Safety Tips To Give The Public (Or Family/Friends)

June 16, 2017

by Ian D Scofield

There have been multiple times when I have been asked for tips to stay safe.  Some of them have been from family and friends and others have been while I have been in uniform.  You have probably had the same thing happen.  Here are some safety tips that you can give to those that ask.

Be Confident

One of the number one ways to deter people from choosing you as a victim is to always be confident.  Act like you know what you are doing.  This doesn’t mean you need to be cocky, just that you need to be aware, attentive, and direct.  Don’t hesitate or stutter.

Know Your Surroundings

You should always know your surroundings.  When you are walking take a look at what is around you.  Inventory where the nearest exits are, potential threats, potential tools, and potential help/witnesses.  This will help you better be able to act should you need to.

Another important part of knowing your surroundings is being able to hear and see everything around you.  Don’t wear headphones in both ears while out in public, or don’t keep your volume so loud you can’t hear.  This presents a big safety risk.  Not just against attackers/robbers, you are also preventing yourself from being able to hear traffic or other potential accident causes.

Travel With A Friend

Having a buddy is always a good thing.  Remember in camp or school when you always had to have someone with you?  It is because things really are safer when someone is around.

Park Safe

Make sure that you do your best to park in the safest locations possible.  When parking, look for a location around other cars.  You should also look for a spot under a light in case you are there after dark.  Look for parking locations that are within sight of your destination.

If You Have A Defensive Tool, Know How To Use It

A lot of people feel the need to carry pepper spray or other defensive tools, and that is great.  As long as you know how to use them.  If you care a defensive tool that you don’t know how to use, it is more likely to become a weapon against you. 

There are many self-defense classes that you can take around the world.

When Walking To Your Car At Night Keep Your Keys In Hand

Walking to the car at night can be scary for people but it can be safer if you take precautions.  When you walk to the car, keep your keys in your hand.  The key can be a defensive tool if needed, but more importantly, it will enable quick access to your car if you need it.

Do Not Use Check-Ins Publicly

There are plenty of social media apps that allow you to post check-ins.  These apps can be really fun when telling your friends where you are but at the same time they can be used to track you.  People can find you by looking at your profile.

Thieves have also been known to look at Facebook or Foursquare to determine when homeowners aren’t at home.  Check your privacy settings and make sure that only your friends and family can see your status and location.

Block Your PIN/Alarm Code

Being conscious of your PIN code and alarm code is important.  Make sure that you are blocking view of it from anyone behind you or around you.  At the same time, remember that cameras are recording everything, keeping this in mind try to make sure cameras can’t see your PIN.

Use Two Locks on Your Bike

Those who ride a bike should use two different locks to secure it to a rack.  One should be a U-bolt style lock and the other a steel cable lock.  This helps to prevent your bike from getting stolen and also helps to ensure that all tires are secure.

These are just some of the safety tips that you can give out when people ask for safety tips.  I know some of them I have used before.  Safety can also be very variable depending on where you are and who you are. 

About the author:

Ian graduated Seattle University with a Bachelor's in Criminal Justice with a Specialization in Administration of Justice. He has held positions as an Auxiliary Public Safety Officer, a Security Patrol Supervisor, and as an in-house security officer for a major medical center. Through all of this he has picked up a wealth of experience, training, and education that he is happy to pass on to others. Ian can be reached at

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