Tis the Season to be Safe
By Office of Communication
Posted on November 19, 2012, November 19, 2012

Parking lots across the city will soon be packed with thousands of holiday shoppers.

This week, the holiday tradition starts early on Thanksgiving Day in many retail stores, in advance of one of the biggest shopping days of the year, which is typically called Black Friday.

The Arlington Police Department reminds shoppers to be safe and vigilant consumers.

"The holiday shopping season is a busy time for retailers, shoppers and those who might try to target unsuspecting individuals' said Sgt. Vincent Pewitt of the APD Community Support Bureau. "It is important to be vigilant and aware of your surroundings.'

This holiday season, shoppers can expect to see more APD foot and bike patrols in busy retail shopping districts throughout Arlington. More officers will be directing travel in and out of high-traffic areas such as the Arlington Parks Mall to keep traffic moving safely and efficiently. Dynamic message boards will be visible along shopping center corridors to remind motorists to lock vehicles and remove valuables.

In parking lots, consumers will notice more sky watch towers to help keep a watchful eye on pedestrians and vehicles. Citizens on Patrol will also be visible in high traffic areas to help identify suspicious activity.

Before you go, keep safety on the holiday shopping list.

Top 10 Safety Tips for a Crime-Free Holiday Season

Safety Tip #10
When dashing out for the holiday season, make sure the garage door is closed to prevent theft at home. Make sure all doors and windows are locked.

Safety Tip #9
When shopping after dark, park in well-lit areas. Have keys in hand and check to make sure no one is hiding inside your vehicle.

Safety Tip #8
Shop with friends or relatives because there is safety in numbers. Teach children what to do if you ever become separated.

Safety Tip #7
Use a waist pack carrier instead of purse and never count cash in open areas or at the ATM.

Safety Tip #6
When making online purchases, shop only from well-established and reputable sites. Make note of the icons that indicate security software is in place. Print and maintain a copy of all terms, conditions, warranties, and confirmation e-mails.

Safety Tip #5
When shopping online and making plans to meet the seller to purchase merchandise, never go alone. Ask someone to accompany you and choose to meet the seller in a public place. Be aware of scams. Learn more at www.craigslist.org/about/scams.

Safety Tip #4
If traveling for the holidays, ask a trusted neighbor to watch your home and pick up mail and newspapers. Purchase an automatic timer for lights.

Safety Tip #3
Always lock vehicle doors. Never keep holiday packages and valuable items in plain view inside of your vehicle.

Safety Tip #2
Before hitting the highways, plan your travel route and avoid distractions inside of the vehicle. Do not drink and drive. Motorists are also reminded to keep thumbs on the wheel. Do not text and drive.

Safety Tip #1
Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Report suspicious activity by calling 9-1-1.

For more holiday safety tips, visit at www.ArlingtonPD.org.

Tis the Season

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