For many of you this part of your life is probably the first time you will be away from home and there is a lot to think about. If you are studying in Cumbria it is a great place to live and study and we want to help you to enjoy what Cumbria has to offer. However, our safety advice to protect you and your stuff should help wherever you are studying.
Think Before You Drink
It is well known that most students enjoy a drink in amongst all their studies. Our advice is if you are drinking alcohol please drink responsibly, know your limits and think before you drink. Irresponsible use of alcohol can cause harm to individuals, families and communities leading to crime and anti-social behaviour. The following film clip illustrates the negative impact that alcohol can have if used irresponsibly.
Please note: clip contains scenes of violence from CCTV cameras.
Think Before You Drink
Staying Safe on a Night Out:
• Plan your night out, let someone know where you are going and when you will be home.
• Carry a charged mobile phone and put a trusted taxi number in your contacts.
• Never accept a drink from someone you don't know or don't trust.
• Keep your drink with you at all times, if it looks or tastes suspicious don't drink it. It only takes a brief moment for someone to spike a drink.
• Watch out for your friends & make sure they get home safely.
• Don't walk alone after dark - plan ahead.
• Avoid taking short cuts, keep to well-lit main streets.
• Never accept lifts from strangers or unregistered taxis.
• Drink responsibly; bing drinking makes you more vulnerable.
• Think: Keys, money, phone, plans to get home?
• Plan in advance how you’re going to get home safely
• Stick with your friends and look out for each other
• Arrange a safe meeting place in case you get separated
• Stash some cash in case you lose your purse
• Know your limits and always stay in control
• Store an ICE (in case of emergency) number in your phone
Living Away From Home - Advice & Tips
This may be the first time you are living away from home, there can be a lot to remember so please follow the advice below to keep your possessions safe. Burglars love an easy life and think students don’t bother about security. Half of all student burglaries happen with no force needed to get in.
• In shared accommodation, look after each other - keep the outer doors locked and check who you let in or who follows you in. Challenge anyone you don’t know.
• Lock doors & windows before you go out.
• Fit burglar alarms & good outside security lighting, check regularly to ensure they work.
• Remove keys from locks & keep out of reach of windows & doors.
• Ensure your house is secure - prevent someone entering when you are busy elsewhere in the house or garden.
• Ensure side gates & sheds are locked.
• Keep gifts, cash & valuables safe & well hidden, so they can’t be seen or reached by thieves.
• Postcode your valuables with a UV pen. It makes it easier to get it back to you.
• Leave a light on in a room & draw curtains when you go out at night.
• Look out for your neighbour’s property.
• Consider joining a Neighbourhood Watch Scheme.
• Cancel newspapers, milk etc when you go on holiday.
• Make sure callers to your home are genuine, always ask for ID.
• Don't forget about insurance - make sure your important things are covered.
• Careful what you put in the bin - Your rubbish could be valuable in the wrong hands! Shred it.
Looking After Your Stuff
Make sure you keep your mobile, tablet, ipod, mp3 player, laptop and other possessions safe and protect them from thieves:
• Don't make it easy for thieves - keep your valuables secure
• Leave valuables at home if possible
• Keep your items in a safe place, preferably in a zipped up pocket or bag
• Don’t leave your stuff unattended even for a short time
• When using your mobile or mp3 player when out, don’t be distracted always remain aware of what is going on around you and who could be watching you
If you are attending any festivals this year Select Here for some advice and tips from our officers on festivals & camping. We want you to enjoy your events safely and crime free so please take time to consider some of our advice and info.
Don’t put up with people treating you badly when you are in a relationship, for information and advice visit: www.direct.gov.uk/thisisabuse
Drugs And Alcohol
Selecting Here for advice and information about drugs and alcohol to visit the “Talk to Frank” site.
On The Roads
• Don't use your mobile whilst driving. Keep your hands on the wheel and your attention on the road.
• If you're tired and drowsy don't drive - your response time will suffer. If you feel yourself getting drowsy pull off into a safe area and rest.
• Don't drink and drive. Alcohol in your system can alter your perception when driving - it's not worth it.
• If you have children, pets, or even crazy friends in the car with you, keep them in check. Anything that takes a driver's attention away from the road has the potential to be lethal and incredibly dangerous.
• Watch your speed, limits are set for a reason to protect you and others. They are not there to be ignored or beaten.
• Remember to alter your speed in different weather/driving conditions - your stopping distances will change. You might think you're totally in control driving at speed, but if you're put to the test it might be the last test you ever take.
• Keep alert - Things on the road can change in an instant and you need to be ready to deal. Daydreaming, eating, tuning your radio, etc... will all distract you and anything could happen in them seconds - another driver crosses your path, a child runs into the road, etc... Keep alert, be aware.
Select Here for further road and vehicle safety advice.
Keep your focus on the road where it belongs
NUS, information and advice from the student union: www.nus.org.uk
University of Cumbria: www.cumbria.ac.uk