Vehicle and Travel
Parking Lot Safety
Do's & Don'ts
Ladies Who Travel
Ladies Who Travel At Night-Take Heed!
1. Don't ever let yourself be caught between two cars. Car-jackers often work in pairs, attempting to corner your vehicle.
2. Don't ever pull off the road at night by yourself in a dark, unpopulated place.
3. Carry a cell phone!
4. Stay calm. Don't try any tricks. If you are in an accident, you are vulnerable.
5. Remember that most criminals want easy victims...DON'T LET YOURSELF BECOME ONE!!!
6. Make sure you find out how to react BEFORE you are in the situation! These situations are unfortunately real and dangerous. Thinking about it When it happens is too late!
7. ALWAYS make sure you do not stop until you are CERTAIN that help is present (i.e., even if you are in a slight accident, head straight for the police station, and don't stop until you are there. Car-jackers often slightly damage vehicles by bumping them from the rear to try to get the driver to get out.)
Roadway Violence Do's & Don'ts
DO NOT make angry gestures at erratic drivers - Avoid them.
DO NOT escalate car-to-car arguments by responding to obscene gestures.
AVOID eye contact with drivers who appear to be angry with you.
GIVE IN to other drivers - even if they are wrong - avoid a confrontation.
If the driver shows a gun, contact Police and try to offer a vehicle and motorist description. OBTAIN A TAG NUMBER.
DON'T carry a handgun in your vehicle because escalation of violence may result.
Parking Lot Safety Guide
As public awareness of parking lot crime grows, so does the concern about personal safety. For instance, have you ever walked through a public parking lot alone at night? Do you forget to have your keys out when you approach your vehicle? If so, you could become a victim.
"YOU ARE AT RISK WHENEVER YOU COME AND GO FROM A PARKING LOT"
What can happen if we are not careful is something most of us do not like to think about. Some parking lots are more dangerous than others, but any can be hazardous. Parking lots are prime locations for crime because they are large and often unguarded. Many lots have insufficient lighting. Not only that, but parking lots are isolated from the buildings for which they are constructed. There are no groups of people around as there are inside a mall. The potential victim is by and large alone and in a wide-open area where someone could easily accost them.
Furthermore, many of us tend to be distracted in parking lots. While at a mall or grocery store for example, shoppers are thinking about the shopping they need to do or the purchases they have made. As they walk back to their cars, they are loaded down with packages and struggling to find the car keys. This distraction makes them easy targets of crime.
Surprisingly, city streets may in some ways be safer than suburban parking lots. The streets are busier than parking lots and there is not the informal surveillance found on city streets. In parking lots, it is harder to get help if you are attacked.
For the criminals, parking lots are the ideal locations to commit crimes. They can hide behind automobiles and pick out their victims. Since parking lots are often located near interstate highways, they are perfect for quick getaways.
The best way to ensure that you will not be the victim of a parking lot crime is to keep yourself from being an easy target. Most people tend to become careless and complacent about safety. We think crime won't happen to us, but you have to be prepared and take precautions.
MAKE SAFETY MEASURES PART OF YOUR REGULAR ROUTINE
Vehicle and Travel Safety Tips
- Be aware of surroundings when getting in or out of your car.
- Do not leave keys in the ignition, even for a momentary errand.
- Park in a well lighted area where other people are around.
- Park close to your destination in a well-lighted area.
- Lock your car when it is parked.
- Keep valuables out of sight.
- If approached in a threatening manner, sound the horn.
- When going to your car, have your keys out and ready to use.
- Look inside, under and around car before getting into it.
- Be aware of your surroundings while walking to your car. Make sure no one is following you.
- As you approach your car, check underneath it.
- Check the back seat before getting into it, even if it is locked .
- If you left your car in good condition and it won't start when you return, be suspicious immediately. Don't accept unsolicited offers of assistance.
- Do not flash money when paying parking tickets, etc.
- Do not leave your keys with a parking attendant. If you must leave, leave only the ignition key and no not mark your key ring with your name, address or phone number.
- When valet parking, take house keys off the key ring. Also remove valuables and papers which may indicate home address.
- Look around outside before leaving your car.
- Always take your car keys and lock your car.
- Have your keys ready when you return to your car
- Avoid parking next to large vehicles such as vans or pick-up trucks.
- Drive with your doors locked and windows no more than half way open,
- Travel on major streets and highways, when possible. Use well-lighted streets. Don't take shortcuts on unknown roads.
- Avoid antagonizing other drivers.
- While stopped keep your car in gear.
- Check your rear view mirror frequently.
- Stay alert if followed by another car.
- If someone is following you don't stop, pull over, go down side streets, go home, or panic. Go to a well lit gas station or store, stay on well traveled streets, drive to a police, fire, hospital emergency entrance, or gas station. If necessary honk the horn and flash your lights to draw attention.
- If a car attempts to force you off the road, maintain control and drive to the nearest police station.
- Avoid driving through crime infested areas.
- If someone tries to get into your car at a stop light, drive away, sound your horn, run light, turn into them.
- Put valuables and purse on the floor or in your trunk before driving someplace. If your purse is on the floor, hook the strap around the hand brake or shift lever.
- Do not give rides to hitchhikers.
- Do not hitch hike. But if you must write down the car's license plate number and be constantly aware for suspicious actions.
- Keep the car in good working order. Obtain a working knowledge of basic auto repair.
- Install a CB-radio. Channel 9 in used for emergencies.
- If you encounter a disabled-car, do not stop, but call for help.
- If your car breaks down, raise hood, get back into car and have someone call police. Beware of anyone stopping to help. Stay in your car. If out of your car keep them in front of you and have your keys or some other item ready in case you need to protect yourself. Do not look under the hood, get on the passenger side of the car, or look in the trunk. Stay at least 6 feet away from anyone trying to help.
- Do not get out of car in a dark, remote location if you have been involved in an accident. Drive to an open service station or business and call police. Accident may be a deliberate set up.
- Do not fall asleep or daydream without someone you know around you.
- Do not flash valuables, money, jewelry, etc.
- Keep all valuables in front of your body.
- Distribute valuables around your body.
- Stay away from the path of upcoming transportation
- Do not let someone stand directly behind you when waiting for transportation
- When waiting for transportation, mingle with the crowd.
- Keep luggage close to your body, between your legs, or hold them.
- Don't place luggage, packages, or valuables on a seat next to you.
- Don't flash money around. Have it ready before you leave the store, office, or home.
- Stay in a well lit area. Don't wait in dark areas.
- Never get on an empty bus or train car. If you have to, stay near the door, facing it.
- Don't walk long distances from the public transportation stop to home or work.
- When using public transportation, note who is around.
- Try to stay out of public bathrooms and enter with caution.
- Be alert to your surroundings and the people around you.
- Avoid regular routines.
- Carry insurance on your vehicle.
- Record VIN and license plate numbers.
- Install an alarm system on motorized vehicles.
- Avoid traveling alone.
- Carry a spare key.
- Avoid putting bumper stickers and other message carriers on the car.
- Plan all trips and give a friend or neighbor a copy of your itinerary.
- When going on a trip be sure your car is in good working order.
- Keep the gas tank at least a quarter full.
- Consider getting a car phone if you are alone a lot or travel a lot.
- Keep your house keys and car keys on separate key chains.
- Car-jacking takes place very quickly. Most take only 15 to 20 seconds to complete.
- Car-jacking can be violent. Drivers have been beaten and even murdered while being pulled out of their car.
- Carjackers are usually armed with a gun or knife.
- Car-jacking may first involve a minor traffic accident. The victim's car is "bumped" at a stop sign, red light, or freeway off ramp. When the victim gets out of the car to check the damage the suspect pulls a weapon and takes the car.
- Car-jacking also occurs at stop signs or lights - the suspect may approach you and pull a weapon on you ordering you out of the car; or as you are pulling into or out of a parking space - a second vehicle may block your path with a passenger from the suspect's vehicle getting out and pulling you out of your car; or as you are entering or exiting your car - the suspect may be standing close by, in a parked car, or hiding by other parked cars, buildings, etc.
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