Holiday Safety: Don’t let would-be grinches spoil your travels 

This post is the fourth in a series about keeping your family and possessions safe this holiday season.

By Lt. Craig Anderson, CSPD Public Information Officer

When preparing for holiday travel, some folks make detailed to-do lists so they won’t leave anything important behind.

Gifts? Check.

Christmas cookies? Check.

Ugly holiday sweater? Check.

If you plan to celebrate the season away from home, you might consider adding a few other items to that checklist to keep your property safe. Don’t let the would-be grinches lurking in the shadows spoil your Christmas.

Good locks, simple precautions, neighborly alertness, and common sense can prevent most property crimes.

Is anybody there?

Make sure your home has a lived-in look since most burglars want to avoid confrontation. Put a hold on your mail and newspaper deliveries and hide your empty garbage container. An alternative is to ask a trusted neighbor to handle these items for you.

You can also provide that neighbor with a key to your home and have them park their vehicle in your driveway. You can offer to do the same the next time they leave town.

Lights and alarm systems are great investments, and you may want to add a timer to turn on the lights and a radio or TV in the evening. Some modern security systems and timers can be controlled and monitored remotely through your smartphone. Leave your shades and blinds in their normal positions.

If you’re a renter, check with your landlord or management company about their security measures and what precautions you should take in case freezing weather occurs.

Secure your home and valuables

Lock all your windows, doors and outside gates. You might even consider double-locking your windows with inexpensive key locks found at hardware stores. Don’t hide your keys in a mailbox, under a doormat or planter, or anywhere outside.

Double check your garage doors before you leave, and unplug or disarm automatic garage door openers, if possible. If you’re leaving a vehicle in the driveway, don’t leave a garage door opener inside.

Take smaller valuables such as laptop computers or expensive jewelry with you or store them in a safe deposit box. It’s also a good idea to record the serial numbers of your valuables. You may even want to engrave your driver’s license number on the back of your electronics and computers.

Be discrete

Finally, it’s never wise to advertise your travel plans to strangers, especially on Facebook or other social media.

Let’s work together to keep College Station a safe place to live, work and play by taking away opportunities for crime. The College Station Police Department wishes you a safe and joyous holiday season.

About the Blogger

Lt. Craig Anderson is in his 30th year with the College Station Police Department.


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