In the run up to Christmas police remind people to keep themselves safe this festive season.
With a month to go until Christmas, Dyfed Powys Police are reminding people to make sure they keep themselves safe this festive season.
“We want people to enjoy themselves but to do so safely and lawfully,” said Inspector Neil Jones. “During the fesive celebrations it can be easy to forget to be sensible.
“We do see an increase in crime and anti-social behaviour at this time of year.One of the main causes of that is often people drinking a little too much alcohol.
“The majority of people drink sensibly, but there is a minority who don’t know when to stop. This can often lead to other problems such as anti-social behaviour and crime including violent crime, domestic abuse, drink driving and sometimes even sexual assault.
“During the festive season there will be increased patrols and officers will be taking a firm stance against criminal and anti-social behaviour.
“I’d also like to remind motorists to take care when doing their Christmas shopping, and not to leave anything of value on display in their vehicles. Criminals are on the lookout for opportunities all the time – don’t give them an excuse to break in to your car.”
Top tips from Dyfed Powys Police on how to enjoy the festive period safely and lawfully:
• Keep an eye on your bag and your wallet when out shopping
• Keep your purse or wallet somewhere close to your body where you can feel it
• When you take your shopping to your car put it out of site, don’t leave it on the car seats
• When you are taking money from a cash point protect your PIN and put the money away quickly and securely. Be vigilant
• Shop with retailers online you know about or research them first to ensure they are reputable and reliable
• If shopping on line, make sure that your credit card details will be encrypted securely before being sent across the internet
• Never give out passwords
• Never open files to an e-mail from an unknown source
• Update your anti-virus software on a regular basis
• Also it is important to remember to register your valuables. A few years ago we encouraged people to post mark their property. This is the twenty first century equivalent. You can go online to immobilse.com and register your valuables.
• If the worst happens and you are burgled, and the police recover stolen items they will search the immobilise database and return the goods to the rightful owners.”
• If you put presents under the tree make sure they can’t be seen by people walking past. If they can, close curtains the curtains when the lights are on.
• Keep external doors locked, even when you are home, but make sure you know where the keys are.
• If you are out during dark winter nights use a timer switch or leave a light on.
• After Christmas don’t stack empty boxes outside your home. Keep them indoors until the morning of your local refuse/recycling collection.
• Stay alert and aware of your surroundings, especially in busy shops and crowded streets where thieves and pickpockets may operate
• If you spot a thief or pickpocket alert security staff and/or police immediately
• Know you’re limits and drink sensibly
• Consider the effects excessive drinking can have on yourself and others
• Be aware of drink ‘spiking’ – another substance being added to a person’s drink without their knowledge
• Some drugs are difficult to detect, being colourless, odourless and almost tasteless.
Don’t leave your drink unattended
Don’t accept drinks from strangers
Avoid unfamiliar places. Be especially careful if you are in an unfamiliar place as this increases your vulnerability
Put your hand over your glass to make it harder for someone to drop something into your drink
Avoid drinks from large punch bowls or jugs
Non-alcoholic drinks can be spiked just as easily as alcoholic ones
If you feel drunk, light headed or ill after just a few drinks, seek help from a trusted friend or member of staff. Watch out for your friends – if they seem to be showing these symptoms help them
If you see anyone adding anything to someone else’s drink, tell them
If you believe your drink has been spiked contact the police immediately on 999
• Spiking is sometimes meant as a harmless prank, but it can have serious consequences – not only severe intoxication, but also increased health risks. Some of these substances can lead to loss of consciousness, temporary loss of memory and even render people unable to move
Drinking and Driving
• The advice from police is simple - don’t drink and drive
• Consider the consequences of drink driving on your health, your family, your job and others
• If you’re caught drink driving you could be banned from driving or go to prison
• Don’t get into a car with someone who is under the influence of drink or drugs and attempts to drive
• Recognise that you’re the victim of abuse
• Seek help to break the cycle of abuse
In an emergency dial 999 for police or in non emergencies dial 101 for police.
For more information about Domestic Abuse White Ribbon Day visit the website at www.whiteribboncampaign.co.uk
Home & car security
• Make sure all doors, garages and methods of entry to houses, garages and outbuildings are locked and secure when leaving a property unattended
• Make sure that Christmas presents are not on show and visible through windows
• Do not leave cars unlocked when unattended
• Do not leave valuables on show in vehicles when unattended. Always keep items securely locked in the boot of your car
• Try and park in well-lit areas and avoid isolated or dimly lit areas
• Keep your car doors locked whilst driving in built-up areas, especially if you have bags of presents in the car
If out at night:
• Stay close to friends avoid being separated from them
• Plan your evening in advance
• Tell someone where you plan to go and make sure someone knows where you are
• Book a taxi with a reputable firm. Don’t walk home – if you have to, keep to well lit areas avoid dimly lit areas or unlit short cuts
• Don’t accept lifts from people you don’t know
• Make sure you have enough money to get home
• Make sure your mobile phone is sufficiently charged
• Avoid trouble – if you do see trouble walk away
• Where appropriate clothing
• Never leave your drink unattended and protect your drinks to avoid them being spiked
• Drink alcohol in moderation – don’t binge drink
• Look confident rather than lost if you’re unsure of your surroundings
• If necessary or you feel more comfortable carrying one – have an attack alarm with you
• Stranger rapes are very rare in Dyfed Powys. Most rapes occur between people who know each other
• Do not put yourself in a vulnerable position, drink sensibly, visit places you know avoiding unfamiliar surroundings, remain close to friends. If you fear for your safety leave with a friend for a safe place. If you can’t do that call police immediately on 999