Jersey City, NJ, August 23, 2011 --(PR.com
)-- As the tight economy creates smaller security budgets for property managers, conditions allowing crime to thrive in apartment complexes become more common. Compounding the problem is the lure of criminal activity as more people face tough times and the need for quick money.
“Most crimes are not random events,” said Ricky Bagolie, a premises liability attorney who recently helped several victims receive a seven-figure settlement due to inadequate apartment complex security. “Instead, they are often planned for locations where there’s the least likelihood of being detected and apprehended.”
According to the National Crime Prevention Council, apartments are 85 percent more likely to get burglarized than other types of property. Of course, these crimes often lead to more violent offenses against people.
Bagolie recommends the following nine tips for keeping apartments safe and deterring criminal activity:
1. Track crime in the area. Request a record of crimes committed within a one-mile radius for the last three years. If violent crime is prevalent, possible measures needed include armed security personnel (who receive regular training), limited access to the premises (often via gates), fencing around the complex perimeter and closed circuit cameras for monitoring activity.
2. Maintain sufficient lighting. Common problem areas are parking lots, mailboxes, laundry rooms, stairways and walkways.
3. Secure doors. If apartments have sliding doors, each one should have a pin in the frame and a wooden rod in the track. Also, deadbolts, chain latches and peepholes are necessities on exterior doors.
4. Change locks. Install new locks whenever tenants move into an apartment.
5. Make apartment numbers visible. Clearly displayed numbers allow for quicker responder access if there’s a criminal, fire or medical emergency.
6. Include only initials on mailboxes. Also, make sure mail, packages and newspapers are removed daily.
7. Maintain the landscape. To prevent hiding, cut shrubs next to buildings to the bottom edge of windows and keep the lowest tree limbs seven feet off the ground.
8. Check smoke detectors and fire extinguishers. In addition to having both functioning properly, a fire extinguisher is required every 75 feet.
9. Display security signage. Security signs, as well as notices such as “no trespassing” or “no soliciting,” remind visitors and residents the premises are monitored.
About Bagolie Friedman Injury Lawyers
Bagolie Friedman Injury Lawyers is a premises liability and personal injury law firm with offices in Jersey City and Clifton, NJ, as well as Hollywood, Fla. Founded by Ricky E. Bagolie and Alan T. Friedman, the firm’s lawyers represent injured victims and families in cases against corporations, insurance companies, hospitals and individuals who commit negligent and wrongful acts. Additional information and registration for free consultations are available at http://www.bagoliefriedman.com.