According to Crime Stats SA, 5 900 crimes are reported at the South African Police Services every day. Many of these can be attributed to South Africans failing to adhere to simple steps to protect their personal safety.

Momentum Short-term Insurance and Multiply, the wellness and rewards programme offered by Momentum, offer few smart ways to improve South Africans’ personal safety:

  • Keep your cellphone charged at all times, and make sure that you’ve saved all relevant emergency numbers. Even better – learn them so in an emergency, you can call for help on somebody else’s phone if you need to.
  • When you leave for your destination, tell someone where you’re going and what time you expect to get there. That way, if you don’t arrive as planned, someone will raise the alarm and call for help for you.
  • Don’t flash cash or flaunt jewellery if you’re walking on the street. This makes you a prime target for mugging or theft.
  • Avoid talking on your phone while you’re walking in public. Not only do you display your phone to potential thieves, your conversation is likely to distract you from being fully aware of your surroundings.
  • If you use public transport, familiarise yourself with available timetables to make sure that you don’t spend time alone waiting in taxi, train or bus stations.
  • If you’re going to be walking anywhere, particularly at night, plan your route beforehand, and try to include well-lit busy streets on your journey.
  • If you are returning to your car in a parking lot, be aware of what is going on around you, looking out for loiterers, people following you or situations that could be a threat.
  • While everyone gets frustrated in traffic, don’t succumb to road rage in your frustration at other drivers. Road rage has caused fatalities in South Africa.
  • Sit with your family and devise an action plan if your home is invaded while you’re there. This could include identifying a safe room, or making sure that everyone knows where panic buttons are located. Ensure you never let strangers onto your property.
  • Remind your family about the importance of online safety. This includes never revealing your home address or telephone number online, and never highlighting the fact that you’re on holiday – no matter how much you want to show off those amazing holiday photographs on social media!

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