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Prevention & Safety

On The Road

  • Never carry large amounts of cash; use traveler’s checks. If you must carry large sums of money, do not display it openly.
  • Keep a record of traveler’s checks and credit card numbers in a safe place. Have the telephone numbers to call in case your checks or credit cards are lost or stolen.
  • Be aware of your surroundings and never advertise your plans, including travel routes and the amount of cash you are carrying.
  • Do not stop to offer help to a stranded motorist. Go to the nearest telephone booth, and call for assistance.
  • If you suspect someone is following you, drive to the nearest service station, restaurant, or business and call the police or sheriff’s department. If you believe it is unsafe to get out of your car, honk your horn and flash your lights to draw attention.
  • If your car breaks down, raise the hood and attach a white cloth to the car antenna as an emergency signal. Stay in your locked car, ask anyone who stops to call the police or a garage. If you must abandon your car, keep all passengers together.

Hotel and Motel Security

  • When staying overnight at a hotel or motel, remember the following:
  • Determine the most direct route to and from your room to the fire escapes, elevators, and nearest telephone.
  • Use all auxiliary locking devices on door and windows. You may want to purchase a port-able door lock for traveling.
  • Use the door viewer to identify anyone re-questing entry. Open the door only if you are certain the person has a legitimate reason to enter your room. If in doubt, call the office.
  • Unpack and place belongings in the closet and dresser. Arrange your things so you will know if anything is missing.
  • Consider locking any electrical appliances in your luggage. Suitcases should always be locked so they cannot be used to carry your property out of your room.
  • Never leave money, checks, credit cards, or car keys in the room. Take them with you.
  • Use the hotel/motel safe to store extra cash, expensive jewelry, or other valuables.
  • Report any lost or stolen items to the management and to the police.
  • Report to the management any suspicious movements in the corridors or rooms. Remember: The only way to stop crime is to get involved in crime prevention.

Car Security

  • Always lock your car.
  • Always lock valuables out of sight, preferably in the trunk. Always carry wallets, checkbooks, and purses with you.
  • Do not advertise that you are a tourist. Place maps and travel brochures in the glove compartment.
  • Park in well-lit, busy areas.
  • Check the back seat before getting into your car.
  • Mark your car radio and other removable car equipment with your driver’s license number (by “CA” for identification.)


  • Remember: Planning reduces your chance of becoming the victim of a crime.
  • Ask for directions at the hotel/motel to those attractions you want to visit.
  • Select tour guides carefully.
  • Ask if any areas in town should be avoided. Stick to well-lit main streets and public areas.
  • Looking lost may make you look like an easy target for crime. If you do get lost, find an open business and ask for directions.
  • Only carry with you the cash you will need, and carry only small denominations.
  • If older children go off separately, be sure they understand the importance of keeping track of time and returning promptly at appointed hours.

When You Return Home

If you suspect your home has been burglarized:

  • Do not go in. Go to a neighbor’s, and call police immediately. Wait outside for them to arrive. Do not try to confront a burglar.
  • After a burglary, do not touch anything. Call the police immediately - a delay can reduce the chances of catching the criminal.

At Home

An empty house is a tempting target for a burglar. Use this checklist of tips to safeguard your home while you are gone.

  • Have good locks on all doors and windows, and use them.
  • Engrave your valuables with your driver’s license number (preceded by “CA”) or other identification number and post “Operation Identification” stickers in entry doors and windows.
  • Never leave your house key hidden outside under a doormat, in a flower pot, or on the ledge of a door.
  • Tell your police department you plan to be away. Patrol officers may be able to check your home periodically. Sign up for Vacation Check.
  • Stop all deliveries, or arrange for someone to pick up your mail, newspapers, and packages.
  • Arrange for someone to mow your lawn or rake leaves to give your home a lived-in look.
  • Use timers to turn lights and a radio on and off at appropriate times.
  • Hide garbage cans in the basement of a storage shed. Empty cans when everyone else’s are full can tell a burglar you are away.
  • Turn the bell on your telephone down low so a burglar will not be alerted to your absence by its ringing.
  • Close and lock garage doors and windows. Ask a neighbor to park occasionally in your driveway. If you leave your car at home, park it in the driveway rather than the garage. Have your neighbor move it occasionally so it looks like you are using it.
  • Leave your blinds, shades, and curtains in a normal position. Do not close them unless that is what you do when you are at home.
  • Ask a neighbor to watch the house while you are away. Leave your vacation address and telephone number with a neighbor so you can be reached in case of emergency.

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The Fullerton Police Department

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