January is over for another year, but before we say goodbye to the month of dreary dark mornings and icy cold days, let’s have a look at the round-up of January news in the security industry.

On the 3rd January Metro reported that home CCTV had captured a firework attack on a couple walking their two dogs. Luke Priest and Jacob Feltham had taken their dogs out for a walk on New Year’s Eve when someone shot two fireworks taped together straight at them. Fortunately, the explosives narrowly missed the couple and their dogs, but it once again shows that home CCTV has a valuable place in helping the police to record and detect crime – and not necessarily just home break-ins.

A business’s CCTV was an integral part of a case to catch a criminal gang who stole 37 high value cars from London, Surrey, Northampton and Leicester.  In a twist worthy of a slapstick comedy, the car racket, worth £500,000, was discovered when the thieves were nailed by their own CCTV from the yard they used to dismantle and process the stolen vehicles. Police and CCTV 1, Criminals 0.

East Cowes fire fighters were called out to an alarm at the Town Hall on 16th January which was triggered by a dusty smoke detector. Luckily there was no fire, but this story reinforces why it’s so vital to regularly maintain and service existing fire alarm systems. While we’re sure East Cowes fire service were relieved there was no fire and no casualties, they probably would have preferred to be in the warm at the fire station than racing to a potential crisis that could have been avoided. Hampshire fire service offer advice on how to avoid false alarms in business premises to avoid fire crews being diverted away from real emergencies.

And finally, a word of warning from British Transport Police, who are investigating CCTV footage of someone attempting the #BirdBoxChallenge on a railway. The Sandra Bullock film, released on Netflix at the end of last year, has inspired an abundance of copycat attempts at performing daily tasks while blindfolded, with a lot of people uploading videos of their challenges to social media. However, some people have taken the challenge a step too far and are putting their both their own, and other people’s, lives in danger. Once again, CCTV has proven itself an essential ally in helping police solve crime.

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