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Tips on Staying Safe

If you see or sense problems on your way, just change your route and - prepare to run or defend yourself.
Do not wear conspicuous jewelry when you are walking on the streets alone
Do not hitchhike, use buses or taxis instead
Do not act or look like an easy target - look confident!
Most "fights" are won before they start, and aggressors will back down if you maintain eye contact and are not intimidated by them.

Public transport:
Remember, there is usually safety in numbers. Wait in a coffee shop or in a well lit area for the public transport to arrive.
Don't choose the window seat as you may be "blocked in" by a potential assailant; always choose an aisle seat for quick exit
After peak hours, always choose the train compartment carrying the most passengers or the compartment directly behind the train driver
On buses, sit behind the driver or next to the door for quick exit.

Motor vehicles:
Danger areas are stepping out of your car either at home or in isolated areas, and also walking to your car
Always approach your vehicle with the keys ready
Windows should be up and doors locked even when driving to avoid unwanted passengers at intersections. (Please note that this conflicts with quick entering and exit procedures in the event of an accident)

Always check your car before entering
Never leave your car unlocked, even for the few minutes it may take you to return a video, buy milk and so forth. Attackers have been known to lie in wait for such an opportunity.

Never get into a car even if someone is pointing a knife or a handgun at you from inside. Just start to run away from the car screaming at the same time. It's much more likely that he will drive away to find an easier target than attacking or killing you. But if you get into the car, he has a much better opportunity to drive to a quiet place and start to abuse you and later maybe kill you.

Never pull your car over from a quiet road even if someone drives alongside your car pointing at the tires etc. Always continue driving to a well-lit and crowded area before exiting your car. The problem might be a bluff and the driver wants you to stop at the side of the road to "help" you without a reason.

Always be alert in parking lots, specially when it's dark. If you are afraid, don't be too shy to ask someone to escort you to your car. Between cars and inside cars, it's easy for someone to hide and wait until an unalert person comes along.

Always check the identification of the driver (usually located near the visor) and ensure that it matches the driver
Be wary of cars with central locking
Don't sit behind the driver as it may be easy for the driver to lock the rear passenger door - always choose the adjacent seat
Always order taxis so that the driver can be traced
Avoid flagging taxis from the street

Walkers / joggers:
If you have car trouble and are walking to look for help, always walk against the traffic so that you can see what is coming
If shadowed by a car, run back in the direction from which you came. If you continue in the same direction, you will make it easy for the shadowing to continue
Be wary of alert passengers
Don't use a "walkman" when walking in isolated areas at any time

Regularly change your routines
Mark out houses at intervals on each route you take that may be used as "safe houses" in the event of attack such as shops or houses that you know to be occupied by a friend or acquaintance. Try to incorporate these houses every time you vary your route Be alert at all times
Don't presume that because your area has been "safe" thus far, that it will continue to be so.

Public phone boxes:
When you are calling from a telephone box, after dialing the numbers always turn around so that you have your back to the phone and may see what is coming. You will then be able to tell the person to whom you are speaking that you may be in trouble and you may be able to use the weight of the phone as a weapon.The door of a telephone box could be used to wedge in the limbs of the attacker.

Think about your clothing - where will it be worn? Will you be going out after work? Get into the habit of leaving restrictive clothing and shoes for those occasions when you are certain that you have no reason to anticipate danger, such as large crowds, being picked up after work or going out and so forth. Choose a wardrobe which maximizes freedom of movement. The best self defense techniques will not help you if you cannot run away because of tight skirts or shoes with straps and high heels. In these situations, it will be necessary to disable your attacker to ensure you are not followed unless you have some means of a quick exit such as a motor vehicle. This places additional, unnecessary pressure on you to be successful. Further, if you focus too much attention on disabling you opponent, you may not be sufficiently aware of an additional threat to yourself

1. Tip from Tae Kwon Do: The elbow is the strongest point on your body. If you are close enough to use it, do!

2. Learned this from a tourist guide to New Orleans: if a robber asks for your wallet and/or purse, DO NOT HAND IT TO HIM. Toss it away from you.... chances are that he is more interested in your wallet and/or purse than you and he will go for the wallet/purse.

3. If you are ever thrown into the trunk of a car: Kick out the back tail lights and stick your arm out the hole and start waving like crazy. The driver won't see you but everybody else will. This has saved lives.

4. Women have a tendency to get into their cars after shopping, eating, working, etc., and just sit (doing their checkbook, or making a listed.) DON'T DO THIS! The predator will be watching you, and this is the perfect opportunity for him to get in on the passenger side, put a gun to your head, and tell you where to go.

5. A few notes about getting into your car in a parking lot, or parking garage: a. Be aware: look around you, look into your car, at the passenger side floor, and in the back seat. b. If you are parked next to a big van, enter your car from the passenger door. Most serial killers attack their victims by pulling them into their vans while the women are attempting to get into their cars. c. Look at the car parked on the driver's side of your vehicle, and the passenger side. If a male is sitting alone in the seat nearest your car, you may want to walk back into the mall, or work, and get a guard/policeman to walk you back out.
IT IS ALWAYS BETTER TO BE SAFE THAN SORRY. (And better paranoid than dead.)

6. ALWAYS take the elevator instead of the stairs. (Stairwells are horrible places to be alone and the perfect crime spot).

7. If the predator has a gun and you are not under his control, ALWAYS RUN! The predator will only hit you (a running target) 4 in 100 times; And even then, it most likely WILL NOT be a vital organ. RUN!

8. As women, we are always trying to be sympathetic: STOP IT! It may get you raped, or killed. Ted Bundy, the serial killer, was a good-looking, well educated man, who ALWAYS played on the sympathies of unsuspecting women. He walked with a cane, or a limp, and often asked "for help" into his vehicle or with his vehicle, which is when he abducted his next victim.

Copyright © 2013 Rev. Michael J Roberts reserved. Reproduction strictly prohibited.