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Safety Tips

Protect Yourself at Home, in your Room, Dorm or Apartment
Protect Yourself when Walking
Protect Your Automobile or Bicycle
Protect Yourself When Driving
At the ATM Machine

  • Stay alert and tuned in to your surroundings, wherever you are. Don’t be taken by surprise. Be aware and be prepared.
  • Stand tall and walk confidently. Don’t show fear. Don’t look like a victim.
  • Trust you instincts. If you feel uncomfortable in a place or situation, leave right away and get help if necessary.


  • Lock your door, even when you intend to return home shortly or even if you are just going down the hall. It takes a thief ten seconds or less to enter an open room and steal your property.
  • Lock or secure doors and windows when you are alone or asleep.
  • Do not leave valuables lying out in plain sight. Record the serial number of your valuables or engrave your drivers license or social security number on the item.
  • Keep emergency numbers by your phone.
  • Do not leave messages on your door indicating that you are away and when you will return.
  • Do not let strangers enter dormitory or premises.
  • Do not prop open outer doors.
  • If someone asks to use your phone for an emergency call, offer to telephone for them instead of allowing them access.
  • Do not put your address on your key ring.
  • Know your neighbors.
  • Do not leave keys in hiding places. Thieves will find them. Carry your keys or make sure that anyone who truly needs them has their own copy.
  • Call 578-3231 to report suspicious persons or activity in or around your neighborhood. Off campus, call 911.
  • Open a savings or checking account instead of keeping money in your room.
  • Keep automatic teller machine cards in a safe place, keep your PIN number secret. When possible, only use atm's during the day.
  • Instead of carrying large sums of cash use a charge card. Some charge cards insure property purchased with those cards against loss, theft or damage.
  • If you find yourself in immediate danger, call 578-3231; try to stay calm and get away at first opportunity.

Additionally, if you live in an apartment or house:

  • Make sure that all doors to the outside are metal or solid, 1 ¾" hardwood.
  • Make sure all doors to the outside have good, sturdy locks.
  • Use the locks you have. Always lock up your home when you go out, even if it’s only for a few minutes.
  • Secure sliding glass doors with commercially available bars or locks, or put a wooden dowel or broomstick in the door track.
  • Make sure your windows, especially at ground level, have good locks – and use them.
  • Make sure all porches and other possible entrances are well lighted.
  • Trim any bushes or trees that hide doors or windows. Keep ladders, tools, toys, and recreational equipment inside when you’re not using them.
  • Don’t hide your house keys under the doormat or in a flowerpot. It’s much wise to give an extra key to a trusted neighbor.
  • Clearly display your house number, so police and other emergency vehicles can find your home quickly.
  • If you see a screen that has been cut, broken windows, or a door that’s been left open, don’t go in. Call the police from a neighbor’s house or a public phone.
  • If you hear a noise that sounds like someone breaking in or moving around, quietly call the police and wait calmly until they arrive. If you can leave safely, do so. Otherwise, lock yourself in a room you are in, pretend to be asleep.
  • Think carefully before buying a firearm for protection. Guns can be stolen and sold to anyone, or captured and used on you or the police. If you do own a gun, keep it locked up, with the ammunition secured separately, and learn how to use it safely.

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  • Avoid walking alone at night unless absolutely necessary.
  • Keep to well lit, commonly travelled routes.
  • Avoid shortcuts and dark, isolated areas.
  • Walk purposefully, know where you are going, project a no-nonsense image.
  • Try not to walk or jog alone. Take a friend or neighbor along for company.
  • Avoid potentially dangerous situations.
  • If you feel threatened, cross the street, locate an emergency phone, or enter a store or place of business even if you have just left it.
  • Have your door keys ready; carry them in your pockets, not buried in a purse.
  • Carry your purse close to your body and keep a firm grip on it. Avoid pickpockets by carrying your wallet in an inside coat pocket or front trouser pocket.

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  • Always lock your car and take the keys, even if you’ll be gone only a short time. Never leave the windows down while it is unattended.
  • Do not leave tempting valuables or property visible inside the car. Lock these items in the trunk.
  • Keep your car in good running condition, and keep the tank at least quarters full; lock doors while driving.
  • Lock bikes to bike racks with hardened-alloy locks and chains or u-shaped locks to prevent thefts.

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  • Look into your car before getting in. Lock doors and roll up windows once inside for protection.
  • Never pick up strangers.
  • Carry change for emergency calls. 911 is a free call.
  • Drive to a police or fire station or open place of business if you feel you are being followed.
  • Do not stop to help occupants of stopped or disabled vehicles. Continue driving to the nearest phone and call assistance for them.
  • Keep your car in good running condition, and keep the tank at least quarters full; lock doors while driving.
  • Raise the hood and place emergency reflectors or flares. Then lock yourself into your car if it breaks down. If someone stops and offers you help, remain in your car and ask them to phone for help. Do not worry about seeming rude.
  • If you’re coming or going after dark, park in a well-lighted area that will still be well lighted when you return.
  • Be especially alert when using enclosed parking garages. Don’t walk into an area if you feel uncomfortable.
  • Leave only you ignition key with a parking attendant. Don’t leave your house key, garage door opener, or other important items in your car.
  • Never pick up hitchhikers.
  • Control your keys. Never leave an identification tag on your key ring. If your keys are lost or stolen, it could help a thief locate your car and burglarize your home.
  • Keep your car’s Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and a complete description in a safe place at home. Since 1969, the federal government has required manufactures to engrave a unique number, the VIN, on all passenger cars in one visible and several hidden locations. One VIN is engraved on a metal plate on the dashboard near the windshield. VIN’s of stolen cars are registered with the FBI’s National Crime Information Center.
  • License plates frequently are stolen from cars used in other crimes. Get in the habit of checking your plates when you drive. A few drops of solder on the bolts or blurring the threads can help safeguard your plates.
  • Keep the following information in a sale location.
    • Year
    • Make
    • Model
    • Color
    • Id# or VIN
    • License #
    • Identifying Marks
    • Insurance Co.
    • policy #

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  • Try to plan your visits to automatic teller during the day, rather than after dark.
  • Choose an ATM location that is in a busy public place. Avoid making withdrawals in isolated areas.
  • If at all possible, take along a friend who can watch the surroundings while you are conducting your transactions.
  • Pre-plan your transaction carefully, and don’t spend too much time at the machine.
  • When you make a withdrawal, quickly place the money in your purse or wallet and leave as soon as you finish your transaction.
  • Watch out for suspicious-looking people waiting around an ATM – they may not really be customers. If someone offers to let you go ahead of them, decline politely and leave.
  • When visiting a drive-through ATM, keep your doors locked and be prepared to drive away quickly. If anyone approaches your car on foot, roll up your window and drive off.
  • If you have not finished your transaction, and you are approached by a suspicious character, press the CANCEL button, receive your card and leave quickly.

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Carrie Lynn Yoder
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