One Vision Housing has implemented a revolutionary way to reduce burglary rates and boiler theft in its communities, which could save both the company and tenants in excess of £200,000 per year.
The initiative, called ‘Too Hot to Handle’, came about after a spate of boiler thefts on its estates. It was calculated that if the rate of boiler thefts continued, it would cost the organisation around £200,000 in repairs and replacements. The solution was ‘SmartWater’, an innovative product that uses cutting edge forensic technology to protect valuable items by making them uniquely traceable. This helps the police to quickly identify stolen property, and acts as a powerful criminal deterrent. Once applied, SmartWater is almost impossible to remove and can only be seen under ultraviolet (UV) light.
One Vision Housing now uses SmartWater as standard on all its boilers, and over 900 households have been offered the opportunity to mark all their valuables with the clear solution, and detract potential thieves by placing a sticker in their window. The organisation has also provided training sessions to local police and funded special UV torches to officers so they can stop and test suspected stolen items whilst on patrol.
The next stage of the initiative is to deploy street signs that highlight the use of SmartWater on particular estates throughout Sefton and Liverpool. Eric Wignall, Contracts and Services Manager for One Vision Housing said “One Vision Housing is committed to providing safer communities and the ‘Too Hot to Handle’ initiative has already led to a number of arrests. We see this as a major deterrent to potential thieves and will reduce crime overall in our neighbourhoods”.