I had a strange job this week in Burleigh heads with a second call out in 10 days to repair a malfunctioning lock. It seemed very odd as we’d done the repair and I knew it had been done right so I was a bit concerned as to what could have happened.
We had initially attended the premises as the front door deadlock that would not turn. The key was right but the locking mechanism was blocked with dirt. I happens sometimes. I was able to clean the lock out with compressed air and some WD40 and no more serious intervention was necessary. The problem had now for some reason recurred.
The 2nd time I attended our new client was pretty annoyed. Locked out of his house, annoyed he’d paid for a job that had not worked out and now worried he might be stung again paying for the job to be done properly. He had every right to be annoyed but not as it turns out for the reason he thought.
Someone had been messing with his lock.
His lock was now clearly blocked with a green twig which someone must have intentionally stuffed in his lock to jam it. The dirt in the lock could have been build up over time from someone using dirty keys(client was a landscape gardener and had said at the time he often uses keys with dirty hands which might have been deposited on his keys causing dirt to build up in the lock) but there was no way this twig could have accidentally found its way into the lock. We had a vandal.
These sorts of problems are not as rare as you’d think. Normally it’s a neighbourhood dispute. My new client said there was no one he could think of who might have done it… but he did have plenty of people who got annoyed at him because of his work. No one likes the sound of a whipper snipper, leaf blower or mower at 7am in the morning… and a peeved neighbour of one of his clients may well have followed him home from a job and sought their revenge.
There was not a lot we could do from a lock perspective. It’s almost impossible to prevent access to the lock itself so we recommended some deterrent options.
- We installed a video surveillance system. Once upon a time we might have recommended a fake one with a realistic flashing light, but the reality is the real McCoy is not much more expensive and it’s far more satisfying to actually catch the crooks.
- We installed a motion activated light out the front of his house so anyone coming onto the property had to contend with the likelihood that their activity might be noticed.
- We installed a motion activated soundbite with a speaker installed above the front door. Anyone who came within 1 m of the front door now got the message. ‘Hi there! Don’t forget to smile for the camera on our new security system!It’s not like in the movies where the bad guys wear balaclavas. Most crooks don’t bother wearing one when they are approaching via the front door. Who wants to walk up to a front door wearing a balaclava? That’s a bit suspicious! Balaclavas only go on when they come back after casing the place, and when entry is via the back of the house somewhere…
Whoever was messing with our new Burleigh Heads client was unlikely to do it again once they realised they’d been videoed on the property.
A month after installing the system no one had been caught but the lock had not been damaged either. I suspect the lock vandal was more likely a neighbour with some sort of grievance and they saw us installing the gear.
In any case it was a good result, and our client’s house is not only far less likely to have its locks disabled, it’s far more secured. Bad guys coming to case the place that ring the front door? Far less likely to return now to rob the place as their face will be on the video.
In need of a Burleigh Heads locksmith? Give the team at Allcoast Locksmiths a call on 0406 333 300.