TTPS offers safety tips ahead of Christmas season
As members of the public prepare to celebrate Christmas in Trinidad and Tobago, the TTPS thought it fit to offer some safety tips.They are as follows:
· Avoid carrying around or exposing large sums of cash.
· Keep your mobile phone with you and do not leave it unattended.
· If walking, please do so in well-lit areas.
· Attend parties with friends that you trust and look out for one another.
· Do not leave drinks unattended or accept a drink from someone you do not know.
· Do not carry too many items when walking in the streets, always keep your hands free so you can defend yourself if necessary.
· Be aware of your surroundings and notify a police officer if you observe any suspicious behavior.
· Be wary of persons loitering around ATMs.
· Be alert for pick pockets when in crowded areas.
· Travel in groups or pairs and pay attention to your surroundings. Cell phones and headphones are distractions – stay alert and tuned into your surroundings.
· Trust your instincts. If the situation does not feel right, move to a public area and draw attention to yourself.
· Keep bags and belongings close to you at all times.
· If someone tries to rob you, give them your cash and belongings immediately.
· While walking, if you suspect you are being followed, cross the street, move to the nearest group of people and shout for help.
· Avoid walking by vacant and/or abandoned buildings, vacant lots, alleys or deserted construction sites.
· Do not walk or jog alone. There is safety in numbers.
· Always plan the safest route to your destination and use it.
· Do not take shortcuts through lonely tracks or dark alleys.
· Hold handbags close to your body with your arm through the strap.
· If you are out very late, ensure you get escorted home or travel with a driver that you know. Ask your escort or driver to wait until you are safely inside.
· Keep the exterior of your home well-lit.
· Be aware of persons posing as service personnel attempting to gain access to your home. Always ask for identification and verify by calling their offices to confirm.
· When you arrive home, always have your keys in hand. Once you enter your door/gate, avoid leaving it open or slightly ajar.
· If you arrive home and suspect that someone has broken in, do not enter. Call the police from your mobile phone or a neighbour’s house. The burglar may still be inside.
· Make sure you use sturdy padlocks on your doors and gates.
· If you suspect that your home or business is being broken into, immediately call 999, 555 or 800-9477.
· Teach children to never divulge information about whether or not an adult is at home.
· Mark your property with an engraver. It makes it easier for police to identify and return your property if it’s stolen.
· If household chores are being done to the back of the premises, see to it that the front is secured or vice versa.
· Children should be taught not to allow strangers into the house. Aides and children should be advised when repairmen are expected.
· Avoid leaving electronic or other valuable items exposed in vehicles.
· Do not drink and drive.
· An unlocked vehicle with keys in the ignition is a recipe for disaster. Lock up whenever you leave your car and take the keys with you.
· When walking to your vehicle, always keep your keys in hand.
· Before getting in your vehicle, check around it, especially at night.
· Always park in a well-lit area and avoid sitting in your car for a long period of time.
· Be cautious at stop lights and intersections. Keep your vehicle in gear and if you feel threatened, honk your horn and drive away.
· If you feel like you’re being followed, drive to the nearest police station or well-populated area and request assistance. Get a good description of the vehicle, number plate and person.
· If you are getting into your vehicle and someone jumps in, get out as soon as possible. Your vehicle can be replaced, you cannot.
· If your vehicle is bumped from behind by another car and you are suspicious, do not get out. Motion to the other driver to follow you and proceed to the nearest police station.
· Always wear your seatbelt while the vehicle is in motion.