Post # 1
Now that I got your attention :
I thought I would start a post on safety and being careful, whether at home or in public.
Please contribute whatever you feel is important/necessary, or if you have any stories you’d like to share about stranger danger, please do share!
Here are my suggestions (some of which I came across in various emails):
- When you get into your car, PLEASE ALWAYS lock the doors. I know many of us tend to get into our cars and fiddle with the radio/music, or look at the store receipts, etc, etc.
- If you see someone suspicious hanging out near/by your car, walk away and go back in where you came from. I also read that if possible, find security/a cop to escort you to your car.
- If you’re someone like me, who is tempted to give people lifts (i.e. hitchhikers), think twice, especially when you’re alone. It’s not bad to help others, but we live in a world where many, not all, but many people will take advantage of your kindness.
- When walking to your car, especially at night, make sure you have your keys ready so that you can make it inside your car quickly.
Ahh, brain freeze…!
But aha, found a good link: Safety Tips
Please do share any of your own suggestions/tips, and let your fellow loved ones know too. I always, always, try to tell my friends/family to lock their doors as soon as they get into their cars.
Post # 3
I always check the backseat when I’m getting into the car. That story of the guy in the backseat with a hook scared the crap out of me.
My brother who is a Police Officer said to always carry your car key between your index and middle finger with your thumb resting on the bottom part, so the metal part is sticking out. That way you can stab someone with it if you need to get away.
Post # 4
Ok, so as I was reading the aforementioned safety tips, I came across this:
When you move into a new place, check your smoke detector for a hidden camera. Your landlord could be spying on you.
My reaction: ………uh, I would have never thought of that on my own. Ugh!
Post # 5
@HisIrishPrincess: For some reason, the backseat kind of scares me when I’m driving alone. Maybe it’s because I saw one too many horror films, but I’m afraid that someone or something supernatural will just pop up out of nowhere…
But thanks for sharing those! …goes off to Google the story about a man in backseat with a hook.
Post # 6
@KindofCrazy: Great thread!
I have two “protect yourself against theft” pieces of advice.
I often see women walking down the street with their bags just hanging off their shoulders and think handbag snatchers would have a field day if they saw them. Always hold onto your bag! There’s a good chance they won’t go after you if you do.
In crowds, while shopping, when eating out etc. always place your bag so you can see it, even when it’s on your body (I move it so it rests against my stomach, for example). If your bag is in your field of vision it will ward off potential pickpockets.
Post # 7
@KindofCrazy: Always check small gas station’s restrooms for hidden cameras too! Especially if its on a relatively low traffic area! When my family and I were traveling, we stopped at a gas station like this because my sister and I had to use the bathroom (she was 13 and I was 11) so my mom let us go together while she and my dad purchased some snacks. The bathroom was in the back, like a utility closet type place, so while I waited for my sister, I peaked into the other room out of boredom and saw a TV with my sister going to the bathroom on it! I told my parents right away, they went out to the payphone, called the cops, and waited for them to get there, pretending to have car trouble. Cops showed up and I’m not sure what happenend after that, but from now on, I’ve ALWAYS checked public restrooms for cameras! Heck, I avoid public restrooms unless it is a dire emergency. Not just because of hidden cameras, but because they are just plain nasty too.
Post # 8
Always walk with confidence they say it helps deter dangerous individuals.
Post # 9
@KindofCrazy: This is more along the lines of self defense, but my mom always told me to have my keys out walking to my car incase someone tried to grab me so I could poke their eyes out.
Post # 10
@KindofCrazy: Always lock the door to your home as soon as you step in! This is especially needed for apartment people who often leave their doors unlocked or take their time locking them.
Remove everything from your car! Cars that have bags or trash laying around are at higher risk for a robbery/break in.
Do not flaunt cash around (especially when you are at a gas sation)
If you are going for a late night walk it is better to stick to busy streets where people cannot pull over and reach you. Avoiding traffic may appear safer but the easier it is for someone to pull to the side of the road the more danger you are in.
Always let someone know when you are leaving and when you will return. The sooner someone realizes you are missing the better.
Edit to Add: I believe that EVERYONE should take some kind of self defense class where they can better understand situational awareness. It is always good to analyze strangers even if you don’t think they are a threat. Being aware and prepared is your best defense against an unfortunate situation.
Post # 11
Apparently there is a trend recently of criminals stealing your phone and purse, finding your significant other in your phone, and texting them asking for your pin number.
police have said the best thing to do is NOT list your husband/partner as “hubby” or something similar and also if they do text asking for their pin as theyve “forgotten” always call that person back so as to confirm its really them.
Post # 12
@MsMeow: I almost always use a cross-body bag for this reason. No need to ever take it off, even when using the restroom. For extra protection I often fasten my coat or jacket over the strap.
Post # 13
Another good tip I have read a few times is if a van or larger car that can obscure people seeing you is parked on your drivers side, either get in from the passenger side or go back inside and have someone walk you out. They could just snatch you into their car while you are trying to unlock your car.
I have pepper spray and a little stabby kitty on my key ring that I always have out when I am walking through parking lots or on walks with my dog. Both were super cheap and I think the kitty could really buy you time if someone is attacking you.
Post # 14
in a parking lot after getting in your car, lock the door and immediately start the car and leave – don’t sit and touch up make up, or make a call and become unaware of your surroundings.
Dont’ leave your purse sitting in the cart while loading groceries in your trunk. Put it in the trunk where you can see it, or put it in the car and re-lock the doors.
If you’re not expecting someone – don’t open the door. I say, “we don’t open the door to anyone unless they’ve made an appointment”
Regarding using public restrooms, I’ll pull into a McDonalds buy a coffee and use theirs. They’re usually somewhat cleaner and there are people around.
Post # 15
@fascinated: I never answer the door unless FI is home unless I KNOW who is at the door – like my mom just called to say she is driving over right now and I see her car in the driveway!
I just slink around on the ground or around the corner like a ninja spy while my animals all look at me like I am crazy.
Post # 16
@Spideykiss: You and my Mum both! 🙂 I hate the feeling of a cross-body bag but used one for bar-hopping when I was still young and fun! lol
@Payless: Very true about the car! And it’s not just bags and trash either. Take care never to leave cash in your car, no matter how small the amount. Same goes for mobile phone, iPod or anything similar, a suitcase or even fancy-looking sunglasses. Lock them in the trunk if you can’t take them with you.