The weather is getting warmer and more and more people are taking advantage of summer's approach and enjoying the outdoors. Residents who have been stuck inside during the long, cold winter take every advantage to get out and enjoy some fun in the sun.
There is much more activity in the summer months - that's a fact. Summer, however, is also the time when crime rates climb in the local area.
Criminals are just like other people - when the weather warms up they move outside and become more active. Most notably, thefts tend to rise during the warmer weather.
Using just a little common sense can prevent you from becoming a target of theft this summer.
Thefts from vehicles take place all year round. During warmer months, though, the number of thefts and frequency rise. By simply keeping your vehicle locked when it is unattended, theft can be prevented. Keeping valuables such as cash, purses, wallets or expensive items in a vehicle is also asking for trouble. If the temptation is there, chances are someone will lured to it.
Although less common, home burglaries also seem to rise in the summer months. Again, using a little common sense will keep you from becoming a victim. When you are away from home, lock your doors - always. An unlocked door is an invitation to a thief. A locked door is your first line of defense.
Making sure your home is well-illuminated is another deterrent to theft. A theft is less likely to target your home if outdoor lights are on and they think they will be seen.
When on vacation, have a friend or neighbor pick up your mail and newspapers while you are gone. You can also have your mail held by the post office and the Daily Press will gladly put your paper on hold while you are away. A pile of uncollected mail or newspapers tips off a potential theft that the home's occupants are away and the dwelling is empty.
We are lucky to live in the U.P. because the crime rate here is nowhere near what it is in other parts of the country. Crime does exist here, though, and residents should take steps to protect themselves. Yoopers are trusting people, but failing to lock your vehicle or home is just asking for trouble.
Taking a few precautions can help keep both your family and property safe.