The Abbotsford Police Department (APD) has been promoting a campaign to help deter property crime in the community.
The “9 p.m. Routine” involves the APD posting routine reminders on its Facebook, Twitter and Instagram channels for citizens to make a 9 p.m. daily habit of taking the valuables out of their vehicles, locking their cars, closing their overhead garage doors, and locking the doors of their homes.
APD Sgt. Judy Bird said it’s a simple concept, with the goal of deterring thieves.
“Offenders will often walk through neighbourhoods checking vehicles that are left open. By simply taking valuables out of your vehicle and locking it up, you may avoid the hassle and expense of having your property stolen,” she said.
Bird said property crime – including break-ins, theft from vehicles, and theft of vehicles – occurs in all parts of the city.
She said theft from automobiles makes up 36 per cent of property crime in Abbotsford.
The 9 p.m. Routine is a campaign that began in Pasco County, Florida, and is now used by police agencies across North America.
The APD launched the program about six months ago, and Bird said they will continue to promote it through the holiday season.
The routine recommends:
• removing valuables from vehicles
• ensuring vehicles are locked and car windows are closed and, if possible, the car is parked in a garage
• closing garage doors and windows
• locking any doors in the garage, including those leading into a house
• checking that all house doors – front, back, side and garage – are locked
• ensuring all windows are shut
• turning on an exterior light