Some residents of the Beachside housing estate at Yamba have fortified their homes to prevent further break-ins.
Some residents of the Beachside housing estate at Yamba have fortified their homes to prevent further break-ins. DEBRAH NOVAK

Fortress beachside

MORE than 200 metres of barbed wire and 100-plus dangerous-looking nails and screws are protecting homes on Yamba's Oceania Crt – a street that was recently the victim of seven break-ins within a week.

Repeated thefts from homes in the Beachside housing estate over the past 18 months have prompted four residents to fortify their boundary fences.

Nails and screws now protrude vertically from the top of the fences of two properties and horizontally near the top of the public side of one of the fences. Combined with the barbed wire, it sends a graphic message to the perpetrators to keep out.

All this less than 500 metres from the pristine and popular Pippi Beach.

One resident, who wished to remain anonymous, said he modified his boundary fence more than 12 months ago and was very upset about having to take such extreme measures to prevent crime.

“I had three attempted break-ins in the space of 12 months,” he said.

“One where the people got in and two where the intruders were challenged and ran off.

“Since I fortified the place I haven't been robbed.”

Another four houses in the street are up for sale, their owners fed-up with break-ins that have forced them to become prisoners in their own homes.

Police said the nearby 4.5 star apartment complex The Sands had also experienced a spate of break-ins over the past 18 months.

But Clarence Valley Council deputy general manager Rob Donges expressed concerns about the fortification.

He said council would take immediate action to have the screws protruding horizontally from the fences removed.

“People should not have any sharp objects protruding from fences onto public space,” he said.

“Council will send a ranger to Yamba and ask the residents that they be removed.”

Mr Donges said a building inspector would assess the fences to see if the barbed wire and nails protruding vertically were outside council regulations.

He said council had taken action by blocking off two walkways between houses in the estate that aided the alleged offenders escape and hindered the police pursuit.

Grafton police said they were aware of the break-ins at Beachside and The Sands, and investigations were continuing into the incidents.

 



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