(Gloucestercitynews.net)(October 15, 2019)--When stepping out into your local community, whether as an individual, couple or with your children, you have a right to feel safe. Unfortunately, even the safest neighborhoods still require an element of self-awareness and safety basics to ensure that you protect yourself at all times.
- Always Stick to Planned Routes
There will be certain areas of your neighborhood that are established and the natural go-to route to get to a specific place, whether it’s walking to the local park, shops or public building. You should stick to these routes, specifically those which see a lot of people on a regular basis, rather than unknown shortcuts down empty alleys or unfamiliar backstreets. Especially during darker hours, using well-known routes is vital for personal safety.
- Prepare Yourself
This could be in many ways, such as taking self-defense classes in your spare time or always carrying something which you can use as a defensive weapon, even as simple as an aerosol spray or pepper spray.
There are cases where you may inadvertently be involved in a crime that wasn’t of your doing, whether self-defense taken to the extreme, or stumbling across a crime in progress. If the worst should happen, a Philadelphia criminal lawyer can be appointed to help with a defense.
- Always Be Aware of Your Surroundings
It can be tempting to want to put on a pair of headphones if you’re taking a stroll through a local route, but you should also free up your senses to be aware of what’s happening around you, especially during unsociable hours. Always be alert to who might be around you and pay attention to sights and sounds, which may seem strange to you.
- Trust Your Instincts
Sometimes, something can just feel a little off – whether it’s a specific pathway or an individual walking near you. Always trust your instincts, and if something doesn’t feel right, take an alternate route or make other plans. It’s always better to be safe.
- Don’t Set Yourself Up as a Victim
A lot of local crime may be opportunistic. If a criminal is walking the streets, you may become a sudden target if you have electronics on display, for example, or are talking loudly on a smartphone while looking through your wallet. Store your belongings in a secure bag or pocket and hold it close to you and discreetly while you are moving through the community. Backpacks should also be adequately secured, as easily accessible zips can easily be targets for pickpockets.
- Take Precautions After Drinking Alcohol
If you have a favorite bar or restaurant within walking distance of your home, it may be safer to take a cab or gain a lift off a friend after consuming alcohol. Drink clouds your judgment, which means even a short walk home can leave you more vulnerable and susceptible to attack if you are obviously tipsy or afflicted. You are also more likely to trip or fall if you are inebriated.