Halloween is a fun time for kids and adults – here are some tips to help ensure your safety. The most important safety tip, as always, is to stay alert and use common sense!
Please keep cell phones out of sight and ensure that personal items such as keys are safely stowed away.
- Cross the street at corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks.
- Look left, right and left again when crossing and keep looking as you cross.
- Put electronic devices down and keep heads up and walk, don’t run across the street.
- Teach children to make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.
- Always walk on sidewalks or paths. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the right as possible. Children should walk on direct routes with the fewest street crossings.
- Watch for cars that are turning or backing up. Teach children to never dart out into the street or cross between parked cars.
Trick-or-treat with an adult
- Children under the age of 12 should not be alone without adult supervision. If kids are mature enough to be out without supervision, remind them to stick to familiar areas that are well lit and to trick-or-treat in groups.
Keep costumes both creative and safe
- Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers and, if possible, choose light colours.
- Have kids carry glow sticks or flashlights to help them see and be seen by drivers.
- When selecting a costume, make sure it is the right size to prevent trips and fall.
Drive extra safely on Halloween
- Slow down and be especially alert in residential neighbourhoods. Children are excited on Halloween and may move in unpredictable ways.
- Take extra time to look for kids at intersections, on medians and on curbs.
- Enter and exit driveways slowly and carefully.
- Eliminate any distractions inside your car so you can concentrate on the road and your surroundings.
- Drive slowly, anticipate heavy pedestrian traffic and turn your headlights on earlier in the day to spot children from greater distances.
- Popular trick-or-treating hours are 5 pm to 9 pm so be especially alert for kids during those hours.
>> Please adhere to COVID-19 guidelines by wearing masks, maintaining social distance and sanitising. <<
- Always keep a close eye on your children. Don’t let them wander off on their own or be without the supervision of a responsible adult.
- Never leave children in the care of an adult you don’t trust.
- Don’t leave children under the supervision of other children.
- Never leave children alone in a car.
- When travelling by car make sure that babies or young children are buckled up or in a car seat, and drive responsibly.
- Learn first aid or at least learn CPR. It could save a life.
- Child-proof your home or the place you are staying by making sure that all dangerous substances and items are out of reach. Make sure that all electrical wiring is safe and swimming pools are sealed off with an SABS-approved safety fence or safety net, preferably both. Keep all alcohol out of the reach of children.
- Talk to your children before a family outing. Make a rule that you must always be able to see them, and they must always be able to see you. It may sound simple, but keep reminding them periodically, especially if you think they’re getting restless. Use the “two giant steps” rule – your children should never be more than two giant steps away from you. It’s a fun and uncomplicated way for young children to remember not to wander away.
- Teach your children that if they ever become separated from you, they should look for a “safe stranger” for help. Some examples include a mom with kids or a cash register person. With older children, agree on a “meeting place” ahead of time, in case you become separated. Make sure that your children know your cell phone number.
- Teach your children never to leave the mall or store to go looking for you, no matter what anyone tells them. Remind your child that you would never leave until you are reunited.
- Establish the “check first” rule with older children. They must always check first with you before going anywhere in a public place, including another store, play area, or even the restroom.
- Don’t treat public facilities as a “convenient babysitter.” Do not leave your children alone at movie theatres, play areas, or other public places. Predators are known to look for unsupervised kids.
- Always bring young children into the restroom with you. Look for well-lit restrooms in high traffic areas, whenever possible.
- If older children go to the mall, teach them to always stay in groups. If a stranger tries to get them to leave, they must scream and make the people around them aware of what is happening.
At the ATM:
- Be alert and conscious of your surroundings when using the ATM.
- Never give your card or PIN (Personal Identification Number) to anyone, for any reason.
- Don’t write your PIN on the card or anything that is kept with the card.
- Do not insert your card until asked to do so by the display screen.
- Never use an ATM with a blank screen and, if the ATM is obscured from view or poorly lit, leave immediately and find another ATM.
- Stand close to the ATM and use your body and hand as shield to make sure nobody sees you keying in your pin.
- Also, make sure you keep your hand over the card slot to make sure nobody can swop or take your card.
- Never accept help from strangers when using an ATM. You should be wary of strangers asking for help.
- Criminals work in teams- one to distract you while the other steals your card or money.
- If your card is retained (swallowed) by the ATM it is advisable to phone your bank toll free stop card line immediately and stop your card.
- Never allow a bystander to call the toll-free stop card line on your behalf- they could be tricking you into thinking your card has been stopped.
- Guards are placed at ATMs to discourage criminal activities and therefore cannot help you with transactions.
- If you need help, ask a bank official.
- It is advisable to set a daily ATM withdrawal limit at your branch.
Carrying cash (Individuals)
If you need to pay accounts, consider options that are lower risk instead of withdrawing large sums of cash. Apply the following tips to avoid being a victim:
- Carry as little cash as possible.
- Consider the convenience of paying your accounts electronically. Cconsult your bank to find out about other available options.
- Consider making use of cell phone banking or internet transfers or ATMs to do your banking.
Carrying cash (Businesses)
A small business which is cash based and needs to deposit money on a regular basis at the bank should apply the following tips which will minimize the chances of you being a victim of robberies:
- Alternate the days and times on which you deposit cash.
- Never make your bank visits public, even to people close to you.
- Do not openly display the money you are depositing while you are standing in the bank queue.
- Avoid carrying money bags, briefcases or openly displaying your deposit receipt book.
- It’s advisable to identify another branch nearby that you can visit to ensure that your banking pattern is not easily recognisable or detected.
- If the amount of cash you are regularly depositing is increasing as your business grows, consider using the services of a cash management company.
- Refrain from giving wages to your contract or casual labourers in full view of the public rather make use of wage accounts that can be provided by your bank.
- Refrain from driving to the bank in your company branded vehicle on a typical pay day.
- Consider arranging for electronic transfers of wages to your contract or casual labourers’ personal bank accounts.
Carrying cash (Saving clubs and stokvels)
If you are a member of a cash savings club, advise members of your club of the following tips that will assist your club from being victim to cash robberies:
- Refrain from making cash deposits of club members’ contributions on high risk days, e.g. Monday after month end.
- Ensure persons depositing club cash contributions or making withdrawals are accompanied by another club member.
- A stokvel, savings club or burial society can arrange for members to deposit cash directly into the club’s account instead of collecting cash contributions.
- Arrange for the club’s pay-out to be electronically transferred into each club member’s personal account or accounts of their choice.
Safety is the number one priority for runners and walkers.
Here are some safety tips to ensure that you get the most out of your training:
Safety during the run
- Always stay alert and aware of what’s going on around you. The more aware you are, the less vulnerable you are.
- Think about possible escape routes in case of a confrontation.
- Take notice of who is ahead of you and who is behind you. Know where the nearest public sites are with some general activity – there is usually safety in numbers
- When in doubt, follow your intuition and avoid potential trouble. If something seems suspicious, do not panic, but run in a different direction.
- Run clear of parked cars, bushes, dark areas.
- Be extra vigilant at junctions with alleyways where traffic may emerge.
- Run across the street at crosswalks and always pay attention to traffic lights.
- Drivers have a bad habit of not looking for pedestrians. Be sure to make eye contact before crossing in front of a car.
- Never assume you have been seen!
- Be considerate of other road/ pavement users – do not force pedestrians into the road – do not step off the pavement without checking behind – cyclists do not make a noise!
- Be aware of other hazards such as forces of nature, animals etc.
- Use discretion in acknowledging strangers. Look directly at others and be observant, but keep your distance and keep moving.
- Ignore verbal harassment.
- Do not approach a car to give directions or the time of day. Point toward the nearest police or information source, shrug your shoulders but keep moving. If you feel you must respond, do it while moving.
Clothing / running gear for safe running
- Dress appropriately – Respect the cultural norms of the society that you are in. In countries where women dress in loose clothing that covers them completely, avoids form-fitting jogging clothing.
- When selecting a running shoe, look for good shock absorption and construction that will provide stability and cushion to the foot.
- Excessive clothing can produce sweating, which causes the body to lose heat rapidly and can increase the risk of hypothermia. Instead, dress in layers. The inner layer should be material that takes perspiration away from the skin (polypropylene, thermal); the middle layer (not necessary for legs) should be for insulation and absorbing moisture (cotton); the outer layer should protect against wind and moisture (nylon).
- If exposed to the sun, apply sunscreen. ] • Wear sunglasses to filter out UVA and UVB rays, and wear a hat with a visor to shade your eyes and face.
- On very windy days goggles or eyeglasses can provide additional protection.
- Always carry some form of identification in a wrist pocket and some change for a phone call.
- Also include information on any allergies, blood group, medical fund and contact number of next of kin.
- If travelling alone and staying at a hotel, carry a card with the hotel phone number and address.
- Do not wear headsets when running alone on the street – do not wear anything which distracts you. You need to be completely aware of your environment.
- Research has shown that high visibility clothing is effective at improving drivers’ awareness of the presence of runners and cyclists. If drivers are aware of other road users just a fraction of a second earlier then they can take evasive action that can prevent an accident. If you aren’t seen, the consequences are often tragic.
- Light coloured clothing is safer than dark colours. Fluorescent and reflective strips provide increased driver awareness once you are in the beam of the car headlights.
- Don’t wear jewellery.
- Take a whistle with you.
Planning the run
- Traffic: When you run outdoors, traffic will be a hazard.
- Let others know where you will be running, and stay in familiar areas, away from traffic if possible.
- Run on the side of the road facing traffic -run preferably in the early mornings when traffic is sparse and exhaust fumes are few and far between.
- Always give traffic right of way and watch for those crazy overtaking speedsters who don’t care about runners.
- Try to get a running partner – If staying at a hotel, ask the concierge for nearby, safe running routes, or possibly a school track.
- Caution another runner in case you find one is not being mindful of something you think is basic—it could save someone from getting injured.
- Do not run at night, but if you run at dusk or dawn, wear reflective material.
- Whenever possible, run on a clear, smooth, resilient, even, and reasonably soft surface. Avoid running on hills, which increases stress on the ankle and foot.
- When running on curved surfaces, change directions in forwarding movement, so that you have even pressure on both feet during the run.
- Avoid unpopular areas, deserted streets, lonely trails – and especially avoid unlighted routes at night.
- Run in familiar areas. Be aware of emergency phones and how they work, note the location of neighbours you trust along with your route.
- Be careful of the terrain and aware of possible potholes and cracks in the streets and sidewalks that can cause major injury.
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