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It’s that time of the year for our annual holiday safety article. You may think you know this all, you’ve heard a million holiday tips by now, it’s all common sense… that may all be true but a) everyone needs a reminder about personal safety every so often and b) we’ll keep it real and try to keep it interesting!
- If you are carrying a wallet, keep it in a front pocket. If you carry your wallet in your bag, close the zipper and keep the zipper side in front of you on your shoulder or in your hand.
- If walking on a sidewalk near a street, always walk facing the traffic to avoid being surprised by someone in a vehicle.
- Contrary to what we’ve heard often – to avoid eye contact – personal safety experts advise you to do the exact opposite. If someone is walking behind you or approaching you and you are unsure of their intent, make direct eye contact with them to let the person know that you are aware, you see them and you are not a victim.
- In your cell phone contacts, program “ICE,” which stands for “in case of emergency,” linking it to a family member or friend…someone you trust the police, firemen or other authorities to call if you are unable to call for yourself.
- Install a mirror app on your smartphone so that you can see who is behind you if you feel the need to do so.
- When approaching your home or vehicle, never fumble in your pocket, purse or bag for keys; have them in your hand prior to reaching the door.
- When approaching your parked car, look and make sure no one is hiding in or around your vehicle, especially in the back seat.
- When on public transportation, cover your jewelry. Turn stone rings toward the palm side of your hand.
- AAA and many other companies offer smartphone applications that enable motorists to request help without making a phone call. Download them before you need the help.
- Keep your space: intimate space = 0 to 1.5 feet; personal space = 1.5 to 4 feet; social space = 4 to 12 feet; and public space = 12 feet or more.
The above was the real part and now for the interesting:
Read below how you have a better chance of being legally executed than dying from a dog bite. Yes, these are United States stats.
Also, these odds are statistical averages over the entire U.S. population and do not necessarily reflect the chances of death for a particular person from a particular external cause. Odds of dying are affected by an individual’s activities, occupation, and where he or she lives and drives, among other things.
Given that the odds of dying from all possible causes are 1 in 1, worry about the ones you have some control over. Here are the lifetime odds of death for selected causes, from most likely to least:
|Cause of Death||Odds of Dying|
|Heart Disease and Cancer||1 in 7|
|Chronic Lower Respiratory Disease||1 in 27|
|Intentional Self-harm||1 in 97|
|Unintentional Poisoning By and Exposure to Noxious Substances||1 in 103|
|Motor Vehicle Crash||1 in 113|
|Fall||1 in 133|
|Assault by Firearm||1 in 358|
|Pedestrian Incident||1 in 672|
|Motorcycle Rider Incident||1 in 948|
|Unintentional Drowning and Submersion||1 in 1,183|
|Exposure to Fire, Flames or Smoke||1 in 1,454|
|Choking from Inhalation and Ingestion of Food||1 in 3,408|
|Pedacyclist Incident||1 in 4,337|
|Firearms Discharge||1 in 7,944|
|Air and Space Transport Incidents||1 in 9,737|
|Exposure to Excessive Natural Heat||1 in 10,784|
|Exposure to Electric Current, Radiation, Temperature and Pressure||1 in 14,695|
|Contact with Sharp Objects||1 in 30,860|
|Cataclysmic Storm||1 in 63,679|
|Contact with Hornets, Wasps and Bees||1 in 64,706|
|Contact with Heat and Hot Substances||1 in 69,169|
|Legal Execution||1 in 111,439|
|Being Bitten or Struck by a Dog||1 in 114,622|
|Lightning Strike||1 in 174,426|
Source: National Safety Council estimates based on data from National Center for Health Statistics–Mortality Data for 2013, as compiled from data provided by the 57 vital statistics jurisdictions through the Vital Statistics Cooperative Program. Deaths are classified on the basis of the 10th revision of the World Health Organization’s The International Classification of Diseases (ICD). For additional mortality figures, and estimated one-year and lifetime odds, see Injury Facts® 2016 Edition, pages 40-43.
BNI Operatives: Situationally aware.
As always, and especially during the holiday season, stay safe.