Resources & Printable Media
Below are some personal safety tips compiled from the following agencies:
Louisville Metro Police, LouisvilleKy.gov
University of Louisville, Department of Public Safety.
Weatherford College, Campus Police.
Santa Barbara City College, Campus Security.
Security on Campus Inc., Securityoncampus.Org.
While You are Out
- Whenever possible, travel with friends, co-workers or classmates. Try NOT to go out alone at night.
- Stay in well lighted areas. Avoid locations that are dark, remote, and not well traveled.
- Don't take shortcuts: don't walk in or near alleys, and don't walk on deserted streets.
- Avoid unfamiliar areas, if possible.
- Make eye contact with people when walking.
- Walk close to the curb. Avoid doorways, bushes and alleys.
- If you think you are being followed by a person, walk quickly to areas where there are other people.
- If a car appears to be following you, turn and walk on the other side of the street
- Use caution in parking lots, and don't walk in poorly lighted areas, or dark doorways, or near shrubbery.
- Don't accept rides from strangers, and don't respond to comments from strangers on the street.
- Don't get into an empty elevator with a stranger. If you do ride with another person, stand near the control panel and if attacked, press an many of the control buttons as possible.
- Don't hitchhike, and if someone suspicious is following you, cross the street and walk into an open business.
- Watch your surroundings and be alert for suspicious persons, especially around banks, stores, street, and your car or home.
- When meeting a new friend, exchange phone numbers only, not addresses.
- On a first date, let family and friends know where you are going. Consider a daytime meeting rather than a night meeting, for a first date, and meet in a public place.
- It is never a good idea to go to a nightclub alone, and if you do, provide your own transportation.
- Keep your space - Intimate space - 0 to 1.5 feet Personal space - 1.5 to 4 feet Social space - 4 to 12 feet Public space - 12 feet or more.
- Don't allow alcohol or drugs to impair your judgment. If you haven't already set a few social standards, do so and stick to them.
- Don't allow an overly aggressive pursuer to change your mind.
- Always lock your car doors after entering or leaving your car.
- Always remove keys from ignition, lock your car and take your keys.
- Never hide a spare key in or on your vehicle.
- Roll up and secure all windows, hatches and sunroofs.
- Don't leave valuables in plain sight in your vehicle.
- Park your vehicle in a well lit location, and park vehicle as close as possible to an open business.
- Never leave your car running while it is unattended.
- Have your car keys in your hand so you don't have to linger outside before entering your car. Keys can also serve as a possible weapon against an attacker.
- Always check the back seat of your car before getting into your car.
- If your are being followed, drive to the police department or an open business for help. Do not go home. Don't let a potential attacker or robber know where you live.
- If your car breaks down, raise the hood and attach a white cloth to the car antenna. If someone stops to help, stay in your car with your car doors locked, and ask them to call the police and/or a tow truck.
- If you have a garage, use it and lock your garage door.
- If you park in the driveway, back in so that anyone raising your hood will be visible to neighbors.
- When going out of town, remove your car's distributor cap or coil wire.
- Remove all items of value from your vehicle before having it serviced.
- Ride only on the right hand side of the street or roadway.
- Watch carefully when passing a parked car or truck, when overtaking a car ahead, pass on the left when the way is clear.
- Before turning or stopping give the proper signal in plenty of time to let others know what you intend to do.
- Ride single file. When on the streets and highways with other bicyclists, ride single file, one behind the other.
- Keep three bicycle lengths behind the rider you are following.
- Never hitch on to cars or trucks.
- Bicycle riders or persons on skateboards or roller skates must never cling to or hold onto moving cars or trucks.
- Keep a safe distance behind the car or truck you are following, being ready for any sudden stops.
- Ride alone. Don't carry another person on the handlebars or crossbars of your bicycle. It makes balance uncertain and steering unsteady. Only one person should ride on a standard bicycle.
- Night riding is especially dangerous. Don't ride after dark, if you can avoid it. If you must ride at night, ride slowly with extra care, and you must have a good light and reflector that can be seen clearly.
- Ride in a straight line. Don't weave in and out of traffic or try trick riding on the street or sidewalk. Keep your head up.
- Don't ride out of driveways, alleys or ride out from behind parked cars without first stopping and looking to see that the sidewalks or streets are clear. Walk your bicycle and mount after leaving the driveway.
- Keep both hands on the handlebars at all times. Never carry bundles that will prevent this. It is best to have a bicycle basket to the front or a rack on the back with straps to carry books or other packages.
- Slow down and look both ways before crossing streets. Cross at corners. Walk your bicycle across busy streets.
- You must observe and obey all the traffic rules that the drivers of cars and trucks are required to obey. Traffic signs, lights, one-way streets and crosswalk markings apply to the bicycle rider as well as to drivers and people who are walking. You must always ride at a safe speed to fit conditions.
You may not be able to avoid crime or a confrontation with a criminal no matter how careful you are. That is why it is important to know what to do if you do become a victim of a crime.
- Use common sense.
- Try to talk your way out of it.
- Stall for time.
- Be verbally assertive.
- Distract or divert the assailant, then flee.
- Run toward an open business or a group of people.
- Hide if you get the opportunity.
- Scream loudly, and keep it up to attract attention and help from people near by.
- If the attacker threatens you with a deadly weapon, and you come out of it alive, you took the proper course of action. During an armed attack, you must decide the proper course of action. There is no hard and fast rule as to self defense. You must consider your physical capabilities, your location, and your perceived chances of success. If you cannot escape, bide your time and look for another opportunity, a half-hearted attempt could be worse than no attempt at all.
- Notify the police immediately, when you get the opportunity, and if there are witnesses, ask them to stay until police arrive.
- If a crime occurs, report it. When you report a crime and all the facts about it, it helps the police to assign officers in the places where crimes are occurring or where they are most likely to occur. If you don't report a crime, this allows the criminal to operate without interference. Tell the police what you know.
- Get Help Immediately! Reporting a Crime or Emergency is an important responsibility of a victim or witness of a crime or other emergency is timely reporting to appropriate authorities.
- When reporting a crime, attempt to provide as much detail as possible about the situation; including at least the following:
1. Your name;
2. Your location and telephone number where you can be reached;
3. The nature of the problem you are reporting;
4. Additional information as requested by the Communications Operator.
- When reporting a crime by telephone, remain on the phone until the Public Safety Operator is fully briefed with all the information necessary to dispatch the appropriate response personnel to the scene.
- When dialing 9-1-1 tell the operator where you are and what happened.
- Try to remember as many details about the assailant as possible, such as clothing, hair color, tattoos, scars or other identifiable marks. Write this information down, don't trust your memory.
- Do not disturb or destroy any possible evidence.