It seems that the subject of safety has been on everyone's mind, lately, especially car safety. I saved an article from Cosmo on the 8 Must-haves for Your Car, thinking that I needed to outfit the car if we were going to do any summertime driving.
This is what they recommended:
1. A cell phone and charger that plugs into the car
2. A flashlight and spare batteries
3. Bottled water and protein bars
4. Candles, flares and matches in a waterproof container
5. A recent map of the area in which you are traveling
6. A blanket
7. A first aid kit
8. A bag of sand and a shovel, in case you get stuck in the snow
Okay....most of these things are pretty easy. I'd need a reminder to swap the protein bars every now and then, so they didn't turn to sawdust before we needed them.
It seems to me that you can get a folding shovel to carry in your car. Otherwise, I'd be likely to carry one only in the winter.
I guess I'll have to do some research on what should be in a first aid kit. The one I used to carry was pretty ineffectual, so it's time to get my act together and be prepared. I had a friend who was a driver's ed instructor, and he came upon an accident and needed serious stuff in his first aid kit. He was prepared, but shaken about the aid he had to give. So I'll surf and post my findings later.
I plan to go looking for a plastic container to hold all these things, except for the phone, the blanket, the sand and the shovel. I already have the phone and a blanket, so I'm part way there!
While I was considering posting the list of Must-Haves, I received an e-mail with general safety tips for women. It makes sense to post it here.
TIPS ON STAYING SAFE...
Tip from Tae Kwon Do:
The elbow is the strongest point on your body. If you
are close enough to use it, do!
Learned this from a tourist guide to New Orleans:
if a robber asks for your wallet and/or purse, DO NOT
HAND IT TO HIM. Toss it away from you.... chances are
that he is more interested in your wallet and/or purse
than you and he will go for the wallet/purse. RUN
LIKE MAD IN THE OTHER DIRECTION!
If you are ever thrown into the trunk of a car:
Kick out the back tail lights and stick your arm out
the hole and start waving like crazy. The driver won't
see you but everybody else will. This has saved lives.
Last night I attended a personal safety workshop, and
it jolted me. It was given by an amazing man, Pat
Malone, who has been a bodyguard for famous figures
like Farrah Fawcett and Sylvester Stallone. He works
for the FBI and teaches police officers and Navy SEALS
This man has seen it all, and knows a lot. He focused
his teachings to us on HOW TO AVOID BEING THE VICTIM
OF A VIOLENT CRIME. He gave us some statistics about
how much the occurrences of random violence have
escalated over the recent years, and it's terrible.
Something like 99% of us will be exposed to, or become
a victim of a violent crime.
Here are some of the most important points that I got
out of his presentation:
The three reasons women are easy targets for random
acts of violence are:
1. a. Lack of Awareness: swing your arms, stand straight up.
b. Wrong Place, Wrong Time: DON'T walk alone in an
alley, or drive in a bad neighborhood at night.
2. Women have a tendency to get into their cars after
shopping, eating, working, etc., and just sit (doing their
checkbook, or making a list, etc. DON'T DO
THIS! The predator will be watching you, and this is
the perfect opportunity for him to get in on the
passenger side, put a gun to your head, and tell you
where to go. AS SOON AS YOU GET INTO YOUR CAR, LOCK
THE DOORS AND LEAVE.
3. A few notes about getting into your car in a parking lot,
or parking garage:
a. Be aware: look around you, look into your car, at
the passenger side floor, and in the back seat.
b. If you are parked next to a big van, enter your car
from the passenger
door. Most serial killers attack their victims by
pulling them into their
vans while the women are attempting to get into their cars.
c. Look at the car parked on the driver's side of your
vehicle, and the passenger side. If a male is sitting
alone in the seat nearest your car, you may want to
walk back into the mall, or work, and get a
guard/policeman to walk you back out.
IT IS ALWAYS BETTER TO BE SAFE THAN SORRY. (And better
paranoid than dead.)
ALWAYS take the elevator instead of the stairs.
(Stairwells are horrible places to be alone and
the perfect crime spot).
If the predator has a gun and you are not under his
control, ALWAYS RUN! (The predator will only hit you
(a running target) 4 in 100 times; And even then, it
most likely WILL NOT be a vital organ. RUN! )
As women, we are always trying to be sympathetic:
STOP IT! It may get you raped, or killed. Ted Bundy, the
serial killer, was a good-looking, well educated man,
who ALWAYS played on the sympathies of unsuspecting
women. He walked with a cane, or a limp, and often
asked "for help" into his vehicle or with his vehicle,
which is when he abducted his next victim.
Pat Malone told us the story of his daughter, who
came out of the mall and was walking to her car when
she noticed 2 older ladies in front of her. Then she
saw a police car come towards her with cops who said
hello. She also noticed that all 8 handicap spots in
the area were empty. As she neared her car she saw a
man a few rows over calling to her for help. He wanted
her to close his passenger side door. He was sitting
in the back on the driver's side, and said he was
handicapped. He continued calling, until she turned
and headed back to the mall, and then he began cursing
at her. In the meantime, she wondered why he didn't
ask the 2 older ladies, or the policeman for help, and
why he was not parked in any of the empty handicap
spots. As she got back to the mall, two male friends
of hers were exiting, and as she told them the story
and turned to point at the car, the man was getting
out of the back seat into the front and the car sped
away. DON'T GET CAUGHT IN THIS TRAP.
I'd like you to forward this to all the women you
know. It may save a life.