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Leaving town for the holidays? The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department offers “vacation checks” as a free service to improve residential security. Residents also can schedule free home security assessments.
For vacation checks, members of the Retired Senior Volunteer Patrol visit the house daily when the owners are away to make sure that doors and windows are secure. If a problem is found, a patrol volunteer will contact the resident right away and notify deputies to secure the property. To schedule vacation checks, call 760-966-3579.
With a simple phone call, residents also can schedule another free service known as a home security assessment. During a home security assessment, a crime prevention specialist looks at a home from the standpoint of a criminal. The specialist checks to see that the home has good surveillance, meaning that no landscaping or other barriers block the view into or out of the house. They point out areas where a suspect could hide in order to target windows and doors. They inspect lighting to ensure dark areas around the house are illuminated to discourage a suspect from targeting it. They also inspect hardware on doors and windows, including secondary locking devices on windows. These measures make it difficult for a suspect to gain entry and allow time for deputies to respond.
Law enforcement professionals encourage the use of external video cameras that connect to smart phones so residents can monitor their property day and night.
To schedule a home security assessment, call 760-966-3500.
To view the Sheriff Department’s Residential Security Checklist, click here. More tips on home security can be found in this flyer. To connect to the Sheriff’s Crime Prevention website, click here.