Off-Campus Safety | Mercy College

Off-Campus Safety

Mercy College of Ohio is committed to providing a safe environment for all students and citizens of our community. This guide outlines important safety information and offers easy-to-follow guidelines to help you stay safe and out of harm’s way.
 
  • Have working lights at all entrances.
  • Have locks on all doors and windows, and use them.
  • Do not use your full name on your mailbox, in the telephone directory or on your answering machine.
  • Know which neighbors you can depend on in an emergency.
  • Check to see who is at the door before opening it.
  • Don't hide extra keys in accessible places. Criminals will find them.
  • Never give personal information to telephone solicitors.
  • Ask for photo identification from all repair personnel. If you are suspicious, call to verify their employment.
  • Do not let strangers into your home to use the telephone. Offer to make the call for them.
  • Consider creating a "safe room" with a separate telephone line or cell phone. If someone breaks in you can retreat there and call for help.
  • Stay with a friend or group whenever possible.
  • Stay away from heavily wooded, poorly lit or secluded areas.
  • Do not wear headphones.
  • Be wary walking by shrubbery or other heavy vegetation that could be used as hiding places.
  • Wear brightly colored clothing to improve your visibility.
  • Vary your route and pattern.
  • Carry a whistle or personal-alarm device.
  • If you're being followed, go to the nearest residence, open business or group of people.
  • Carry the keys for your vehicle or home with you.
  • Keep your car in good working order and the gas tank at least half full.
  • As you approach your parked car, check for any suspicious persons in the vicinity.
  • Always park in visible, well-lit areas.
  • Have your keys ready when approaching your car to reduce the time needed to enter.
  • When driving, keep the doors locked and the windows rolled up.
  • Exercise caution when using underground parking garages. If possible, avoid going there alone.
  • Avoid parking near large pickup trucks or vans. They can be used as convenient hiding places.
  • Carry in your car: flashlight, fix-a-flat, maps, warm clothing, first-aid kit, empty gas can.
  • Do not open your window if someone approaches your car to ask for directions, the time, etc. Keep car doors locked.
  • When stopped at traffic lights, allow space between you and the car in front so you can drive away if necessary.
  • Advise a family member, roommate or friend of your travel route and time. Call when you arrive safely.
  • Have the exact fare ready to avoid fumbling for money or displaying extra cash.
  • Sit in an aisle seat if possible. This allows you to observe your surroundings and avoid getting "boxed-in" against the window.
  • Sit near the driver/operator if possible, but avoid sitting next to the door. A thief could snatch your belongings and quickly exit.
  • Avoid dozing off or becoming overly engrossed in what you're reading. It can make you an easy target.
  • Keep your purse, bags, backpack or packages close to you. Do not leave them on an empty seat.
  • Be wary of noisy passengers arguing or causing a commotion. This could be staged to distract you while others are trying to steal your valuables.
  • Observe the behavior of those around you. If you feel uneasy, change your seat or alert the driver.
Don't be a "target of opportunity." To keep your home safe while you're out of town, do the following:
  • Set automatic timers for indoor and outdoor lights, televisions and radios.
  • Set poles in the tracks of your sliding glass doors.
  • Leave keys with a neighbor. Do not hide extra keys outside. Burglars will look there first.
  • Ask neighbors to check your home regularly and have a number where you can be reached in an emergency.
  • Leave drapes and shades open to make the house appear occupied.
  • Ask a neighbor to use your garbage cans. Empty garbage cans are clues that you're away.
  • Leave a parked car in your driveway.