• 26 Oct 2010 10:05 PM
    Message # 451749
    Deleted user

    (Taken largely from the Met. Police booklet 'Stay Safe - a guide to personal safety')

    *  Think ahead, plan your journey and avoid deserted areas.
    *  Walk confidently - hold your head up looking as if you know where you're going.
    *  Be aware and take note of what's going on around you.
    *  Try to avoid walking alone at night
    *  Keep to well-lit main roads if possible
    *  Walk down the middle of the pavement, facing on-coming traffic to avoid kerb crawlers.
    *  Avoid shortcuts like alley-ways, waste ground and wooded, bushy areas.
    *  Carry a personal attack alarm in your hand, or in your pocket. It can give you extra confidence.
    *  Never accept a lift from a stranger or hitchhike. Only go with someone you really know and trust.
    *  Vary your regular route and times if possible - but safely so.
    *  Go to the Post Office with a friend or a neighbour to collect your pension, if you don't feel safe alone.
    *  When jogging, wear bright reflective clothing so you can be seen easily.
    *  Personal stereos severely reduce your awareness of your surroundings and their use should be avoided.
    *  Keep a phonecard or change handy for a phone call.
    *  If you are going to a party or returning home late, try to travel with a friend you can trust. Keep a reliable taxi number and the fare handy.

    *  Consider how much alcohol you have had - it can affect your judgement of people and situations.
    *  If you think you're being followed:
    -  walk quickly across the road;
    -  cross it again if necessary;
    -  if necessary, walk towards a busier area where you know there will be other people - a shop, garage, cab office, police station, hospital;
    -  call the police as soon as you get somewhere safe.
    *  Whilst it is an offence to carry any item for the sole purpose of self defence, everyday items such as umbrellas, keys, torches can be used to defend yourself should you need to.
    *  Mobile phones - if you take or make a call while on the street, your awareness of your surroundings will be severely reduced. If you have to take or make the call, stop walking, position yourself with your back to a wall, fence or shop window and maintain your awareness of your surroundings throughout the call. Keep the phone in your bag or pocket when not in use.
    *  Carry your handbag over your shoulder with the flap against you. In winter you can carry it under your coat.
    *  Cover up expensive looking jewellery. Tuck chains and necklaces under your collar.
    *  If someone tries to snatch your bag - think to give it up rather than risk personal injury.

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