Sandy beaches, warm water and lots of parties beckon hundreds of thousands of college students to destinations across the world each year. The combination of partying and relaxing associated with this annual tradition can lead to increased safety risks. Make spring break memorable by having fun and helping yourself, your friends and others stay safe and healthy with these tips.
- Arrive safely. Driving through the night to make it to a sunny destination is common for spring breakers. But, the National Safety Council says traffic death rates are three times greater at night than during the day. If you can’t avoid night driving, have at least one person stay awake to talk to the driver.
- Don’t take chances at your hotel. Lock the doors and secure important belongings like passports and wallets in the safe. Make sure you know the name and address of your hotel or take a hotel business card out with you so you can give to a cab driver. This is especially important if you don’t speak the local language. Don’t tell new acquaintances your hotel or room number. You never know who has innocent or dangerous intentions.
- Protect your location. Sharing too much information on your location on social media may endanger your safety according to the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network. Adjust your privacy settings and use your best judgment when checking in on Facebook. Be cautious about revealing personal information and your location through status updates or tweets.
- Carry cash and phone numbers. Take a copy of your credit cards in case they are stolen.
- Use the buddy system. Never leave a party with a stranger and establish a place to meet in advance if you get separated. It’s always best to take a friend with you. If for whatever reason you do leave without your friends, give them details about where you’re going and when to expect you back.
- Create a code word. Create a secret signal or code word to let your friends know when you’re uncomfortable and need them to intervene.
- If you need help, ask for it. If there’s an emergency, don’t rely on a bystander to call for help. Call for help yourself to be sure first responders or the police get the message.
- Hydrate and wear sunscreen. Heat stroke and melanoma aren’t happy spring break thoughts, but too much time in the sun can leave you dehydrated with an increased risk of sunburns. Take your SPF and a bottle of water to the beach.
Tips Courtesy of FAMU PD.
Photo courtesy of @shinecity37 via @RattlersUnited.