St Albans burglary victims second worst-affected in the country
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Burglary victims in St Albans are among the worst-affected in the country, with the average break-in costing nearly £5,000.
The figures, from insurer Privilege, revealed St Albans was second nationally for average value of possessions stolen.
The average value of possessions stolen from a St Albans home was £4,892, only just behind first-place Lichfield in Staffordshire on £5,180.
Commercial director of St Albans-based security firm Amthal, Jamie Allam, said: “This is clearly of worrying concern for homeowners in St Albans, and shows why now is really the time to review home security measures.
“Especially when holiday season is upon us and many homes in the area will be left empty, and vulnerable.”
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The figures do not relate to any increase in burglaries in St Albans.
However, the number of burglaries in the district did increase by four per cent between March 2016 and March 2017.
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While, non-domestic burglaries rose from 299 in 2016 to 375 in 2017, domestic burglaries fell from 393 to 344.
St Albans chief inspector Shane O’Neill said: “These statistics are based on the value of items stolen, which are not reflective of the number of burglary offences committed in St Albans.
“Of the ten districts in Hertfordshire, St Albans has the second highest population of more than 140,000 people, but has the third lowest number of burglaries per 1,000 head of population, and last year the number of dwelling burglaries fell by 13 per cent. This decline is a continuing trend.
“We remain committed to reducing burglary rates, working with our residents to prevent these offences, and arresting those who carry out crime in St Albans and I would like to reassure the public that St Albans, like the rest of the county, is a safe place to live and work.”
Behind Lichfield and St Albans on the list was Durham, Cambridge, and Coventry making up the top five.
Amthal have put together a list of tips for anyone going on holiday and leaving their home empty.
These include sharing spare keys wisely, investing in smart home technology, and ensuring social media privacy settings prevent potential burglars seeing when you are away.