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Gardai urge shoppers to beware of car park thefts this Christmas

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TODAY’S the day when shoppers swing into action to cross off essential items on that festive list, with December 8, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, having long become a traditional shopping day in Ireland. And Gardaí in Kerry are taking the opportunity to warn shoppers to be vigilant of car park theft in retail car parks today and this month.

Issuing the warning for “Retail Safety Day” today, they report new figures which show 50 car park thefts taking place each month.

The figures, compiled by the Garda Analysis Service to launch Retail Safety Day, show some €400,000 worth of goods was stolen from Irish shoppers’ cars last year.
Incidents are most common on Tuesdays and Fridays between 12 noon and 6pm, with incidents rising in December. The average value taken per theft was €600, while the most commonly taken items are cash, electronics, tools and handbags.

Launched to coincide with the start of the busy festive shopping period, Retail Safety Day urges members of the public to engage in safe shopping and parking in order to avoid becoming a victim of crime, whilst also improving their personal security.

Sergeant Kelvin Courtney of the Garda Bureau of Community Engagement stated: “Customers should be wary while shopping. Always park in well-lit and secure areas. When you leave your car, lock all doors and windows and double check to make sure. Don’t leave property or cash on view, take it with you. Report all thefts and suspicious activities to staff or Gardaí.

“We strongly encourage shoppers to engage in safe parking as over 50 incidents of theft from vehicles at retail car parks occur every month. With an average loss of €600 per incident, many of these thefts are avoidable. Following some of these simple steps will make sure your Christmas doesn’t get spoiled by theft,” said Sergeant Courtney.

“There are also over 100 thefts from customers in shops every month. Handbags are being targeted when left in trolleys or hanging on buggies. The handbag itself isn’t always the item that is taken, sometimes objects within the handbag are targeted too and often they are not immediately noticed missing by the owner. Mobile phones are the most commonly stolen object.”

Retail Safety Day also aims to raise awareness amongst retailers on ways to prevent business losses from criminal activity. Shoplifting adds 3% to the price of products.

The Garda Analysis Service also said that shoplifting at Christmas time last year cost retailers €55 million, while the overall loss in 2015 was €255 million. However, thefts from shops have decreased by 2.7% this year so far, according to the CSO.

The busiest time for thefts from shops are Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, with almost two thirds occurring between 12pm and 6pm.

Sergeant Courtney added: “It’s important for retailers to be reminded that thefts from shops tend to increase from mid November until Christmas.

“The four main items stolen from retailers are groceries, alcohol, clothing and cosmetics. It is noticeable that thefts from clothes stores increase sharply just before Christmas and we also see a considerable increase of thefts from pharmacies, largely involving cosmetic thefts, throughout November and December.

“Retailers should make it difficult for thieves by improving security around the peak times of these thefts. Two thirds of all theft from shops happens between 12pm and 6pm, with Thursday, Friday and Saturday seeing the most thefts. Employing more staff at these times, training staff on retail security, displaying high value products away from entrance doors or behind security cabinets, installing and maintaining CCTV systems and ensuring cameras are not blocked by sale signs are just some of the ways retailers can improve their security.”

Local Garda clinics will be held throughout the country on December advising the public on their personal safety at this festive time. Meanwhile, An Garda Síochána produced safety information packs for both customers and retailers, both of which are available to download from the Garda website.

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How to have the best skincare routine at home

By Jill O’Donoghue from Killarney Toning and Beauty Studio Home care is essential for glowing, youthful skin. It’s like brushing your teeth, it must be done twice a day. Step […]

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By Jill O’Donoghue from Killarney Toning and Beauty Studio

Home care is essential for glowing, youthful skin. It’s like brushing your teeth, it must be done twice a day.

Step one: Cleanse to remove sweat, oil, dirt and other pollutants that your skin naturally collects throughout the day and night. It’s the first step in your skincare routine and shouldn’t be rushed.

How to do it; Cleanse your skin in the morning and in the evening to keep your pores clear and your face fresh. Your cleanser may vary based on skin type, but with all cleansers, the general consensus is to apply them using an upward, circular motion so as to prevent wrinkles from forming. Make sure your hands are clean in order to prevent excess dirt from entering your pores.

Step two: There is a lot of confusion around toner, and when you’re first establishing a daily skincare routine, it may even seem unnecessary. But most experts agree that toning is an important addition to your skin care routine with beneficial effects for your skin. After you cleanse your skin of impurities, toner removes any residue left behind by the cleanser as well as any make-up or oils your cleanser might have missed. The added cleansing effects help prepare your skin to absorb moisturiser and minimise the appearance of pores. Some toners may have PH balancing and antiseptic effects as well. Apply toner right after you have cleansed your skin while it is still damp. The best way to apply it is with a cotton pad or cotton ball, simply soaking cotton pad with toner and wiping upward and out, starting at your neck.

Step 3: Exfoliate. Our skin is constantly shedding millions of skin cells every day, but sometimes those cells can build up on the surface of our skin and need some extra help to be removed. Exfoliating removes these dead skin cells that have accumulated in our pores. If you struggle with blackheads, acne or breakouts, you’re not going to want to miss this step.

It’s best to exfoliate after toning and before moisturising. You should exfoliate one to three times a week, but this depends on your skin type and how it reacts to exfoliation. Experiment and find what works best for you. There are chemical exfoliators and granule exfoliators such as your traditional sugar or salt scrub. Both can be effective tools for removing dead skin cells, but chemical exfoliating ingredients like AHA and BHA are often more effective in getting deep into your pores and removing buildup.

Properly cleansed skin will allow your next steps e.g. serums and moisturisers get to the right layers of the skin where they will be most effective.

For a skincare consultation or more advice just ask Jill on 064 6632966.

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Annual Christmas motorbike charity road run launched

The Kerry Bikers are hosting their annual Christmas Bike Run on December 18. The event will raise funds for St Francis’ Special School at St Mary of the Angels in […]

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The Kerry Bikers are hosting their annual Christmas Bike Run on December 18.

The event will raise funds for St Francis’ Special School at St Mary of the Angels in Beaufort and Eagle Lodge in Tralee.

Now in its sixth year, the run, which is organised by an amalgamation of several Kerry motorcycle clubs under the banner of Kerry Bikers, will visit Killarney.

The run gets underway at 10.30am from Tralee. The first stop off is in Sheahan’s Centra on the Muckross Road where the Tralee group will be joined by local motorcyclists before setting off on a yet to be decided route.

“We will announce the route in Killarney. Last year we went to Killorglin, Farranfore and Castleisland. This year Abbeyfeale and Listowel may be in reach and if so we will make donations to Nano Nagle Special School too,” organiser Dave Foley said.

Over one hundred motorcycles are expected to take part in the run. Last year the full convoy measured 1.6km from start to finish.

“We hope to exceed that this year,” added Foley

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