- Deterring the Burglar
- Minimize Risk
- Outdoor Trees & Shrubbery
- Preventing Rape
- Public Transportation
- Returning Home
- Safety at the Door
- Telephone Safety
- When Away
- When Out
- When Walking
Deterring the Burglar
- Never carry identification tags on your key ring or holder.
- Do not hide a spare key outside your door, under the doormat, in the mailbox, flower box, over the door, etc. the burglar knows where to look.
- Always lock your exterior doors, even when you are home.
- The best kind of lock is a dead bolt with a 1-inch bolt.
- Avoid chain locks: they can break too easily.
- For sliding doors, place a broomstick or an aluminum bar in the door track so it won’t be as easy to force open.
- All exterior entrances or doorways, garages, and even alleyways should be well lighted.
- In apartment buildings, stairways, corridors, laundry rooms, areas under stairwells, garages, and any other “nooks and crannies” should be well lit.
Minimize the Risk
- Direct deposit Social Security, pension or other regular incoming checks.
- Avoid keeping large amounts of cash in the home.
- Place valuable jewelry or other valuables in a safety deposit box.
- Appraise and photograph any valuables you do have in your home.
Outdoor Trees & Shrubbery
- Bushes and plant growth, particularly near doors and windows should be trimmed at a height that does not prohibit you from a clear view.
- Trees should not be so dense that they provide cover for intruders.
- Never reveal to someone at the door or a phone caller that you are alone.
- Don't open your door to strangers or allow a stranger to use your phone.
- Ask for identification from all repair and utility representatives. Once they are in your home, never let them out of your sight.
- List only your first initial and last name on the mailbox and in the telephone directory if you live alone.
- Avoid walking alone on the street. After dark, avoid poorly lighted areas and walk on the side of the street facing traffic.
- Be alert on public transportation. When leaving, take a quick look around to see who else is getting off with you. If someone is following, walk quickly to the nearest well-lighted area.
- If attacked, your best defense is noise - use a whistle, or scream long and loud. People will react to a scream of fire more readily than for help.
- Keep a level head and don't panic. Most women escape possible rape by talking their way out of it. Few escape by fighting.
- Try unexpected tactics: distract him; tell him you have a venereal disease; sing "The Star Spangled Banner" at the top of your lungs.
- Use fighting only as a last resort, unless you are expertly trained.
When Using Public Transportation
- Do not wait alone at the bus stop any longer than necessary.
- Carry exact change in your hand or purchase a bus pass if possible.
- Stand in view of other passengers.
- Sit in the front of the vehicle near the driver or the middle away form the doors.
- Board and exit at well-lighted stops.
- Don’t fall asleep. Stay alert!
- Hold on to any packages or your purse.
- Watch who gets on and off with you.
- If you feel uneasy walk directly to a place where there are other people.
- If you return home and find your door ajar or you hear unusual sounds inside, do not go in! Go to the nearest telephone and call 911.
- If you return home and notice that your home has been burglarized, do not touch anything until law enforcement arrives.
- Should you enter your home and the burglar is there, leave immediately, if you can.
- If the intruder is armed, sit down quietly and obey instructions.
- Do not resist or fight.
- Try to observe the intruder closely so you can give law enforcement a good description.
- When the intruder leaves, call 911 immediately.
Safety at the Door
- When someone knocks on your door, do not answer the door unless you know who it is.
- Have a through the door wide-angel viewer on each exterior door.
- If the person is a representative, salesman, etc. ask for identification and credentials be slipped under the door or through a mail slot. Call the employer to verify the name and business. refuse to deal with anyone who won’t comply with this request.
- Someone may knock at your door to use your telephone claiming it is an emergency. Never open the door, call your local law enforcement agency and let them help the individual.
- If someone comes to your door that you do not trust or whom you believe might be dangerous, call 911.
- If you receive frequent “wrong number” calls, hang up calls, late night calls from strangers, or other nuisance calls, call your local phone company and speak to a security representative.
- If a telephone call is obscene, hang up the telephone but do not slam the receiver down.
- If a telephone call is threatening, contact your local law enforcement agency immediately.
- Never allow yourself to be drawn into a conversation with an unknown caller in which you reveal your name, address, marital status, or anything to indicate you are alone.
- Do not play detective and extend the call attempting to find out who is calling. This may be the reaction the caller wants or needs.
- Do not try to be a counselor. The caller probably needs professional help, but he/she may only be encouraged by your concern and may continue calling.
When You Are Away
- When you leave your home for a prolonged period of time, discontinue your newspaper, and other deliveries. Do not leave notes.
- Have your lawn mowed or have your snow removed.
- Notify the Post Office to hold or forward your mail or have a trusted person pick it up daily.
- Put lights both inside and outside the house on timers. Also, place 1 or more radios or TV’s on timers so they will periodically come on.
- Turn the volume on the telephone down so it cannot be used as a cue that no one is home.
- Call your local law enforcement agency and ask that police officers check on your home for you while you are away, see our House Watch Program.
While You Are Out
- Carry as little cash as possible and carry credit cards in a concealed coat or chest pocket.
- For a woman carrying a purse, carry it close to the body, preferably in front. If the purse has a clasp, cover it with your hand. Do not wrap the strap of the purse around your wrist.
- Never leave your purse unattended.
- If you are carrying both packages and a purse, put the purse between your body and the packages.
- Avoid carrying a wallet in a back or side pocket.
- If a robber attempts to snatch your purse, do not resist. Give the robber what he wants. Try to sit down to avoid injury and make noise by calling for help.
- Never pursue your attacker.
- Plan your route and stay alert to your surroundings.
- Never flash large amounts of cash or valuables.
- If you must walk at night, choose the busiest and best-lit streets.
- Whenever possible, walk with a companion.
- Stay away from dark buildings and corners.
- Avoid dark places, short cuts, alleys, thick trees, shrubs, and sparsely traveled areas.
- Be wary of strangers who attempt to start meaningless or odd conversations.
- Make sure someone knows where you are going and when to expect you home.