Community Safety, News


As cottage season draws to a close in the Timmins area, the Timmins Police Service is issuing a few cottage break-in prevention tips in keeping with its crime abatement program.
1) Avoid attracting thieves by leaving valuable sporting equipment outside and in plain view. Taking the time to put gear, boats, bbq’s, lawnmowers away and in a locked storage shed pays off in terms of theft reduction.
2) Take time to move expensive electronic items (computers, tablets, flat-screen TV’s and stereo equipment out of sight so that prying eyes don’t window shop and hit your cottage when the time is better suited to not being noticed
3) Always lock your cottage door when you leave. Two hours or two months, lock it up with a decent deadbolt into a solid framed door. A $50.00 lock on a 0.25 cent hasp is a recipe that does not serve the property owner very well.
4) If you a calling it a day (for the season) take the necessary preventative steps to store your goods away or take them home if they are dear to you or expensive and portable. That said, always remove all firearms and alcohol from the cottage when it’s being closed for the offseason.
5) Small boats, outboard motors, canoes and paddle craft must be stored off the shoreline and out of sight. They’re expensive, sought after and relatively easy to sell
6) All ladders, gardening tools, axes, shovels should be placed in storage. These items, left to the use of a would-be thief can assist him in reaching the 2nd-floor access points or to be used to force a door or window. If they don’t have break-in tools and you leave them out in plain sight, the thief will cheerfully use them
7) Automatic timers on indoor cottage lights and motion-sensing lights at the perimeter send a strong message and act as an effective deterrence to keep potential thieves of your property.
8) Enlist your neighbors to keep an eye on your property in your absence and report any suspicious activity without delay.
9) Make the necessary effort to make sure your cottage appears well maintained on a regular basis. A property that is not maintained screams out “nobody has been here for quite a while and it looks as though they aren’t coming back any time soon”. Leave the welcome mat out for guests, not thieves.
10) Consider restricting road access to your cottage property by opting for a gate. Most often, thieves use the path of least resistance. Efforts made to discourage thieves are time well spent.
11) An alarm system can be beneficial. If you have one installed, advertise the fact that the property is monitored.
12) In the event of a break-in, having a detailed inventory with make, model and serial numbers is a crucial tool for the police to use in tracking down your goods and returning them to you. A thorough list is good, a video inventory is great. Mark your property by etching your name or phone number onto the back of TV’s and stereo equipment has proven to be effective in such investigations.
13) Avoid saying “goodbye to the cottage” on social media. The season is over and you want to share a message with friends about another great year at the cottage. These nauseating messages act as an invitation to thieves. You’ve inadvertently advised them that the property is unattended. This is an easily avoided temptation for criminals.