Sheriff offers holiday security and safety tips |

Sheriff offers holiday security and safety tips

Staff reports

The Carson City Sheriff’s Department is reminding people to be extra diligent about protecting their belongings this holiday season.

“During the year-end holidays, people are often busy, excited, and sometimes a little careless,” said Lt. Ken Sandage. “Take some steps to make sure you have a safe and happy holiday.”

Sandage recommends the following:

• Be sure doors and windows are locked when you leave, even for just a few minutes. Install motion-detector lights, and trim bushes and shrubs that are in the front of windows.

• Don’t display presents where they can be seen from a window or doorway. Hide them if you leave town.

• Keep on lights and a radio or TV so your home looks occupied, even when it’s not.

• Use an automatic light timer and ask your neighbors to collect mail and newspapers when you’ll be away from home for long periods of time. Ask your neighbors to park occasionally in your driveway.

• Be cautious of strangers asking for charitable donations. Confirm who they are, which organization for which they are collecting, and find out how the money will be used.

• Keep records of serial numbers of your possessions. Update the list as new items are received.

• Test smoke- and carbon monoxide detectors.

• Assure holiday lights are in good working order and ornaments are flame resistant.

• Avoid leaving empty boxes curbside for trash pickup. They indicate to burglars the items inside the home.

• Shop before dark. Never park in a dark lot, no matter how convenient it is.

• Put packages in the vehicle’s trunk. Make sure the windows and doors are locked.

• Avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Use checks and credit/debit cards when possible.

• Keep a firm grip on wallets and purses. Put purses under arms, and keep wallets inside jacket pockets, not rear pants pockets. Be aware if anyone bumps you. It may be an accident, or it could be someone has just picked your pocket.

• Don’t carry too many packages. That could attract purse snatchers.

• Teach children that if they become lost in a store, stay inside and find a store employee.

• Make sure drinking party guests don’t drive intoxicated. Offer to take them home, have them sleep over, or find them a designated driver.