Personal Protection and Safety
Tips From Your NFCC Security Officers
The following are tips that can help you avoid becoming a victim of a crime when you are out and about, around campus or on your way to or from campus. By taking a few simple precautions, you can reduce the risk to yourself, and also discourage those who commit crimes. Burglars, robbers, and thieves seek primarily to remove cash or property. Many such perpetrators are capable of harming people with little provocation, so whether at school or out on the street, these precautions should be taken.
While You Are Out:
- Try NOT to go out alone at night. Avoid unfamiliar areas, if possible.
- Don't take shortcuts.
- 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 hitchhike, and if someone suspicious is following you, cross the street and walk into an open business go to the light.
- Watch your surroundings and be alert for suspicious persons.
- If you work late after class, ask the security guard or another student to walk you to your car.
- 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 nightspot 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.
In Your Automobile
- Never pickup hitchhikers.
- Don't park in the dark.
- Never leave your keys in the car.
- Never allow another vehicle to follow you home.
- Have your keys in hand so you can open the car door without delay.
- Always keep your car in gear when stopped at a traffic signal or stop sign, so if threatened in any way, you can quickly drive away.
- Always check the back seat of your car before getting in.
- If you stop to aid others, do not get out of the car. Ask what the problem is, and go to the nearest phone and call the police.
- Always lock your doors while driving.
- Always prearrange meeting times so you do not have to wait alone.
If You Are Attacked
- Use common sense.
- Try to talk your way out of it.
- Try to negotiate.
- 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 nearby.
- 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.
- It is not advisable to carry guns, clubs, knives, or chemical sprays. It is illegal to carry some of these weapons, and they could be used against you. It is advisable not to carry weapons.
- And finally, 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. No fact is too trivial.