Out & About / In the Car

Out and About

  • Choose populated places rather than deserted ones.
  • Try to avoid being out alone after dark.
  • Have a friend accompany you.
  • Walk with a dog.
  • Be alert to your surroundings.
    • Walk with your head on a “swivel”, eyes constantly scanning all around you as you go.
    • Don’t wear headphones, as they reduce your sense of hearing and lessen your awareness.
  • When approaching your car, have car keys in your hand (these can be used as weapons).
  • Carry your bag or purse over the shoulder and hold it close to your body.
  • When going for a walk, carry a walking stick.
    • Concealed weapons (knife, gun, pepper spray, etc.) may be useful, but you should check local laws and abide by them. Also consider that concealed weapons will not deter crime. If you carry concealed weapons, be practiced in accessing and using them during stressful situations.
  • Choose to walk in open areas if possible.
  • Walk with a sense of purpose and try to exude confidence.
  • Always carry a cell phone, just in case.

In the Car

  • Upon entering your vehicle, lock it. Do not arrange your purse, laptop, bags while sitting in the car with the door open or unlocked - your attention will be distracted from what is taking place outside your vehicle.
  • When placing children into car seats, place your purse in the vehicle on the floor in front of them rather than leaving it on the front seat, in a shopping cart, or hanging from your shoulder.
  • Remove keys and personal property such as wallets, purses, electronic devices, etc. from parked vehicles - even ones parked in a garage. If property must be stored in the vehicle, stow it in the trunk, locked glove box, or at least out of sight and lock the vehicle.
  • Never leave valuables in plain view, even if the vehicle is locked. Loose change can be enough motivation for a break-in.
  • Purchase a visible anti-theft device, such as a “club,” to use in your vehicle(s).