When reports of abduction, rape (Inquirer says that there have been 7,785 cases reported nationwide from January to September of this year) and other blood-chilling crimes take over the evening news, it’s natural to feel a little paranoid. Put your guard up and stay safe this holiday season.
Here, tips to keep you on your toes.
1. Adopt a buddy system.
Attending a party or going home late? Make sure you’re not alone. Either sleep over at a trusted friend’s house or ask someone to pick you up. Remember, there’s strength in numbers. Besides, walking in the dark, even if you’re merely a few meters away from your house, is just asking for trouble.
2. Look tough.
It’s not as good as a taser, but putting your game face on might discourage some of the less scrupulous characters from going through with their plan. Don’t make yourself an easy target.
3. Be smart when it comes to public transportation.
Taking public transportation? Keep a low profile. Avoid wearing flashy jewelry or anything that might be seen as valuable. Just a few days ago, a woman was shot when she resisted a cab driver who declared a hold-up. If you’re hailing a cab, use apps like EasyTaxi or GrabTaxi. They won’t necessarily guarantee your safety, but they might lower your chances of getting robbed. Follow your gut. If for whatever reason you feel uneasy, get off immediately.
4. Keep your phone charged.
Or invest in a power bank. The last thing you want to happen is to lose your means of communication.
5. Guard your drink.
If you think your chances of being victimized by a date rape drug are slim, think again. According to a news report that appeared on Inquirer, “the demand and supply for date-rape drugs or gamma hydroxybutyrate and ecstasy usually go up at the start of Yuletide season.” If you’re at a party or at a bar, never leave your drink unattended. Don’t accept drinks or rides from people you hardly know either. On that note, never drink more than you can handle. It’s easy for other people to take advantage of you when you’re intoxicated.
(Screencap from Pretty Litte Liars courtesy of ABC Family)
6. Always be mindful of your belongings.
Thieves can strike anytime, anywhere. Whether you’re on the MRT en route to work or shopping for last-minute presents at the mall, it’s important to always keep your bag and other belongings close to you. Make sure the zippers are all closed and be sensitive to any pressure from the people around you.
7. Watch the evening news.
Keep yourself updated on what’s happening in the metro. Find out which areas are experiencing a spike in criminal activity and listen to the details of the case. Familiarize yourself with common modus operandi; you never know it might actually save your life.
(Opener and flashbox image by Mike Dee)