BEAR CREEK TWP. — A state trooper visited the township board of supervisors’ meeting Monday, offering residents tips on protecting their home from burglaries, robberies and home invasions.
Trooper Tom Kelly from Troop P in Wyoming explained the types of calls state police have answered in the township, sharing information on how to stay safe and addressing residents’ concerns about possible drug activity. State police responded to 860 calls between January 2012 and June 2013, said Kelly, including 75 false burglar alarms and more than 100 auto accident calls of varying severity.
Noting that calls for burglaries had increased from 31 in 2011 to 38 in 2012, Kelly said residents can take steps to make their homes less attractive targets for thieves.
“Don’t put pictures on Facebook while you are on vacation and brag about being on vacation; and don’t put a message on your answering machine that says you’re on vacation,” Kelly said. “Thieves check these things and it’s easy enough to find out where you live.”
Other tips included having someone visit the home at various times while the occupants are away or using timers on lights to give the appearance someone is home, trimming bushes that provide cover near the home and being leery of any strangers who come to the door asking for directions. In some cases, said Kelly, these strangers are would-be thieves simply checking to see if someone is home before they break in.
Kelly also addressed the concerns of more than a dozen residents of one section of the township who are concerned about possible drug activity in the neighborhood. Kelly advised the residents to contact the state police corporal in charge of the vice squad and provide information such as descriptions of vehicles and license plates. He also urged patience, noting that while it might seem that police aren’t doing anything about reported drug activity, they could be working in the background to build a case.
In other business, the board reported that paving work almost has been completed on Weiss Road, with only some shoulder work remaining. Paving work on Laurelbrook Road is awaiting a pre-construction meeting that should happen this week, with road work to begin shortly after that. The board also noted that permanent speed bumps have been installed on Golf Course Road, and supervisors heard from a resident who said that the speed bumps are forcing traffic to stop at the stop signs and improving conditions at what was a dangerous intersection.
Solicitor Bill Vinsko also reported that, barring any opposition at a hearing at the end of this month, the township soon should be able to acquire the Forest Park Playground, which has fallen into disrepair and will be maintained as park space.