RETURN OF DARKER NIGHTS
During the darker nights there are several occasions in the calendar that fireworks play a part in, for example, Bonfire night, Diwali and New Year's Eve.
Fireworks can be a spectacular addition to any occasion but it's important to stay safe, especially when using fireworks at home. It's also important to be considerate of our neighbours and be aware that it's an offence to use fireworks between the hours of 11pm and 7am. On Bonfire Night this extends to midnight, and to 1am for Diwali.
When safety advice is followed, fireworks are fun and exciting but by not adhering to safety guidelines or the law an innocent firework display can be devastating and risk lives.
For more information on firework safety visit West Midlands Fire Service.
You can view more information about fireworks and the law on Gov.uk.
Darker nights are here and it’s a good time to make sure your home is secure. You can do this by:
Using a timer switch for lights. These are inexpensive, meaning homes are not left in darkness to alert burglars to an empty property
Using door and window locks, even when someone is home
Keeping your shed and garage locked – your tools could be used to break in to your house
You can also visit the darker nights burglary advice page on the West Midlands Police website for more tips on keeping your home safe.
Street robbery is generally known as mugging or bag snatching. Pick pocketing is different, as victims aren’t aware that the offence is taking place.
Robbery is more likely to take place in quiet or dark areas and pick pocketing where it is busy, e.g. on a busy train in rush hour
Young men are most likely to be the victims of robbery and are typically attacked by other young men
If someone tries to take something from you by force, it may be best to give it to them. This will help you avoid getting injured
You can take actions to reduce the effects of a theft if it does happen to you:
Register your personal items on the Immobilise database
If your phone, bike, computer or any other registered item is lost or stolen, use Immobilise to instantly tell police, insurers and the second-hand trade. These actions help greatly in the recovery of your property and capture of thieves.
Benefits of registration:
Immobilise helps police identify the owner of lost & stolen property thousands of times each day
Loss & theft updates you make are immediately available to the police nationally
Simplify insurance claims and police reports with certificates of ownership
Great member offers from Immobilise’s numerous supporters, often helping support provision of Immobilise
These features are unique to the FREE Immobilise service
To register your property visit www.immobilise.com
If your phone is stolen, tell your mobile phone network and the police. The handset can be barred and will be useless to all thieves
Register your phone with your network operator
Record your registration number (IMEI) and your phone number. Keep these in a safe place separate from your phone. You can get your IMEI number (15-digit serial number) by keying *#06# into your phone or by looking behind your phone battery.
Stay alert. When you are out, be aware of your surroundings and don’t use your phone in crowded areas or where you might feel unsafe
Vehicle crime – freeze out car thieves on frosty mornings
Every winter, cars are stolen from driveways across the West Midlands because owners leave them unattended with keys in the ignition while they warm up and the windscreens defrost.
Some victims nip inside for just a few seconds to collect a bag or finish the last mouthful of coffee but that’s all the time and opportunist thief needs.
Insurance companies may not pay out for cars stolen in this way and if your house keys are taken as well, you’re making your home vulnerable. It’s advised that you:
Clear windscreens with de-icer and a scraper
Sit in your vehicle while the heater de-mists the windscreen
If you see anyone acting suspiciously, call the Police on their non-emergency number 101. If you see a crime committed call 999.