Last week community leaders from Fethiye and Fethiye’s chief of Police, Hüseyin Kocabıyık met to discuss what could be done to reduce the increase in thefts that arrive with the summer season and help educate citizens in ways to prevent and report theft.
Summer is most definitely here and along with all the wonderful things this season brings there are also one or two that are not so pleasant.
One of the most disagreeable is the opportunist thief.
Of course, this problem is not solely confined to Turkey; every country in the world has its share of lawbreakers and antisocial elements but there are some simple guidelines that you can follow to try to ensure that you are not the victim of this criminal element.
Here in the Fethiye region the Police and Jandarma are doing their utmost to deter these predators but residents and tourists must also take responsibility for their own security.
During the hot weather there is always the temptation to leave windows and doors open, even when the house is unoccupied or the occupants are asleep.
Furthermore, alarms and security fittings are an additional expense but speak to any of the victims of these callous crimes and one of the first things they’ll tell you is, “I wish I’d taken better precautions.”
Wishing this after the event is of course way too late and the inconvenience, sadness and trauma of loosing passports, jewellery, electronic devices and mobile phones, let alone money, credit cards etc can be devastating at the very least.
Last week Güler Uymaz, a representative from the tourism sector, Ahmet Durduncu, Proconsul from Fethiye’s British Consulate, Dilek Dincer from FETAV, Pauline Elliot representing the expat community, and legal interpreter Doğan Şahin from the newly opened Fusion Fethiye Advice Centre, came together with Fethiye’s chief of Police, Hüseyin Kocabıyık and his colleagues to discuss what could be done to reduce the increase in thefts that arrive with the summer season.
The victims appear to fall into three categories:
1. Tourists staying in holiday rental accommodation;
2. Holidaymakers in Fethiye staying in their own property; and,
3. Turkish and expat residents living in their own or rented property.
Tourists staying in holiday rental accommodation
The majority of holiday accommodation in the Fethiye region is let by Turkish or foreign tour operators. However, there are also an unknown number of properties being privately rented by their foreign owners.
Some are legally run by expat owners who have set up foreign investment companies but others are not and little can be done to determine how many there actually are.
All the legal ‘holiday let’ properties are checked to make sure they are secure and comply with health and safety regulations but the same cannot be said of the informal lets.
Holidaymakers should make sure that this is the case before they book their holidays.
Holidaymakers in Fethiye staying in their own property and Turkish and expat residents living in their own or rented property
All property owners and temporary residents, whether they live in Fethiye year round or just for holidays, are advised to follow these simple guidelines recommended by Fethiye’s Police Force.
PROTECT YOUR HOME AND PROPERTY:
1. By not opening your front door to anyone unless you know who they are – deter bogus callers by asking for ID.
2. By investing in a safe that is professionally installed for all your valuables.
3. By ensuring that windows and doors have secure locks and grills.
4. By making sure that communal entrance doors to the property are always kept shut and restricting who can enter.
5. By calling 155 if you see any strangers in or around the property acting suspiciously (EMERGENCY NUMBER: POLİS İMDAT/ POLICE 155).
6. By ensuring that all communal areas in and outside the property are well lit.
7. By securing vulnerable balconies to deter unwelcome visitors.
8. By shutting and locking all doors and windows before you leave your property.
9. By leaving lights and TV or radio on when you go out at night.
10. By being responsible about who you give your keys to – change your locks if you suspect they could be used without your consent.
More advice and tips about home security are available on www.fethiyetimes.com.