Police to step up anti-burglary patrols

POLICE in Magherafelt will be conducting anti-burglary patrols throughout the month of February.

During these patrols they will be keeping an eye out for any premises that are insecure and highlighting vulnerable areas to the owners.

Crime Prevention Officer Gillian Dixon explains: “We have recently had incidents in the Magherafelt area where tools have been stolen from unlocked sheds.

“I would urge everyone, particularly those living in rural areas, to ensure that tools, equipment and machinery are locked away in a shed when not in use, even during the day.”

The following tips will help prevent you from becoming a victim of a theft or burglary.

- Restrict access to your yard. Install gates and fix them to a sturdy concrete or metal post. Keep locked.

- Fencing, hedges and walls should be robust, well maintained and checked regularly for breaches.

- Consider installing an alarm in vulnerable areas. An alarm will emit an audible warning and CCTV will provide surveillance on places out of view of the farmhouse.

- Consider installing security lighting in areas which are overlooked from the dwelling or covered by CCTV.

- Store your tools and smaller machinery items in a building with enhanced security features.

- Consider marking your property with UV Pens or a forensic DNA solution. Photograph machinery and tools - to get an idea of scale have someone stand beside larger items such as quads and trailers.

Use a ruler for smaller items. Make a register of the make, serial number, colour and any unusual features on equipment. Indicate the type of property marking and where applied on the item.

- Report any suspicious activity to your local police immediately.

The non-emergency number is 0845 600 8000. In an emergency always dial ‘999’.

Contact details for your local Neighbourhood Team can be found on the PSNI website.