Safety Tips

To help you enjoy your stay, please take a few moments to read these Safety Tips for Annual Meeting Attendees.

When Leaving Home...

DO DON'T
Keep a list at home of the important credit cards and identification you plan to take with you. It's hard to count on your memory if they are lost. Don't display large amounts of cash when paying for taxis or tips.
Carry with you the name, address, and phone number of an individual to contact in case of accident. Don't leave luggage unattended. Keep it in full view at all times. If your hotel room is not ready when you check in, use the luggage check-in service at the bell captain's desk.
Be sure to carry a card describing any medical difficulties such as diabetes or allergies to any drugs.  
Take as little cash as possible. Carry travelers' checks and credit cards to cover expenses.

When Checking In...

DO DON'T
Use the hotel vault safe deposit service, provided to all registered guests, for jewelry and valuables. Just ask at the front desk. Don't leave money or jewelry in your hotel room, even for a short time. Remember, thieves know all the same hiding places you do!
Be careful what you say in the presence of strangers. Never reveal your room number or discuss plans for leaving the hotel in a crowded area where you can be overheard. Don't put your room key down beside you on a restaurant table, bar, or at poolside. You may find your room robbed while you are enjoying yourself.
Turn in your room key at the front desk when you leave the hotel. This way you will avoid losing it. Don't reveal your room number within earshot of unfamiliar people (on an elevator or in a restaurant).
Ask at the front desk or concierge desk about the neighborhood around the hotel so you know what streets to avoid.

When Staying In the Hotel...

DO DON'T
Use your peephole to identify callers before letting them in. If you don't have a peephole, put on the chain and open the door to see who is there. Don't automatically open your room door if someone knocks. Make sure you know who your callers are before you let them in.
Call the front desk before letting in anyone claiming to be a maintenance or TV repair person. Find out if the claim is legitimate before opening the door. Don't leave your room door ajar if you are going down the hall for ice. Someone might go in while you aren't looking.
Use every locking device on your door (the nightbolt, deadbolt, etc.) when you are in your room. Don't enter your room if the door is ajar. Call security to go in with you. Make sure the security guard checks all places in the room where someone could be hiding.
Check all areas of your room (bath, closet, etc.) before letting the bellperson go. Don't open your room door if someone is following you down the hall. Let the individual go before you put the key in the lock.
Stand near the elevator control panel. If accosted, push all the buttons.  
Exit before the door closes if a suspicious person joins you in the elevator.  
Look into the elevator carefully before you enter. If you are uncertain of any occupant, wait for the next elevator.  
Look down the corridor carefully for suspicious activity before leaving the elevator.  
Put all valuables in the safe deposit box at the front desk.  
Check carefully to find where fire exits are located. Remember the red exit sign may not be visible if there is a fire. Walk from your room to the exit so you are sure how far way it is. Count the number of steps and open the exit door to see what is beyond it.

When Going Out...

DO DON'T
Ride, rather than walk, particularly at night. If the streets around the hotel are deserted, as they are in many major cities, take a taxi or shuttle bus, even if your destination is "within easy walking distance." Don't loiter. Remain alert if window shopping. Be prepared to run if followed. If accosted by someone in a car, run in the opposite direction that the direction the car is going.
Avoid unlit driveways and other shadowed places. If necessary, walk in the middle of the street until you reach a better lighted street. Don't wear your badge or carry your convention material with you outside the hotel. Obvious conventioneers are prime targets for thieves. Try to look as though you belong.
Walk with another person when sightseeing or shopping, particularly at night. Don't take unmarked, "gypsy" taxis or accept a ride from anyone you don't know, even if the person claims to be attending your meeting.
Carry your wallet in your inside coat pocket if you are a man. Your rear trouser pocket is an easy target for pickpockets.  
Carry your wallet in a coat pocket rather than your purse if you are a woman. Leave valuables at home. If you must carry a purse, firmly clasp the top of the purse so a pickpocket cannot reach in.  
Be wary of strangers. Never accompany a stranger anywhere.  
Remain alert at all times, especially in crowded areas. Thieves often operate in pairs. One may bump you while the other is picking your pocket.  
Avoid shortcuts and walkways between buildings during the day and at night.  
Beware of people who approach you on the street asking for directions. Keep a polite but safe distance.

When Driving Around...

DO DON'T
Make sure you have enough gas. Don't leave attractive packages, luggage, clothes, purses, cameras, or other valuables in view. Lock them in the trunk.
Keep your car doors locked when driving and keep the windows rolled up to within two to three inches of the top. Don't transfer items to the trunk at the location where you are parking the car. A thief may be watching.
Park only in lighted areas at night. Don't ask directions from strangers. Instead drive to a well-lighted gas station.
Look inside your car before entering. An intruder may be crouching on the floor. Don't pick up hitchhikers. ever.
If you car breaks down, remain inside with the doors and windows locked. If possible, raise the hood. Open the door only for the police or road service personnel. If anyone else approaches you, offering help, politely decline the offer. Don't turn over your car keys or your idling car in a parking lot until you are sure the individual is a legitimate employee.
Pull over to a well-lighted curbside and blow your horn to attract attention if you are being followed by another car.

When You Have an Emergency...

DO
  • Call the police and report any crime.
  • Be sure to identify yourself and your location.
  • Explain what type of crime occurred (theft, robbery, pickpocket, assault, etc.).
  • Give as complete a description as possible of the offender.
  • Give a description of the offender's flight.
  • State whether the offender was armed; if possible, describe what type of weapon the offender was carrying.
  • Be prepared to sign criminal complaints and to testify as to what took place. Remember, without your cooperation, the the police can't help.

When There Is a Fire...

DO
  • Try to leave the hotel if you can. However, if you can't, stay in your room and take precautions.
  • In your room, call the operator or security to let them know you are there.
  • Put your hand on your room door to see if it is hot before opening it. If it is, don't open it quickly. Open it just a crack to see what is on the other side and be prepared to slam it quickly if necessary.
  • Shut your room door if you leave the room during the fire. You may find the exit blocked and have to return. A closed door will keep smoke and fire out.
  • If you leave the room and go to the hall, drop to your knees to avoid smoke.
  • Remember the way back to your room as you go to the exit so you can return if necessary.
  • Open the window unless smoke is rising outside your room.
  • Fill the bathtub with water and put wet sheets and towels in it to stuff around the cracks in your door to keep out smoke.
  • Use your ice bucket to bail water from the bathtub onto the door and walls to keep them cool if they get hot.
  • Tie a wet towel around your nose and mouth to act as a smoke filter. Fold it into a triangle and put the corner in your mouth.
  • Swing a wet towel around the room. It will help clear the smoke.
  • Take down anything flammable such as drapes from the windows if there is a fire outside. Bail water around the window to keep everything wet.

 

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