how to stay safe in the dark student tips host students

How to stay safe in the dark

It’s that time of year, summer is a distant memory, and winter is around the corner. We are getting ready for Halloween, Bonfire Night and Christmas, and the dark evenings are starting to draw in. Not to mention the dreaded autumn clock change and longer darker nights.

Undeniably it’s important to stay safe and be cautious at all times of the year. But it’s particularly true this time of year; the mornings stay darker for longer and the afternoons and evenings become darker sooner. So, below are a our top tips to being safe in the winter, especially when walking in the dark.

Tips for staying safe when travelling in the dark.

how to stay safe in the dark student tips host students

Travel with mates.

We know it is not always possible, but when you can, try to travel with others. There is safety in numbers.

But if you have to travel solo…

Tell someone where you are going.

Let your mates know that you’ll be walking or getting public transport home or to uni and tell them when you should arrive. Let them know when you do arrive safely. Letting someone know when and where you are going means that if they don’t hear from you after your expected arrival time, they can check on you to ensure your safety.

Plan your route.

You may not be familiar with your route if you’re travelling somewhere new, it differs from the way you normally go, or if you are using a different method of transport to get to work. In any of these cases, it can be useful to practice your route in daylight and check your route before setting off.

Charge your phone.

how to stay safe in the dark student tips host students

Ensure you have plenty of charge on your mobile to last the trip before you leave. This means that incase of an emergency, you have your phone to get in contact with someone to help. Did you know that there are apps specifically made for safely whilst walking? Read our blog about the top personal safety apps.

Follow a familiar route.

If you can, stick to using routes that you know and are comfortable with. This means you are less likely to get lost and become vulnerable.

Walk in the direction of oncoming traffic.

Walking home by a main road? Its a great idea to walk in the direction of oncoming traffic whilst it is dark outside. You can use the headlights as light, and it also means that you are visible to the public.

Stay in well lit areas.

If it is possible, stay in lit areas when walking at night or early in the morning. Keep a mini flashlight on your keychain, where it will always be with you. It will provide light in extra dark areas and give you more confidence. Or learn to use the built-in torch on your phone. You can download a flashlight app if your phone doesn’t have a built-in option.

Keep valuables hidden.

Sometimes it is nice to walk with headphones in, but in some circumstances this can make you a target. If you find yourself walking in the dark and there is no one else around, it is a good idea to keep your valuables hidden (phone included too) and

Trust your instincts.

how to stay safe in the dark student tips host students

If you don’t feel like something is right and you are being followed, cross the road, change your route, or walk as quickly as possible to a well-lit public place.  If this is not possible, use your mobile to ring a friend, family member or emergency services if it requires it. If you’re in a situation or environment where you feel unsafe or scared, it is essential to remove yourself from the situation and, if you need it, find help.

What to do if you feel you are in danger.

Make noise.

Attackers don’t want to get caught. Do whatever it takes to attract the attention on people nearby. Yell for help. Scream. This will act as a deterrent to attackers and gives you time to get away.

Get to a safe place.

As quick as you can, get to a safe place, such as a café, shop or nearby house. Call the police and report the incident. Include details of the confrontation, as well as a description of the perpetrator.


For more top tips, follow Host on our social channels FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

 

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