Holiday Season Safety

Holiday Season Safety

The holiday season has arrived and we are only a few weeks away from 2019! It is the time of year many look forward to spending it with family and friends, buying gifts for their loved ones, and taking holiday vacations. It is also the time of year when thieves are lurking the malls and homes are being burglarized. It is important to remember while this may be the best time of year, it is also the time of opportunity for criminals. These are a few tips to keep in mind while you enjoy the holiday season.

The malls during the holiday season are chaotic from finding parking to the long checkout lines. With the abundant crowds of people it is easy to get distracted, however this is the time to be the most alert. It is very important to be aware of individuals around you. Lurking in the crowds can be an individual waiting for the right moment and opportunity to take someone else’s belongings. You need to be conscious of your purchased items and make sure not to leave any bags unattended. Also, it is important for women to keep their purses closed and close, making sure no one can reach in and take anything. When leaving the mall it is also crucial to be attentive as to who is around when you put your bags in your vehicle. It would be best if you find a friend or family member to go along with you while you check off your Christmas list.

Many who cannot find time to go to the mall or simply refuse to deal with the Christmas chaos, rely on online shopping. This means various packages are being delivered to homes daily. When you order items online make sure you note for the packages to be placed in a discrete spot, behind a plant or behind your porch furniture. Anywhere that it is not visible for anyone driving by.

Once you have completed your holiday shopping we are sure you cannot wait to wrap everything up and put it underneath the Christmas tree.Always keep in mind that burglars can be watching the neighborhood and waiting for the opportunity to commit their crime. Try to not put the gifts so close to a door or window that is visible to anyone from the street. This is a big red flag as many will know whose homes are filled with Christmas goodies. Make sure your doors are always locked, including any back doors or side gates. If you have an alarm system, remember to turn it on before you leave your home. It is also important to be attentive as to who is roaming in your neighborhood. If you see something suspicious, say something and report it.

Another tip to keep in mind is if you are traveling this holiday season make sure you do so safely and keep your home secure. Ask a trustworthy neighbor to keep an eye on your home while you are away. Put your home lights on a timer so the house seems it is being occupied. These are deterrents for anyone thinking about burglarizing your home. Also, be careful with what you are posting on social media during the holiday season. Although it is fun to post about where you will be vacationing, it also important to think about who is viewing your posts. If you post about being away from home for a week, then this leaves individuals knowing that your home will be vacant for a week.

Remember to enjoy yourselves this holiday season but keep your guard up and be aware of your surroundings.

For more information on how you can stay safe this holiday season, please contact our office.

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas, a happy holiday season, and a wonderful 2019 from all of us at Specialized Investigations Consultants!

Author: Claudia Barrios

Safety Tips – Active Shooter

Safety Tips – Active Shooter

Unfortunately, active shooter encounters have become our reality. They can and have happened anywhere, schools, offices, bars and even festivals. Just this past week, innocent lives were taken at a California country bar as a result of a shooting. These unfortunate circumstances can happen at any point, anywhere and it is important to be prepared.

Many of these instances have happened to our most vulnerable members of society, children. School shootings have been of the worst shootings as they target such young people. Situations like Columbine, Virginia Tech, and Sandy Hook are only a few of the tragedies that have occurred due to an active shooter. It is sad that these occurrences happen however, they can be worse if individuals are not prepared to protect themselves or others around them. Teachers, parents and even students themselves need to be prepared and ready to react if they are ever in a situation like this.

But schools are not the only places that shootings can occur, it is important to always be prepared no matter where you are. Sadly, these occurrences can happen in your workplace, at dinner with your family, or while shopping at your local mall. It is important to have a plan with your family and educate your children as to what to do and where to go. Having a plan with your co-workers in the workplace is important as well.

We have provided the following safety tips to remember if you are ever in this situation.

When you walk into a place, whether it be a restaurant, movie theatre, or even a school always look for exit signs. Know where the nearest exits are and where you can escape should you ever encounter this situation. If there is an active shooter, try to escape. Go to the nearest exit and try to remove yourself from the situation. If you are unable to escape the situation, look for the best form of protection. Desks or tables are always a good form of protection. Also, counters and large cabinets can be used as well for protection. If you are in a mall, school or office, look for places where you can barricade yourself. Find the nearest restroom and lock yourself in. Once you have reached a safe spot, call 911. If the shooter is nearby try to be as quiet as possible. If you cannot call 911, send someone a text message that can call for you. The goal is to be as discrete as possible and stay out of the shooter’s view.

It is important to know what to do in these situations because you never know if it can happen to you. Make sure you and your loved ones are ready and informed on what to do if they ever encounter an active shooter.

Remember, run first and try to escape. If you don’t have time to run, hide. As a last resort, fight.

For more information please contact our office as we can provide you with more tips as well as training on what to do in the event of an active shooting.



Author: Claudia Barrios