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Crime Prevention Advice
It will soon be the end of British Summer Time and the longer nights will be upon us.
Beware the opportunist thief as they will take every opportunity to exploit poor security at and around people’s homes. Very often it is the simplest security measures that can make the difference and stop crime from happening in the first place. First and foremost, lock front and back doors, as well as windows, even when at home and especially overnight.
It is recommended that householders leave a light on if they are unlikely to be home before dark, or use a timer switch to ensure that the lights come on as dusk falls.
Nowadays, it is common for people to store expensive goods and equipment in their sheds, garages and outbuildings – which is precisely why householders should take steps to ensure their belongings are safe and make life as hard as possible for the opportunist thief. Tools and ladders and even garden furniture should also be put away and never left out for thieves to steal, or even use to commit crime.
Be a good neighbour and look out for any suspicious activity within your community. Look out for other people living around you, particularly older or vulnerable neighbours.
Tell the police immediately if you have any reason to be suspicious about any persons or vehicles. Along with community safety wardens, our officers regularly carry out high visibility patrols across the city. They will respond to ongoing incidents and react to information passed to them by the public. We would urge residents to report crime when they see it happening, or where they have suspicions that something is going on.
Some points to consider:
• Ensure that keys are not left within door locks.
• Consider getting a house alarm fitted or using an existing one.
• Mark all valuables with a UV pen with the relevant postcode and house number. If stolen items are recovered by the police, it is much easier to return them to the owner if this has been done.
• Make it more difficult for criminals to simply unscrew locks or hinges of shed doors by fitting carriage bolts, or clutch head security screws. Another method of stopping screws being removed is to fill the heads with epoxy resin.
• Consider fitting a curtain, or similar. If the shed has windows this may help to obscure the view of the shed’s contents.
• For visibility at night, consider sensor-operated lighting as a convenient and effective deterrent.
• Consider using a steel cable threaded through removable property and securing it to a building. This can make it extremely difficult for the thief to steal the item.
• Consider the use of an intruder alarm for sheds, garages, or outbuildings.
• NEVER leave the shed, garage, or outbuilding unlocked when unattended.
Fuel and oil thefts
Theft of heating and diesel oil has been an issue periodically over the years and the police have always noticed an increase in this type of crime whenever the price of crude oil rises. A rise in the price of fuel at the petrol pump inevitably leads to a rise in the cost of heating oil.
It therefore makes good sense to take precautions to protect your oil tank, with the following a few ideas about what can be done to make life more difficult for the thief. After all, would you leave over £600.00 in cash lying around in your garden?
General advice
1. Make sure the tank is situated away from the main road, but equally good surveillance from the main house and neighbouring houses. This will increase the offender(s) anxiety.
2. Closed boarded vertical strutted fencing offers the best wooden fence security. Trellis can be used to raise the fence height. Prickly plantation should also be a second option. Gravel around the tank is a good deterrent due to the noise when someone is walking on it.
3. Control switches that control the flow of oil should be turned off and the electricity isolated.
4. Use decent 'Closed Shackle' padlocks. These are harder to bolt crop.
5. Lighting should be 'site specific'. If overlooked light up the tank area using 'dusk to dawn lights'. If less overlooked, use PIR lighting that 'draws attention' on a short cycle - perhaps for 3-5 seconds. If in the middle of nowhere, keep the site completely dark.
Fuel theft
Below are a few tips to help reduce the possibility of fuel theft.
• Always park in well-lit and well-used areas.
• Try to park with your fuel tank facing the road so passing traffic makes it less of a target.
• Locking fuel caps are a deterrent.
• There are devices that can be fitted to the filler cap that can activate the vehicles alarm when tampered with.

Police Scotland, local community
Telephone: 101 for non emergencies.
The community officer for Kinross-shire is Sadie Allan.
The Community Sergeant for Kinross, Auchterarder and Crieff is Sandra Williams.
Crime Stoppers – Telephone 0800 555 111
This telephone number is a free phone number (unless you are using a mobile phone), which any member of the public can contact at any time if you have information relating to a criminal activity of any sort. It is, if you wish, confidential and you cannot be contacted if you choose to remain anonymous.