Safety tips to survive a home invasion

PROTECT yourself against home invasions with these tips from a security company.

“There are measures that can be taken to discourage intruders from choosing your home. Should you fall victim to such a crime, there are things you can do to survive an attack,” Fidelity ADT KZN district manager, Ivan Govender.

He offers the following tips to make your home less appealing to home invaders:

  • Ensure shrubs and bushes in the garden are trimmed back so there is no place for intruders to hide.
  • Outside lights must be in good working order and provide a good view of pathways, the driveway and gardens.
  • Ensure your gate and driveway is well lit if you arrive home after dark and ensure you can easily exit in case of an emergency.
  • If your property is surrounded by walls, make sure that there is a videophone and intercom at the gate to identify visitors.
  • Burglar bars on windows and security gates must be firmly in place and checked regularly. Never underestimate the determination of an intruder, so cover even the smallest or highest of windows in your home.
  • Everyone in the home must know how to summon emergency services and operate the home security system.
  • Test your home security system regularly, to ensure it works and that emergency signals are received by your armed response company.
  • The garage and any other outbuilding must be locked when not in use as it can be a source of tools or weapons for intruders.
  • You can request your armed response service to meet you at home to ensure a safe arrival.
  • Security gates or safety chains on doors must always be in use.
  • Investigate with caution if dogs bark persistently. If you are uncertain and concerned, alert the neighbourhood watch or armed response.
  • Lock the internal doors of rooms that are not in use at night.
  • Activate the alarm for those areas of the home that are unoccupied at night.
  • Keep your cell phone by the bedside.

Should your home be invaded, Govender offers these tips:

  • Avoid aggravating your attackers and make it clear you will co-operate if you know there is no means of escape or raising the alarm.
  • Hand over valuables and property if they demand it.
  • Be observant and take particular notice of any voice, dress or behavioural traits.
  • Only fight back or attempt escape when your life or that of a loved one is in grave danger.
  • If the intruders leave, don’t hinder or try to apprehend them.
  • Don’t follow the intruder outside.
  • Close and lock the doors immediately and call for help by activating the home alarm system.

“Always join the local neighbourhood watch, even if you do have the services of an armed response on call. Community safety is everyone’s business and it is essential residents know their neighbours in order to present a united front against crime. Trust your instinct and raise the alarm immediately if you see any suspicious activity in your neighbourhood,” said Govender.

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  AUTHOR
Erin Hanekom
Journalist

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