SLCPD: How to ultimately enhance personal safety

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SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Officers with the Salt Lake City Police Department are kicking off the new year with guided tips on enhancing personal safety, Saturday.

On January 9, the Salt Lake City Police Department share their tips on how the public can follow the best safety practices for public places, homes, and online.

PERSONAL SAFETY TIPS:

Stay alert, confident, and aware of your surroundings.

“Walk purposefully and make eye contact with people around you. Trust your instincts,” shares the team.

The department also shares that it’s vital to keep your head and eyes scanning the areas you are passing through.

“Stay off your phone and don’t
text while walking, as it distracts your attention and exposes you to a variety of threats (traffic, uneven surfaces, criminals),” they add.

When out and about, it’s recommended to avoid alleys, short cuts, and vacant lots. Officers say it is best to stick to well-lit, busy streets and to walk with a companion whenever possible.

“If you carry a purse, don’t dangle it by your side in such a way that a thief can run by you and grab it. Carry your purse close to your body, preferably in front,” SLCPD informs.

Their tips also go on to advise individuals to wear shoes and clothing that will not hinder an escape. Sneakers are best, shoes with low heels are your second best bet. Keep a pair in the car if you are going to be out on your way home from work. If you wear high heels and are pursued, kick them off and run barefoot.

“If you think you are being followed, abruptly change directions, stay in a well-lit area, and seek safety in a public building, that will give you an opportunity to reevaluate the situation,” the team says.

When in a situation as such it’s always best to call someone to have a safety communications line open and pass the following information to them; where you are at, and who appears to be following you.

If it seems appropriate call the police.

SOCIAL MEDIA AWARENESS

Social media has gained huge momentum entering 2020, and as the new year goes, more users may fall victim to either a scam or a stalker on the web.

“Be aware of what you post on the Internet, you never know who is looking at your information. It could be stalkers, future employers, recruiters, family, etc.,” shares SLCPD. “Consider locking down access to your social media platforms to only close family and friends, as open pages can be used to gather a lot of personal information on you, your life patterns, or that of family or friends.”


Officials say if you really need those platforms for work, keep a separate personal one that is more secure for your personal business, and keep the work ones focused in that realm.

HOME SAFETY

“Consider installing a home camera or an alarm system with DVR/Cloud recorded cameras,” authorities share. “Include a doorbell with video & sound capability so you can observe who is there and speak with them without opening your door.”


Officials also say that deadbolts with long throws and extra-long screws that make it well into the door jamb/framing should be on any exterior entry door.

Glass slider type doors should have wood dowels in the slider tracks or frame locks that prevent the slider from being lifted off the rails to gain entry. Protective window films can be applied to doors and windows if you feel the need for additional security or have a particularly vulnerable window or door.

“Vigilance and awareness of your surroundings is your best defense,” concludes the department.

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