Village Talk 7 March 2018

March 2018 sees the 29th birthday of “KNIGHT” operating as a security service provider in the Midlands. Gary Preston, who now owns KSS, was the first employee of Knight Alarms in 1989 and installed the very first alarm in Howick. Thank you, GARY, for everything you have done for the people of our community for the past 29 years of loyal, committed service.

KSS Staff training
KSS runs an effective in-house Skills Development and Training Program for all our staff. Training ranges from basic first aid and OHS, to human resources, public relations, understanding your role in the security industry, care of security equipment, advanced driving, firearm refresher training, understanding security industry statutory regulations etc…. just to name a few of the up-skilling training sessions held over the past year. Currently, we are empowering staff to get fit and healthy, and have a fitness expert coming to the new office premises 3 mornings a week to do training. The staff are loving it.

Storms and lightning strikes
Please may we advise people to ensure that doors and windows are closed when you are not at home. Often a storm rolls in and the high winds cause many unnecessary alarm activations due to doors and windows banging and curtains blowing in front of beams (PIR’s).

Please also note that KSS has been requested to dispatch medical services to more than two people that have been stuck by lightening recently. It’s not always possible to predict where lightning will strike, but here are some tips on what to do when there is lightning activity. (Adapted from www.parent24.com).

• Lightning is electricity which is attracted to the tallest object around, as it travels between the earth/ground and the sky. The first rule of lightning is to avoid being outside when there is lightning activity. Avoid fields and open spaces which could make you the tallest object.
• The second rule is also incredibly important: When we’re caught outside in a storm, our instinct is to seek shelter under a tree. This is very dangerous, because if the tree is struck, the lightning could jump to your body.
• A car is a safer place to find shelter. Even though a car is metal, lightning will be conducted through the metal of the car and into the ground.
• Avoid using items such as umbrellas or golf clubs.
• If caught in an open space, find a hole or ditch to hide in, and make your body as small as possible - don’t lie flat, though.
• Inside your house, avoid anything electrical such as plugs, appliances and telephones, as well as anything relating to water such as taps, basins or pipes, as water is a conductor of electricity. Don’t have a shower or bath during a storm!
• Avoid swimming or standing on a beach, as lightning may strike at the water’s edge.
• Remove anything metal from your clothing and body, such as jewellery, belts and coins – if caught outside.
• Don’t use your cell phone outside during a storm.

Remember: When thunder roars, go indoors. Find a safe, enclosed shelter. Lightning can strike very far from a thunderstorm, so even if it isn’t raining, once you can hear thunder you may be in danger.

Unalarmed out-buildings
There has been an increase in break-ins to unalarmed outbuildings (wendy houses and sheds). Please ensure that if you have out-buildings, they are locked and alarmed.

Cable and Copper Theft
Cable and copper theft is on the increase. Please report cable or copper theft immediately to the KSS Control Room on 033 3305911. KSS are working alongside Private Investigators and SAPS in combating this serious crime.

Village Talk - 6 December 2017

Village Talk 6 December 2017

Knight Security Solutions Operations staff and SAPS have been proactive and implemented a joint visible patrolling operation over the past month. This has seen a decrease in serious crime over the past 5 weeks. There is no other security company in the Midlands that cares more about you and your family’s safety and security than Knight Security Solutions. There is a lot to be said for 29 years of local knowledge and a hands on approach to community safety.

A reminder about personal safety and security
You need to take responsibility for your own safety and security. What emergency plan do you have in place? Do you have a secure property with an alarm, panic buttons and armed response? Do you have a family emergency plan should an incident occur (fire, robbery etc…)? Do you have local emergency contact numbers somewhere visible in your house? Do you have relevant emergency contact numbers on speed dial on your phone? Do you know your neighbours?

Please take cognizance of these points and try to make an effort to keep yourself and your family safer. Our KSS Control Room is able to assist or facilitate any emergency response. Call 033 330 5911 for emergency assistance.

Check your alarm systems
With the festive season approaching it is important to ensure that your alarm system is fully functional. Many people leave this to the last minute before they go away. Be proactive and check that your systems are working optimally. Please do not hesitate to contact KSS should you need a service done or upgrades made to your existing system. You can contact Gary on 0828947628 (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Keshen on 0833935265 (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Lock-up and go advice for the upcoming festive season
The last thing you want is a positive break-in while you are away on holiday. Here are a few things you can do before leaving for the holidays.

1. Alert your alarm company
Just switching on your alarm and jumping into your car is not sufficient. First ensure that your alarm is working, and then let your alarm company know that you will be away.

2. A presence and proactive activity
Try to ensure that there is some activity in and around your home. Whether you have a friend or family member making regular “pop-by” visits to feed your pet or have someone staying the night. The little bit of activity will keep criminals at bay. You can also have a light, TV or radio on a timer to go on and off periodically during the night – giving the impression that there is someone home.

3. Social media
Don’t advertise your travel plans on any social media; rather share the details and upload photo’s when you get back.

4. Hold your post/mail
One of the most noticeable signs that there is no one at home is a pile of post and newspapers in the letterbox at the end of your driveway. Consider hiring a post box and tell the media company to put a hold on your daily newspaper. Failing that, get someone to collect your post and newspaper on a daily basis.

5. Lighting and fencing
Ensure that outside lights are also on a day-light timer and that the foliage is cleared along your fence line. Many verges are overgrown at this time of the year, and do create a security hazard as criminals can easily hide away.

What you also need to consider when away from home:
1. Beware of remote jamming. Always check that you have locked the car with your remote by actually double checking – try the door handle and ensure that it does not open.
2. Keep your keys handy when returning to your car – you don’t want to be fumbling in your handbag looking for them and then not be alert to your surroundings.
3. Keep your handbags and wallets close to your body.
4. When driving, keep your handbags, wallets and other valuables out of sight, preferably locked in the boot of your car.
5. ATM withdrawals – stand close to the machine and keep your pin protected. DON’T let anyone disturb you. If you feel uncomfortable, cancel the transaction and retrieve your card. Report the incident to bank officials immediately.
6. Don’t draw attention to yourself if you have a lot of cash on you.
7. Carry pepper spray - this is useful when warding off an assailant.
8. Carry a whistle – if this is on your key ring it is useful and easy to access if you have your keys in your hand.
9. Try to go out with a “buddy” or let someone else know you are going out and when you are likely to return home.

Have a safe festive season and enjoy the special time with family and friends. Remember, KSS work 24/7 and are available to assist with any emergency.

Village Talk Front Page - 15 November 2017

Knight Security Solutions tackles crime head on!

SAPS released the National Crime Stats for South Africa on 24 October 2017. The stark reality is that crime is a serious problem EVERYWHERE in our country. Robbery at residential premises is at its highest in 10 years with 22,343 reported cases - an increase of 7.3% this year. Robbery with aggravating circumstances has increased by 6.4% – also the highest it has been in a decade

Howick is no stranger to crime waves, but the current crimes committed are more brazen than we have ever seen. According to Gary Preston, owner of Knight Security Solutions (KSS) and key role-player in our community for 29 years, this wave of crime has elicited many emotive responses from the community, with KSS being the target of much unfounded blame and accusation. The current gang that has hit Howick is an organised crime syndicate that is receiving high level attention from SAPS at Provincial level. Preston says that serious crime like this has to be escalated to the likes of Provincial and National SAPS, who work very closely alongside SA CAN.

KSS are proactive and have tracked the crime trends in Howick and its surrounds for some years now. If we look at the statistical facts, one will see the incredibly positive impact KSS has had in combatting crime in our area (Howick, Howick West, Merrivale and Hilton), particularly over the past year. Where crime nationally has seen a significant rise, crime in our local community (Howick, Howick West, Merrivale and Hilton) has actually seen a decrease for KSS clients. Preston attributes this success to the fact that KSS implemented the “2-up” Armed Reaction Officers in November 2016 and since then we have seen positive results. KSS are also quick to respond, follow-up timeously on crime related investigations and work shoulder to shoulder with the various local SAPS and SA CAN.

KSS Clients Statistics: 2016 compared to 2017 (up to 11 November 2017)

• Positive Break-ins are down by 64% overall for 2017.
• Attempted Break-ins are down by 63% overall for 2017.
• Arrests made are up by 21% overall for 2017.
• The total number for ALL crime related incidents (serious to petty) is down by 62% for 2017.

Another key factor in combatting crime effectively is community involvement, and for the first time the Howick community has woken up to the fact that they can contribute and support the efforts of security companies such as KSS and the local SAPS. WhatsApp groups are vocal but have to be controlled and information needs to be reliable, relevant and concise. In fact, accordingly to Brian Jones, CEO of SA CAN, the future of tracking and verifying crime related communication is in the “TrackBox” App, patented by Jones himself. It must also be noted that WhatsApp is NOT a medium through which security companies dispatch a response. Security company structures are far more complex and the dispatch of an Armed Reaction unit is primarily through alarm and panic activation signals, as well as direct phone calls to the Control Room.  

KSS Management also recently met with the Visionary Team of the newly established Howick Safety Network (HSN), an independent team of experts in their fields, to address the current crime issues. A further meeting is being held tonight by various additional community role-players and cell leaders, to strategically plan, alongside KSS and SAPS, so that all key community role-players are on the same page. Our intention is to also form a small team, who will then meet with our highest Municipal Officials.

It is interesting to note how Howick has evolved over the past 10 years. In 2007 there were 2 informal settlements in an around Howick, with 2 SAPS vehicles available for operations. In 2017 we find up to 10 informal settlements in and around Howick, but still the same compliment of SAPS vehicles available for operations. This is in part attributed to the fact that OFTEN crime is not reported to the local SAPS and cases are not opened. Local crime statistics are then not accurate and National SAPS do not see crime as a serious enough issue in our community to warrant additional resources. A case in point is that over the past month in Howick, well over 20 gate motor batteries have been stolen but NOT one case of theft has been opened at Howick SAPS.


KSS have also had the Bobbies Community Patrolling (BCP) Project running for over 3 years now in the Greendale Park, Lakeview and Eridene Road areas of Howick North, but the support from the community is very poor and criticism levelled at KSS and the BCP Project is often unfounded. The facts of the CBP Project are:
• Membership is 199 households.
• Cost is R100 per month (over and above alarm monitoring and armed response).
• There are over 1200 houses and 30 complexes in the patrolled area.
• The community buy-in is less than 16%.
• KSS supplements the shortfall in funding to keep the project running.
• If KSS had a buy-in of at least 40% (480 financially contributing members) KSS would be able to have 2 vehicles patrolling the area manned with Armed Reaction officers, 24/7.

People need to support local community projects if they want to see change and make Howick an even safer town.

KSS also facilitate the operations of the very effective Hilton Street Hawks Security Initiative in Hilton. The members pay R250 per month (over and above alarm monitoring and armed response services) and a dedicated, professional committee made up of volunteers from the community administer and monitor the initiative. The initiative has seen a reduced rate of crime in the Hilton areas patrolled by the Hilton Street Hawks.

KSS are 100% dedicated to our community, but not any one person or business is infallible – the difference is that KSS will never give up trying to make a HUGE difference for the good of all in our community. Our new premises and state of the art Control Room attest to the fact that we are improving all the time.

(KSS have moved to 5 Old Main Road – next door to their old premises).

Village Talk - 18 October 2017

Congratulations
Well done to ALL Knight Security Solutions (KSS) staff for the time and effort they put into “Caring for our Community” and keeping people, property and possessions safe. Exceptional work by exceptional people who go the extra mile.

Suspicious vehicle
Please be advised that a sliver VW Golf (NP 10163) has been identified at numerous break-ins recently. Report to the KSS Control Room 0n 033 330 5911.

Break-ins
There have been numerous break-ins to buildings / garages / garden sheds that are not protected by alarm systems. A number of clients have had to phone into the KSS 24/7 Control Room to report positive break-ins to these unarmed areas. Outdoor furniture. brush cutters and chain saws appear to be target items at the moment. Please secure your out-buildings, garages and sheds. If you need assistance, please contact Keshen at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone 0833935265.

Vehicle theft
Please be advised that there has been an increase in attempted vehicle theft and it appears that older models of vehicles are being targeted.

Church crime
I have received an email from a local Church warning of a possible new modis operandi in the area. Please be aware of anything / anyone suspicious at church services, memorials, social events etc… as the perpetrators appear to “blend in” with what was going on, and then make off with stolen items from unsuspecting staff or guests.

Knight Cleaning Services (KCS)
KCS now owns “Carpet Care” and is now able to not only clean your homes, business, school, shopping centre or residential estate, but also clean your carpets and upholstery. KCS is run as a totally separate entity within Knight Security Solutions (KSS), under the expert guidance of our Cleaning Supervisor, Alesha Hayward and her capable staff. For any further information please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 082 8936 076. How about that long over-due “Spring Clean”?

Emergency numbers
Please remember that you can call the Knight Security Solutions Control Room 24 hours for any emergency. The number is 033 3305911. KSS are able to facilitate an emergnecy response to anywhere in our Howick, Merrivale, Hilton area. We have also assisted with dispatch of emergency services to incidents in PMB and our local surrounding areas. KSS also still work very closely with SA CAN who manage all types of emergencies on a National scale. Their number is 0861672226 should you want to contact them directly for more information.

Useful Emergency Contact Numbers
Knight Security Solutions 033 330 5911
SA CAN 086 167 2226
Midlands EMS 074 149 7911
ER24 National 084 124
ER24 Pmb 082 943 1838
ER24 Midlands 079 620 6661
Netcare 911 082 911
Provincial Ambulance 10177
SAPS National 10111
SAPS Howick 033 239 9340
SAPS Mpophomeni 033 238 0078
SAPS Hilton 033 845 6500 / 033 845 6521
Road traffic inspectorate (RTI) 033 342 3939 (PMB)
Road traffic inspectorate (RTI) 033 239 9200 (Umngeni)
Umngeni Fire Dept. 082 804 4414
Umngeni Municipality C/R 033 329 9200 / 033 329 9244
Eskom 033 330 4884 / 086 003 7566
Water 033 392 2128 / 0800 00 1868
Telkom crime line 080 012 4000

Emergency

Our 24/7 control room number is 033-330-5911

Office Hours

Mon - Fri: 7.30am to 4.30pm

Contact us

Our Office

5 Old Main Road

Merrivale
Kwazulu-Natal
3291

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