Personal Safety Tips

There are many steps we can take to protect ourselves from crime. Many crimes occur because there is an opportunity for them to happen. For example, we know that most crimes of theft and burglary are random and not calculated. Occasionally crimes occur because community members are careless. For example, they leave a residence hall door propped open, a car window down, or door unlocked. Even in the safest of environments, it is easy to get lulled into a false sense of security. The reality is that crime can happen anywhere, anytime, especially if we allow the environment for it to happen. The Wentworth Public Safety Department ask that you follow these simple tips to reduce your chances of becoming a victim.

When you're Walking or Running

Before You Leave

  • Plan your outing. Always tell someone where you’re going and when you’ll return. Tell friends or family of your favorite exercise routes.
  • Know where telephones are located along the course.
  • Wear an identification tag or carry a driver’s license. If you don’t have a place to carry your ID, write your name, phone number, and blood type and other medical information on the inside of your athletic shoe.
  • Don’t wear jewelry or carry cash.
  • Wear reflective material.
  • Stay alert at all times.
  • Run or walk with a partner or a dog.
  • Don’t wear headsets. If you wear them you won’t hear an approaching car or attacker. Listen to your surroundings.
  • Consider carrying a cellular phone. Program the phone with the emergency number for the Police.
  • Exercise in familiar areas. Know which businesses or establishments are open.
  • Vary your route.
  • Avoid unpopulated areas, deserted streets, and overgrown trails. Especially avoid poorly lit areas at night.
  • Run clear of parked cars or bushes.
  • Ignore verbal harassment. Use discretion in acknowledging strangers. Look directly at others, but keep your distance.
  • Trust your intuition about a person or an area. React based on that intuition and avoid areas you feel unsure about.
  • Be careful if anyone in a car asks you for directions, if you answer, keep a good distance from the car.
  • If you think you are being followed, change directions and head for open stores or populated areas.
  • Have your door key ready before you reach your home.
  • Call police immediately if something happens to you or someone else, or you notice anyone suspicious.
  • Stay Alert.
  • Runners and walkers often get lulled into a “zone” where they are so focused on their exercise they lose track of what’s going on around them.

In Your Car

Getting In

  • Walk with purpose and stay alert.
  • Approach your car with the key in hand. Look around and inside the car before getting in.
  • Be wary of people asking for directions or handing out fliers. Trust your instincts, if something makes you feel uneasy, leave the area.

On the Road

  • Keep your doors locked and windows rolled up (at least partway, if it’s hot and you don’t have air conditioning), no matter how short the distance or how safe the neighborhood is.
  • When you’re coming to a stop, leave enough room to maneuver around other cars.
  • Drive in the center lane to make it harder for would be carjackers to approach the car.
  • Avoid driving alone. Go with someone whenever possible.
  • Don’t stop to assist a stranger whose car is broken down. Help instead by driving to the nearest phone and calling the police to help.

Getting Out

  • Park in well-lit areas, near sidewalks or walkways. Never park near dumpsters, woods, or anything that limits your visibility.
  • Never leave valuables in plain view, even if the car is locked. Put them in the trunk.
  • Try to park in a garage with an attendant. Leave only the ignition key.
  • Even if you’re rushed, look around before you get out and stay alert to the surroundings.

At the ATM

  • If you drive to the ATM, keep car locked when using the ATM. Keep your keys handy so you can enter your car quickly after completing your transaction.
  • Whether walking or driving, remain alert for anything suspicious, especially two or more people in a nearby vehicle, particularly if no one else is at the ATM, or someone who just appears to be “hanging” around the area.
  • If you sense something is wrong, leave the area immediately and use another ATM.
  • Have everything ready before you approach the ATM; have your card ready, know your code, fill out your deposit envelop before approaching the ATM.
  • Report all ATM crimes to the WIT or Boston Police and the financial institution.