As Christmas creeps closer, most people will have at least one festive celebration planned in their calendar.
The joint Prevention and Community Protection Department (Northamptonshire Police and Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service) would like to use this opportunity to remind people to socialise safely.
Consuming alcohol on a night out can make people less alert to potential dangers, but it is important to avoid drinking so much you are unable to take care of yourself.
Prevention Team Leader Paul Golley said: “We very much hope people will all be able to go out and enjoy their Christmas and New Year parties safely, but it is always sensible to keep an eye out for your personal safety.
“Criminals know that people are often distracted at this time of year and so it is likely they may be on the lookout for anyone they think hasn’t got an eye on something like their bag, their money or even their drink.”
Safety tips for socialising safely:
-When enjoying some time out at Christmas, don’t leave your bag unattended.
-Keep your purse safe in an internal pocket and don’t carry your PIN number with you.
-Don’t leave your drink unattended. It takes a matter of seconds for someone to tamper with a beverage.
-Do not accept a drink from a stranger.
-Drink water between alcoholic drinks.
-Consider equipping yourself with a personal safety alarm. Be aware of what is going on around you and be confident that you can keep safe.
-Plan your journey home. If you use a taxi, ensure it is registered. Make sure you know the locations of the official taxi ranks. Always carry the number of a trusted firm with you.
-When possible, try to share a taxi with a friend.
– If you have to walk home, walk with a friend. Stick to well-lit and busy streets and make sure someone knows the route you are taking. Do not walk home alone in the dark.
-Ensure your mobile phone is charged and in credit. But also remember to keep your phone hidden and just use it when you need to.
-Keep the money you need to get home separate from the rest of the cash you are carrying.
-If drinking alcohol, make sure you do not let the amount you drink affect your ability to take care of yourself.
-If you realise you have drunk too much or you feel strange after drinking something alcoholic or non-alcoholic, tell a friend straight away and make sure someone trusted within your group accompanies you home.