If you are concerned about your personal safety, the safety of your family or your belongings, here are some tips to help you reduce the chances of victimization.
Safety At Home
- Trim shrubbery so it does not block windows or doors and insure that your home has adequate lighting at after dark.
- Leave a spare key with a neighbor or relative instead of keeping it outside. If you choose to place a key outside, insure that it is not kept in an obvious place, such as under a nearby flowerpot.
- Use timers on lights, radios, and television sets to give the impression that someone is home when the house is unoccupied. Timers with a built-in random time function to vary the time that lights, etc. are turned on are best for accomplishing this task.
- Change all of the old locks immediately after moving into a new home to eliminate the possibility of someone using any old keys that have been lost.
- Insure that all ground-floor windows and doors have secure dead-bolt locks.
- Before leaving home, insure that your garage door is completely closed. If an interior door connects the garage to your home, insure that the door is also locked.
- Keep upstairs windows locked if someone could climb a nearby tree to gain access to a second-floor window. An alternative solution is to prune any large trees to keep limbs away from the house.
- Empty boxes from newly purchased electronic equipment are inviting signs to opportunistic thieves when left outside.
- Local community watch programs help to reduce your chances of being victimized. The police department can provide information on how to establish a community watch program. If your community already has an established program, active participation will help the entire community.
Safety on the Road
If your car breaks down:
- Pull to the side of the road and turn on your hazard lights.
- Keep a white cloth in your trunk to hang out of the driver's window; this symbolizes that your vehicle is disabled and that you need help.
- Remain in the vehicle with the windows closed and the doors locked.
- If someone other than a law enforcement officer stops to offer assistance, crack the window and ask them to call the police for you. If you feel threatened, blow the horn non-stop to alert passersby.
Safety in Parking Lots
- Park in highly visible lots where there is a lot of activity.
- Pick a well-lighted area to leave your vehicle.
- Always lock your doors-even if you are only going to be gone a few minutes.
- Don't leave anything visible inside your vehicle-even something as simple as spare change.
- If you think that someone is following you, don't stop at your car. Keep walking and try to find help.
- Before you open your door, inspect the back seat of your vehicle to insure that nobody is hiding inside.
Safety at the ATM
- Choose an ATM that is in a well-lighted area
- If you need to use an ATM after dark, ask a friend to accompany you
- Don't initiate a transaction if there is anyone around that you find suspicious
- Put away your cash, card, and receipt before leaving the ATM machine
Safety on Vacation
- If you are going to be away for an extended period of time, consider hiring a "house sitter".
- Do not publicize the fact that you are going on vacation.
- Put lights and a radio on timers.
- Keep shrubbery from blocking the view of doors and windows.
- Burn an outside light all night, not just when you go away.
- Lock garbage cans in a storage room, or have someone share their garbage with you while you are gone.
- Leave window coverings as they normally would be.
- Do not stop deliveries! Have a neighbor pick them up for you, as well as circulars that accumulate by the front door.
- Make arrangements to have your lawn cut while you are away.
- Turn your telephone ringer down to low or turn on the answering machine.
- Lock all doors (including garage doors), windows and screens before leaving.
- Store items such as lawn furniture, garden tools and hanging baskets in a secure area of your residence.
- Ask neighbors to look out for your residence while you are away. Tell them which lights will be left on.
- Consider asking a neighbor to park a vehicle in your driveway during your absence.
- Leave a phone number with a neighbor where you can be contacted in case of an emergency.
- Call the Frankfort Police Department or the Emergency Dispatch Center at 875-8582 and request a vacation residence check. For additional information call our Crime Prevention Officer at 502-875-8523.