Theft & Robbery: a technique by thieves to open gates.

In this article we will discover the tools and dynamics used by thieves to force a security gate.

The video below, taken from video camera surveillance footage, shows a gang of thieves at work in South Africa. Now let’s see in detail how they break in through the gate, the protections adopted and what measures can be taken to avoid this type of burglary.

Video at end of article:  click here to watch the video

The dynamics:

Using a crowbar and levering between the gate and the jamb, the thieves force the opening by moving the gate away from the stop. The lock used to protect the gate is then separated from the striker (and, consequently, the deadbolt comes out of its seat) due to the weakness generated by the pressure exerted by the levering tool.

Some useful measures:

Some suggestions are listed below to avoid or limit as much as possible this kind of break-in. Is useful to:

  • Check that the resistance of the gate materials is suitable. In particular, it is important to:
    1) Make sure the hinges are not weak.
    2) Make sure that the external frames are not weak.
    3) Evaluate the quality of the metal, since, if it is a poor quality alloy, it could be easily bent.
  • Give preference to wall-fixing of the gate, so as to add the resistance offered by the wall, provided that it is strong and firmly on the ground, to the protection provided by the lock and the gate.
  • Inquire about the different types of locks available on the market, evaluating each time which one is the most suitable according to the type of gate. Although, in fact, the latch/deadbolt lock is the most widespread for similar applications, in the specific case it might not be the most suitable. For this type of gate, where the option of fixing to the wall may not be possible, it is preferable to use a hook lock, as it allows a greater hold and a “joint” which is probably more difficult to force with a lever.
Locks for heavy frames with swing hook-bolt
Locks for heavy frames with swing hook-bolt (Art. 8547)

To conclude, whilst it is true that it would always be best to let the choice of the lock fall on the product which best fits in terms of features and resistance for each specific case, it is equally true that the structure on which it will be installed and the application of the lock itself should not never be overlooked if what you really want is to truly achieve the best possible security.

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