In a recent statistic reached by gathering crime data from several metropolitan police authorities, as many as 50% of residential burglaries occur when the intruder gained access through an open, damaged or superannuated garage door.
People leave their garage doors open for a number of reasons, security isn’t an issue as they don’t keep valuable property in it, it’s inconvenient to keep opening and closing it every time they come and go, even letting the cat have somewhere dry to sleep if it starts raining all seem like ‘good’ reasons to keep the garage door open when it’s not in use.
Unfortunately, burglars see an open garage door as welcoming as an open front door or window.
“An open garage door is an open invitation to thieves,” says Chris Long, executive director of the International Door Association. “Thieves are also targeting remote controls that are not locked up in vehicles parked outside.”
Of course you wouldn’t leave your door keys in full view in your car, but it wouldn’t cross many people’s minds that the remote to their garage door is just as tempting. Today’s garage doors are far more secure than the old fashioned up and over models of yesteryear meaning that people are more likely to keep high worth goods, particularly sporting goods, in the garage, but they’re still not closing, maintaining and locking them properly.
Dash mounted remote garage door controls can easily be replaced with remotes that can go on keyrings, entry code and finger print ID units. These can be combined with open door alert devices which will tell you if your garage door hasn’t been closed properly. If you’ve ever been gardening, come inside, made a cuppa, got distracted and left the garage door open all night you’ll know how easy it is to overlook basic security precautions.With an open door alert a light will come on whenever the garage door is open. Even if your garage door is only open a crack the indicator will come on; you might not have noticed but a burglar might and if they can get a jimmy into the gap, they’ll soon follow it.
Numeric keypads eliminate the risk of lost or stolen keys or remote controls being used to access your garage. There’s no need to worry about getting keys cut or who has the remote, you can tell as many people as you want the code since you can change the code as much as you like afterwards. Imagine you’re going on holiday and you want the neighbour’s kid to feed your fish. You can tell them a code that you set for the duration of your break and change it again when you get home, meaning that if there were any danger of them letting the code slip, it won’t matter.
If your garage door needs updating, repairing, general maintenance or a complete upgrade to a brand new model then get in touch. Prestige Doors provide the same service for their domestic garage doors as they do to business clients. Services include, measuring, building and fitting, routine maintenance, and 24 hour call out. All our parts and labour are guaranteed so you can rest assured that with our garage doors, your garage is as safe as houses.
Assistant chief constable for Leicestershire police force, Phil Kay stated in an interview with the Loughborough Echo that “I would far rather my officers were spending their time preventing crime, protecting the public and focusing on other stuff than things that are preventable.”
He made his statement in reference to burglaries that occur when windows and doors are left open, essentially blaming victims of crime for their own stupidity if they make a mistake and fail to properly secure their property.
Kay was speaking specifically about students who had recently moved to the area who often left windows and doors open despite crime prevention officers leafleting both campus and parts of the city with particularly high student accommodation.
He justified his point of view but adding that the NHS wouldn’t operate on someone who was obese, a smoker or heavy drinker.
“If the health service are making decisions on whether someone has helped contribute to prevent something or not, should the police? It is right that we try and stop it but it is right that people take responsibility.”
“If they knew we were not investigating it, they may take notice.” Meaning that residents would be more fastidious about securing their homes in the absence of active policing.
Unfortunately his assertions are nonsensical. The NHS will always intervene when someone’s health is at risk just as it is necessary for the police to investigate any crime, no matter how much the victim is at ‘fault’. And to suggest that these crimes would be overlooked and left without any investigation is absurd and tantamount to a dereliction of duty. Letting crime go unchallenged would turn Loughborough into a wild-west town where the bandits could roam the streets with impunity, victimising people at will because they knew that the police simply didn’t care about crime in the area. It also overlooks the many methods that criminals use to gain access. Well brought up young people will hold the door open to a stranger who looks like they belong, they’ll open the door to people who buzz the entryphone and claim to be visiting a neighbour, they won’t challenge strangers who ‘piggyback’ them when they are entering a building, all tried and tested means of gaining access that don’t depend on windows or doors being left open. When thieves target industrial premises, they often achieve entry using exactly the same techniques, relying on the politeness and cooperative spirit of authorised personnel who assume that people who they don’t know are probably supposed to be there and fail to challenge them appropriately.
It’s not only students he would leave beyond the help of the law. He went on to state, in an interview a couple of days later with the same paper, that according to the recently adopted Cambridge Crime Index:
“All crime is not equal and does not cause the same harm. I think what the public would like us to do, and that’s my experience, they want us to be focused on the harmful crimes. The ones that cause the most harm to them and their families not necessarily on crimes which could be preventable.
“At the moment we spend a lot of time investigating theft from shops and a lot of time collecting CCTV from the theft of shops and very often we find that theft is preventable.
“That does not mean we are not interested, we are still investigating them, it is looking at our demand.”
Naturally, local businesses are as concerned as student representative bodies over Phil Kay’s comments and are worried that they will be receiving a second rate service. David Pagett-Wright, Chairperson of the Loughborough Business Improvement District organisation said:
“We recognise that the police have got limited resources. Shoplifting might feature low down in that list of priorities but it is extremely important for stores concerned, especially the small independents.
“We need to work with the police to make sure there are still ways we can help prevent shoplifting and to also take action against those who commit it.
“We don’t want to be at a stage where they just get away with it.”
Thieves are opportunists and have little or no regard for the law or the consequences of their activities, either to themselves or their victims. There’s no reason to suppose that shoplifters shoplift exclusively or that housebreakers and warehouse burglars only keep to that particular form of crime. They’re only concern is getting what they can as quickly and easily as possible, if they see a chink in your armour, no matter where it is, they will abuse it.
Law abiding citizens have every right to expect that, when they become the victims of crime, they will receive the full backing of the law and not be told “well, it’s sort of your own fault and you were asking for it really.” This kind of victim blaming mentality is unacceptable and potentially leads to some very darkplaces if it’s used when looking at crimes against the person.
A feature of good business planning is the ability to ascertain when equipment has outlived its useful life. There is a triple balance of efficiency and effectiveness, safety and cost of reinvestment to buy new, up to date equipment.
You may be reluctant to spend money on new equipment to replace tools and machinery that you’ve had for a long time, it might be faithful, or, you may just have got used to its foibles and idiosyncrasies. If the chief operator of a particular asset were to retire, would their replacement be able to effectively take over with more than the basic manufacturers’ instruction manual? I f the answer is ‘no’ then it’s time to upgrade.
Vintage Vs. State of the Art
In the right hands it might be fine to keep hold of older utilities but if staff need ‘special’ instructions on how to use it then it is clearly on its way out. Putting up with unpredictable operation also means that it is very likely that it isn’t working as efficiently as it should. Routine maintenance (and health and safety audits) will keep the equipment running at its optimum for as long as possible, but as with all things, any tool will simply need retiring one day.
Depending on your field of enterprise, local and international rules and regulations will have an impact on the effectiveness of your tools. If your business is making windows routers that could be used to produce traditional wooden sash windows would be utterly redundant in the manufacture of uPVC triple glazed windows, notwithstanding the end product is still a window.
Safety First, Safety Last, Safety Always
Coming on to safety, if a piece of machinery, fixture or fitting become unsafe they should be replaced immediately, without exception. “Obviously” you will say to yourself, but many companies operate machinery illegally that has had safety devices disabled, guards and barriers removed and safety instructions ignored. Often the devices can be operated faster and more easily if the failsafes have been bypassed, notwithstanding that the increased speed of production poses a considerable risk to the health, even life of the operator.
If accidents are more likely it affects your bottom line as well as the morale of your staff. If they are being worked too fast and perceive that there are risks, then your employees will not feel that their safety is being prioritised. No matter that you didn’t remove the regulators and governors yourself, if someone on the shop floor thought it would be quicker and more efficient to do so it’s still you who’s committing an offence. If it’s your company, it’s your responsibility under the law and in the eyes of your workers to ensure that a culture of corner cutting and dangerous practice doesn’t take hold. Poor safety standards affect your bottom line because it’s you who has to pay the fines, makes the compensation and if the worst comes to the worst, goes to prison if recognised health and safety procedures aren’t enforced.
Costs, Hidden and Actual
Finally, the cost of reinvestment has to be addressed. If your assets are old but safe and effective then there’s no reason to invest in new unless your business is expanding. When it comes to the repair of old equipment, is it more cost effective to repair and replace worn parts or install new items that will come with warrantees? Storing or ordering in replacement parts and unexpected stoppages in production that mean you get behind with orders and lose business all mean costs, costs which can be avoided if your machinery is all running smoothly.
But what has this to do with Prestige Doors’ industry? Well, steel shutters and security grilles are subject to wear and superannuation, just like any other piece of equipment that has multiple moving parts. They need attention, maintenance and repairs. A worn, rusty, poorly maintained door produces a bad impression on staff and visitors, if it breaks down and can’t be opened or securely closed it will affect production and it has been known for roller shutters to fall from their mountings, injuring people who were walking through the door at the time. And that’s all without even looking at the primary purpose of a shutter – to keep your product in and intruders out.
When you replace your security shutters you expect them to last for years and that’s what Prestige Doors gives you. With 24 hour call out and a regular inspection and maintenance on all the screens and doors we build and fit, we ensure that replacing entry security won’t be a consideration for many years.
October’s here and it’s National Home Security Month. Autumn is statistically the worst time for domestic break-ins as the darker evenings mean that there are more hours in the day when intruders can creep about in the shadows. Bearing this in mind, Yale, and Union along with other companies and organisations are bringing together a different theme for each week in October that focuses on a different aspect of home security.
-Week one, National Home Security Month is Back!
Starting on 3/10/2016, starts with numerous different suggestions of small changes that you can make to keep your home, and everything in it, safe.
-Week two, Safe as Houses.
The weeks beginning 10/10/2016 looks at total home security but concentrates on the weak points that burglars will target first.
-Week three, Smart Home Security
From Monday 17/10/2016 they ask what gadgetry is there on the market that can be used to increase your home’s security, does it really work and which is best for you?
-Week four, Dark Nights
The week starting 24/10/2016 looks at ‘Dark Nights’ as the clocks go back and the nights close in this week provides plenty of advice on keeping your home safer for winter.
-Week five, Spooky Season
The end of the month, from 31/10/2016 concludes National Home Security Month’s round-up of hints and advice for the season, and the rest of the year until the next NHSM comes around next October.
Register by leaving your name and email address on their website and you’ll get a regular email newsletter full of advice and suggestions, together with special offers and deals on security devices for your home.
You can also keep in touch with them and share your own advice or household security horror stories with other security conscious homeowners by liking and following NHSM on Facebook and Twitter.
Although the National Home Security Month takes place in October, the NHSM Facebook page, the NHSM Twitter profile and NHSM website will remain online permanently and blogs will continue to be published regularly, meaning that homeowners can come along at any time throughout the year to pick up on the best professional advice available.