Did You Know?
Older Adults Need To Learn How To Protect Themselves Too
You don’t necessarily need physical strength, agility, speed or expensive security devices. You just need to be aware, not afraid.
HEAR ARE SOME PERSONAL SAFETY TIPS FOR OLDER ADULTS
Criminals look for the easy target.
Don’t allow yourself to become a target…make it clear you are not their next victim.
TRUST YOUR GUT FEELINGS…if something doesn’t seem right it probably isn’t…don’t take chances!
Remember your life is worth more than your purse, vehicle or any item you are carring or possess.
Make sure you have important phone numbers programmed into your cell phone and that you know how to find them.
Learn how to set the security settings on social networks or have someone do it for you. Never “post” current plans on a social network.
At home consider theses tips
Keep doors locked
Install easy-to-use deadbolt locks.
Install new locks if you move to a new home, apartment or lose your key.
Keep garage and basement doors & windows locked at all times.
Draw the curtains and blinds at night.
Don’t leave your windows open at night. Use floor or ceiling fans for air circulation.
Install and use a peephole
Never open the door to strangers or let them know you are home alone. Ask service people for an ID before you open the door. If you did not request service, call the agency (look phone numbers up in the phone book. Don’t rely on the number they may give you) and verify the call for service.
Remember, chain locks can be forced open.
If someone asks to use your phone, make the call for them. Never let a stranger into your home.
Consider a pet
Even a small dog can be a deterrent as well as good companionship.
Keep money and other valuable papers and securities in the safe or bank safety deposit box. Make copies of all important information and give the copy to a trusted relative or lawyer.
Have your Social Security or retirement check deposited directly into your bank account.
Don’t throw boxes out that show you just bought something valuable…it advertises your purchases to whoever may drive by.
Organize a buddy system
Have neighbors watch out for each other and report suspicious activity to the police department.
Don’t shop, exercise or attend community functions alone—take a friend—and don’t go out alone at night.
Beware of phone scams
Don’t give any personal or financial information to anyone over the phone.
If you are a woman living alone, don’t reveal that information to anyone on the phone.
Hang up on nuisance callers and report chronic nuisance calls to the phone company.
When you go out, play it smart
Secure your home
Make sure all exterior doors and windows are locked.
If you will be returning after dark, have an interior light set on a timer so when you come home, there will be a light on in your home. Turn on a radio.
Don’t leave a note on your door telling delivery persons you aren’t home.
Never leave a house key under the doormat, in a flowerpot, or on the ledge of the door…Consider giving one to a neighbor or keeping an extra one in your vehicle. There are even combination locks you can install.
Garage doors should always be kept closed and locked—even if you are home.
Always be alert to your surroundings and the people around you.
Avoid walking alone at night.
Walk confidently. Make eye contact with people when walking.
If you are carrying a purse, don’t dangle it from your arm. Carry it securely between your arm and your body. If a purse-snatcher tries to steal your purse, let it go….your personal safety may depend on not trying to hang on to it.
When you are in a store, never leave your purse in a shopping cart.
Don’t carry any more cash than is necessary. Many grocery stores accept checks and automatic teller cards.
Always lock your car doors when you get into your car.
Keep passenger windows rolled up or just crack them for air.
Keep your purse on the floor next to you, not on the passenger seat.
At night, drive on streets that you are familiar with and that are well lit.
Wear your seatbelt properly.
When leaving your vehicle with a mechanic…remove personal information (registration/insurance card). Only give them the vehicle key.
At home, if you have a garage, use it.
In parking lots, park as close to the store as you can. At night, park under a light.
Have someone from the store/business escort you to your car if you need assistance or feel threatened.
Don’t leave valuables or packages inside your parked car where they can be seen. Lock them in the trunk.
Have your keys ready to unlock your car…they can also be used as a weapon.
Always lock your car!
Know what to do if you are a victim of a crime
If your home is burglarized while you are out:
Don’t go in if you suspect someone is still inside your home.
Call your local law enforcement agency from your cell or neighbor’s home.
If someone breaks into your home while you are there:
Don’t confront the burglar.
Leave the location if you can safely or lock the door to the room you are in.
Call 9-1-1 immediately.
Let law enforcement officials help
Learn how to use your cell phone camera and use it when you see something suspicious or write down the details so you don’t forget.
Report any crime, attempted crime or suspicious activity.
Give details, including height, weight, clothing, appearance, license plate number and information about witnesses.
Press charges if the criminal is caught. This helps protect others.
Our Community has always looked out for one another whether they have been your neighbors and friends for years or they just moved here last fall. We can continue our way of life by adding a layer of awareness for our personal safety. Remember safety doesn’t happen by accident.