A NORTH-EAST security firm has raised concerns over the safety of commercial properties during lockdown after a spate of break-ins over the winter months.

G&A Security, which monitors businesses across the Tees Valley, encourages facilities managers to review the safety of their premises, after the company found it had to carry out extra night patrols during the coronavirus lockdown.

Karl Aiston, guarding manager at G&A Security, said: “It’s no surprise that when whole industrial estates are almost deserted, that opportunistic thieves are taking their chances, especially with an already stretched police service.

"And because so many people are staying at home now, there’s even fewer chances that an attempted burglary on a commercial site will be spotted and reported.”

The company, which has a control centre in Faverdale, Darlington, believes a contributing factor to the rise in burglaries and attempted thefts is the reliance on out-of-town security firms.

Mr Aiston said: “A lot of our clients are working almost completely from home at the moment, so ensuring sites are secure and ready for when lockdown is over is imperative. Through CCTV monitoring we have witnessed an increase of trespassing and break-ins which has reinforced the fact that it’s not worth taking the risk being unprotected.

“No two sites are ever the same, it’s worth checking to see if your area has witnessed a rise in criminal activity over lockdown, that would be one indication of greater vulnerability and may highlight where additional security measures might be needed. This can be in the form of CCTV or even security guards."