Crime prevention tips
It is up to all of us, not just police, to help fight crime. By taking a few simple precautions you can make life harder for criminals and protect yourself, your belongings and your home.
The Office of Crime Prevention has compiled some of the top tips to reduce your chances of becoming a victim of crime which includes:
- personal safety
- home security
- holiday security
Most offenders choose targets that they perceive as vulnerable so it is important to always act and respond to others with confidence. It is also important not to put yourself in situations where your safety could be compromised.
Some tips include:
- Tell your family, friends or colleagues your whereabouts and the time you expect to be returning. If you change your plans, let them know.
- Stay alert and aware of your surroundings at all times.
- Practice what you would do in a life threatening situation with a friend or consider taking self-defence lessons.
- Walk in well-lit areas that are clear of overgrown bushes or trees.
- Walk against the flow of traffic, this prevents vehicles driving slowly alongside you;
- Walk with a friend or group wherever possible and always walk confidently at a steady pace.
- Keep the car doors locked at all times while you are in the car.
- Stay in control if you are drinking. Count your drinks and, if you planning to have a big night, have a non-drinking friend to take care of you and make sure you get home safely.
- Check the surrounding area before going to your car, and check your back seat before getting in. When approaching your car, have your keys ready in your hand.
The following are some simple measures that can deter would-be criminals from making your house a target:
- Lock up the house whether you are at home or out. In over a third of WA’s burglary cases the burglars have climbed through an open window or walked through an unlocked door.
- Install quality deadlocks on all external doors and key locks on your windows. Install security screens so you can have your windows open without inviting burglars in.
- At night, leave inside lights on which would normally be on if you were at home.
- Consider using electronic timing devices that turn the TV, radio or lights on and off at selected times;
- Keep doors and windows locked at all times and activate alarm systems when leaving your home;
- Consider installing movement-activated external lighting.
- Install key operated locks for doors with glass panels.
- Make windows more secure by fitting locks, safety film, security screens or external roller shutters.
- Put away tools, gardening equipment and ladders – burglars may use these to gain access.
- Remember to lock garden sheds and garages.
- Keep trees and shrubs trimmed to minimise hiding places available to a burglar. Low or see-through fences at the front of homes also deter burglars as they minimise hiding places.
- Fit an approved meter box with a viewing window. Contact your electrical supplier for further information.
- Mark valuable property with the letters of the state followed by your driver’s licence number, e.g. WA 1234567.
- Photograph and record serial numbers of all valuable property and keep this information in a safe place.
By taking some simple precautions and giving your home a “lived in” look before you go on holidays, you can substantially reduce the risk of burglary.
Some tips to follow include:
- Ensure all doors and windows are securely locked, preferably with deadlocks and keyed window locks.
- Let your neighbours know you will be away and ask them to watch out for visitors and collect all your mail.
- Cancel all deliveries such as newspapers.
- Consider installing automatic timing devices for lights and electrical appliances such as radios and televisions.
- Give your house keys to a trusted friend or neighbour rather than hiding them outside your home.
- Be sure to notify the key holder when you return. This is especially important if you return home early.
- Give your neighbour or friend your contact address and telephone number.
- Consider asking your neighbour to park a car in your driveway.
- Your answering machine message should simply say that you are unable to come to the phone.
- Consider leaving a pair of old work boots by the front door to give the impression that someone is home.
Fire prevention tips
The City of Fremantle prohibits the burning of garden refuse and rubbish in an incinerator or on the ground all year round. Any person who deliberately lights a fire may face penalties.
Pursuant to the powers contained in section 33 of the Bush Fires Act 1954, property owners or occupiers are hereby required on or before the 30th day of November each year to clear flammable matter from the land in accordance with the following requirements:
Land area less than or equal to 1 500 square metres
The owner or occupier is to remove all the flammable matter from the whole of the property except living trees, shrubs, plants under cultivation and lawns by slashing or mowing to a height of not more than one hundred (100) millimetres, or otherwise to the satisfaction of council or an authorised officer.
Land area greater than 1 500 square metres
- clear firebreaks of a minimum width of three (3) metres inside all external boundaries of the land and all buildings situated on the land by ploughing, cultivating or scarifying.
- mow/slash the whole of the land. The height of vegetation thereafter must not exceed one hundred (100) millimetres over the entire area of land, as far as reasonably practical as determined by the authorised officer.
The penalty for failing to comply with these requirements is a fine of not more than $5 000 and a person in default is also liable whether prosecuted or not to pay the cost of performing the work directed in this notice if it is not carried out by the owner or occupier by the date required by this notice.
Once installed the fire break must be maintained up to and including 31 March the following year.
Contact the chief bush fire control officer on 08 9432 9999, for more information regarding fire control.
If you want to use a solid fuel BBQ’s or wood fire pizza ovens between the 14 December–31 March, check with DFES as their use may be prohibited. Call the Total Fire Ban Information Line on 1800 709 355.
For information on total fire bans visit the DFES website.
Bush fire prone areas
Bush fire prone areas are designated as those areas containing bush fire prone vegetation as well as areas that are within a 100 metre buffer zone immediately surrounding it. Bush fire prone areas are subject to or likely to be subject to bush fire attack in the event of a fire.
Bush fire attack includes embers that may be transported by wind from the bush fire. Information on how to prepare your property and yourself is available on the DFES website.
The Fire and Emergency Services Commissioner has designated all bush fire prone areas in the State. These are marked in pink on the bush fire prone areas map.
More information on bush fire prone areas is available on the DFES website.
Reporting suspicious behaviour
If people have any information about a fire or suspect somebody of deliberately lighting fires, they should call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Ongoing vigilance by the community in reporting suspicious behaviour and arson will help minimise the likelihood of bush fire.