One of Blackpool’s top officers has told residents they need to take responsibility for themselves if police are to cut crime.
There have been 20 burglaries in central Blackpool in the last month - nine of those because residents left their homes insecure and allowed the thieves to simply walk in.
And now a frustrated Insp Jason Richardson, geographic inspector for Blackpool central, said: “Leaving houses unlocked means it is easy pickings.
“The police are doing all we can to prevent such offences taking place and to bring the offenders to justice, but people need to protect their own property as well.”
Insp Richardson said there was no pattern to the burglaries, with offences occurring across the resort.
And thieves have also managed to steal four cars after careless owners left them with the keys in the ignition.
He said: “During the same period we have suffered 28 vehicle crime offence, and in 14 of these the vehicle was left insecure.
“People have left cars insecure on driveways and thieves are just trying doors and getting into them.
“It is very much a case of asking residents to help us help them.
“As much as the police do their best to prevent crime and arrest offenders it would be a help to us if the public could make sure their properties are secure to make it harder for thieves.
“A burglary is one of the worst things which can happen, it is horrendous and people need to take it upon themselves to act sensibly and responsibly.”
Insp Richardson’s message comes as the police launch their annual crackdown on burglaries, Operation Julius, which last year saw over 350 people arrested and £30,000 of stolen property recovered.
And his message has been echoed by Talbot PACT chairman Dave Blacker, who said residents need to engage with their local neighbourhood policing teams to help keep Blackpool safe.
He said: “Insp Richardson is absolutely right and it’s something we try to make people aware of in our PACT meetings.
“We’ve got to help the police and get involved.
“People have got to start asking the questions not what Blackpool and the police can do for them but what they can do for Blackpool to make it safer, better place to live.”