Ah, the sweet smell of Spring …..
With the arrival of Spring, sun-kissed sand is calling and bright, beautiful beaches await your arrival. It’s that time of year when thousands of teens, college students, and families partake in the always popular phenomenon known as Spring Break! For one week in March, vacationers descend on beaches, ski resorts and picture-perfect vacation spots to help them rejuvenate and renew. But time away from school and jobs doesn’t mean that criminals are also taking a break.
Before you scamper away to a sunny locale to unwind, keep these Spring Break safety tips in mind:
- Trust your instincts. Don’t go out with someone you just met and be aware of your surroundings. If you are enjoying the nightlife at a vacation hotspot, never drink from a glass that was left unattended and keep your hand over your drink so no one can slip something into it.
- Know your limits. Limit your alcohol intake and keep copies of important telephone numbers separate from your cell phone in case it’s lost or stolen and you need to contact someone for help. Don’t go out alone and stay with the same groups of family and friends who traveled with you.
- Do your homework. Check out your lodging ahead of time and, if possible, stay on a higher floor of your hotel making it more difficult for criminals to get in and out of your room with your valuables quickly. Keep your awareness level high when you travel to popular family-friendly destinations like zoos and beaches. Criminals are lurking, waiting for your head to be in the clouds so they can catch you off guard and remove valuables from purses and backpacks.
While away, make sure you secure your home and valuables. According to “Crime in Arizona,” most burglaries occur during the hours of 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. and the average value of stolen items is more than $1,700, so make your home safe to prevent this from happening to you.
- Lock your house, secure your pet door and make sure windows are closed and latched.
- Don’t post on social media about when you are departing and returning.
- Avoid packing your most expensive clothing and jewelry and instead secure them in a locked closet or safe before departing.
- Are you driving to your vacation destination? It’s a good idea to park any other vehicle in the garage so those passing by don’t notice you are away. Let your close friends and neighbors know where you are going and when to expect you back. Remember those old-fashioned paper maps? Take one with you, cell phone service isn’t always available or accurate. Don’t get lost or turned around if your cell phone service drops on the way to your breezy bungalow.
Spring Break is the perfect time for families to reconnect and return full of energy with a renewed attitude. Use the week away to enjoy stunning views and sweet siestas without worrying about criminals who may want to take advantage of your absence or your unfamiliarity with the area. The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office wishes you a safe and spectacular Spring Break.