Holiday Safety Tips: Shopping/Home/Celebrating

City of Hattiesburg Holiday Safety Tips
Your Guide to a Safe Holiday Season             


Hattiesburg-The holidays can be a hectic time for many of us, but in the midst of the chaos please don’t forget to stay safe from would-be thieves and preventable dangers. Ok, former straight A students, think you know all there is to know about staying out of harms way? Take a look at the City of Hattiesburg’s Holiday SafetyTips listed below and learn if you’ve aced the test.

• Try to shop during the day.
• Always shop with a friend or family member, never alone.
• Avoid wearing expensive jewelry.
• Avoid carrying large amounts of cash.
• Never leave your purse or wallet unattended, even for just a moment.
• Never leave your children alone in a store or automobile.
• Make sure your children know to find a police officer or security guard in the event they become lost and know their address and telephone number.
• Carry a cell phone with you and do not hesitate to call police if you witness suspicious behavior or feel threatened.
• Always be aware of your surroundings.
• Be aware of strangers who approach you. During this time of year “con artists” attempt to distract shoppers with the intention of taking their money or belongings.
• Park as close to the store or mall as possible in a well lit area.
• Avoid leaving any visible packages, presents, or valuables inside of your vehicle. Secure these items in the trunk.
• Always lock your vehicle.
• Have your keys ready before walking to your vehicle and avoid fumbling with packages. Often criminals view this as an opportunity to victimize you.

• If you are going out of town let a trusted neighbor and/or the police know and ask them to watch your home.
• Be cautious of who you make aware of your vacation plans.
• Make your home appears to be “lived in” by having a neighbor or friend collect your newspapers and mail.
• Use an automatic timer to control interior and exterior lights if you go out of town.
• Avoid placing your tree or presents in a front window. Not only do they make tempting targets, they limit your ability to see outside.
• Avoid placing decorations over windows or peep holes thereby limiting your ability to see outside.
• Do not advertise what you received for Christmas. Tear up your boxes before you put them out as trash.

• Appoint a designated driver before you leave for the evening.
• If a guest at your party has had too much to drink do not let them drive.
• Be cautious of taking drinks from strangers.
• If you are holding a party at your office or home hide and secure all valuables.
• Remember, fireworks are illegal in the City of Hattiesburg and in many cases their improper and unsupervised use has resulted in serious injury and loss of property by fire.
• If you are in an area where fireworks are legal, never allow children to enjoy them unsupervised.
• Never discharge a firearm into the air! In years past, many people have been seriously injured or killed by falling bullets.