Van Alstyne residents looking to protect their packages and thwart porch pirates this holiday season are invited to send their deliveries to the city’s police station for safe keeping.

The Van Alstyne Police Department will accept and hold deliveries through Jan. 1. With the station open 24 hours a day and seven days a week, items can be picked up any day and any time, but those looking to claim their packages must show a current driver’s license or state-issued ID. Packages must also be addressed to the person who will pick them up.

“We hope this will prevent package thefts in our community,” Police Chief Tim Barnes said.

Due to the station’s limited capacity, the program is only available to those who live and work in Van Alstyne.

A study commissioned by Insurance Quotes found that more than 23 million Americans were affected by package thefts last year. Other tips to fend off porch pirates include sending parcels to neighbors who will be home, requiring a signature at the time of delivery, outfitting one’s residence with security cameras, or obtaining a parcel locker. The United States Postal Service alone said it expects to deliver more than 900 million packages this holiday season.

The Van Alstyne Police Department is located at 242 N. Preston Street and can be reached by calling 903-482-5251.

Mary Jane Farmer also contributed to this article for the Van Alstyne Leader.