Sligo and Leitrim experienced a significant rise in the rate of burglaries in 2017 with a 26% increase.
According to PhoneWatch, Ireland’s leading provider of home alarm systems, who today launched their Annual Burglary Report, while there was a 3% increase in the number of burglaries nationally there are significant regional variations which are a cause for concern.
In total there were 247 burglaries across the two counties last year. While this is a significant increase, with a burglary rate of 7 per 1,000 homes the county is still below the national average of 11.
The busiest Garda stations in the counties were Sligo (79), Carrick-on-Shannon (47) and Manorhamilton (35), while the quietest were Gurteen and Ballinamore with two each.
Speaking about the figures PhoneWatch Managing Director, Eoin Dunne said “Burglary remains all too common in Ireland and it is concerning that so many counties, including Sligo and Leitrim, experienced significant increases last year.“After several years of welcome falls any increase is burglary is a concern, but it is vital that efforts are taken to address the blackspots. This responsibility falls on all of us, homeowners must take proactive steps to protect their homes and neighbours should be vigilant for one another.”
“A monitored alarm continues to be among the most effective ways to protect homes. In the last year, while the nationwide rate increased, there was a 19% fall in the number of serious incidents involving PhoneWatch customers, a trend that has continued in recent years as our alarm technology and instant monitoring continue to act as a significant deterrent to potential burglars. “With the summer hopefully around the corner there are specific risks that can be avoided. Burglary thankfully remains a largely opportunistic crime, so homeowners can make their homes considerably safer by taking simple precautions and steps to make their homes less vulnerable.
PhoneWatch research shows that almost 40% of burglars enter through the back of the house. This can often be as windows and doors are left open in warmer weather. Garden tools are also often used as implements to gain access to houses, while unlocked garages and sheds can prove easy targets.”PhoneWatch advice includes:
· Always lock windows and doors, and double check in the warmer weather as it may
be less obvious.
· Do not leave garden equipment lying around, with ladders the most important to secure.
· Ensure garages and sheds are locked after use
· When away from home, ensure that post and bins are collected, these can be an
easy sign that a home is unoccupied
· Use the spring and summer to ensure shrubs and trees are tidied, these can provide
a helping hand in gaining access to upstairs windows
· While the evenings are getting brighter, it is still worth setting timer switches on lights
to make your home appear occupied after dark.
· When on holidays, wait until you’re home before posting those holiday snaps on
social media, to avoid letting others know your home is empty.