A variety of safety tips can be found on the SAPS website at www.saps.gov.za.
Following are some of them:
A high fence around the house with lockable gates is much safer than a high wall due to the advantage of the improved visibility it provides.
The primary aim of a fence is to make access difficult and to allow dogs to move freely around the house.
Ensure that your gates are locked at all times and that the keys cannot be reached easily.
Security gates with sturdy locks in front of each outer door as well as burglar proofing covering all windows, are recommended.
Devices that prevent easy access are window bars, security doors and gates, additional locking devices on doors, peepholes in and safety chains to doors as well as an intercom system between the home and gate, front door or garage.
An alarm system, preferably connected to an armed response company, can act as an effective deterrent.
In the rural environment a siren/alarm on the roof that can be heard over a long distance and that can be activated by means of a switch/panic button in the house, is recommended.
A few panic buttons in different rooms of the house should preferably be installed.
Security lights on the outside of the house improve the physical protection of a house, farm or smallholding.
The lights must be directed away from the house and must allow the occupants to use the windows without being observed from outside.
Be aware of possible blind spots.
Ensure that all doors are locked at all times, and that windows are closed when you are not at home.
Large dogs serve as a deterrent. At least one dog should be trained to sleep inside the house.
If you leave your residence, inform your family/ neighbours of your intended destination, time you expect to return and the route you will be driving, especially if you reside in a rural area.
Ensure that tools such as axes, spades, picks, ladders, etc that can be used in an attack, are locked away when you do not use them.
Vary your daily routine.
Get into the habit of not immediately falling asleep after switching off the lights.
You should not be visible in the bedroom from the outside when you are asleep. Always keep a torch nearby at night, but ensure that you do not give away your position.
If you are unsure about the security at your home after returning from work/a visit (eg your dogs do not come to the gate) do not enter your home.
Identify relatively safe places of refuge, ie: bathroom, toilet or storeroom.
The fewer windows and doors these rooms have, the better.
Report suspicious behaviour and information to the SAPS.
Clear the areas around the gates of bushes and other hiding places.
Employees must be involved in maintaining security on an equal footing.
Take photographs of all employees and keep copies of their ID’s. It could be to your advantage to identify them, if required.
Do not employ casual workers without a reference.
Ensure that you have a good relationship with your neighbours to support and help each other.
Access and Key Control
Do not allow strangers on your premises or in your house without having properly identified the person, especially at night.
Implement proper key control measures.
Keys to the safe must be kept on the person.
Never hide any keys in traditional places, such as in pot plants or under doormats.
Keys in the keyhole on the inside of the front or back door should be turned to avoid easy removal.
Never allow strangers to handle keys or look at key numbers.
Change locks when keys are lost.
Insert barring devices in door locks.
Remove keys from doors when leaving.
Inform your children not to give an indication that adult supervision is not available when they answer a phone.
Emergency numbers of the Greater Oudtshoorn
Police: 044 203 9090 / 044 203 9000 / 10111 (Tel) / 112 (Sel)
Fire, emergencies, complaints after hours: 044 203 3147 / 044 203 7800/1
Ambulance: 044 805 5070 / 10177 (Hele Eden-distrik)
ER24: 084 124
Resq Pro: 084 021 1283
Oudtshoorn Hospital: 044 203 7200
Mediclinic Klein Karoo: 044 272 0111