We all know that the election could lead to turbulent times, and there are going to be risks out there. What can you do if you come across some type of violence or protesting? Let’s start with some general tips to keep yourself safe:
- Don’t wear candidate-specific clothing. You are only bringing attention to yourself.
- Stay away from areas where there are demonstrations
- Check out the situation before you head out
- Things can change very quickly so have a plan to get out of violent situations.
- Keep up with local news
- Don’t go near large gatherings
- Stay home if you hear about demonstrations in your area
- If you come upon a protest, leave the area as quickly as possible.
- If you have to go where there are protests, bring a friend and stay together.
- If you see police trying to settle a situation, leave.
Protests and Demonstrations – Safety Tips
If you want to participate in a protest or demonstration, here are some tips:
- Don’t get involved if civil unrest breaks out. You could get jailed, hurt, or even killed.
- Don’t take videos or photos. Law enforcement might see it as threatening.
- Leave if things get violent.
Unexpected Civil Unrest – Safety Tips
If you find yourself in the middle of unexpected civil unrest, here are some tips:
- If things get violent, do your best to get out quickly. Try to find a safe, public place like a museum, hospital, church, or hotel.
- Plan a few routes out of the area. Keep in mind that roads could be closed.
- Curfews might be imposed, and it’s best to follow them.
- Try to get to the edge of the crowd, and as soon as you can get away, you should.
- Walk and try not to run. Running can bring unwanted attention
- If you get arrested, don’t resist, even if you are totally innocent. You can work it out later.
- Stay away from glass windows and try to move with the flow of the crowd.
- Avoid banks, fast food places, government buildings and police stations, as they are often targets during uprisings.
- If you get into a tight spot, grab your wrists and push your elbows out. This will give you a bit of air.
- If you are pushed or fall to the ground, try to get close to a wall and roll into a ball. Cover your head.
- If shots ring out, drop to the ground and cover your neck and head.
- Don’t try to drive a car through a crowd.
- If you do end up in a crowd while driving, turn down the nearest side street, turn around, or reverse.
- If you can’t move, park, lock it, and leave the car. If you can’t get out, turn off the engine and lock the doors.
Stuck in a Hotel or Your Home – Safety Tips
If you are home or in a hotel when violence occurs, here are some tips:
- Stay inside and don’t leave
- Reach out to your family and police to let them know where you are.
- Stay away from windows, draw the blinds, and lock all windows and doors.
- Find a place to sleep in the center of the home or hotel room.
Following Election Civil Unrest – Safety Tips
Once things have settled down, keep the following in mind:
- Stay where you are safe until you know it’s okay to leave.
- If you are hurt, get medical attention
- Report damage to police
- Reach out to family to let them know where you are
- Report damage to your insurance company
Shut Downs – Tips
Shut downs can happen during times of unrest. Keep the following on hand:
- First aid kits
- Baby and pet supplies
- Radios and batteries
- Flash lights
- Gas in your vehicle
- Phones, laptops, and chargers
- A bag with a couple of days of clothes for everyone in your family
- Essential documents
- Emergency contacts
Written by Robert Siciliano, CEO of Credit Parent, Head of Training & Security Awareness Expert at Protect Now, #1 Best Selling Amazon author, Media Personality & Architect of CSI Protection Certification.