Oregon theft ring runs wild during power outage

During a recent snowstorm, parts of Portland experienced power outages. This included popular shopping areas.

With no power, criminals took the opportunity to break into multiple stores by shattering windows to gain entry.

They knew there wouldn’t be any surveillance cameras to catch them since the power was out.

In the case of one of the stores – A-Boy Electric – the intruders triggered an alarm. But by the time store staff arrived the criminals were long gone.

The burglars made off with high-end flashlights and expensive power tools.

When store employees arrived at work, they had to search the store with flashlights to check for missing items.

At another store, Basics Market, the burglars left freezer doors open, so all the perishable food in the store was ruined.

When the power goes out, criminals take advantage to break into places since there likely won’t be a security camera or alarm to catch them.

Considering this, here are a few security measures you should have in place for the next time the power goes out. Because we know it will.

Outdoor lights:

These days, motion sensor outdoor lights are inexpensive.

You can get a battery-powered motion sensor light from Mr. Beams for about $10.

Consider installing these lights (or something similar) around the exterior of your home.

If your whole neighborhood is without power but the lights around your house are on it can act as a deterrent.

In addition, if you are sitting inside your home in the dark and notice the lights outside turning on then you will know there is someone outside setting off the lights.

A bright light turning on will make a thief think twice. Burglars want to operate in the dark.

These motion sensor lights are easy and affordable deterrents.

Window film:

In Portland, the thieves gained access by breaking windows.

This is why you should think about reinforcing your windows with a security film such as one made by 3M.

A security film can make windows shatterproof and hard to break.

A window security film won’t make the window impossible to break. But it will make it more difficult and will slow an intruder down.

Also, if you are inside your home, you would likely hear someone trying to break a window since it would take a lot longer.

The window film would give you time to grab a gun and react.

Make your own analog alarm system:

Paracord is one of my favorite pieces of survival gear.

During a power outage, take some paracord and rig it with soda cans, marbles, tin cans, or even ball bearings.

You can tie up the paracord around your house or at least in front of doorways or other likely points of entry.

The sound of the cans and ball bearings would alert you to someone moving around outside.


A lot of folks have home security systems, but it’s important to know what will or won’t work during a power outage.

So, if you have a security system, ask the company if there is a battery backup in the event of a power outage.

Also, ask if there is a cellular backup.

This means if the Wi-Fi goes out, a cellular signal will kick in to keep the security system connected to the monitoring center.

It’s also a good idea to ask the company you use if there are multiple monitoring centers in case one loses power.

Most security companies will offer battery and cellular backups for their systems.

They charge a little more for these but it’s worth it.

Be sure to ask the company how long these backups will operate in case the power goes out.

While these security tips might not stop a criminal, they will at least alert you and provide time to defend your home.

Securing your property when the power’s out is just one aspect of your home defense plan.

You should integrate it into your existing plan, and ensure you have everything set up and in place before you ever need it.

If you don’t have a comprehensive plan, now’s the time to get one.

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