Preventing Physical Assault

These tips can help reduce your chances of being assaulted:

  • If you think you are being followed, go to a lighted area where there are other people. Call the police.

  • Never hitchhike or accept a car ride from a stranger.

  • If you are going anywhere at night, go with a friend or group.

  • Plan your outings. Always tell a friend or family member where you are planning to go and when you will return.

  • Always be aware of your surroundings. If the area looks deserted or poorly lit, don’t risk it.

  • Walk confidently and with a steady pace. Don't stop to talk to strangers.

  • Walk on the sidewalks when possible. Stay close to the curb, avoiding doorways, bushes, vacant lots, or other spots where an assailant could hide.

  • Walk facing traffic. A person walking with the traffic is easier to follow and to force into a car than a person walking against the traffic.

  • If possible, carry a cell phone at all times.

  • After dark, park as close as you can to the building you are going to. Have your keys in hand when you return to your car.

  • Don’t go for walks or jog alone early in the morning or after dark. Try to plan your activity during daylight hours when others are around.

  • Wear shoes that make it easy for you to walk or run. Don't carry a lot of packages.

  • Headphones and earbuds can be dangerous when you are alone because they make you less aware of your surroundings. If you use them, keep the volume low so you can hear outside noises.

  • Don't carry large quantities of money or show expensive jewelry. Try not to show how much money is in your wallet when purchasing items.

  • Go to ATM machines during daylight hours and be aware of who is behind you.

  • If you are attacked, yell, scream, shout or do anything to attract attention.

  • Do everything possible to keep an assailant from getting in your car, or forcing you into their car.

  • If you are abducted, drop a personal item that can be traced to you.

Self-defense classes can improve confidence in your ability to prevent physical conflict and defend yourself if needed. You may find listings for classes through an internet search.

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