With the Christmas holidays fast approaching we have been gleaning advice from our resident Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) Ian Taylor, all designed to keep your business safe and secure over the festive period.
As Ian explains, keeping a key holder list and having a secure copy of who has security details will help the police if there is any crime. If security staff are employed, ensure you and the staff know the work rota and that this is recorded.
Here are Ian's 20 key safety tips to help you get prepared:
1. Regularly visit the business property, this will ensure the safeguarding of the building, contents and anything else of value.
2. If the business has a manned security presence then make sure that the cover is in place, ensure security systems work and get your alarm company to walk-test the system to ensure all detectors are functioning correctly.
3. Make sure your detectors are not covered in dust or debris.
4. Check all external doors can be effectively secured and that the alarm contacts, if fitted, are operational.
5. Conduct a CCTV system health check, make sure images are of good quality and time and date set correctly. Make sure you have prominent CCTV signage as this has a deterrent value.
6. Check external security lighting is working correctly and is bright enough for any CCTV images.
7. If the building benefits from natural surveillance from the street then it would be beneficial to install low energy internal and external lights during closure.
8. Try not to illuminate areas of the building/yard that have little or no surveillance prospects as this could aid the thief.
9. Make sure that emergency contacts and call out details for key staff are correct and up to date.
10. If you have to have cash at the premises use an approved insurance-rated cash container which is rated to the value of the contents.
11. Make sure the cash container is out sight and is, where applicable, correctly and securely installed.
12. If possible and practicable, make sure any high value items are kept out of sight of ground floor windows.
13. Ensure that external yards are left tidy and, if possible, bring in equipment and materials that you might otherwise leave outside which may be stolen or used in crime.
14. Reduce the risk of arson by securing materials such as timber and fuels.
15. Ensure that outbuildings are secured and graffiti, if present, should be removed in good time for the close-down as graffiti tags often attract further attacks.
16. Check visibility from the road or footpath and ensure that foliage is trimmed back to aid surveillance.
17. If vehicles are being left on site ensure they have been emptied of tools, fuel and materials also locked and that the keys have been left in the safe or taken off site.
18. Assign the responsibility for the final security inspection to a senior member of staff. It may be helpful to produce a locking up checklist and routine to aid the person responsible so nothing is missed.
19. As the last person leaves, make sure the building is properly secured and alarm set. Close and lock all windows, including roof lights and secondary exit doors and pull down and lock any shutters and or grilles.
20. Lastly, make a final check of the perimeter fence and make sure any gates within it have been locked and secured.