Neighbourhood Watch

Suffolk Police are issuing security advice to caravan owners following a number of caravan thefts in the county.

At some point between Sunday 28 May and Wednesday 5 June offenders stole a Hobby Excellent caravan from a storage area on a site on Icklingham Road in West Stow.

At some point overnight on Tuesday 6- Wednesday 7 June three caravans were stolen from a storage area in a caravan park in Hinton. The caravans were all in a storage area rather than on pitches on site.

Police are looking into the possibility that these offences are linked, and are offering security advice to caravan owners across the county to prevent theft:

· Ensure your caravan is locked and securely stored

· Fit a tracking device and an alarm to your vehicle

· Invest in good quality locks and lock the coupling head into a cover

· Lock the wheels with locking wheel nuts

· Keep valuables elsewhere if possible or out of sight

· Consider security marking 

Anyone with any information about the crimes should contact Suffolk police on 101 quoting crime reference number 37/40267/17. For more security advice on how to secure your caravan please see www.suffolk.police.uk/advice/crime-prevention-z .

Following recent burglaries in Dennington, Suffolk Police have issued this information: 

More than a third of reported residential burglaries in April and May this year were as a result of an insecure door or window and Suffolk Police are urging residents to keep windows and doors locked to prevent becoming an ‘easy’ target for thieves during the summer months.

Of the 185 burglaries reported to police over the two months, 65 were due to a lack of security. This compares to 72 out of 170 reported in the same period last year which represents a 7% decrease in the proportion of burglaries where access was due to insecurities.

Detective Superintendent Andy Smith said: "Whilst we have seen a slight drop in insecure home burglaries, the summer months are popular for thieves as more of us spend more time outdoors. It’s important that we all continue to take security seriously and lock up – even if you’re in another area of the house or in the garden.

"Thieves are opportunist and operate quickly. Typically, they will look for the easy option by looking for gaps in security and are often not afraid to try door locks. If they see an easy way to enter a property and steal something valuable, sadly, they’ll take it so I would urge people not to leave valuable items such as laptops and jewellery in view of windows.

"Remember to keep garages and outbuildings secure too as burglars look for utensils to help them break into homes. Be neighbourly by looking out for your local community and always report any suspicious activity to police. If you believe a burglary to be in progress always dial 999.”

Follow the advice below to help keep your home safe:

LOCK

• Lock all doors and remove the keys before leaving the house.

• Keep front doors locked even when you are at home and especially if you are in the back garden.

• Close all windows fully before you leave the house, lock downstairs windows and remove the keys.

• Use window limiters to allow air in instead of keeping windows fully open, even when you’re at home.

• Install window locks on upstairs windows that can be easily accessed by a flat roof.

• Lock back gates using a sturdy lock such as a closed shackle padlock to no less than CEN 3-4 security grade or 5 lever lock. 

LIGHT

• Make your home look lived in – use timer switches if you’re not home.

• ‘Dusk-to-dawn’ sensored security lighting is a cheap, low cost way of making sure the front of your home or shed/outbuilding is well-lit.

• Visible burglar alarms can make burglars think twice; get specialist advice and consult your insurance company.

• Hedging and shrubs to the front of your property should be pruned to no higher than 1m and trim trees up from the ground to 2m. This will allow a clear line of sight across your property and will stop the garden being used as a hiding place.

HIDE

• Keep your valuables, jewellery, cash, passport and deeds to your property in a safe.

• Never leave spare keys in an open place. Be aware, burglars know all the usual hiding places so never leave a spare key under the doormat or under a garden gnome.

• Keep dustbins and wheelie-bins away from fencing/gates as these can be used by thieves to climb into windows or used to escape.

• Make sure valuables are property marked. Take photographs and keep a note of any serial numbers.

• Don’t leave equipment and tools lying around that can be used by burglars to break into your home, such as hammers, shovels or gardening tools. Keep ladders locked away and out of sight.

SUMMER CAMPAIGN

Police in Suffolk will be targeted motorists who drive under the influence of drink or drugs as part of a month-long campaign.

The campaign, which started on Thursday 1 June and lasts until 30 June and will see officers from the Norfolk and Suffolk Roads Policing Unit breathalysing any driver who is stopped due to concerns over the manner of their driving, a vehicle defect or anyone involved in a collision.

Chief Inspector Kris Barnard, head of the roads policing unit, said: "This is an offence we target all year round but the summer campaign gives us the opportunity to raise awareness of the dangers driving under the influence can have, that a minority of motorists still chose to ignore.

"Drink or drug driving impairs your judgement, making your reactions slower, therefore increasing the chance of being involved in a collision.”

The campaign will involve targeted roadside activities by roads policing officers with support from uniformed colleagues across the county.

During last year’s campaign (2016) 113 motorists were caught drink or drug driving in Suffolk.

Suffolk Police & Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore said: "As the weather improves and the barbeques are dusted off, I welcome this timely campaign to remind drivers not to drink or take drugs and drive.

"It beggars belief that despite the obvious dangers, too many drivers still take to the road under the influence of drink or drugs.

"All drivers need to understand that drink or drug driving risks lives and the lives of others, it is grossly irresponsible and selfish.

"I hope that slowly but surely the message is getting through, this cavalier attitude to safety is completely unacceptable and I urge drivers to take heed. Sadly too many drivers have still not learnt the lesson – drink driving kills.”

UK THREAT LEVEL

With the tragic events that took place in London over the weekend, Suffolk Constabulary’s Chief Constable has moved to reassure local residents and visitors that although the county remains safe, the approach to policing will be continuously reviewed to help mitigate any potential further threats. 

The UK threat levels remain unchanged at SEVERE for police and the UK generally, meaning an attack is highly likely but not imminently expected and officers locally will be conducting increased, highly visible patrols, to provide reassurance and confidence. 

Chief Constable Gareth Wilson said: "Our thoughts remain with those affected by the incident in London on Saturday, particularly the families of those killed and all who sustained injuries. Here in Suffolk we continue to keep policing under review in view of national events and, while the county remains safe, we need to come together to show those who would create fear and division that we stand as one against such attacks.

"Extremists present a significant challenge for the police, security and intelligence services and our communities’ support is paramount in helping us deal with this challenge. I would urge everyone to report anything they believe to be suspicious behaviour, and to continue to be alert but not alarmed.

"The threat level and our response are constantly under review. If we feel it necessary to deploy specially trained officers again in the coming weeks we will, while maintaining a police presence in our communities and at key events.

"I would continue to ask the public to remain calm but alert – if you see anything which causes you concern, then call the police immediately. Look out for anything that seems out of place, we would rather investigate concerns which come to nothing, rather than hear an incident could have been prevented.” 

Latest guidance on recognising the terrorist threat and remaining vigilant can be accessed via www.nactso.gov.uk

To report any suspicious activity or behaviour call 0800 789 321 or in an emergency dial 999.


This message is being broadcast on behalf of Suffolk Trading Standards

We've had many reports of traders going door to door across the County offering to sell chainsaws and generators. Reports have been received in Ipswich, Stowmarket and Beccles.

Please be especially cautious of any individual who approaches you and offers to sell you something at a incredibly reduced price. 

Trust your instincts – If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!

Anyone who is offered goods for sale out the back of a van, by a person who approaches them in the street, or uninvited at the doorstep, should be highly suspicious. Goods sold in this way may be stolen, counterfeit, unsafe or simply overpriced.

Our advice is simply never to deal with traders in this way.

Anyone who is suspicious of goods offered for sale in this way should report the matter to Suffolk police by contacting the number 101, or by calling us via the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 04 05 06.