Keeping your home safe and secure
You can improve the security of your home in many ways that don’t cost much money. This section suggests some of these.
Close all windows and lock external doors when you go out, even for a short time. Most thefts happen during the day and take only a few minutes.
Fit locks to your ground-floor windows – they are quite cheap and work well. Make sure you always know where the keys are in case of emergency, such as a fire.
Close windows on the ground floor and near pipes or flat roofs at nigh
Never leave keys under a mat or on a string inside the letterbox.
Don’t leave notes for callers saying you are going away from hom
Callers to your home
Our staff and contractors carry identity cards. Anyone from the gas or electricity suppliers, or the water board, should also carry one. Always ask them to prove their identity, even if they have an appointment with you. Never let anyone into your home unless you are completely satisfied they are who they say. If a caller leaves when you challenge them, call the Police straight away.
Crime Prevention Officers at your local police station are always happy to give you more advice about protecting your home. They can also help if you want to set up a Neighbourhood Watch scheme in your area.
Many fires in the home are caused by simple carelessness, so remember to follow this advice:
- Put cigarettes out properly before you empty ashtrays.
- Never leave a burning candle unattended.
- Don’t smoke in bed.
- Don’t dry or air clothes around fires or cookers.
- Keep matches away from children
- Put fireguards around fires.
- Unplug or switch off all electrical equipment when you aren’t using it.
- Look out for the danger signs of faulty appliances or wiring – such as hot plugs and sockets, fuses that blow for no obvious reason, lights flickering, and scorch marks on plugs and sockets.
- Close all doors before going to bed.
- Take extra care when deep- frying chips or other food. Never leave a chip pan unattended.
- If it does catch fire, smother it with a damp cloth – don’t throw water on the pa
- You must not keep flammable materials, such as gas cylinders, in your home.
Your home should be fitted with a smoke alarm. You must check the battery from time to time to make sure it works, and replace it if not. Most smoke alarms have a test button so you can easily check they are working.
If a fire does start:
- Close all doors to stop the fire spreading if safe to do so.
- Get everyone out quickly.
- Call the fire brigade on 999 and give the exact address of the fire. (Use a neighbour’s phone or public call box – never go back into your home to use your land line)
- Stay out of your home until the fire brigade tells you it is safe to return.