A Message from Sheriff Scott Israel


As the holiday season approaches, many Broward County residents will be gathering with family and friends to celebrate. Whether you are traveling out of town or hosting festivities at home, the Broward Sheriff's Office wants you to be safe. Here is a security checklist to help protect your home and family.

Protecting Your Home

  • Sign up for BSO's free Home Watch program before you leave town (visit www.sheriff.org/homewatch to download the registration form or contact your local district office).
  • Install good locks on all doors and windows.
  • Leave your window blinds as you normally would if you were home.
  • Use timers to operate lights at night and install a home security alarm system.
  • Stop newspaper and mail deliveries, and never hide a spare key outside.
  • Have someone mow your lawn if you'll be away more than a few weeks.
  • Turn down your home phone ringer so no one outside can hear repeated rings, and never leave a greeting on your answering machine or cell phone stating you are out of town.
  • Do not post holiday travel plans on social networking sites.
  • Invite a neighbor to park their car in your driveway or have a friend occasionally move yours if it is parked at your home.


  • Arrive early at the airport to allow enough time for checking in, security screenings and reaching your gate.
  • Always confirm your vehicle is in proper working order prior to departing on a long road trip.
  • Get proper rest to avoid driver fatigue. Only stop at well-lit rest areas and lock your doors when you exit the vehicle.
  • Do not exceed posted speed limits and buckle up – it's the law!

Entertaining Safely

  • Encourage guests to use a designated driver if they will be drinking.
  • When cooking, always use proper protective equipment, such as oven mitts, and never leave towels or food wrappers next to the stove.
  • Never deep fry a turkey indoors; keep a safe distance from your home and other combustible materials.
  • Do not use lighted candles near trees, draperies or flammable items.
  • Turn off all cooking appliances and blow out all candles.

The men and women of the Broward Sheriff's Office are dedicated to keeping our communities safe. Help us by taking these important safety precautions to ensure the safety of you and your home. As you celebrate with your loved ones this season, I remind you to give thanks for all those who serve in the armed forces. I wish you a safe and enjoyable holiday season!

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