July 24th, 2021

MHPS offers tips on keeping unwanted guests from entering your home while you’re away

By Peggy Revell on June 13, 2017.


Going away on vacation? There are simple things to do to ensure your residence isn’t targeted for a break and enter.

“It is always such a crime of opportunity,” said Sgt. Mike Fischer with the Medicine Hat Police Service, explaining that residential break and enters are proportionate to the city’s population, compared to other cities.

And while there’s the idea that break-ins generally happen at night, Fischer says they also occur during the day — when your family and neighbours are out — or while on vacation.

“If they’re targeting you because they think you’re gone, just make it look like you’re home,” said Fischer. This could be having spare vehicles normally parked on the street parked in the driveway, having both exterior and interior lights on.

Another measure is to have a trusted person to take care of your house, said Fischer, such as making sure flyers don’t pile up in the mailbox, upkeeping the grass, weeding the garden and watering the yard if you don’t have timed sprinklers.

Another thing to do is to let your neighbours know you’re going to be a way, and asking them to keep an eye on your house, said Fischer — retired neighbours are often perfect to tell, because they’re often home during the day.

Caution is also needed when posting on social media, said Fischer, as people love to share their lives — including taking pictures and celebrating that they’re on their way to Mexico or elsewhere.

“We try to just remind people not to make it really obvious on social media that they’re gone and their home is vulnerable,” said Fischer.

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