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Tips to stay safe

Thieves are generally opportunistic and will steal items if they see a chance. In many cases, if the opportunity is removed the theft can be prevented.

Neighbour knowledge

  • Introduce yourself.
  • Exchange phone numbers.
  • Look after their home while they’re away e.g. collecting mail.
  • Check on elderly/vulnerable.
  • Organise coffee/BBQ/picnic for street.
  • Welcome new neighbours.

Home safety from burglars

  • Lock all the doors and windows.
  • Keep fly screens locked.
  • Never leave a spare key outside.
  • Cut back shrubbery around the house to have a clear view outside.
  • Keep your house number clearly visible.
  • Make sure your house is well lit at night.
  • Lock all sheds, garages and side gates.
  • Put away tools, ladders and equipment that could be used to break in.
  • Keep your letter and metre box locked.
  • Install and use a house alarm.
  • Have a screen door and peep hole in the front door.
  • Maintain a “lived in look” for your house.

Home safety prior to winter/storms/emergency

  • Secure loose objects.
  • Keep tree branches trimmed clear of house/powerlines.
  • Create an emergency kit – battery powered torch etc.
  • Have an emergency plan and practice it with family.
  • Ensure everyone in your household is prepared.
  • Discuss possible scenarios and responses with your household.  

Motor vehicle

  • Close and lock all windows and doors.
  • Remove valuables – GPS and cradle, Mobile phones, iPods, laptops, CDs, money, sunglasses, bags etc.
  • Do not place items in your boot, console, or under your front seat – you never know who is watching. If it is valuable, take it with you.
  • Remove the suction mark left by your GPS cradle on the windscreen. Thieves will often break into a vehicle looking for a GPS unit hidden in your vehicle.
  • Do not leave loose change within view; thieves will do hundreds of dollars damage to steal small amounts of money.
  • Power cables from cigarette lighter sockets are signs of a valuable item probably hidden in the vehicle. Remove these from view.
  • If your car stereo has a detachable face, always take it with you.
  • Never hide a second set of keys anywhere on your car: thieves know where to look.

Personal safety

  • Always let someone know where you are going and when you will be back.
  • Travel with a friend/group.
  • Avoid taking a shortcut through deserted areas.
  • Plan ahead – time to park/travel.
  • Park/travel through well lit areas.
  • Keep valuables out of sight.
  • Be observant.

Holiday preparation

  • Stop mail/newspaper delivery.
  • Make your house look lived in by turning lights on/off and moving your car in/out.
  • If your garden is usually well maintained, arrange for it to be watered/mowed in your absence.
  • Lock all doors and windows when you leave.
  • Don’t make announcements of your plans on social media.
  • Install and use a security system.
  • Have someone come and look after your house/pet.
  • Give your neighbour or friend your contact address and telephone number.

Business safety

  • Ensure gates in the perimeter fence are able to be secured.
  • Identify potential hiding spots.
  • Secure bins in or away from buildings to stop them being used as a climbing aid and to discourage arson.
  • Fit each door with at least one good quality lock to restrict access.
  • Install security lighting outside your premises. E.g. floodlights, sensor activated lighting.
  • Install and use a security alarm.
  • Install and use CCTV equipment.
  • The Office of Crime Prevention (OCP) have developed a Business Security audit to assist in assessing the security of businesses. The City is assisting OCP in distributing this resource which is available in hard copy upon request or online.

Seniors safety

  • Ensure your house number is clearly visible from the street.
  • Have security screens on doors and windows.
  • Keep entrances to your house well lit.
  • Keep a phone extension in the bedroom with emergency numbers.
  • Make sure that handbags or wallets are not left in sight on bench tops etc.
  • Avoid opening the door to anyone you don’t know.
  • Plan walking routes to include footpaths, quieter roads, controlled crossing points and pedestrian access ways.
  • Varying your routine helps to prevent theft. Try not to do your banking at the same time on the same day each week or fortnight.

Designing out crime

  • Keep shrubs and landscaping surrounding your property trimmed to allow unobstructed views.
  • Secure bins in a way to prevent them being used as climbing aids.
  • Ensure all lights surrounding your property are in good working order.
  • Install security measures on gates sufficient to prevent forced entry.
  • Display Neighbourhood Watch signage.
  • Display signage indicating you have an alarm.

Graffiti prevention

  • Coatings – apply a plastic film over the outside of windows, this film can be removed if damaged and fresh film applied (see “coatings” in the Yellow Pages).
  • Practice Neighbourhood Watch – Neighbourhood Watch is a community-based programme aimed at reducing the incidence of preventable crime. See the website for more information.
  • Landscape – prickly plants (e.g. roses, bougainvillea, hakea and grevillea) can form effective barriers outside ground floor windows and balconies.
  • Lighting and surveillance – increase lighting of high-risk areas using sensor lights and vandal-proof permanent lighting.
  • WA Police – report graffit to Police (131 444) and contact the City for assistance and advice with clean-up.
  • Goodbye Graffiti– the Goodbye Graffiti website is dedicated to graffiti vandalism management within Western Australia and is managed by the Office of Crime Prevention – Goodbye Graffiti hotline 1800 44 22 55.