26 Nov 2014

Festive Season Tips 2014

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The festive season is fast approaching and Thorn Valley Estate would like to bring several items to your attention. First being the increased criminal activity during the festive season.

It is queried as to what plans are in place to ensure that your home is safe and secure while you are at home or away during the upcoming holidays?

We recommend the following tips and suggest that, where possible, you implement same in order to assist the Thorn Valley Estate security team in protecting your home:

Is your home secured with an alarm system or beams that will be able to send out a signal to a service provider in a case of a forced entry?

Ensure that your alarm system and the beams are functioning effectively by conducting tests and have them fixed if they do not respond accordingly.
These tests should be done as soon as possible in order to avoid a last minute rush hour, and also generally on a regular basis.

Are all access points into your home secure?
Check all windows and doors, including garage doors and windows leading into the house to ensure that they close and lock properly.
The main gate to your home should also be in working condition, and kept closed and locked.
Remember to keep the gate motor locked so that it cannot be accessed and/or switched to manual by potential trespassers.

Estate booms access cards & domestic staff access cards safety – remember these access cards are a passport into and out of the Estate:
Ensure that all access cards issued under your property are accounted for, and report any missing cards to the Estate Security, so that they can be suspended.
Do not issue your personal access cards to any third party or non-resident – this offers access to the Estate and your home to un-accounted for individuals, and threatens the security of the Estate and your home.
Check with security and ensure that your former domestic employees’ cards are no longer on display at the security pedestrian guardhouse.

Vehicle safety:
Vehicles should be kept locked and the alarm system armed while parked in your property.
Test your vehicle tracking device on a regular basis to ensure that it still operates effectively. Such tests may require requesting a travel report for the vehicle from your service provider.

Are you contactable through the security intercom situated at the Estate’s main guardhouse?
Check and update your contact details with security, including giving an alternative number in order to be contacted by security, should the need arise.
You will always be contacted through the intercom to approve or deny access on all visits to your property.
In cases where you cannot be reached, written requests that are signed off and handed over to the security manager will be considered. Equally, e-mails can also be sent to the Estate security office. Strictly no unapproved individuals will be granted access to the Estate under any circumstances.
The security team will not carry out an instruction received telephonically as Security cannot confirm the identity of the caller.

Pets’ identification:
We recommend that a metal tag with contact details for the owner is secured around the neck of a dog or cat, so that it can be easily identified in case it wanders out of a home. Micro chipping is also highly recommended, and can be done at minimal cost at your local veterinary clinic. Ensure that pets are secured either indoors or in the property, in order to prevent them from wandering into the Estate roads.

Goods release form:
All residents are requested to familiarise themselves with the goods release form, and ensure that it is completed and handed over to security at the gate whenever home assets are being removed from the Estate by anyone other than the registered homeowner.

While going away on holiday, take note of the following:
Ensure your day/night light switch is in proper working order.
Unplug and switch off all your home appliances from power supply to save electricity and prevent faulty sparks that may cause fire.
Domestic employees staying behind should be well informed of the security rules and requirements.
Make arrangements with your plumber to be on standby in order to attend to unforeseen emergencies.
Ensure that your pets have someone to feed them and keep them company during your absence.
Ensure that all house windows are closed before the alarm system is armed to prevent false alarm activations due to wind blowing in.
Ensure that there are no pets inside the house before arming the alarm system.
Thorn Valley Estate would like to wish all residents and their staff a safe and peaceful holiday season wherever they may be.

In addition to the above, our offices wish to bring a notice from the Official Website of the City of Johannesburg which has reminded residents to never hand gifts or personal items to the Pikitup Employees. Recently reports have been received from members who have been visited by Pikitup employees requesting monies and even alcohol at times. Should this happen to any member and/or resident please report the incident to Thorn Valley Estate security immediately on 011 022 0305. In addition to this, members and/or residents are encouraged by the City of Johannesburg to report any unusual behaviour by either calling: 0800 0025 87 0 800 or emailing anticorruption@tip-offs.com .
Thorn Valley Estate security have also been instructed to monitor collection vehicles during collection times in order to ensure that all safety measures are taken.

We hope the above is of assistance and wish all at Thorn Valley Estate Homeowners Association a safe and Happy Christmas and New Year!


Chélene Botha

A Byrne Associates
P O Box 1515
Gallo Manor

Tel (011) 706-9700
Fax (011) 706-9709