Security insights to help you make an informed choice
PREPARING FOR WINTER LOADSHEDDING
With loadshedding on the increase, most of us are quite concerned about how we will be affected this winter. More people using electricity to warm up! The problem is power outages cause power surges and power surges can cause havoc on your electronic devices and household appliances as well as your security system. Not only that, but your alarm system’s battery will go flat quicker, too. Add to this the fact that in winter it gets darker earlier and night time power outages bring cold evenings huddled around a flickering candle feeling miserable and vulnerable.
And, if you’re a business owner you also have your business premises to worry about because while you’re at home with power there may very well be a power outage at your place of work. You worry about the easy access for criminals to break onto the property. Is your security system still working effectively? And were any of the computers left on because a surge is quite likely to cause damage.
So, what can we do to prepare for winter loadshedding?
• Check that your household content insurance policy covers damage caused by power surges – pay the extra amount for the coverage as it’s well worth it.
• Keep kitchen appliances unplugged at the times when you’re not using them, such as your microwave and kettle, as this will lower the risk of them being destroyed when there are frequent power outages.
• Switch off and unplug at work before you leave at the end of the day. Also back up your work on your computers regularly and ensure your employees do the same.
• Call a professional in to advise where you could benefit from surge protectors.
• Alarm systems should be checked on a more regular basis to see if they work especially when there are frequent power outages.
• Ensure your back-up batteries for alarms and electric fencing are in good order – the more power outages there are, the more frequently these batteries get used and the quicker they need to be replaced.
• Keep gas heaters and / or a stock of fire wood (if you are lucky enough to have a fireplace) – when the power goes out on a cold winter’s night you want to at least keep warm.
• Your property is more vulnerable during load-shedding and criminals know this - be extra alert during power outages for suspicious activities especially when arriving or leaving the property after dark.
• Keep a torch in your car so that you can use it if you arrive home in the dark during load-shedding and you need to open your perimeter gate manually (if your battery has run down)- in winter this will be more often than not as it gets dark quicker.
• Install solar or battery operated lights and use them during power outages – ensure that these are kept in good condition plus batteries kept recharged.
• Invest in an uninterruptible power source (UPS) especially if you’re running computers, DVR systems and smart TVs - it gives you a few hours of power to run items such as a computer or a DVR.
At 6th Sense we will come out and check where your home or work premises are vulnerable against power outages. We will check your security system to ensure it’s still in good running order and that your back-up batteries still have decent power. For a consultation with one of our reputable consultants call 011-482-9957 or visit us at www.6thsensesecurity.co.za. We’ll provide you with all the credentials.