Trevor’s Tips – February 2015

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By Trevor Hughes……

House Fires

Earlier this month I needed to process an insurance claim for a house fire. The fire was started when a log fell out of the burner [door which had not been closed correctly], and fell out onto a cushion nearby.

The fire damaged a large rug on the floor near to the burner, two sofa’s, two sets of curtains, scorched a nearby coffee table and filled the room with tHouse Fireshick black acrid smoke, causing paint work needing to be included in the claim.

Luckily for the owners of the villa, they were at home at the time, but were not in the room to catch the fire in its infancy and easily extinguish the fire!

If the fabric had been treated with a fire retardant liquid at the time of manufacture, in all probability, the fire damage would not have been so severe. When purchasing soft furniture here, keep in mind that your chosen purchase may not be as fire resistant as those purchased in the Euro Zone. Try and avoid placing soft furnishings close to your log burner, as this could well happen to you.

Be mindful when putting up Christmas decorative lights, later in the year, all too often they are not fit for purpose and a fire risk in themselves. Never go out at night and leave Christmas lights on. Also be aware when lighting scented candles, or candles lit and placed on a dining table when entertaining guests for dinner, they too are a potential fire risk.

Hearing Aids……

We are all getting older and our senses are gradually wearing out!! More and more people need to rely on the use of hearing aids to improve their quality of life. It can be very difficult here in the TRNC to find a qualified hearing specialist who can fit you with a suitable hearing aid, and needing to go to the UK  to visit a specialist.

Earlier this month my wife needed to have her very complex hearing aid repaired, and could not go to the UK NHS, from where she first had it fitted, becauseHearing aids we do not have a UK address. We found Medaid in Lefkosa who managed to sort her hearing aid problem out.

The owner of this practice went out of his way to overcome the problem and nothing was too much trouble. He undertook his training in the UK, making his English extremely fluent. He was very attentive and very considerate.

His name is Mertcan Şenol, the company name is “Medaid Medical Technologies” also known as “MedAid Medical Centre”. He is an engineer and a medical physicist, specialising in hearing aids. He studied at Queen Mary University of London and holds an MSc in Medical Electronics & Physics.

His very helpful and able assistant is Cihan Özkiraç who is a Registered Audiologist and trained in Hacettepe University, İstanbul.

He can be contacted by telephoning him on 0392 227 9353 or email him on mertcan@medaidcyprus.com

His address is 3, Mehmet Ali Görmüş Sokak Köşklüçiftlik, Lefkoşa which is close to the British High Commission. If you are a Dagli Sigorta customer you are entitled to a 15% discount, which could save you a considerable amount of money and the cost of plane flights to and from the UK and not having to be put on a waiting list and wait months to be seen by a specialist. Plus your hearing aid can be supplied and adjusted to suit while you wait. If you need a new ear mould he can take an impression of your ear which will be waiting for your collection within a in a few days.

The Revered Olive Tree.

If you have olive tree[s] in your garden and you want it [them] removed/transplanted, you can’t just cut it [them] down, without firstly obtaining permission and going through the correct procedure. Unlawful removal of olive trees, without official permission can attract severe fines and even imprisonment if caught out.

If you need to remove/ transplant an olive tree, firstly you will only be permitted to when you have the official authority, not just cut it down.

The correct procedure for doing this is as follows:

  1. Go to the Forestry Commission in Girne and consult with them.
  2. Take your Title Deeds/purchase document, your passport, and a photograph of the tree you wish to transplant and a photograph on the intended new site foOlive treer planting.
  3. The Forestry Department will consult the District office which will take a minimum of 10 [ten] mandatory working days. When permission has been granted you can then transplant the tree, but not before. There is no charge for this permission.
  4. The tree cannot be just dug out; it must be uplifted by an appropriate machine, which will attract a fee for hire.
  5. If your property has not been parcelized, all the properties on the same piece of land as yours must attend the Forestry Department with you, together with the same documents as yours. If for whatever reason any of the land owners cannot attend, they can appoint a power of attorney.
  6. If your neighbour would like the tree in his/her own garden, the same procedure must be followed, but the neighbour must take their Title Deeds, their passport/kimlik card and a photograph of the new site for planting.

Cor blimey!, is it worth all this trouble, why not just leave it alone?

LPG Storage Tanks.

From the beginning of the year, the annual gas tank permit has gone up in price and is now  55.52TL per year.

Police Language Training

In an effort to alleviate confusion through language diffiSpeaking Englishculties, the Girne Police Authorities are instructing their officers to attend English Language classes.

This will help them and yourselves to improve accurate communication should you need to call them when you have suffered a road traffic accident or burglary.

Burglaries

In just one week in January this year, Police Authorities informed me that over 50 televisions have been stolen from locked properties, here.

Crime is at an all time high at the moment, mainly from houses left empty whilst the owners are out of the country. Thieves are opportunists and will try to find ways and enter your property illegally to steal your possessions.

The Police handling a reported break-in for one of our customers, called me to go down to the villa with them as they wished to confirm certain TV Stolenaspects of the crime. After being with them for several hours, two of their colleagues arrived with a criminal in handcuffs.

Although I could not speak fluent Turkish, I came to the conclusion that the man in handcuffs was probably the guilty person. The way in which the police went about their investigations made it quite obvious that the handcuffed man was the guilty person. They showed me a photograph of the stolen television in his possession and confirmed it was indeed the same model as the one stolen from my customer’s villa.

The crime was some three months old, but the police managed to track this man down with the television in his possession. A very BIG thank you to the police for their persistence in apprehending the thief, all too often the police only seem to attract criticism.

I took our customer’s documents down to the Lapta Police station a few days later, and the officer on duty confirmed the man at our customer’s villa was indeed the thief. He is a mainland Turk, and will be prosecuted accordingly. After his gaol term he will be sent packing back to Turkey from where he came. When his trial is completed our customer’s television will be returned to her, JOB DONE.

There is no political asylum here, no legal aid to enjoy, no European Court of Human Rights, no cushy cells with all the latest gadgets to occupy your boredom, just good old fashioned punishment. Remember those days when prison was an institution to fear. Still want to go back to the UK? Thought not!!!!!!!!!!!

When leaving your property for some time, consider putting televisions and small electrical items in a cupboard and out of sight. Give thought in having additonal window locks and more secure door locks fitted, better to be safe than sorry.

Traffic Offence

On both sides of the island it is a driving offence to drive a vehicle Gavel hammerwhilst eating.

In Romania it is illegal to drive a dirty car. Can you imagine having that traffic Law here!!!!

Editor’s Note

“The opinions, advice or proposals within the article are purely those of the author and do not, in any way, represent those of Cyprusscene.com”