It’s the party season and following a few simple tips could see you safely through the festivities.
Most people enjoy a drink or two especially during the festive season. However don’t take risks and don’t let alcohol or drugs endanger your personal safety.
Consider these simple steps when planning your nights out.
- Plan ahead – tell someone where you’re going and when you’ll be home.
Book a trusted taxi in advance or call a licensed cab company and arrange to be picked you up right outside - never accept lifts from strangers or unregistered taxis. Keep the taxi number in your phone.
- Know your limits, drink responsibly. Remember, nothing will turn you into a potential victim quicker or more effectively than alcohol. Be aware how you come across when you’ve been drinking. Ask your mates. Sometimes people can inadvertently attract trouble by the way they behave when they are drunk.
For information on the effects of alcohol visit the DrinkAware website.
- If possible arrange for at least one of your group to stay sober, in order to keep an eye on the others and see that they don’t do anything to put themselves in danger.
- Watch your drinks and food, and never leave your drink unattended. If it’s been left or tastes suspicious, don’t drink it! If a stranger offers you a drink decline or accompany them to the bar - watch that nothing is added to your drink. Never give somebody the opportunity to spike your drink.
- If you feel particularly strange after having a drink (even a soft drink) or realise you have drunk too much, tell a friend immediately and make sure you are accompanied home by one of your own group.
- If you meet someone new at a party, don't go home with them or invite them back to your home or accept a lift from them. Arrange a second date in a public place to get to know them better.
- Trust your instinct - if you feel uneasy about someone, there may be a reason. If you feel threatened by someone move away, cross the road, head towards somewhere where there are other people.
- If you are out in the evening or early morning try to stay with friends or near a group of people. Avoid taking short cuts and consider carrying a personal attack alarm.
- When walking alone vary your route, stick to well-lit roads and pavements and walk facing traffic so that a car cannot pull up behind you unnoticed. Carry your bag close to you and keep your keys in a separate pocket. Walk down the middle of the pavement if the street is deserted.
- Keep your mobile phone charged, carry a phone card or some spare change to make a call.
You can get further information on personal safety from;