HOMEOWNERS are being advised to take steps to prevent burglaries in their home as the clocks go back an hour.
Figures from the Central Statistics Office show that an annual increase in burglaries occurs after the change of time.
Last year, the figures showed a 20% increase in burglaries in Cork city from the third quarter of the year to the fourth quarter.
The increase in Cork north garda division was much higher, at 78%. This is almost eight times the natioinal average of 10% - and is the highest of any garda division. The next highest was the Tipperary division with an increase of 57%.
Meanwhile, burglaries in Cork west went against the national trend by being the division with the largest decrease. Burglaries there fell by 40%, with the Kerry division coming in with a reduction of 38%.
Homesecure.ie are now urging people to be security conscious with the onset of longer hours of darkness in the evenings.
CEO Colm Daly said: “Homeowners must remain vigilant and aware of home security leading into the darker months. We know that burglaries increase by around 20% once the clocks go back. We know crime prevention is much more effective than crime control and we encourage our customers to do what they can to prevent a burglar from ever entering their home. Making your home less inviting to potential crime is critical.” The warning comes as gardaí in the Southern garda region introduces the winter phase of Operation Thor, targeting burglars.
1. Always set your alarm whether you're at home or away 2. Ensure your external house alarm is visibly lit to act as a deterrent 3. Keep your doors and windows (including upstairs) locked at all times 4. Leave a light on, and use timer switches or a smart plug when you're away 5. Radio on to make the house seem occupied 6. Move your keys away from letterboxes to prevent “fishing” 7. Record details of valuables, particularly coming up to Christmas 8. Do not keep large amounts of cash in the house and keep jewellery locked away 9. Keep ladders and tools locked safely away to prevent burglars from using them 10. Never leave a key out under a mat or flowerpot