The date is January 27, 2011, and the time is early in the middle of the night. In Dallas, TX a family lies quietly sleeping- a husband, a wife, and their little daughter. In the early hours of the morning, the wife awakens and stumbles out of the bedroom to check on their daughter. Perhaps subconsciously she heard a noise. As she walks through the house, she notices that the lights in the house were left on. “How strange”, she thinks to herself. In her half awake, half asleep stupor, however, she doesn’t think too much of it. Then, she notices that the door from the house to the garage was also open, and as she walks closer, she can see that the garage door is open as well.
Now she knows that something isn’t right. As she stands there rubbing her eyes, trying to make sense of what was happening, a man suddenly emerges from her family room, looking at one of her family’s DVD covers. At that point, the wife begins screaming for her husband, “Someone is in the house! Get up! Get up!” Read more about West Palm Beach garage door repair
When the husband ran out of the bedroom, he saw the criminal sprinting across the house to the front door. It just so happens that there was a child safety lock on the front door, so the home invader stood there struggling with the front door long enough for the husband to retrieve his rifle and grab the man. The police soon came as they held the robber at bay, and an arrest was made. It turns out that this burglar was part of a group who had been invading homes in the area.
This story was published in the “Far North Dallas Advocate” magazine in the March 2011 issue. It had a happy ending, but how easily it could have turned tragic. What if the wife had not awakened during the night? What if the husband did not have a rifle? What if the robber struggled with the husband and took his rifle away? A simple robbery could have easily turned into a homicide. Now ask yourself this: “What if that had been your home and your family that were threatened?”
What can we learn from this real life crime that occurred in Dallas, Tx? Well, the first question we need to examine is how the burglar got into the home. It all boils down to garage door security. The family had parked their car outside of their home, rather than inside the garage. This gang of burglars evidently would cruise neighborhoods looking for cars parked outside of the garage. Then, as in the case with this attempted robbery, they would simply break the window of the car and grab the garage door opener. That gave them an easy way to directly enter the house.
Dallas Police Liutenant Barry Payne of the North Central Patrol Division was quoted as saying: “Citizens must realize when they leave a garage door opener in their car in their driveway, it is like leaving a key to their house outside where everyone will know where it is. The solution is simple: Park in the garage, or don’t leave a garage door opener in the car in the driveway. I can’t say it any clearer than that.”
Actually, this home invasion could have been avoided in three different ways: the family could have parked their car in the garage, they could have parked outside of the garage, yet removed the garage door opener from the vehicle, OR they could have securely locked the door going from the garage to the home.
We call all learn an important lesson about garage door security from this event in Dallas, Tx. Here are some other helpful tips about garage door security:
If you are going away on vacation or for any extended period of time, unplug the garage door opener.
Consider buying a garage door opener with rolling code technology. This will change the access code each tie the transmitter is used, and it prevents any outsider from grabbing the code. The best garage door company in your area should sell and install these types of garage door openers.
Treat your garage door opener remote control as you would a house key. Do not ever leave it in the car. Also, if using a parking attendant or valet parking, take your remote control out of the car and keep it with you.
Install and use a deadbolt lock in the door going from the garage to the inside of your home. The safest type of lock to install are the ones that are key-less and instead use a keypad. You simply enter the right code, and you can turn the doorknob. The reason these are the best types of locks for this door is because they cannot be picked, and more importantly, they are safe. If you ever become locked in your garage accidentally, you can escape by simply entering the code. Only your family members should know the code. Do not ever share the code with anyone else. These locks are also more convenient and eliminate the need for you to keep up with and carry around another key. Every night before you go to bed, and any time before you leave the house, be sure to check that this door is locked.
When you pull into your garage at night and get out of the car and push the button to close the garage door, stand there for a few moments and watch to make sure that the door closes all the way AND to make sure that no one slips into the garage. Some burglars hide nearby and wait for you to go inside the house after hitting the button to close the garage door. As soon as you are gone, they slip inside the garage before the door has a chance to close completely.