Personal Safety Tips to Help You Through the Holiday Season
- By Ginger Hill
- Oct 11, 2013
With the holidays upon us, it’s time to start thinking about spending quality time with family and friends, sharing meals together, pumpkin pie, reasons to be thankful, hot chocolate, fuzzy slippers and presents. Unfortunately, all this joy and happiness can come to a screeching halt as this is also the time in which the “bad guys” start to prey on people.
According to a survey of 225 respondents, aged 18-65, from United States, Canada, United Kingdom, New Zealand and Finland by BiiSafe, personal safety is a rising trend. The survey revealed that:
- 73% of the survey respondents thought that personal safety devices are needed more now than ten years ago.
- 66% of the survey respondents would use a safety device when running alone.
- 54% of the survey respondents wanted to be sure their elderly relatives are doing okay by ensuring they had a way to send an alert message, just in case.
- 41% of the survey respondents would use a safety product or service to be aware of their children’s whereabouts.
- 41% of the survey respondents are using a product or service that enhances a loved one’s personal safety.
"Today's technology, with smartphones and other mobile devices, provides an enormous amount of new possibilities in the field of safety devices and services. Location sharing and alert sending is just a couple of examples," said Jouni Suutarinen, CEO of BiiSafe.
As the weather cools and people are becoming more active outdoors, it is wise to brush up on a few important, personal safety tips.
- If you are carrying a wallet, keep it in a front pocket.
- Be sure to walk in well-lit, highly-traveled streets…even during daytime hours. Never take shortcuts through parking lots or alleys.
- If walking on a sidewalk near a street, always walk facing the traffic to avoid being surprised by someone in a vehicle.
- If someone is walking behind you or approaching you and you are unsure of their intent, make direct eye contact with them to let the person know that you are aware, you see them and you are not a victim.
- If you think you are being followed, abruptly switch directions or duck into a police station, fire station, hospital, business or public place and ask for help.
- In your cell phone contacts, program “ICE,” which stands for “in case of emergency,” linking it to a family member or friend…someone you trust the police, firemen or other authorities to call if you are unable to call for yourself.
- Program 9-1-1 into your direct dial feature of your cell phone.
- Remember that talking on your cell phone or listening to headphones in public makes you easy prey.
- Change your walking routine by planning different routes and take note of “safe places” you could go should something happen.
- When approaching your home or vehicle, never fumble in your pocket, purse or bag for keys; have them in your hand prior to reaching the door.
- When approaching your parked car, look and make sure no one is hiding in or around your vehicle, especially in the back seat.
- When on public transportation, cover your jewelry. Turn stone rings toward the palm side of your hand.
- Keep your space: intimate space = 0 to 1.5 feet; personal space = 1.5 to 4 feet; social space = 4 to 12 feet; and public space = 12 feet or more.
Ginger Hill is Group Social Media Manager.