Since 1 January 2013, 41 sheds and 9 garages have been broken into across Ipswich. An estimated £7,200 worth of tools and bicycles have been stolen, as well fishing gear and motorbikes. Of the 50 break-ins, 11 of the buildings had been left insecure.
Whilst you may not consider the items in your shed or garage to be of great value, please remember that most sheds and garages contain tools and other items that could be used to break into your house or that of your neighbours.
The following steps will help to ensure that your shed and garage stay secure:
- Fit good locks to all doors. Padlocks should be at least 6cm/2.5 ins wide, hardened steel, have at least 5 pins and be closed shackle. Pedestrian access doors should have 5 lever mortice locks.
- Fittings should be bolted through the door and reinforced at the back with a steel plate or washer; hasps should have concealed screws.
- Use the locks at all times, even if you are at home.
- Cover the windows. Either cover them with mesh or metal bars or least obscure the view with newspaper or an old curtain.
- Make sure that the shed is in good condition. Weaknesses such as rotten wood or holes in the doors or windows will be an easy access point for a burglar, even if there are good locks on the doors.
- Fit additional locks to garage doors. Garages with pedestrian access doors as well as up and over doors can be further secured by adding padlocks to the front of the runners when the door is shut to prevent the door being opened.
- Consider fitting an alarm or investigating if your house alarm can be extended to cover the sheds/garage.
- Secure items within the shed. Lock items to each other with a quality lock or secure them to a fixed point in the floor.
- Security mark property and register it on .
- Use dusk to dawn security lights around the shed/garage.
- Make sure that the boundary fence is in good order, at least six foot high and check that gates are locked.
- If you see or hear anything suspicious, call police on 101 or 999 in an emergency.
For further information please contact your local crime reduction officer on 101.