The holiday season is a time when busy people can become careless and vulnerable to theft and other holiday crime. The following tips from law enforcement can help you be more careful, prepared and aware during the holiday season.
• Keep all car doors locked and windows closed while in or out of your car. Set your alarm or use an anti-theft device.
• If you must shop at night, park in a well-lighted area.
• Avoid parking next to vans, trucks with camper shells, or cars with tinted windows.
• Park as close as you can to your destination and take notice of where you parked.
• Never leave your car unoccupied with the motor running or with children inside.
• Do not leave packages or valuables on the seat of your car. This creates a temptation for thieves. If you must leave something in the car, lock it in the trunk or put it out of sight.
• Be sure to locate your keys prior to going to your car.
• Keep a secure hold on your purse, handbag and parcels. Do not put them down or on top of the car in order to open the door.
• When approaching and leaving your vehicle be aware of your surroundings.
• Do not approach your car alone if there are suspicious people in the area.
• Ask mall or store security for an escort before leaving your shopping location.
• Make sure a family member of friend knows where you are and when you expect to be home.
• If approached or attacked, let it go! Nothing is more important than your life! And if possible, never ever get in a car with someone who wishes to do harm. Your chances of staying safe are much higher if you don’t. This is the time to not be afraid to make a scene. Scream, yell “fire,” do anything you can to get attention to yourself so you can try and get away from the person who is holding you against your will.
Although these tips may sound a little scary, they are a simple reminder for all of us to just be aware of our surroundings to ensure our safety, not just during the holiday season, but all year round.