if possible.

Happy Christmas everyone  enjoy and keep safe.

Message sent by
Val McPherson BEM (NWN, Multi Scheme Administrator, Thames Valley)

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