Warnings Over Busy Roads and Burglaries in Normandy as School Holidays Start

Operation-tranquillite-vacances_articlewideOfficials are asking drivers to take care this weekend as the holiday getaway starts, particularly in Seine-Maritime where there has been an increase in serious accidents in recent weeks.

As the summer holidays start police are also warning people to make sure their homes are secure as some parts of Normandy have seen an increase in burglaries this year and unoccupied homes in the next few weeks could be a target for thieves.

The police are also reminding people that they can take advantage of a special service offered by officers to have your home checked regularly when you are away. Local gendarmes will check homes and businesses as part of their routine patrols.

The service is known as Opération Tranquillité and is provided this year from 29 June until 01 September. ‘Before leaving on holiday give your details to your local gendarmerie. Patrols are carried out night and day and officers check with neighbours to make sure there has not been anything unusual,’ said a police spokesman.

The Seine-Maritime council has issued an appeal for careful driving and has stepped up road patrols after a spate of fatal accidents in recent weeks. Speed traps are being increased and patrols will also be on the look out for dangerous driving such as crossing white lines, failing to indicate and drink driving. There will also be an increase on checks on tyres and insurance documents.

The council is also warning those going on holiday about an increase in burglaries since the start of the year. Official figures show there was a 12.31% increase in burglaries in the first five months of 2013.

Figures also show that there has been a 19% rise in burglaries since 2008 and there was a rise of 17% during the months of July and August last summer. The increase is the same in towns, cities and the countryside.

A list of advice to householders includes making sure doors, windows and shutters are secured and not hiding a key near the property when you are away on holiday. Don’t mention that you are on holiday on your telephone answering machine or on social networking sites. People are also advised to get a neighbour to empty their letter box if they are away for more than a couple of days.

About Ray Clancy

Ray Clancy has 20 years experience in journalism including contributing articles to print and on-line publications such as PropertyWire.com, Property World Middle East and websites for estate agents. She has also written for the Daily Telegraph and Mail on Sunday.

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