There has been a recent increase of muggings in downtown Madison. Many of these have occurred in parking garages due to the lack of lighting, and easy escape routes. Here are 5 safety and self-defense tips to keep in mind in order to keep safe in a parking lot environment:
(1) Stay off your cell phone and keep focused on getting to your car safely. Talking on your cell phone gives an assailant the ‘green light’ to take advantage of your lack of focus. Don’t give them that opportunity!
(2) Park as close to exits as possible! This will reduce the time a potential attacker has to intercept you. Always be aware of the vehicles around your vehicle and make your exit as quickly as possible. Have your keys in hand and if you have an auto-start function on your vehicle, use it in order to avoid long searches for your keys.
(3) Don’t hesitate to ask a security guard or police officer to escort you to your car. However, be aware of a security guard or police officer that approaches you–beware of imposters!
(4) If given the opportunity to exchange your purse or wallet for your safety, do so. Hollywood would love to make you think defending yourself against a weapon is possible….most times it’s not…even for someone that has studied the martial arts for years. There’s only 1 person more dangerous than a Blackbelt and that’s a White belt.
(5) Let a friend or family member know your general timeline for arriving to destinations (especially at night). If possible, travel with a friend–power in numbers!
Stay safe! Mr. Huett