Prevention is better than the cure. This adage would always fit in the context of safety going to and from your car every day.
Millions of people around the world drive everyday which means that they will need to walk to and from their car. Many times however, people see this activity as routine and do not take precaution. There have been many instances when individuals are robbed or worse when they are departing from or approaching their vehicles. There have been many incidents of street harassment, panhandling, and crimes that include murders, carjackings, and robberies.
As a rule, always be on the alert when you are getting in and out of the vehicle and walking to and from your car. Have a plan for the worse possible scenario so at least you have an idea what to do if something were to happen to make you feel or actually be physically unsafe.
If you sense danger, go back inside!
If you leave a place and in your gut feel it is unsafe on the street or in the parking lot/garage, go back inside and ask for an escort to your car or wait until others are leaving and leave with them. Sometimes, a security guard might be willing to escort you out but you can’t always count on that. Going back in the building may be time-consuming but it is the safest step from your end.
If someone does grab or chase you and you get away, go inside somewhere with other people and call the police. When police arrive, give as many details as possible and then ask for an escort to your car.
Check your car from a distance
When walking to your car, be alert and keep your eyes open. Note any people around and what they are doing. Even in a crowded lot or street situation, things can happen rather quickly.
Have your key out and your phone put away. Do not answer your phone if it rings and do not unlock your car too far away. Also, do a visual check of your tires to make sure that none look flat.
If you have parked your car next to a pillar, take some extra strides to ensure that no one is hiding behind.
Check the back seat before you step in
While you open your car door, ensure that you check your back passenger seat. This would help you to decide whether anyone is hiding in your car or not.
At night, your interior should illuminate by unlocking the door and make sure you do a quick visual check. If you feel something is not right, do not get in your car.
For vehicles with tinted windows, use your mini-flashlight in your keychain while opening the door.
Once everything looks okay, step inside your car and immediately lock your doors.
If you have to strap in a child, already have the routine set up and do this as quickly as possible.
If you have been shopping, make sure to place everything inside your vehicle quickly and then relock the car before you take the cart back to the service area.
Look around as you make adjustments to leave
Just as a pilot would check his plane, build a routine that allows you to check your rearview and side mirrors before leaving and backing out of a space.
While you are traveling at night, turn on the car’s headlamps as soon as you can. This would assist you to have a better look at your surroundings.
As said before, prevention is better than a cure. If you want to feel safe, take a personal security and safety class. Think about the scenarios beforehand.
Don’t be distracted while walking to and from your car. Be sensible and trust your gut!
Be alert, be aware and be safe!
Krima Flint is an Executive Editor at . She loves to explore her writing skills in leisure.