The Christmas holidays is here already and of course the rush is in the air; from last minute Christmas shopping, to travel plans, just name it. Although I can’t seem to get the Christmas feel yet, maybe because the weather has been hot and dusty (pseudo harmattan), and the roads are still as congested with cars; well I’m presently in Lagos and don’t know if other parts of Nigeria can already feel Christmas in the air. I told a colleague yesterday to expect harmattan in Lagos on Boxing Day. That has been my observation in the last two years. Anyway, that’s gist for another day.
Despite the rate at which people have been travelling out of Lagos and even the fuel scarcity which seems to be a norm during the Christmas season for some years now, the traffic has been crazy, horrible in fact!
With Christmas just four days away, here are some of the basic safety tips for the Christmas holidays to adhere to whether you’ll be travelling or not.
- Don’t post your Travel Plans online
We live in a “social media” world and most times we get carried away with our activities online without taking our security and privacy into consideration. Not everything is meant for social media! It’s important to draw the line. Avoid posting your travel plans on social media platforms to avoid thefts or worst scenario, kidnap. There have been many sad stories surrounding this.
- Secure your house
The Christmas holidays is the most travelled period and this is one of the times to be more security conscious. As basic as it may sound, ensure that you lock all your doors before you travel. Also investing in security devices like the CCTV is just as vital especially if you live in a much bigger house. It’s not a bad idea to let your neighbours know that you wouldn’t be around for a period of time. This is to help monitor activities around your house and deter theft and home intruders.
- Turn off all electrical devices before leaving the house
Leaving electrical appliances connected have led to fire outbreak in the case of an electrical surge. Unplug your television, computer, refrigerators, toaster oven, and other appliances to protect them from power surges. This will help you save power as well. Also don’t leave your lights on at home if you’re travelling, in an effort to make it look like someone is in the house as this can look a bit suspicious at night.
- Mind what you eat
It’s no doubt that Christmas is a period of eating with enough assorted meals, both local and intercontinental (I’m literally salivating right now), finger foods, drinks ranging from alcoholic to non-alcoholic to go around. It’s also a season where most people throw caution to the wind but in the midst of the merriment, you wouldn’t want to fall ill or get involved in accidents that could have been avoided if some safety measures were observed. If you are on medication or have a medical condition, ensure that you avoid anything that would escalate the issue or inhibit the effectiveness of the medication.
- Don’t drink and drive
Drunk driving is a major contributory factor to road accidents and road deaths. Avoid alcohol if you would drive. If you must drink, drink responsibly but ensure that someone else drives. You can also opt for another safe alternate to get home.
- Avoid using the ATM in insolated places
If you must use the ATM, choose the one that is located in a well-lighted area with people around and withdraw only the amount that you need. Also be alert and observe people loitering around. Don’t linger at the ATM to count your cash, leave immediately you have completed the transaction.