Any holiday season should be a time of great joy to celebrate and share gifts with those close to us. Unfortunately, it can be a time when crime becomes more prevalent. These holiday safety tips are offered to help make your holiday season a safe and happy one.
- Walk confidently, with your head up, and stay in well-lighted and well-traveled areas. Pay attention to people walking in front of and behind you. Pay particular attention when you are in crowded areas. Places with large crowds are favorites for thieves and pickpockets.
- If you carry a purse, keep it in front of you and close to your body.
- Never leave your purse in a shopping cart or on a counter while you pay for your purchases. When using public washrooms, use extreme caution try to avoid putting your purse on hooks or door handles.
- Keys should not be carried in your purse. In the event of a purse snatching, the thief will have your address and keys to your home. Keep your keys in your pocket if it is possible. If you carry a change purse or wallet, keep it in your front pants pocket or in the inside breast pocket of your coat. Always be alert when opening your purse or wallet.
- Try to shop with friends or relatives. Not only is there safety in numbers, but shopping in a group will give you a chance to catch up on things and renew friendships.
- Never carry large amounts of money.
- Use credit cards or checks instead of cash. When using credit cards, make sure that only one credit slip is printed with your charge card. Also, be sure to tear up any carbons that may be used to complete the transaction.
- Thieves and pickpockets are more likely to be attracted by expensive clothes and jewelry. When you are out doing your holiday shopping, dress comfortably and casually.
Secure Your Car
- Park your car as close to your destination as possible and in a well-lighted area. When you do your shopping, remember to store your packages in the trunk of the car and not on the back seat.
- If you take packages back to the car and plan to return to the store or mall, drive your car to a new location within the parking lot.
- When returning have your keys in your hand, ready to open the door. The few moments you save may keep you from becoming a crime victim.
- Before entering your vehicle, carefully check the front and rear seats and floors for anyone that may be hiding there. Lock your doors immediately after entering the vehicle.
Secure Your Home
- When you are out shopping, leave some lights on at home. You may also want to let a neighbor know that you will be out of the house for a short time, so they can watch your house for you.
- If you plan to be away for a longer period to visit friends or family over the holidays, make sure to tell a neighbor or friend who can keep an eye on your house. Have them check periodically to make sure packages that may have been delivered while you were gone aren't sitting on your porch.