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need property security advice

Old 02-07-2007, 11:54 PM
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Default need property security advice

After witnessing years of mismanagement, favoritism, and selective rule enforcement, I took the plunge, I ran for and was elected to the HOA board (more like had my arm twisted due to my help with Hurricane Wilma claim)

I am trying to do the right thing and have a perplexing problem. We are a subcommuntiy of 98 townhomes with our own satellite pool area that is fenced in and has bathrooms and an awning covered area. This pool area is on the outskirts of the community and is being hit by vandals at night. Furniture is being cut, legs sawed off lounges and tables, and garbage inclucing the destroyed patio furniture being thrown in the pool. Area is fenced and only residents have key, but I have yet to see a fence (legal for us to use - no razorwire, etc) that will keep the vandals out. Would love to put in video surveillance (though some of the more adventurous residents may not want - we will vote on any decision).

Problems: too far to access via wi-fi to a home LAN no phone or cable lines to make a land line connection, and no airconditioned/dehumifed area in the restroom building to place a DVR or computer. We are in S. Fl and heat and humidity too high for the operation and storage of such equipment.

A feww of us have though of ambushing the jerks, but it is not worth going to jail or getting hurt over. The local PD has been no help - they promise increased patrols, but this is happening all too frequently and expenses are mounting.

Any suggestions? Any security companies witha solution? HELP
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Old 02-08-2007, 12:13 AM
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I would think that a non-working camera and a cheap sign will stop most of that trouble.

As long as the place "looks" like its under video surveilence, very few fools are going to mess with it. I've seen "replica" cameras at Frys for under $10. Put one of those up along with a sign that says "Smile - you're on camera" and your troubles will stop.
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Old 02-08-2007, 12:16 AM
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though of that, but some felt it would not do the trick. To me, its a cheap investment that might pay off - Thanks
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Old 02-08-2007, 12:23 AM
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Or you could pay a couple of hundred dollars for a "real" video monitoring system. The question is - do you hide it to catch the perps, or expose it to deter vandolism?
Then, if you've got a crime in progress - do you call the local constabulary for an armed response, or just call up old Joe with his street sweeper?

There's a lot to be said for a blinking light and a plastic camera. Less blood spilled, too.
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Old 02-08-2007, 01:02 AM
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I have a very good friend who specializes in security issues. He is a low voltage electrical specialist (or something like that) We are both in S. Florida. If you PM me, I will give you his information.
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Old 02-08-2007, 06:35 AM
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pm sent - thanks
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Old 02-08-2007, 06:51 AM
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Hire a night watchman? Over 90 units the cost would be nothing.
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Old 02-08-2007, 10:47 AM
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Default Re: need property security advice

We use to have an electric fence around a cow pasture at my house. Although not lethal, it is very unpleasant and would stop vandals IMHO, assuming that it is fenced in.

Is the pool area light at night? We have paid off duty officers to patrol our neighborhood when things started to disapear or given some incentive for on duty patrols.
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Old 02-08-2007, 12:34 PM
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www.bushmaster.com
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Old 02-08-2007, 02:29 PM
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Bugbuster - 2/8/2007 7:51 AM
Hire a night watchman? Over 90 units the cost would be nothing.
Check with your local security services. You may be able to hire someone to hide in the building and with a walkie-takie or cell phone and call the cops when the kids show up. It has likely been the same people so once they're caught it should stop.

Good luck!
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Old 02-08-2007, 04:57 PM
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How far away is the closest house? Here's a "driveway" alarm by Lord Henry. It will transmit 2500 feet. Gather at a close house, throw down some beers and wait until it beeps, then beat the sh*t out of the little bastards. Just a thought.

http://www.lordhenry.us/2500foot.htm
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Old 02-08-2007, 07:20 PM
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With omnidirectional antennas and distance boosters you can get a very long distance with wifi. How far is it?
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Old 02-08-2007, 09:37 PM
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Another thing you might consider, is the installation of one or more MemoCam cameras. They record video or rapid-sequence still pics to an SD memory camera when motion is present. No flash or other "give-aways", and can be concealed in many ways. Swap the SD card out periodically, and ownload the pictures to a computer (or another 'consumer' type digital camera that uses SD cards), while the Memocam continues to function.

Motion detection floodlights and perhaps a horn or some type could be a deterrant, as the vandals would know they have been detected. If they continued in their actions, the memocam would obtain better quality photo's from the improved lighting.

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Old 02-09-2007, 05:32 PM
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i had problems with people stealing from coin operated car wash.they would get 10 to 20 dollars and ruin 3000 dollars worth of equipment i put camera's up and they stole them
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Old 02-10-2007, 12:58 AM
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Thanks for all of the suggestions.

Still have several issues - theoretically the pool is availab;e 24-7 for residents, so motion alarms, sensprsd etc, would be b!tched about by someone - there is always one in the crowd. I am sure tah some would even say that cameras are a violation of their privacy. Changes in the pool hours would require a change in the association by-laws, then there is the problem of someone turning on and off the security device - entry alarm, motion sensor, etc. Latly - where would the alarms signal. I agreed to be on the board, but lately I have been working over 60 hours per week, have a wife and a 5 year old and want to be able to get out fishing as well. don't need it going off in my house at 3:00 AM either. I would do my share of being on watch, but how to rotate it.

As far as distance - the pool are is about 200 feet from the nearest unit, about 1/4 mi from the nearest board member.

The 2 biggest problems are: no climay controlled area to house electronic equipemt - whether it be a transmitter or digital recorder.

The other is budget, everybody is reeling from HOA dues that have doubled in the pas 2 years, assessments, etc. There is healthy diverse mix in the development, but some about 1/3 are retired and on fixed incomesm and there are also many young families struggling to get by. It looks loke we will just take the furniture out as it getd=s detroyed and have people bring their own beach chair when goingto the pool.

Lying in wait for the bastards is looking more attractive, but that is the younger mre foolish version of myself talking
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Old 02-10-2007, 08:54 AM
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Standard Wifi will travel 200 feet in clear air and directional antennas will make the 1/4 mile hop with no problem.
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Old 02-10-2007, 09:09 AM
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Mount a few of the inexpensive deer cameras used to scout out wildlife areas. The motion triggers the camera and a pic is made and stored for later retrieval. Or you could simply electrify the fence and fry the little bastards' nuts.
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Old 02-10-2007, 09:50 AM
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"The other is budget, everybody is reeling from HOA dues that have doubled in the pas 2 years, assessments, etc. There is healthy diverse mix in the development, but some about 1/3 are retired and on fixed incomesm and there are also many young families struggling to get by. It looks loke we will just take the furniture out as it getd=s detroyed and have people bring their own beach chair when goingto the pool. "

So who is paying and will continue paying for the damage that is being done? If they are sawing legs off pool furniture and throwing it in the pool, etc., then it is more than mischief. What will the HOA do when they steal a car and drive in into the pool?

Either the HOA will need to come up with some money to secure the place properly, or the magnitude of the problem will only escalate. Deer cameras will not give a hi-res picture, and will draw attention to themselves from the flash, that most of them have. A monitored system is good, but only if it has 24/7 response, and that means a a properly designed and installed security system. That may end up costing several thousand dollars (I suggest you get some estimates). The alternative may be to close the facility and fill it with dirt.
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Old 02-11-2007, 05:29 PM
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[QUOTE]CaptWill - 2/10/2007 9:50 AM

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Old 02-11-2007, 07:05 PM
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MakoSteve,
I too live in SE Florida and have been in the video surveillance business for 20 years. If you have power at the sight which I think you you said you do you can easily transmit video and motion alarms if you desire back to a DVR via wireless with no problem at all. The main thing you need to decide is how much video storage you want. I would suggest that you have a video camera with analytical video capabilities that can transmit video only when needed so as not to suck space on the DVR hard drive. If you need any help let me know as this is what I do.
Good luck
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