Welcome to 2020! Not only are we entering a new year, but we’re also kicking off a whole new decade.
You may have made New Year’s resolutions, and you may or may not stick to all of them. However, there is one resolution we hope you’ll join us in; to make every day safer. At SABRE, our goal is to empower you through safety to live life more confidently. Confidence is power, safety helps fuel confidence, and that’s where we come in.
Let’s cover a few key relevant statistics before we jump into solutions. As far as crime in the U.S. goes, there is some good and bad news. First, the good news. According to FBI statistics for 2018 (the latest data available), the violent crime rate in the United States declined for a second year in a row. Homicides, rapes and assaults were down 3.9% in 2018 compared to 2017. The rate of property crimes including burglary, larceny and auto thefts fell even more, by 6.9%.
The bad news is that there is unfortunately still plenty of crime. The FBI’s 2018 figures show 1,206,836 violent crimes, including an estimated 16,214 murders, 15,505 forcible rapes and 7,196,045 property crimes that resulted in an estimated $16.4 billion in losses. This isn’t to scare you, but it’s important to be informed and protected as we all work to create a safer world together.
Safety Solutions for 2020
Our goal at SABRE is to offer simple-to-use, affordable and effective methods to stay safe and secure. Keep these safety tips for January in mind for future months and years as well. Read on to learn five easy ways to improve your personal safety for the new year.
1. Situational Awareness: The first key solution is to always be aware of your surroundings. Whether you are at home, in a vehicle or walking or jogging on a sidewalk or trail, it’s essential to be aware of what’s going on around you. Use your senses to anticipate danger so you can avoid it. At home, keep a keen ear out for unusual sounds. Don’t unlock and answer the door for strangers without verifying who they are first.
On the street, watch out for individuals who are behaving strangely or who may be lurking or loitering. Carry yourself confidently. Just like animals, human predators are most likely to attack the weakest prey. Even so, cross the street or use evasive measures to avoid interaction with questionable characters. The same goes for hiking trails. When you see, hear or otherwise sense a danger ahead, behind or nearby, remain confident and poised but try to move away without panicking. If possible, don’t walk, run or hike alone.
2. Pepper Sprays: Carrying a small canister of pepper spray with you is a smart idea in case you ever come face-to-face with danger. These sprays are meant for defensive rather than offensive purposes.
You can spray an attacker, disabling him or her and giving you enough time to escape and get help. It is also a good idea to carry pepper spray in your vehicle to help ward off carjackers, road ragers and other assailants.
Keeping pepper spray by your front door can deter intrusions too.
For walking or biking, carrying pepper spray designed to repel dogs is a good idea. Besides protecting you, it can also guard your dog if another canine becomes aggressive with it.
If you like to hike or camp, powerful pepper spray for bears can help you escape aggressive bears.
3. Personal Alarms: A personal safety alarm can be a lifesaver if you are walking, jogging or hiking. These personal devices are available in a variety of designs. You will find models that can be carried in a pocket or purse or worn on a belt.
Many runners prefer wrist alarms that can be worn on an arm for easy use even under stress. A good personal alarm will make a shrill sound when you activate it. That serves two purposes: to scare off assailants and call for assistance from nearby people.
4. Home Alarms: Personal safety and security don’t stop at your threshold. A good alarm can scare off intruders. It can also alert you when an unwanted person is moving around your home or attempting to break in.
There are two main types of home alarm systems: wireless and standalone. Wireless systems monitor multiple zones in your home from a single hub. They can protect areas like doorways, windows, carports and more. Standalone alarm systems can be installed in particular places, like doors or windows. They cost less than wireless systems and are often preferred for smaller places like dormitory rooms and apartments. They are also great for traveling and protecting entrances to hotel and motel rooms.
5. Security Signs: Affordable and easy to install, items like fake video cameras, security signs and TV light simulators can be surprisingly effective in deterring crime. Remember: Like predatory animals, most criminals seek easy marks. If they see security warning signs or decals on your lawn or window, most crooks will move on to an easier target. The same goes for fake video cameras, which are a cinch to install. Turning the lights on and off in your home or otherwise making it look occupied can also deter burglaries and break-ins when you are away.
Enjoy this New Year more confident, more powerful, and safer with SABRE. Stay up to date with SABRE news, safety tips, and more. Subscribe to our Safety Newsletter.