Updated: Saturday, 20th October 2018 @ 4:55pm

Remember, remember... to lock your doors as research reveals 22% Bonfire Night crime surge in thefts

Remember, remember... to lock your doors as research reveals 22% Bonfire Night crime surge in thefts

By Tim Hyde

As Mancunians gather with gloves and sparklers in hand to enjoy their fireworks, others will enjoy a different high, with crime set to increase by a staggering 22%, an insurance company revealed.

The research, conducted by Aviva, revealed that while people are outside enjoying the fireworks, opportunistic criminals take advantage of unlocked doors and loud noises which give them the cover to burgle homes.

Safety precautions as basic as locking the door are often forgotten about while out celebrating Guy Fawkes Night as houses are often left unguarded while watching the various displays.

Heather Smith, Director of Home Insurance at Aviva, said: “The crash and bang of fireworks under the cover of darkness gives opportunist burglars their best opportunity to target your home. 

“The 22% increase in thefts shows they will be out and about while families are enjoying the fizz and sparkle of Bonfire Night celebrations.”

Aviva recommends taking extra precautions tomorrow night as criminals will be on the look-out to steal from un-attended houses.

“Those planning fireworks parties in their own back garden shouldn’t think they’ll be safe from thieves,” said Miss Smith.

“It’s easy to leave doors and gates unlocked so that people can come and go as they please – including burglars.”

According to ten years of Aviva claims data, 19% of households holding a party in their garden leave the back door unlocked to make it easier for friends.

Even homes that enjoy celebrations elsewhere fail to carry out basic security checks with 22% not checking that doors are locked before they leave the home.

As well as ensuring safety precautions regarding personal possessions, Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority warn those setting off fireworks to do so carefully.

“Make sure you take care when setting off bangers and rockets. Fences and conservatories, in particular, can easily get hit by stray fireworks.  So read the instructions, or it could be more than the Guy that goes up in flames,” said County Fire Officer Steve McGuirk.

“We are aware that it is a busy time for the fire service so I would urge people to take extra care and only attend organised bonfires and firework displays.”

Image courtesy of c r i s via Flickr, with thanks.

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