Criminals are increasingly targeting the farming community nationwide with thefts of agricultural machinery, diesel, livestock and metal on the increase. Garda in Co Roscommon have had successes recently apprehending criminals associated with this type of theft and recovered stolen agricultural goods. However two recent thefts of stock in Frenchpark and the apprehension of two men after the theft of farm machinery from Lecarrow emphasises the continuing need for farmers to be vigilant and report suspicious activity.
Farmers are asked to review their farm security on a regular basis. They should ask themselves the following questions:-
Do I know where my tractor, tools, quads, trailers, and other expensive equipment are at all times?
Have I ever found anyone in my yard without a valid reason for being there?
Has anyone ever just turned up unexpectedly to try to buy or sell me something at my farm?
Have I ever seen suspicious vehicles on my property or in my neighbourhood and what did I do about it.?
Controlling access to your property is a basic component of crime prevention. Criminals should not have unrestricted access to farms. This can be remedied by installing gates at both the point of access to the farm and also to the farmyard. The boundaries of the farm, the fencing, hedging and walls should also be robust, well maintained and checked regularly for breaches. An alarm or CCTV should be considered in vulnerable areas. Motion sensors or beams that detect movement of vehicles or machinery at the point of entry to the farmyards are available. They activate an alarm or text the farmer when the beam or sensor is broken. Lighting is also a deterrent and areas that are overlooked from the dwelling house should be illuminated. Tools and small machinery items should be stored in a secure shed if possible close to the farmhouse. Marking of property is also advisable, a unique personal I.D should be used and property details including photographs should be retained. GPS tracking devices are also available to track the movement of high value machinery. Farmers are also advised to get involved in local Community Alert schemes and if not established in their area, consider setting one up. Finally any suspicious activity should be reported immediately to your local Garda Station and if you wish to report anything confidentially dial 1-800-6611. In an emergency call 999 or 112.
Further crime prevention information advice can be obtained from Sergeant Paul Mc Dermott, Crime Prevention Officer at Roscommon Garda Station at 090-6638300, your local Garda Station or online at www.garda.ie
Issue dated: 22 June 2012
© Roscommon People