A string of area burglaries prompted Fort Lee police to issue an alert today to residents to “keep their eyes and ears open,” a ranking officer said. With the economy in a hole and the weather warming, the reverse-911-styled text message was “more a precaution than anything,” said Sgt. Daniel Zusi. “It wasn’t directed toward any specific incident.”
We just want residents to keep their eyes and ears open.”
Basic anti-burglary tips:
* Make your home look occupied;
* Lock all outside doors and windows before you leave or go to bed — even if it’s for a short time;
* DO NOT use “secret” hiding places for your keys — under doormats, flowerpots, or mailboxes (It’s the same as leaving the place unlocked);
* Leave a light on. If you’re worried about the utility bill or are going to be gone for a long time, get automatic timers;
* Keep your garage door closed and locked;
* Don’t let mail or newspapers pile up while you’re away; get the post office or a neighbor to hold onto them;
* Deadbolts on doors (pushbutton locks are too easy to push open), change immediately if you lose your keys;
* Special locks for sliding glass; pin-down locks for windows;
* Outside: motion sensors, especially for backyards; trim those trees and shrubs so they can’t be used to hide; make sure door hinges are on the inside.
* Alarm systems: Worth it.
*Write down plate numbers of suspicious vehicles that appear in your neighborhood.
If come home to find an unexplained open/broken window or door, don’t go inside. Use a neighbor’s phone to call police. Don’t touch anything and be sure to resist the urge to clean up until police have a chance to look around.
It’s also good to keep a detailed inventory of your stuff — including a description of the items, date of purchase and original value, and serial numbers. Make sure your copy is in a safe place outside the house, in case of fire or other disaster. Take photos or videos of expensive stuff. If anything bad happens, you’ll be glad you did.
Most of all, Zusi said: If you see anything suspicious, you’re not bothering police by calling. Better to have it turn out to be nothing than for someone to be victimized because police weren’t called.
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