Secure your business for Christmas/New Year
Hastings businesses are being asked to ensure any waste around their premises is emptied or secured, especially ahead of the Christmas close-down period.
The Safer Hastings coalition, which includes Hastings District Council, Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ) and New Zealand Police among other agencies, issued the warning this week in line with its aim to keep public spaces safe.
According to FENZ, firefighters attend more than 100 skip fires in Hastings each year.
While some are accidental, many are arson, and in the course of investigating three fires in the Hastings CBD on November 18 this year Hastings police likewise identified insecure skip bins as problematic.
Hastings police detective Ryan Kemsley says these bins attract unwanted attention from people looking for discarded items of value.
“This often causes groups of people to congregate in areas not visible to the general public and during hours when business owners are not there to watch over their properties.
“This can lead to undesirable behaviour in these areas such as property crime, and sometimes worse - arson.”
Mr Kemsley recommended people lock or secure bins to prevent this activity, something FENZ also endorses and promotes to CBD businesses when working with them to ensure they keep rubbish away from the rear of their premises.
Hastings District Council group manager community facilities and programmes Alison Banks says that while it’s a busy time of the year, it’s important to look out for each other and work together to make the city a safe place to live, visit and play.
“The Safer Hastings coalition is one of many examples of where council and key agencies such as Police and Fire work together to look out for our communities.”
FENZ suggestions include business and shop owners developing robust waste management plans including organising with contractors to have bins emptied as soon as they are full, changing skip bins to ones with lockable-type lids, and making sure bins are not stored up against the building.
If appropriate, security lighting was also a possibility to prevent unwanted activity.
20 December 2018
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