Senior citizens can be easy targets for such criminals as burglars, con artists, purse snatchers and muggers. Many seniors feel frightened and helpless, but they do not have to. You can help prevent crime by learning how criminals operate and how to foil them. Seniors do not necessarily need physical strength, agility or speed to protect themselves. What you do need is to BE ALERT, CAUTIOUS and SELF-CONFIDENT!
The following are safety tips which should be considered by every senior citizen:
- Always keep your doors and windows locked. Install deadbolt locks on all your doors (Remember, double-keyed deadbolts are against the fire code in Long Beach).
- Install a peephole in your front door and always look through it before opening the door to someone.
- Ask for proper identification from delivery persons or strangers. Don’t be afraid of asking if they are legitimate, they won’t mind.
- If a stranger asks to use your telephone, offer to place the call for them NEVER let a stranger into your home.
- Never give out information over the phone indicating that you are alone or that you won’t be home at a certain time.
- Have smoke detectors installed in all sleeping rooms. Replace the batteries in them once each year.
When You Go Out
- Before you go out, secure your residence properly, leaving a light and radio on and locking the doors and windows.
- Avoid walking alone. Try to have a friend accompany you – even during daylight hours.
- Walk confidently and at a steady pace. Avoid doorways, bushes and alleys where someone could hide.
- If you carry a purse, don’t dangle it from your arm. Carry it securely between your arm and your body. If a purse snatcher tries to steal your purse, your personal safety may depend on not trying to hang on to it.
- Don’t carry any more cash than necessary. Many grocery stores accept checks and automatic teller cards instead of cash. Have your paycheck or Social Security check deposited directly into your account.