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Safety Tips for First-Year College Students

First-year students at college in Miami and other cities in South Florida love the sense of freedom. With the responsibility of being an adult and living on your own, however, comes a greater awareness of personal safety. First-year students can be at risk of crime and personal injury, especially since some fraudsters and criminals may target college students.

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While you are pursing a college education, there are a few tips you can follow to improve your safety, especially during your first year:

  • Stay aware of your surroundings. Be careful about walking distracted. Paying attention to your phone instead of your surroundings can mean you accidentally walk into traffic. Not being aware of your surroundings at parties or in public can make you at risk of theft or other crimes.
  • Practice safety in the dorms. Make sure your dorm room or off-campus apartment has a smoke detector as well as a sturdy lock. Consider a dead-bolt lock and use it regularly. If you notice any problems with lighting, stairs, windows, or doors, make sure to report it to your landlord or your residence authorities. Follow up to ensure it is fixed. Your landlord or the college can be held liable in a premises liability claim in Miami if they do not take proper precautions to keep the property safe and residents are injured as a result.
  • Get familiar with college safety resources. Your college may have a walk-home program to get you home safety after dark, an emergency number, and blue light stations where you can call for help. Find out about these and other safety measures and get familiar with the location of campus security so you know where to go should you ever need help.
  • Don’t go alone. Walk along more populated paths and walkways on campus and avoid deserted areas. If you are at a party or event, do not remain after those you know have left.
  • Trust your instincts. If you feel unsafe, trust that gut instinct and get out of the situation.
  • Take after-school classes. Many colleges offer self-defense and first-aid classes, sometimes at no cost or at very little cost. These types of courses are useful well beyond your college years and are a smart investment of your time.
  • Stay aware of what is going on on campus. Sign up for security alerts so you’re aware of break-ins and other problems. This way, you can take extra precautions.
  • Get around safely. Whether you bicycle, drive a car, or walk, keep safety in mind. Never try to bicycle, walk home, or drive after drinking and avoid distractions when you are headed for your destination. If you need to get home after dark, consider using your college’s get-home-safely walk-home program.

If you have been injured on campus, contact Flaxman Law Group at 1-866-352-9626 (1-866-FLAXMAN) to speak to a Miami personal injury attorney. You may have a legal claim  if you have been injured, and compensation from your claim can help you pay for medical care, tutoring to catch up in classes, tuition, and more.