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Layered home security is essential for the elderly


A spate of home invasions and attacks on the elderly in the Knysna-Sedgefield area recently has been of great concern to Trellidor’s Knysna franchise owner, Brian Elliott. After 17 years in the security industry, he has some valuable advice on security at home for Trellidor’s more mature customers.  His tips are summarised below, but he emphasises that people are welcome to phone their nearest Trellidor franchise for a free in-depth home security assessment.

Cover all bases

Don’t rely on one type of security.  In some of the recent burglaries the robbers gained access in spite of burglar alarms being on and passive beams throughout the home.  One theory is that small people or children crawl around a home with pet-friendly passives, collecting floor-level items to steal.

“You need more than one system in place in case one of them fails,” said Brian.  His advice is to install physical barriers in addition to an alarm system, coupled with an armed response service. 

Added extras

Additional security measures could include keeping your dogs indoors with you to act as an early warning system; cleaning up your garden so that there are no hiding places for criminals; making sure you don’t leave tools, ladders or rubbish bins where robbers can find and use them to gain access to your home; installing top quality locks on all doors; installing external security beams; electric fencing and/or barbed wire on the property perimeter.

Access control for home security

“An often overlooked way of securing your home is to install barriers on every single window and external door.   If you leave any opening unsecured, even a cat-flap, you can be sure that determined thieves will find a way of gaining entry through it,” said Brian.  Don’t miss out windows that seem to be inaccessible or fixed window panes.  They all need burglar bars.  Trellidor has a large range of window security options, tailored made to fit your particular window style.

Quality is key here.  Poor quality security gates and burglar guards are all too easily broken through or will rust and weaken quickly, particularly on the coast.  This type of home security barrier will probably also have inferior locks that are easily breached.  “The only benefit is that a visible barrier may deter the thief as breaking through it makes quite a noise and attracts unwanted attention,” said Brian.  

Be on the alert

Brian’s final advice is to stay vigilant.  If you’re suspicious of anyone in your street, report it to your neighbourhood watch and armed response service.  Be disciplined about locking doors and security gates and setting your alarm, which must be checked periodically.  “Finally, don’t enter your home if you see anything unusual.  Rather phone your armed response security service and ask them to escort you inside,” said Brian.

* Information true and correct at the time of publish
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