Keep Yourself and Your Holiday Presents Safe

You’ve made your list and checked it twice, and now it’s crunch time to get everything ready for the holiday! There’s a lot to remember, and you’re bound to forget a few things. Just don’t let safety be one of them. Here are some tips to help ensure a safe 2018:

While Shopping: 

  • If you must carry a purse, keep it close to your body and make sure it is zippered up. Always carry identification.
  • Bring your cell phone in case of an emergency, but store it in your pocket. You need to be looking at your surroundings rather than at your cellphone.
  • A single shopper is the best target for theft. Always shop with a friend or relative. If you must shop alone, always make sure someone knows where you are going and what time you expect to return.
  • Store car keys in your pants or jacket pocket. If your purse is stolen, you will still be able to drive home.
  • When shopping online, only use secure websites that you are familiar with.
  • Monitor your bank account regularly, this is especially important if you do a lot of online shopping.

While Driving:

  • Avoid overloading your vehicle with packages. This could obstruct your view or restrict motion while driving. Be sure you are able to clearly see out of your rear-view mirror.
  • Slow down, relax and give yourself time to get to your destination.
  • Do not drive if you have been drinking. Call a cab or a friend.
  • On long trips, take regular breaks and always pull off the road if you feel too tired.
  • Be sure your vehicle is in good mechanical condition before taking a long road trip. In cold climates, make sure your car is prepared for conditions such as snow and ice.
  • Always use proper vehicle restraints
  • Always keep emergency supplies in your vehicle (flashlight, blanket, tools, etc.)
  • Do not text or use your phone while driving.
  • Be alert for pedestrians, especially around shopping centers, grocery stores and parking lots

While Parking: 

  • Park in areas that are well-lit, open and visible. If you’re in a parking garage, steer clear of areas that are dark and be sure to park where there are other cars. Keep track of where you parked so that you don’t have to wander around the parking lot. You could even take a photo of where you parked before you enter the store.
  • Don’t leave shopping bags or purses in visible areas of your car. Instead, place them in the trunk where they will be hidden.
  • When returning to your car, always have your key ready in hand. Check your surroundings and the back seat before entering the vehicle.

At Home:

  • When disposing of the trash after the holidays, cut or tear up any obvious signs of new electronics or expensive gifts. You don’t want your garbage to advertise to everyone that you have the newest electronics.
  • When going on vacation this holiday, ensure your home looks lived-in. Putting your lights on timers, having a neighbor mow your lawn and holding your mail at the post office are all great ideas. You can even ask a friend or neighbor to park in your driveway. Leave your contact and trip information with a friend or family member so that they can reach you in an emergency.
  • Do not post about your vacation before you leave. Post pictures and talk about it when you return.
  • If you are expecting packages, be sure to utilize the tracking information provided to know when to expect the delivery. Depending on the shipping carrier, you can request that deliveries be left at a back or side door, a garage, or even a neighbors house. You can customize delivery times and have packages held at pick-up locations, or you can even re-route them to be delivered to your office.