Safety Tips

Jada Bailey, Staff Writer

Recently, there have been several high profile kidnappings in the news. Although it isn’t possible to totally prevent these terrible events, there are some things we can do to protect ourselves and lessen the chances of being targeted.

Staying safe 

Criminals have many tactics. Some of them include getting you alone and away from people, getting you vulnerable, and using your morals against you. 

The car is one of the main places attacks occur. If you see a zip tie or something similar attached to your car, it is best to leave it alone and deal with it in a safer environment. Trying to get the zip tie off at that moment leaves you vulnerable to an unexpected attack. When you come to your car, check the back seat in case anyone is hiding in the back, waiting for you to get in. It is safer to get in the habit of locking car doors, even when you feel it is okay to leave it unlocked. Keep a spare tire or battery in your trunk to avoid breaking down on the side of the road, stuck, without help. Many kidnappers will try and sabotage your tire so you are purposely trapped. 

If you get that feeling of being followed in the store, simply ask a worker or security to walk you to your car. When you get to your car, lock your doors and leave. Sitting in your car to check off a list or send a text before driving off gives an opportunity for kidnappers to attack. As always, it is best to go with your gut. Buy a new drink rather than risking one you left alone. If you see someone asking for help to get their bags in the car or asking for directions, it is okay to say no if you don’t feel comfortable. Ted Bundy, an infamous kidnapper and murderer would pretend to be injured and ask girls for help to his car. Once there, he would kidnap them. 

If you are attacked, remember that your elbow is the strongest point of the body, and make a lot of noise. Kidnappers go for easy targets, so putting up a fight and making noise will bring attention and gives you a chance of escaping. When fighting back, always scratch your attacker’s skin so you have their DNA under your nails. If you’re walking to your car, keep the car alarm button in your hand to make noise in any unfortunate event. Gel pepper spray is a better purchase than regular pepper spray, so when you spray it will have a higher chance of hitting your target. If you feel safer with extra protection, invest items like a taser or a tactical pen. 

Living with caution

These tips are all just to take a safer precaution. There’s a fine line between living with caution and living in fear. In many situations, it is better safe than sorry, and always let someone know where you are even if you’re not supposed to be there. Remember to be aware of  your surroundings and stay safe!