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Safety at Johns Hopkins

This handout is designed to familiarize you with safety precautions in order to improve the quality of your visit to the U.S. and to Baltimore. We want you to enjoy Baltimore and to embrace what this city has to offer. We also want you to be able to enjoy your stay and be safe.

To protect yourself at home:

  • Keep your house and car doors locked at all times
  • Do not admit strangers into your complex
  • Close your curtains and blinds at night
  • List only your last name and the initial of your first name in telephone directories, mailboxes, doors, and any other location where names may be posted
  • Get to know your neighbors
  • Report suspicious activities/individuals to security officers or management officials
  • Lock windows and block sliding-doors with a pole placed in the bottom track
  • Don't take the trash out alone at night
  • Hang up immediately if you receive an obscene phone call
  • Never give out personal information on the phone to a caller you don't know
  • Keep emergency telephone numbers near the phone

To protect yourself while out and about:

  • Pay attention to your surroundings
  • Avoid walking alone, especially at night. Call for an escort, if necessary
  • Walk at a steady pace with a self-assured stride
  • Acknowledge a greeting but do not linger if you do not know the individual
  • Avoid dark streets and alley-ways
  • Do not hitchhike or accept rides from strangers
  • If you are followed, move away fast, change directions, or walk into a crowded area
  • Walk near the curb and avoid passing close to shrubs, dark doorways, or other potential hiding areas
  • Carry your keys in your hand, ready to open doors immediately
  • If a driver in a car asks you directions, do not get too close to the car
  • Watch your dress and body language when going to a night club or fitness club
  • Maintain a secure grip on your valuables and purse; preferably under your arm
  • Be cautious when entering elevators and public laundry facilities alone
  • Jog on an indoor or outdoor track, rather than in city streets; and jog with a friend when possible
  • If you suspect trouble or confrontation, leave the area immediately

To protect yourself while driving:

  • Keep car windows and doors closed and locked
  • Never pick up strangers
  • Check the back seat every time you get in your car
  • When parking at night, select a place that is well-lit & check for loiterers before exiting your car
  • Do not allow another vehicle to force you off the roadway

To avoid theft of property:

Most of the crimes reported on the Johns Hopkins medical campus involve theft of property. Be aware of your possessions and do not give someone the opportunity to steal your books, your passport, your wallet, your backpack, or your purse. You can help avoid theft by doing the following:

  • Keep your personal items with you at all times and lock your valuables in a secure place
  • Do not leave books or other personal items unattended
  • Do not leave personal items (books, camera, bags, wallet) visible in a car; instead, leave them in the trunk
  • Engrave valuables with your name
  • List your name, and phone number in two different places in your books or notebooks

To help others:

If you do become a victim of a crime, you can help others by reporting the incident to local law enforcement officers or to campus security officers.