Gone are the days when all the neighborhood kids played kick the can in the middle of the street. Whether you blame it on paranoid parents or uninterested children, one thing is for sure – many neighbourhoods today are lacking that close-knit feeling.
Neighborhood safety is a team effort, but it starts with you! What can you do to make your neighborhood a safer place?
Here are some simple tips to keep in mind:
> Know Your Neighbours
This is very important. You need to know whether they work during the day and whether they have children. Do you live next to an old couple that stays home, is there a teenage driver in the family or are there small children you need to look out for. Knowing all these things helps you be aware of who is in your neighborhood and what could be suspicious activity.
Always have a way to reach your neighbours if they’re gone and something doesn’t seem right in the neighborhood. It might even be a good idea to develop a neighbourhood calling tree.
Keep Up your Yard
A neighbourhood with mowed lawns, neat hedges, flowers and freshly painted homes and simply looks like its cared for will help deter crime. A well-kept yard also provides fewer places for criminals to take cover.
Be cautious When Leaving Town
Talk to your neighbours and arrange for someone to mow your lawn, pick up your mail and open and close your curtains. It is best to use timers on your lights, or find a security system that will allow you to turn lamps on and off remotely.
Close Your Windows and Blinds
A huge flat screen TV is less likely to be stolen if no one knows it is there. Leaving your blinds open your lights on at night provides a free look into your house, it’s layout and the habits of its occupants. Leaving your windows wide open at night or when you’re gone is also an invitation for criminals to come inside (especially if you don’t have burglar bars).
Improve Lighting on Your Street
Streetlamps are not the only way to do this. Ask that each household turn on their porch lights in the evenings and install motion sensor lights in the back and sides of the house so potential intruders don’t have any darkness to hide in.
Encourage Outdoor Activity
Go on walks with your neighbours, work in the garden together and let your kids play with the other children in the neighbourhood. Organising a neighbourhood cookout can encourage people to feel more comfortable spending time out in the neighbourhood as well.
Know Your Neighbourhood Watch
Chat to your area’s neighbourhood watch and talk to them about how to keep your neighbourhood safe. Notify them if you see any suspicious activity or require any assistance. Your neighbourhood watch needs to be on top of things at all times, which is why the PatrolMan mobile app is the perfect way for them to record and track incidents and summon assistance from other patrollers.
Improving neighbourhood safety is a team effort, but it needs to start with someone and that someone should be you!