Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP have provided some helpful tips to make sure your valuable are safe if you’re returning from a spring break trip. (RCMP photo illustration)

Keep your home safe while away on vacation: Vernon RCMP

Nobody wants to return from a spring break vacation to find their home has been broken into

Whether you’re calling it spring break or a break from winter, planning time away can be stressful.

However, being the victim of property crime can as well.

The Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP are reminding residents to not fall victim to property crime while away from their homes this spring.

“No one wants to return from a wonderful vacation to find that their home has been broken into,” said RCMP Const. Kelly Brett. “There are a number of safety and security measures that you can take to protect your home.”

The Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP is offering the following safety tips to ensure you home and property are secure:

* Install a home security system – These systems can be direct linked to a monitoring service which act as a deterrent for intruders;

* Install motion / light sensors – Ensure the light on the sensor is bright enough to draw attention to anyone attempting to enter the home;

* Replace old entry doors and locks – Good locks are useless if your door is easily broken;

* Purchase a fireproof safe – Before you leave, lock up any valuables that you may keep out on an everyday basis, like jewellery or sensitive documents;

* Relocate any hidden keys – Retrieve your hidden key and put it somewhere safe inside your home;

* Concealing your absence – Ask a trusted person to watch the house in your absence by checking on the home daily, collecting mail and or maintaining the yard as to appear as if someone was still home. Have a neighbour park their car in your driveway for the appearance that someone it staying at the home;

* Leave lights on – Or install timer lights that come on at different times of the day to make it appear as if someone was home. Also leaving a radio or TV on will act as a deterrent;

* Do not post online – Never post on social media you are leaving for a vacation. Avoid posting photos, check in details or updates of your vacation while away;

* Check all locks – Before you leave, check that each door, window and garage door are securely locked.

READ ALSO: From boat motor to horse saddle, search recovers thousands in stolen Vernon property

“Ensuring personal safety while travelling seems to be top of mind for most when planning a holiday, however securing properties should be of high priority as well,” said Brett. “Homeowners often return to find their home burglarized, not a great way to end a trip. Following some of our simple safety tips could reduce their risk of being victims to property crime.”

There are simple things you can do to boost the security of your home and reduce the risk of break and enters.

By using CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design) techniques around the exterior of your home, you can make a big difference to your security at home. Contact Rachael Zubick, Coordinator for the Vernon Community Safety at 250-550-7840 for a free consultation.

If you see something, say something.

Public safety is everyone’s responsibility – and it’s easy. The best way to do your part for public safety is to get connected with your neighbourhood, pay attention to what is going on around you and report any criminal or suspicious activity to the police, Brett said.

Click here to connect with your local North Okanagan Detachment.

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