After Dark Safety

After Dark Safety

Autumn has arrived, and with it comes later sunrises and early sunsets. 24/7 Security Services encourages everybody to pay special attention to their personal safety – the reduced daylight, coupled with the ongoing load shedding, provides criminals with ample opportunities to commit crimes.

At Home

  • Lock doors, switch lights on and activate beams the moment it starts getting dark.
  • Ensure that garages and garden shed doors are locked at night.
  • Criminals don’t want to be seen – motion detection lights are a good choice for lighting up dark outdoor areas.
  • Ensure that outdoor lights are not left on during the day. It usually indicates that nobody is home for a prolonged period of time, and criminals scouting for a target will immediately notice.
  • If you are travelling, motion detection lights or lights with day/night sensors are good options.
  • Ensure that your driveway is well lit and clear of shrubbery where criminals can hide.
  • Keep flashlights and extra batteries in your home and car in case of an emergency.
  • Test your electric fence and panic alarms regularly.

Running and Cycling
Reduced daylight affects most people’s exercise schedules. Pay special attention to
your personal safety when exercising in low light.

  • Wear light coloured clothing with reflective detailing. Always ensure that you are visible from the front and the back so that both directions of traffic can see you.
  • Wear a headlamp and runner lights – they will make you more visible and help you see in the dark.
  • Stick to well-lit routes as far as possible to reduce your risk of tripping.
  • When running in poor light, always run against the traffic so you can see any potential dangers coming. You’re much more likely to be able to get out the way quickly of cars or road users if you can see them first.
  • Be aware of headlights – if you see flashes of light coming round a corner or a busy road, avoid crossing until the vehicle has passed.
  • There is a certain amount of safety in numbers – exercise with a friend or in a group.
  • Always tell somebody where you are going and be specific regarding routes and directions.
  • Carry some form of identification on you so that any bystanders will know who you are and who to contact in case of an emergency. Most exercise gear has small pockets for this very reason.
  • Refrain from carrying your cell phone and other valuables while exercising – these items make you a target for criminals.

24/7 Security Services – / 011 444 2237

Electric Fence Maintenance

Electric Fence Maintenance

Avoid an unwanted shock – ensure that you maintain your electric fence.

  • Check your electric fence regularly for damaged, broken or corroded wires, and damaged insulators.
  • Prune trees and shrubs regularly to ensure that foliage does not touch the electric fence wires, and remove any dead insects or other debris from inside the insulators that could ground the wires.
  • Ensure that the fence wires’ tension is correct. If the wires are earthing, the fence will short and cause false alarms.
  • Remember that your need to replace the energiser battery regularly.
  • Physically check that the electric fence zones correspond with the zone display.
  • Test your electric fence regularly to make sure the alarm activates.

24/7 Security Services – / 011 444 2237

Vehicle Safety

Vehicle Safety

24/7 Security Services has noted a marked increase in the number of incidents related to thefts from vehicles in public spaces.

Thefts are either smash-and-grab related, or break-ins into stationary vehicles.

Generally, thieves target items such as:

  • purses, handbags and wallets
  • laptop bags and briefcases
  • shopping bags
  • gym bags
  • cell phones and tablets

Advice on preventing smash-and-grabs:
Even though it is not always possible to avoid the hotspots where criminals prey on unsuspecting motorists, it is possible to reduce the risk of becoming a smash-and-grab victim.

  • Don’t leave items on the seats, floor or anywhere in the vehicle where they can be seen.
  • Lock all your doors and close the windows when driving.
  • Avoid opening your windows or getting involved in discussions with street vendors or anyone handing out flyers.
  • Constantly be on the lookout for suspicious-looking characters.
  • Always be conscious of your surroundings and remain alert when coming to an intersection or stopping your vehicle.
  • Be wary of people loitering at intersections.

Safety when parking:

  • Thieves target car parks – always park your car in attended parking lots.
  • When parking at night, ensure that you always park in a well-lit area.
  • Never sit in your vehicle without being conscious of your surroundings.
  • Lock your doors and roll up your windows when you park.
  • When arriving at a destination, refrain from openly placing valuables in the vehicle’s boot – criminals are often watching for easy targets.

24/7 Security Services – / 011 444 2237

Cell Phone Safety

Cell Phone Safety

It is hard to imagine life without cell phones. Being connected 24 hours a day has become the norm, and many people cannot leave home or participate in an activity without their phone in hand. Unfortunately, cell phones have become sought after by criminals. The devices are small, easily transported, and there is an insatiable market for stolen phones. Even more concerning is the level of violence associated with some phone thefts.

24/7 Security Services urges everybody to be cautious when using their phones in public:

  • Do not leave your phone on the restaurant table while dining out – put it in your pocket or bag. Ensure that your bag is safe and not hanging on the back of the chair.
  • When queueing at a shop or ATM, keep your phone out of sight. It has become a habit to text or update social media while waiting, but this puts you at risk.
  • While refuelling at a filling station, do not sit in your car engaged on your phone with the window open.
  • Do not text while sitting in traffic – you are a soft target for criminals moving between vehicles.
  • Be alert when making calls in public places while walking on pavements or crossing the street.
  • When using your phone to book transport, do not stand on a public pavement. Make the booking while indoors, and then also be aware of your surroundings.

You need to exercise – your phone does not!
We appeal to all athletes to please refrain from exercising with any valuables:

  • Leave cell phones at home (measure a route in your car and then run it if you can), but please do not run or cycle with a phone – not only does this pose a danger to yourself, but also to other athletes.
  • Do not run with iPods or any form of music in your ears. Not only does this make you a target (due to the value of the iPod), but you won’t hear traffic and thugs approaching you.
  • Remove all jewellery before heading out on the road for an exercise session.
  • Try not to exercise alone, irrespective of the time of day or the route that you follow – many incidents occur on busy roads in broad daylight.
  • If you wear an expensive training watch, consider covering it with a buff to hide it from opportunistic criminals.

Cyber Security Tips

  • Set the ‘Lock Code’ on your phone with a timer to lock the screen. While unlocking your phone after a short period of no use may seem painful initially, it does become second nature and is a great first line of defence.
  • Manually log out of your internet banking and social media sites, and do not allow these sites to auto-store your passwords.
24/7 Security Services – / 011 444 2237
Holiday Safety

Holiday Safety

You deserve a safe and happy holiday. Unfortunately, the holiday period traditionally sees an increase in crime, and we urge everybody to double check their security measures to help ensure a stress-free holiday.

Electronic Systems
It is important that you test your electronic security systems (alarm, electric fence, beams, batteries and CCTV) on a regular basis with the 24/7 Command Centre. Panic button tests should be conducted on a monthly basis out of peak hours.

Perimeter Check
Walk the perimeter of your property and inspect all fences, gates and walls. Ensure that there are no weak spots where criminals can gain entry. Ensure that foliage is cut back and does not interfere with the electric fence. Overhanging branches can provide access for criminals.

Doors and Windows
Ensure that all doors and windows are securely closed and locked before you leave the property – this includes outbuildings and garages. Ensure that rusty locks are replaced and that burglar bars are secure.

Outdoor Lights
Criminals are wary of well-lit properties. Ensure that you have good outdoor lighting that switches on at night. Motion sensor lights are always a good investment.

Tell a Neighbour
Ask neighbours to keep an eye on your property and to report any suspicious activity. Neighbours can also assist with collecting mail, newspapers and removing empty bins and recycling bags.

Out and About

  • Know where your children are at all times and do not leave children unattended or without adult supervision. 
  • Avoid wearing expensive-looking jewellery when out and about, and please stay off your cell phone when in a public space – it makes you an easy target for criminals.
  • Be aware of your surroundings and suspicious people when visiting an ATM or conducting cash transactions.
  • When shopping or visiting a restaurant, keep your handbag close to you and your cell phone out of sight.
  • If you suspect that you are being followed, proceed to your nearest police station.  

24/7 Security Services – / 011 444 2237

Emergency Numbers  

JHB011 444 2237
KZN031 140 1061
PTA012 451 8600

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