Fraser Coast businesses fighting back against thieves
HERVEY Bay businesses are ramping up their security after a series of break-ins across the city.
Coast restaurant was one of the businesses targeted, with alcohol and a small amount of money being taken from the premises.
Owner Julia Paussa said the cost of repairing the damage where the offender had gained access had cost about 10 times what was stolen.
She said it was annoying but she wasn't letting it detract from her positive outlook.
Ms Paussa said she realised other small businesses had been targeted, too.
"I feel really sorry for them," she said.
The Torquay Hotel was also broken into.
Again, alcohol and a small amount of money were taken.
General manager Darren Carter said he had taken steps to increase security, with no money being left on premises and the alcohol now being locked away after-hours.
He said two bottles of rum had been taken and again, the cost of repairs was considerably more than what had been stolen.
Torquay Butchery fell victim as well, with the offender or offenders gaining access through the back door.
Nothing was stolen thanks to an alarm that was activated, but the door cost $700 to repair, employee Shane Lester said.
He said police had carried out forensic testing.
Hervey Bay Florist was another business that was broken into.
Simon Boss-Walker, whose fiancee owns the store, said the business had additional security added after the break-in.
"But I think it only slows them down," he said.
"If they want to get in, they'll get in."
Mr Boss-Walker said the intruder gained access through the back door of the business.
"A small amount of property was taken," he said.
With Valentine's Day this week, he said the business had been well supported by the community.
"At the end of the day we didn't have a flower left in the shop," Mr Boss-Walker said.
Peter Imbesi from Ice Cream Delite said his CCTV footage had recorded a suspect just before the neighbouring business, Humpback Pizza Shack, was broken into.
Footage from the pizza store had shown the man breaking in, he said.
While the security at his business was "pretty good," Mr Imbesi said he had spoken with his employees about making sure all doors were locked before heading off for the night. He believed about a dozen businesses had been targeted in the past week or so.
The post office at Central Plaza in Pialba was also broken into last week.
Mobile phones were stolen from the premises, with the offender smashing a door to gain entry.