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    Q86: Have you got any advice re personal safety whilst I am driving?

    Whilst driving around in the car, keep all doors locked. This is to prevent people getting in the car and also from stealing valuables from the passenger seat whilst your vehicle is at a standstill at a junction etc.

    • If driving late at night, make sure someone knows what time you are expected home.
    • Make sure if setting off on a long journey, you have enough petrol, water, oil etc in your car.
    • If parking and leaving your car, never leave valuables on view in the car. It is not even advisable to leave valuables at all in the car, even in the boot as a thief will always check the boot if they have broken into your car.
    • Park your car in a well-lit and secure car park. It is worth paying a bit more to ensure yours and your car's safety.
    • When parking at your house at night, make sure you have your house keys at the ready to save rooting for them in your pocket or bag.
    • If you think you are being followed home, never go home, drive straight to the nearest police station or if you do not know where that is, drive to a shop, petrol station or any other place where there are lots of people.

    In general though, wherever you are try and remember the following suggestions:

    • Do not walk home alone late at night. If you do then choose well-lit main roads and walk confidently.
    • If someone does grab your bag, fighting back is not always a good idea, you do not know if your attacker has a weapon.
    • Always be aware of your surroundings and the people around you. Reading and listening to music can be distracting.
    • In a busy public place, try to only use your mobile phone in an emergency as it is advertising the fact that you have a phone and whilst using it you are distracted, making it easier to take it from you.

    If you are attacked it is often better to shout "fire" rather than "help", it tends to attract more attention.

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