By Neil Ohlenkamp
- Get a security alarm system.
- Get solid core doors with dead-bolt locks.
- Get a solid core bedroom door with a dead-bolt lock, or a brace.
- Have a portable cellular phone in your bedroom if possible.
- Don’t use your name or phone number on your answering machine.
IN YOUR CAR
- Park close to any building you will be entering.
- Don’t park next to a van or vehicle you cannot see into.
- If you return to your car and a van has parked next to it, get in the door farthest away from the van.
- Look under your car and in your car to make sure no one is hiding there.
- Have your key ready to open the lock. Practice unlocking your car door by touch so you can remain alert to your surroundings.
- If your car has an automatic lock that unlocks all doors at once, change the system to one that only unlocks the driver’s door automatically.
- Lock your door as soon as you’re inside your car, start the ignition, then put on your seat belt.
- Keep car windows closed, especially when stopped (even at lights).
- Always leave yourself room to get away, an escape route, at lights and when parking.
- Keep car and other keys on separate rings, or a ring that splits into 2, so that you can throw keys onto the ground and get away when he goes for them.
- Check your mirror for someone following you. If you think you are being followed don’t go home.
- Don’t hesitate to drive off or use your car as a weapon, if necessary.
- Put up parameters. If a man’s actions make you uncomfortable, confront him or escape before the situation escalates.
- Walk with confidence, don’t be a victim waiting for an attack.
- Be aware of your surroundings. Carry a personal attack alarm.
- Don’t be too predictable, vary your routine.
- Stay in good physical condition.
- If assaulted, even with a gun, and you are told to get in a car, don’t. The criminal will have more control if you do and you won’t come back.
- Take every opportunity you can to learn more about self-defense and to practice the techniques you learn.