CHALMETTE, La. (WGNO) — If you live in St. Bernard and plan on going out of town for an extended period, the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Office will provide assistance.

Residents leaving for an extended period of time or for summer vacation can call the St. Bernard Sheriff’s Office to request deputies to make extra patrols past their homes while they are away, Sheriff James Pohlmann said. 

Residents can call (504) 271-2501 to get on the list for the extra patrols. 

Pohlmann said the resident’s information will be kept confidential. Residents also are advised to leave a contact number with the Sheriff’s Office so a patrol deputy can call them if something happens at their home.

Here are some tips provided by St. Tammany Parish Sherriff’s Office:

  • Lock up. While this might seem obvious, some people forget to lock their houses completely while rushing to getaway. Make sure all doors and windows are locked.
  • Be careful who you tell that you plan to be away from your home. However, ask someone you trust to watch for anything unusual. Also, never leave a message on a phone voice mail system saying you are out of town because any caller would learn your house may be vulnerable.
  • The same is true with social media. It is foolish to announce to everyone you will be going on a trip. Wait until you return to post photos instead.
  • Do whatever possible to create the appearance that someone is home. Keep a vehicle in the driveway or out front of your residence. Maintain your lawn before you leave or have someone you trust to mow your lawn while you are gone.
  • Put outdoor lighting on either timers, light-sensitive photocell mechanisms, or motion detectors. Use timers to activate inside lighting, radios, or TVs. Use LED light bulbs because they burn cooler than standard light bulbs.
  • Don’t let deliveries accumulate. If possible, ask someone you know to pick up mail, newspapers, packages, and any circulars placed on your front door. Stop delivery of any newspaper if you can so they don’t pile up.
  • Don’t leave keys under your doormat, flower pots or window ledges – intruders check these first.
  • Keep shrubbery trimmed. Thick shrubbery and trees cover your windows, allowing burglars to work undetected.
  • If you have a security system, ensure it is armed and provide instructions to the central monitoring station – if you have one – to call your cell phone, the Sheriff’s Office and/or a particular friend, relative or neighbor if there is a problem.
  • If your area has a Neighborhood Watch program, inform its officials about your vacation plans.

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