APD encourages maintaining address numbers for safety

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - Anchorage Police Officers are encouraging the public to do a small housekeeping chore which could potentially save your life; properly maintaining your address numbers.

Sgt. Steve Childers has been working with APD for going on 12 years. He said over the years, he and his fellow officers have been late to many calls simply because they can’t find the right place.

“Out of everyone on patrols here, it’s several times a week,” he said.

He said it can get frustrating for the officers and the people who get help late, but much more importantly it gets in the way of responding to an emergency.

“Whether it’s the police or firefighters or paramedics it’s about being able to find your house or business as fast as possible,” he said, “because life and death can be the difference between minutes. So the faster we find you the faster we can help you.”

Childers pointed out that all APD officers are CPR certified and when on patrol, they can often respond faster than an ambulance. So whether it be a crime or medical emergency, putting good numbers can help.

APD said the numbers look like is important. The department suggests the following:

- Pick numbers at least six inches tall
- Make sure they contrast the color of your house; light colors on dark houses, vice versa
- Lights and reflectors help a lot.
- If you have a long driveway put them on your mailbox as well
- Don’t use shiny materials like brass because they are too hard to see in the sunlight

Apparently, doing this maintenance in combination with other housekeeping items it could help bring crime down in your neighborhood all together, according to Childers.

“There’s a couple different communities in America that use the ‘old broken windows’ theory,” he said, “that’s where if a house looks like it’s well kempt and the yard is straight and everything, then crime is reduced. However, if it’s the opposite, research shows that crime is a little bit higher.”

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