Out and about this Summer? Keep Safe.

Written by Oladotun Togun

Hello Ladies,

Wow, and its summer time again, where are we going to spend summer? Dubai? London? The United States of America - you could stop by at my cousin’s house, his name is Barry and his wife's name is Michelle ..wink,wink.

Most times we go to the familiar places, and do the familiar things. Staying at apartments we have stayed in every time we go there. But sad to say, the world has changed, with more danger around us. This is not to scare us, but really about keeping us informed and also knowing what to do in any situation.

We will address two genres of ladies, first my single ladies and then the fantastic moms.

Single ladies - going to an exotic location alone or with some other girl friends:

  • Ensure you research the areas you are going to: hotels, restaurants and attractions ahead of time. Make a mental note of the distance between the hotel and these locations. So you know when a five minute cab ride turns into an hour call for help. 
  • Always sit directly behind the driver, rather than in front with him. This will be a difficult place for any would be attacker to reach you and also a good place to defend yourself from if need be. 
  • When going out, always go out with someone, there is strength in numbers.
  • Know your alcohol limit. - This can never be over emphasized. 
  • Better to call a cab from the hotel you are staying at.
  • Always keep your room number private and well hidden when out and about by the pool looking fabulous or by the bar having drinks, and yes still looking fabulous.
  • Always have a sense of your surroundings and what’s happening. 
  • No walking to anywhere at night especially alone.
  • Have Emergency contacts for the city you are in- Police, your Passport issuing authority (either Embassy or Chancery) at hand in case you need help.
By no means is this list extensive but it’s a good place to start.

Fantastic Moms - vacation time out of the country means you will take on your secret identity as a ‘Super mom’ 24/7. You will have to deal with the kids with little or no help.

  • When departing your country, always hold over the counter medication for your little ones - allergy, malaria, vitamins, and pain medication.
  • When you get to your final destination, go around the block or street, just to ensure you have an understanding of what has changed in the neighborhood.
  • We have always heard of the "Iya Insurance" in the United Kingdom, LOL, these are those old ladies that sit at their windows looking onto the street and keep watch. If anything is amiss, they have the police on speed dial. - It won’t hurt for you to spend 5 -10 minutes doing that. You would learn a lot more about your neighborhood. 
  • The EMERGENCY NUMBERS - Police, Ambulance, and Fire etc must be pasted up or printed and placed in significant places. The Fridge door is always fabulous for this. Rather than Chinese and pizza menus (they can come below) …shout out to our pizza moms.
  • Keen watch at the playgrounds or parks, sad to say, you have all sorts of predators at the parks.
  • Always check what medical issues are ongoing in the country of visit. I.e. malaria, cholera etc. and practice to basic hygiene rules.
  • Know your embassy. It’s very imperative to know at least one staff there or have a contact.
  • Scan ALL travel documents i.e. Passport data pages and visa and send it to yourself on a yahoo, Gmail, Hotmail type accounts. Just in case one looses a passport, it is easier to retrieve and face authorities there with printed information rather than word of mouth.
  • Always carry medication and prescriptions in carryon luggage. Just in case suit cases don't arrive in time, you have the bare necessities, and can buy anything else you need such as under garments and toiletries.
  • Basic first aid for children should be learnt. And NOT the urban myths told to us by our parents i.e. if someone faints pour water on his face. WRONG. Lift the person’s legs up and let blood flow back to the brain. - this is the part where our mother’s advice on wearing clean under garments comes in : )
Stay safe, have a fantastic summer and treat yourself. Ladies you deserve it. 
About the writer
Oladotun Togun is a Security Professional with noteworthy security expertise spanning over 15 years. He has 10 years management level experience in various industries ranging from Telecoms to Finance and Manufacturing. Dotun writes for Sitrep Nigeria - a consortium of organizations who are keen to reawaken community policing and ensuring safety of lives and possessions. Through their online portal, they collect data as well as organize and disseminate useful information about the state of security in the nation. www.sitrepnigeria.com