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Old 03-28-2011, 06:13 AM   #1
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Security Question

A few days ago, I went to our new class A at our covered storage facility and found that it had been burglarized. We've been at that fenced-in, code-operated gate facility more than 12 years with various other RVs. This is the first time we've experienced a break-in or a loss. The thieves evidently came through a side window (I don't know how, but the detective said there is a special tool that is used) and left through our side entrance door, after ripping out our built-in TV, the DVD, my hidden and loaded .38 special, a portable CB, and other minor items. All the drawers and closet doors were opened. I go to our motorhome at least once a week at varying times. I had just returned from a trip to the Gulf Coast. It had been about four days since I had last been in it. Ours was the only RV entered and burglarized. Now I'm wondering whether there is a security system available that anyone would recommend. It would have to be battery operated, however, because I do not keep the coach plugged in, and I always disconnect the chassis and house batteries. Thanks for your help. Komac
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Old 03-28-2011, 08:06 AM   #2
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The problem, as I see it, is that crime is the new 'pan-handling'. They just don't ask anymore. I know Maryville isn't as big as Atlanta, but crime is on the rise everywhere. If you can't (or don't want the expense of) keep your coach at home. Most car type alarms work off the battery, but in a storage facility, who's going to hear the alarm in the middle of the night. What you need is a monitored system like you would have at home and I don't think that would be practical because the police couldn't get to the unit through the fence and you'd need a phone line, etc. Have you tried a cover (out of sight, out of mind)?

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Old 03-28-2011, 10:51 AM   #3
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So now, thanks to you, there is another GUN in the hands of criminals.. Thanks.

Now, as to a security system.. Before you read my advice you are required to promise to REMOVE THE GUN when it is in storage.. Put the gun in a proper GUN SAFE one that is strong, and well anchored, so it won't go walk-about.

There are several systems.. About the beast and easiest to install in your case would be a untrasonic motion detector.. A single sensor sitting on the dash or on the back wall should be able to see most all, if not all, the interior of the rig, it will alarm on any motion bigger than a cat or dog (depending on how it's set) including fire, and even high wind in the case of a motor home.

Some of these can be tied to a cell phone which can ring your chimes (Telephone) when it alarms, Or they can be connected (Again via cell) to a centeral monitoring station who can listen to the sounds and decide what response is proper and buzz the fuzz,,, or fire dept.

Now, the problem... Response time.. Police have been suffering cut backs time and time and time again. and where as there used be a police officer in the neighborhood.... Today the nearest patrol car may well be 10 or 20 miles away, and the thieves know this and will be long gone by the time he gets there.

With private security (Goes with that monitoring station) the response MIGHT be faster. But the authority is less (Power of arrest)
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Old 03-28-2011, 10:57 AM   #4
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No security system will keep a crook out of anything they want to get into
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Old 03-28-2011, 12:39 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by wa8yxm View Post
So now, thanks to you, there is another GUN in the hands of criminals.. Thanks.
Ditto. Leaving your "personal security system" in your unit in storage was really questionable -- but you already know that. Hopefully others will learn from your mistake.
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:11 PM   #6
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Something to think about. Only one broken into. No sign of forced entry. They used a "special" tool. ????? Did you check windows before leaving. Who all was in new coach and might have left window unlocked?
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Old 03-28-2011, 07:59 PM   #7
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I leave our coach at a site with an on site manager and 24 hr.surveillance video, still wouldn't be totally shocked if someone broke in.
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Old 03-28-2011, 08:06 PM   #8
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I would ask the detective, based on his local knowledge, what type of system he would consider to be most effective.

One thing I always use at home and in the MH is 3 cheap but loud sirens INSIDE. It is unnerving for a theif because he can't hear if police are approaching, and taking the time to find and disconnect all 3 units makes him much more vulnerable.
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Old 03-28-2011, 09:35 PM   #9
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I'm thinking like CTPRES. I have heard of other burglarized RV storage units. It usually happens in the wee morning hours, and in every case, except this one, It involved more than one RV. It sounds like you were singled out.

  • As stated - who was the last one in the RV, or group of people in the RV
  • Any children in the family. If so, did any of their "friends" enter the RV
  • Was the RV in for repair or maintenance just prior to the theft
  • Who was responsible for checking all window locks before leaving the RV (Something I'm remiss in sometimes and I have found the driver window unlocked when I returned)
You can go on and on with questions. In most cases you do not need an elaborate security system. One that makes a lot of noise and turns on lights usually will deter a burglar. The ultrasonic motion detector can be rigged to set off a siren that can be mounted under the MH/RV on a frame. These types of alarms are sensitive to any movement, including something moving outside. A shadow passing the window can set them off so it is something you will have to do a lot of experimenting with. Many people try to set up alarm systems so that all windows and doors have switches on them and will set off an alarm. I'm against that for two reasons. One, it doesn't prevent the break-in. Two, the only need of sensor is in the main travel area. A theft has to travel a main corridor to get to whatever treasures he thinks are there. A device with a narrow beam aimed down the narrow passage way will trip an alarm and cause a thief to scatter. All that needs to be done after that is to repair the door/window.

The storage facility "may" have some liability if it is fenced and gated.

Good luck.
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Old 03-29-2011, 06:10 AM   #10
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Thanks for all your responses. They've been helpful. I got a call from the investigating detective yesterday afternoon. A person who tried to pawn my .38 was arrested in an adjoining county (I didn't realize that a notice from the police had already been transmitted to area pawn shops). That person is going to jail. I'm very glad I had it registered with the local police. Unfortunately I did not have serial numbers of the other items stolen because they had been built-in to the coach and could not be seen from the back. Following my burglary, the detective reported that two additional break-ins followed mine at the same storage facility. Several of us believe that one or more of the recent small unit renters at the facility are involved in the crimes. Since they have access in and out of the coded-gate, the detective believes it is easy for one of them to monitor the gate and be ready to make a warning cell-phone call to any of their buddies who may be in the process of pillaging property inside the fence. We are hoping that the arrest of the person trying to pawn my pistol will lead to the arrest of others. No one, other than my wife has a key to our motorhome, nor does anyone other than us know our code. The detective believes my motorhome was singled out because it is the center one of three that are side-by-side. The thieves were less likely to be seen because they were relatively hidden by the other two. My routine when returning from a trip is to wash the motorhome, return it to its covered spot, open the refrigerator and bathroom doors, lock all the windows, deploy the jacks, disconnect both chassis and coach batteries, and lock the entrance/exit door as I leave. I usually check on the motorhome about once a week after that. It's about eight miles from me, but I pass by the facility often and it's no trouble to stop on my way to and from. Thanks again for your helpful replies. Komac
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Old 03-29-2011, 07:03 AM   #11
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When you initially fill out your warranty cards you need your serial numbers for the appliances, need to make your list.
Some MFG's will list serial numbers on a sheet located in a coach cabinet some where in coach.
Had a coach broken into many years ago with a alarm system while at dealer for service, dealer never set the alarm while coach sat outside his garage in a city area.
They smashed a large window to gain access.
Thieves are just as bold these days as years ago.
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Old 03-29-2011, 07:36 AM   #12
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We also had some one break into us, plus 2 other RV's. How, the great window latch MFG use. Look at your windows and if they are not crank out type than more than likely you lift the latch up and slide the window open.
We now use expanding curtain rods when MH is in storage.
We were lucky nothing was taking, but every draw and closet was dumped except for one that had 2 rolls of Quarters. Now I know what it feels to be violated.
Police figure Drug Addict[s] as the 1 MH had Silverware taken. 5th wheel they could not pop the door open[had to replace].
Camera covering the section we were in was not working and had been removed a couple of days before the break in and it was my luck that I had just parked there that day after being on the road for about 10 months.
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Old 03-29-2011, 09:43 AM   #13
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It sounds like you can release the kids, grandkids, and friends from you clutches now. It appears that you were singled out for what ever reason was going through the burglar's minds. Actually it should give you some peace of mind knowing it was someone you "didn't" know. I hope you are correct and the capture of the perpetrator selling your pistol leads to more arrests. Thanks for the follow up. Keep us posted.
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Old 03-29-2011, 11:00 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by komac View Post
. A person who tried to pawn my .38 was arrested in an adjoining county (I didn't realize that a notice from the police had already been transmitted to area pawn shops). That person is going to jail.
And if the the law is as it is in FL., grand theft firearm can carry a life sentence...especially if violence is envolved. It's very frustrating when people steal our stuff...may the fleas of a thousand camels infect the perp's shorts! Glad you'll get the gun off the streets. Bob
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