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Warning to female drivers to be vigilant

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We have a number of steps that you should consider to ensure your safety on the road writes Geraldine Herbert

The Gardai are warning female drivers travelling alone to be extra vigilant particularly when stopping on secluded roadsides. The warning comes in the wake of a number of shocking incidents in recent months which include a knife-point high-jacking and a serious assault.

 

So how can you protect yourself?

 

Always ensure

  • You have a mobile phone – full charged and if you have a pay-as-you go mobile ensure you have credit on it.
  • Keep the car at least half full of fuel
  • Have your car regularly serviced and properly maintained as this will reduce the risk of breakdown
  • Breakdown cover is also an added reassurance
  • Your doors are locked, particularly if you’re stopping regularly at traffic lights or junctions

 

Many crimes against female motorists occur as they are heading to or from their vehicles

  1. Park in a well lit area.
  2. When returning to your parked car, be aware of the surroundings. Walk with purpose and stay alert
  3. Be wary of people asking for directions or handing out fliers
  4. Avoid driving alone if you are nervous. Go with someone whenever possible, especially at night.
  5. Always ensure that you take your car keys out of the vehicle if you are going into shops or a petrol station

 

When driving

  1. Keep a safe distance between your car and the car in front.
  2.  Stay alert at all times, it only takes a moments lapse in concentration to be a victim of fraud.
  3. Don’t get lost! Consider getting a sat nav in your car or an app on your phone.
  4. Never give lifts to strangers.
  5. Beware of anyone who tries to signal you. Do not get out of your car unless you feel safe to do so; there has been  reports of staged accidents so people will stop to help.

 

Remember, the chances of anything happening to you is very small but  nonetheless following these few simple tips can help to ensure that you are safe on the roads.

Geraldine Herbert

5th February, 2016

 

Author: Geraldine Herbert

Contributing Editor and Motoring Columnist for the Sunday Independent and editor of wheelsforwomen. Geraldine is also a regular contributor to Good Housekeeping (UK) and to RTÉ Radio One, Newstalk, TodayFM and BBC Radio. You can follow Geraldine on Twitter at @GerHerbert1

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