Avoiding Crime When Parking Your Car
Theft and Vandalism
– Wherever possible, provide each dwelling with its own locked garage within the property boundaries. Locked garages outside the boundaries or well-lit and visible common car parks are the next best things.
– Where private garages are not feasible, carport or driveway parking is preferable to grouped parking away from dwellings.
– As a general rule, underground or multi-story car parks should be avoided, as they are breeding grounds for vandalism and crime. If they already exist, limiting entry points and providing them with sturdy locked gates could minimize danger. Alternatively, each resident could be provided with locked gates could minimize danger. Alternatively each resident could be provided with a lockable garage in their own space, with robust, vandal-proof metal doors – garages within garages, so to speak. Or users can be provided with a secure lock or a plastic keycard, which operates electronic doors.
– Grouped car parks should be avoided in high-crime areas. If they cannot be avoided, they should be within view of some dwellings; they should be equipped with sturdy gates or tilt doors, and should never be sited near alleyways.
– Open car parks should be small and within view of dwellings and visitors’ car parks should be clearly identifiable, well lit, and visible from dwellings.
Rape, Assault, Robbery
– To make car parks safer, planners should provide direct access from parking areas to the entrance of dwellings.
– Car parks should be no further than 60 meters from dwellings, and the path should be well lit and free from shrubbery.
– Visitors’ car parks should be well lit, clearly identifiable, and visible from dwellings.
– Access to enclosed car parks should be limited to residents by some form of electronic entry control device if possible.
– If it is desirable to limit access to dwellings, make sure access via car parks is monitored as well.
– In high-crime areas, advanced technological surveillance methods may be needed in car parks. For example, an infrared unit is available which detects the presence of intruders – but not cats and dogs – by body heat, and automatically switches on all lights in the car park and turns them off after 15 to 20 minutes.