August 23, 2011

NEWS: Staying Safe On The Road

By Mitchell Smith

The most prevalent form of crime on IUPUI's campus is theft, according to the IUPUI Police department’s website. The majority of theft on campus is nonviolent; however, there are recorded incidents of robbery and other crimes. 

The IUPUI police have published safety tips to help students and faculty protect their personal property. They recommend never leaving personal items unattended due to the increased probability that it will be stolen if left unattended. “Whenever you leave a study area, classroom, canteen or a bench in a lobby—even if it’s just for a minute—take your laptop, cell phone, ipod, camera, wallet or purse and book bag with you,” Public Information Officer David Briggs.

Vehicle Theft and Break-In
The majority of students and faculty drive vehicles to class and park on campus. due to the large amount of parked cars, vehicular theft and break-in is of significant concern to the IUPUI police.
The IUPUI Police department recommends:
• Removing all electronic items from your vehicle (i.e. cell phone and charger, GPS units and/or any other items of value) and to lock them in your trunk before you park.
• Always rolling up your windows and locking your car.
• Taking your keys with you and not leaving a spare key inside or anywhere on the vehicle.

Bicycle Theft
As cycling is becoming more popular around the city, bicycle theft is of concern to IUPUI commuters.
“The total bike thefts are down comparing 2010 with 2011,” according to Officer Briggs. “In 2010 we had 21 bikes listed with one being a found property. In 2011 we had 13 taken.”
The IUPUI Police department recommends:
• whenever possible, locking your bike to a bike rack and to avoid locking it to items that can be easily cut, broken or removed.
• using a steel U-Shaped bike lock. Two locks are better than one and lightweight cable or chain locks no longer provide adequate security in most areas.
• leaving as little space as possible within the “u” of the lock to make it harder for thieves to pry it open.
• keeping the lock up, off the ground.
• take the seat with you if it’s easily removable and/or expensive. 
• record your make, model, serial number and take a digital photo of your bicycle to assist the police if your bicycle is stolen.

Pedestrian/Cyclist/Driver Traffic Safety
The IUPUI Police say drivers, pedestrians and cyclists need to:
• slow down and be aware of what’s going on around them
• always look for pedestrians, cars or cyclists—especially when at an intersection with a traffic light.
• make eye contact with cyclists, drivers or pedestrians to confirm they see you. Never assume they do—even if they make eye contact.
Cyclists need to:
• not ride on the sidewalks or ride the wrong-way, against traffic.
• not stop in a vehicles blind spot.

• signal their turns.

Pedestrians need to
• stop and look both ways every

time before crossing the street.

• use pedestrian push buttons; obey “walk” and “don’t walk” signs.

drivers need to:
• obey the posted speed limit.
• look for stopped vehicles; Indiana law requires all vehicles to stop if approaching a vehicle from the rear that has stopped at a cross- walk for a pedestrian.

In addition to these suggestions (or ‘recommendations’), the IUPUI Police Department offers Rape Aggression defense training for female students and faculty. The RAD class teaches self-confidence, defensive techniques and common sense com- bined together to maximize safety. 

For more information on the law itself, check out the Indiana State we bite here:

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