crime prevention strategies
There are many simple safety measures you can take to avoid becoming a crime victim. Please take a minute to review some of the strategies listed below. For more information and additional resources visit the National Crime Prevention Council
Safety tips for pedestrians
- Stay alert and tuned into your surroundings.
- Stand tall and walk confidently.
- Choose busy streets and avoid passing vacant lots, alleys, or deserted
construction sites. At night, stick to well-lighted areas.
- Don't walk or jog alone. Take a friend or neighbor along if possible.
- Get to know the neighborhoods where you live and work. Find out what stores
and restaurants are open late and where the police and fire stations are
- Carry your purse close to your body, and keep a firm grip on it. Carry a
wallet in an inside coat pocket or front pants pocket.
- Don't overload yourself with packages, and avoid wearing shoes or clothing
that restrict your movements.
Be smart and alert: avoid dangerous behaviors
Safety tips for drivers
- Always walk on the sidewalk; if there is no sidewalk, walk facing
- Stay sober; walking while impaired increases your chance of being
- Don't assume vehicles will stop; make eye contact with drivers, don't
just look at the vehicle. If a driver is on a cell phone, they may not be
paying enough attention to drive safely.
- Don't rely solely on pedestrian signals; look before you cross the road.
- Be alert to engine noise or backup lights on cars when in parking lots
and near on-street parking spaces.
- Be careful at crossings: look before you step
- Cross streets at marked crosswalks or intersections, if possible.
- Obey traffic signals such as WALK/DON'T WALK signs.
- Look left, right, and left again before crossing a street.
- Watch for turning vehicles; make sure the driver sees you and will stop
- Look across ALL lanes you must cross and visually clear each lane before
proceeding. Just because one motorist stops, do not presume drivers in other
lanes can see you and will stop for you.
- Don't wear headphones or talk on a cell phone while crossing.
Safety tips for homeowners
- Always lock your car and take the keys, even if you'll only be gone a short
- When you drive, be on the lookout for any problems that affect the
neighborhood's well-being-abandoned cars, missing signs, malfunctioning traffic
lights, reckless drivers, or poor street lighting. Follow up and report any
problems to the appropriate authorities.
- Keep your car in good running condition to avoid breakdowns.
- If your car does breakdown, raise the hood and stay in the locked car. If
someone stops to help, ask him or her to phone for assistance.
- Park in a well-lighted area that will still be well-lighted when you return.
- Be alert when using enclosed parking garages. Leave only your ignition key
with a lot attendant if you must leave a key.
- Always carry an emergency kit in your car. It should contain a flashlight,
flares, first aid products, and a 72-hour supply of food and water.
- NEVER pick up hitchhikers.
- Consider purchasing a cellular phone to use in an emergency.
- Before getting into your car, look underneath and inside the vehicle.
Safety tips for renters
- Make sure all your exterior doors have good locks-at least deadbolt locks
with a minimum 1" throw.
- Use the locks you have. Always lock up when you go out, even if only for a
- Make sure outside doors and door frames are solid, 1 3/4" metal or
- Secure sliding glass doors with commercially available bars or locks, or put
a wooden dowel or broom handle in the door track.
- Make sure your windows have good locks, particularly those at ground level.
Lock double-hung windows by sliding a small-headed bolt or nail through a hole
drilled at a slight downward angle in a top corner of the inside sash.
- Make sure all porches, entrances, and outside areas are well lighted.
- Trim any bushes or trees that hide doors or windows. Keep ladders and tools
inside when you're not using them.
- Don't hide your keys under the doormat or flowerpot.
- Record serial numbers on valuable property like televisions and DVD players
and store the numbers in a safe place.
- Consider installing an alarm system.
- If you park your car outside of your garage, never leave the garage door
opener in the car.
- Make sure that entrances, parking areas, hallways, stairways, laundry rooms,
and other common areas are well-lighted. Mailboxes should be in a publicly
traveled, well-lighted area.
- Make sure fire stairs are locked from the stairwell side with an appropriate
emergency release mechanism. Laundry rooms and storage areas should be kept
- Use common area locks and encourage your neighbors to do the same.
- Place items out of sight before reaching your destination or move them
inconspicuously. This includes packages, gym bags, cell phones, computers
and compact discs.
- Park in well-lit areas.
- Always lock ALL doors even if you plan to be gone for a brief time.
- Always roll up your car windows.
- Set any alarm or anti-theft device.
- NEVER leave your vehicle unattended with the engine running, even if
“just for a minute.”
- NEVER leave keys or valuables in your car-remove stereo face plates and
don’t keep change out in the open.
* Prevention tips provided by the
National Crime Prevention Counsel