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Police tackle Sedgemoor shed thefts
POLICE have been helping to tackle a spate of thefts from sheds in Sedgemoor.
The ‘Allotment Watch’ scheme has seen police hold property-marking events at allotments across the Bridgwater area to help prevent thefts of tools and gardening equipment.
PCSO, Jo Farrow, said: “The events have been really well attended so far but I am keen to go to more allotments, so if there are any allotment groups or individual plot holders who would like us to have their property marked, call 101.
“Sheds and garages do sometimes contain lots of tools and equipment that are worth quite a bit of money and can be easily transportable.”
All of the equipment was marked with the owner's postcode and initials. Digital photos were also taken and details of the items were recorded on a national database.
Crime prevention advice and security leaflets were also given to plot holders.
North Petherton and Westonzoyland Allotments have had equipment security marked and Jo hopes to hold more events over the next few months.
Jo's Top Tips:
•Secure an unframed shed door using two hasps and staples fixed to the door with coach bolts or security screws and secured with a disc or round, closed shackle padlock. Or alternatively, fit a shed bar.
•A framed shed door can be secured in a similar way to a house door, by fitting concealed hinges, hinge bolts and a British Standard key-operated lock.
•Fit opening windows with a British Standard window lock or consider screwing them permanently shut from the inside if they are never used. Reinforce the window by fitting a window grill or wire mesh on the inside. Polycarbonate shed windows are considerably stronger and more durable than glass, offering greater resistance.
•Hide the contents of your shed or garage from prying eyes by fitting frosted or reflective window film or a net curtain.
•Illuminate the shed or garage area with a dusk 'til dawn light (photo-electric cell) and consider installing a shed or garage alarm. You can get stand-alone/battery powered alarms.
•Chain/padlock garden equipment, tools, ladders, lawn mowers and cycles together to a ground or wall anchor on the same side as the shed or garage window, to obscure them from view. Consider the use of an anchored, lockable box or cage within your shed or garage to store garden and power tools.
•Property mark your belongings!
•For sheds in allotments or remote locations, secure the shed to strong posts or ground anchors.
•As most sheds are inherently weak, consider installing an internal wire mesh lining in the event a panel is breached. Alternatively, consider defensive planting around the perimeter of your shed using spikey plants.
For more information and advice, please visit www.avonandsomerset.police.uk or contact your local policing team by calling 101.
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