By employing the following tips will help you to make your house or apartment more secure.
House numbers on our homes are very important. They can save police officers, fire fighters and paramedics valuable time. The numbers should be large enough to easily be seen from the street and composed of a contrasting color.
Fences: Privacy vs chain link. Burglars prey on privacy. Fences that allow activity to be seen in your yard are preferable to "privacy" fences.
Trees and shrubs: Should be trimmed six inches below windows and at least three feet away from doors. Shrubs such as rose bushes and other thorny varities serve as good deterrents to window peepers.
Landscape rock: Large landscape rock (golf ball size or larger) can be used to damage your property. Small landscape rock (< golf ball) is both decorative and, if someone walks on them, a person can easily be heard.
Deadbolt locks: The deadbolt lock has a bolt that must be activated by a key or thumb turn. It offers good security because it is not spring activated and cannot be opened with a credit card or knife.
A single cylinder deadbolt: Is activated with a key on the exterior and a thumb turn piece on the interior. Install this lock where there is no breakable glass within 40 inches of the thumb turn piece.(Otherwise a burglar could break the glass, reach in and turn the thumb piece)
A double cylinder deadbolt: is key activated on both sides of the door. Use these where breakable glass is within 40 inches of the lock. (These locks are potentially dangerous if your home should start on fire. If installed, make sure that a key is accessible inside)
Both single and double cylinder deadbolt locks should meet the following criteria:
A heavy duty strike plate: Helps to strengthen door frames better than a regular strike plate. The heavy duty strike plate uses four to six, three inch screws. The longer screws go into the frame and jamb, making it harder for someone to split the frame when kicking the door.
Auxiliary locks: Pin your windows or add and auxiliary lock to your double hung windows. This type of mechanism allows you to secure your window when you open it (5 inches or less) for ventilation. Do not use keyed locks in sleeping areas.
Motion detector lights: are very effective in deterring crime. They also light up the selected area when coming or going at night.
Dusk to dawn lighting: is also a strong crime deterrant. These lights constantly light up entry doors and possible obstacles that would otherwise be unseen.
Landscape lighting: is low voltage lighting that can highlight your property line, light up your sidewalk and also light up the exterior of your windows - making your home a less attractive target for night time burglars.
Interior lighting: using light timers makes a home look occupied, especially when you are on vacation. Good lights to leave on include bathroom and or bedroom lights.
Radios and televisions: are also good items to have on timers. They also give the appearance of an occupied home.
The Fairmont Police Department urges you to follow these home security tips. If you are interested in having a crime prevention specialist give your home a security survey, please call 507-238-4481 and ask for Sgt Spee, Officer Runge or Officer Bass.