Warning about derelict buildings

Teenagers and youngsters are becoming involved in a new, dangerous craze across the county which involves entering derelict buildings, climbing up and onto roofs and causing damage.

Derelict buildings are those that have been deemed unsafe or blocked off by the council or police. Many houses are derelict because they are too old and unstable to be in.

Although some youngsters may get a buzz and an adrenaline rush from taking part, they are putting lives at risk. There are many dangers involved in this type of activity – the most common is ending up stuck and unable to get down, the most severe can be injury and even death. It is important to know that these buildings are not playgrounds and although they are derelict or abandoned, they will still likely have an owner and entry may be classed as trespassing. Also anyone seen standing on the top of a roof may be mistaken for someone who is threatening to jump off and purposely cause injury or death,  this is likely to be reported to the police.

Abandoned and derelict buildings are dangerous for many reasons, some of the reasons being:

  • the floors may be weak or rotted
  • roofs could collapse at any moment
  • debris will be lying around and are seen as trip hazards

Think – before you consider entering a derelict or abandoned building there are all sorts of things that can go wrong. However much you want to, don’t go in, it’s not safe!

 

Kayleigh’s Love Story

Kayleigh’s Love Story is a film about the last 13 days of the life of 15-year-old Kayleigh Haywood.

The schoolgirl was groomed on Facebook by Luke Harlow, a man she had never met, she thought she had found someone who loved her. But she had walked into a nightmare and was raped by Luke before being raped and murdered by his next door neighbour Stephen Beadman in October 2015.

Murders like this are very rare, but sadly grooming via Facebook by older men pretending to be younger men are not.

Luke was actively trying to groom several girls at the same time and sent 2,000 messages in a 24 hour period to lots of girls. Sadly Kayleigh believed his story and was lured to his home.

Please be aware of the dangers you face. If someone you don’t know is talking to you on line, check they really are who they claim, and don’t arrange to meet them. Your well-being is too precious for that.

Watch the film here, some viewers may find this content upsetting.

If you are worried about an online friendship or are worried for a friend or loved one, get help. Check out our E-Safety and Abuse sections for more or visit Nest Lancashire.

Don’t use a phone at the wheel

From Wednesday 1 March 2017, changes to the law come into effect that mean drivers who are caught using a mobile at the wheel will receive six points on their licence and a £200 fine, doubling the previous punishment.

This means that for those of you who are new drivers, if you are caught just once using your mobile phone whilst you are driving, so that’s within two years of passing your test, you could lose your licence. You will then have to re-apply for your provisional and re-take both the theory and practical tests.

Whether it’s looking at a text or a new social media post, streaming a video behind the wheel, checking emails or making a phone call, all of these activities are dangerous. Research shows that your four times more likely to crash if you use your phone and drive and your reaction time is 50% slower.

For those who aren’t able to drive yet, even as a passenger you can help to keep our roads safe. Don’t distract the driver with a mobile phone, a momentary lapse in concentration could cause a crash. And why not tell your friends, siblings, parents and family members about the tougher new penalties and encourage them to stay safe by not using a phone behind the wheel.

The message is clear and simple – don’t use you mobile phone when driving.

Hundreds of Apprenticeships up for Grabs

Get those CVs at the ready as the countdown begins to Lancashire’s largest ever Apprenticeship Expo on Tuesday 14th March at Preston Guild Hall.

The event is ideal for school leavers, young people and adults who will have the chance to meet face-to-face with some of Lancashire’s biggest and best employers to discuss the Apprenticeships and job opportunities on offer.

Around 50 businesses will be there between 12pm and 7pm with confirmed attendees including: BAE Systems, Leyland Trucks, NHS, BAXI, United Utilities, Harrison Drury, Sika and KPMG.

Amongst the many Apprenticeships on offer include jobs in construction, business, engineering and healthcare.

Jobseekers are encouraged to come armed with their CV to take advantage of this one-of-a-kind opportunity.

The event is being run in partnership with Preston’s College, University of Central Lancashire, Lancashire Constabulary and Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Andrew Richardson, lead organiser of the event, said: “This is a great chance for young people and businesses to come together and discuss job opportunities available across the county.

“The Expo gives a platform to find the right talent and we know that some employers could potentially interview candidates on the day.”

Entry to the jobs fair is free and more information can be found at www.appexpo.co.uk including a full list of exhibitors.

Lancashire students celebrate Safer Internet Day

Students across Lancashire joined their local officers to celebrate National Safer Internet Day 2017, taking part in talks and activities discussing how to stay safe online. Pupils used their creative talents to think of new ways to get these serious messages across. A fun day was had by all – here are some of the best moments.

Safer Internet Day 2017

Tuesday 7th February is Safer Internet Day and this year’s theme is ‘Be the change: unite for a better internet’. Lots of you will be taking part in activities in school and college to think about how to use the internet well and what you can do to improve you online life. The Safer Internet Centre are encouraging you to follow these tips to make a positive change online:

  • Be kind
    Use images and videos to make a positive impact, and think carefully about the impact on others before you share something online.
  • Be the change
    Make the internet a great place for all. Use the positive power of images and videos to help create a better internet.
    Do you know how to be positive to keep yourself and others safe online? Try their Safer Internet Day 2017 quiz now to find out!
  • Be you
    Think before you post. What do your images and videos say about you; are you happy with the story you are telling? What you share online could be there forever, can be misinterpreted and could also reveal personal information about you.
  • Be a critical thinker
    Seeing is not believing… when you see something online take a moment to see the full picture. Not everything or everyone online can be trusted.
  • Be safe
    Never agree to meet up offline with someone you only know online. No matter how friendly they might seem or how well you think you know them, they are still a stranger. Always tell a trusted adult if someone online asks to meet up.

 

 

 

Average speed cameras for Lancashire roads

Lancashire Road Safety Partnership has given the go ahead for new average speed enforcement camera systems on eight routes across Lancashire with the hope of reducing the death toll and making the roads safer for all to use. The routes have seen a total of 406 casualties with 62 people suffering serious or life changing injuries since 2011. It is also hoped that with improved traffic flow, fewer road closures and slower speeds both noise and pollution will reduce.

How do they work?

Average speed camera systems work using automatic number plate recognition and a set of cameras over a planned length of road. In Lancashire this ranges from 0.5 miles to 8.5 miles long. The cameras recognise number plates at set points along the routes; the system will calculate vehicle speed based on the time taken to travel between the points of a known distance. Infrared technology means images are clearer in low light and in the dark.

Why are they there?

Lancashire’s Average Speed Camera Systems are being installed to improve road safety. They encourage road users to travel within the existing signed speed limits. Some of the average speed camera systems will be placed on routes where there is a need for action but there aren’t any other options for enforcement. All the routes have been carefully selected based on casualty information since 01.01.2011 on a case by case basis.

The average speed camera systems are used alongside other existing education and engineering solutions. Any existing fixed housings will be removed as part of this process.

To find out more about average speed cameras, which roads have been chosen and for more on road safety click here

Nominate Lancashire’s Young Citizen of the Year

Applications for Lancashire’s Young Citizen of the Year 2017 close at the end of January.

This year, High Sheriff John Barnett MBE DL wants young people to be nominated who have put others first.

He said: “Some of our youngsters receive negative coverage in the media but my experience has always been that the vast majority are hardworking and help others.
“Perhaps you know someone who goes above and beyond the call of duty at school, a young charity fundraiser or they may be a young carer who looks after a family member – whatever they have done, we’d like to hear about it and they may win the top prize!”
The awards take place every year and involve the High Sheriff inviting applications to find a young person, ideally aged up to age 21, who has helped either their local neighbourhood, an individual, family member or local organisation.

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The University of Central Lancashire are sponsoring this year’s awards, and are happy to be supporting the scheme.  Vice Chancellor Mike Thomas said:  “Our young people play a huge role in making local communities safer and better places to live and it is extremely important that we recognise and celebrate their achievements. Many step out of their comfort zones to make a difference and crucially they act as powerful ambassadors for inspiring positive change in others.”

Winners and runners will be selected by the High Sheriff and a panel of judges from the Lancashire Partnership Against Crime (LANPAC), Lancashire Constabulary, the University of Central Lancashire and the former High Sheriff Rodney Swarbrick, who initiated the award.

Lancashire Constabulary’s Chief Constable, Steve Finnigan said: “This award highlights the contribution that young people can make towards supporting people in their communities, helping to reduce vulnerability and build community resilience.

“Our Volunteer Police Cadets are an example of that as they show that young people have a lot to offer and I am really pleased to play a part in making sure that young people get the recognition and support they deserve.”

All finalists will be invited to attend a presentation at Lancashire Constabulary Headquarters in March 2017 where the winner will receive £500 along with a specially commissioned trophy and certificate from the High Sheriff and Chief Constable Steve Finnigan.

The scheme is being administered by the Lancashire Partnership Against Crime (LANPAC) charity on behalf of the High Sheriff and the closing date for nominations is 31st January 2017.

Two runners up will also receive £100 and a certificate.

Approval of a parent or guardian is needed for the nomination, subsequent publicity and any future events involving the finalists.

Application forms can be completed online at www.lanpac.co.uk. For more information you contact Al Yusuf from LANPAC on 01772 412796.

 

CSE – Know the signs

Lancashire Police are raising awareness within Lancashire of child sexual exploitation. Last year almost 650 crimes of CSE were recorded in the county and 1750 young people were highlighted at risk.

We want to keep you safe and arm you with the facts on grooming and exploitation whilst giving you the confidence to report and speak out.

Child sexual exploitation is child abuse. It is complex and can manifest itself in different ways but essentially it involves young people like yourselves being coerced into performing sexual acts often in return for rewards such as drugs or other gifts. Many don’t see themselves as victims and wrongly believe they are in loving  relationships with their abusers.

CSE can also occur without physical contact such as grooming; sexting or online gaming.  These types of crimes are increasing nationally as well as in Lancashire.Dont be exploited

Offenders can be male or female, of any ethnicity, they can operate alone or as part of a group or gang. They are often very manipulative and plausible people and can come from all sections of society. The thing they have in common is that they all prey on the vulnerable.

If you are concerned about yourself or someone you know, call Lancashire Constabulary on 101. In an emergency, always dial 999.

Nest-Logo-TrustEd-HomepageFor confidential advice or if you want to talk to someone contact Nest Lancashire on 0300 111 0323.

 

For more on CSE check out our dedicated page here

 

12 years in prison for sexual predator

A man described as one of America’s ‘most wanted’ has been jailed for 12 years for child sex offences.

Gerard Zalewski 32, groomed his 13 year old victim over the internet, and persuaded her to send him a number of indecent images of herself.

Zalewski, of Dartford in Kent, arranged to meet the teenager in a Bamber Bridge park last June. He than subjected his young victim to sexual abuse over several hours taking pictures of her on his mobile phone.

He was arrested later that month in Kent following a man-hunt and appeared at Preston Crown Court on Tuesday 6th December where he was imprisoned for a total of 12 years.

Gerard Zalewski is wanted by the FBI for various sexual offences against another 13 year old from Pennsylvania.

The officer who led the investigation into the Lancashire offences, Detective Chief Inspector Vicki Evans, of Lancashire Constabulary’s Public Protection Unit, said: “Gerard Zalewski is a dangerous and predatory sexual deviant who posed a significant risk to children across the country.”

“He groomed this vulnerable young teenager before arranging to meet her knowing that she was under 16. He then filmed her for his own gratification.”

“This case highlights the risks and dangers faced by children with on-line grooming, it is important that young people understand the risks involved with meeting people online, who are their friends and how to manage these online relationships.”

If you are worried and want to find out more our online grooming page and our sexual exploitation page

 

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