Outdoor Safety Tips for Women:
Force Predators

Outdoor Safety means learning to avoid the traps of Force Predators. Sometimes they first approach you as Friendly Predators, then suddenly switch.

Five punks – aged 12, 13, 14, and 16 – assaulted and robbed a man in Manhattan’s Central Park at 5:00 a.m. on a weekday morning. Soon afterward, they robbed two women jogging through the park. [They're lucky they weren't beaten and raped as well.]

And you’re actually “outdoors” whenever you’re outside the door and relative safety of your home – whether or not you’re still inside a building:

When she couldn't sleep, she often did her laundry all alone in the middle of the night in the White Plains NY apartment building where she’d lived for years. She recognized a neighbor hanging around the basement laundry room, but didn’t worry because he wasn't a stranger - he lived there too. As she was busy loading her clothes, he suddenly turned off the light and closed the door. Total darkness. He got behind her, smashed her against the dryers, and dragged her behind the machines to rape her. Nobody could hear her screams.


• Don’t go alone to laundry rooms in apartment buildings.

• Use fire stairwells only in a true emergency.

• Be wary of going alone into public restrooms.

• See Elevator Safety in Apartment Security.

Parking lots have lots of hiding spots. Assume someone is always watching you. See Parking Lot Safety.

• Avoid stairwells or elevators in parking garages. Instead, walk in the middle of ramps.

Shopping malls and ATMs are magnets for criminals. They know you have money.

Parks and wilderness areas are ideal hunting grounds for predators – they're often lonely and have few witnesses around. See Camping and Running Safety for safety tips.

The young couple were sitting at a picnic table in a park when four teenage boys walked up and asked for a cigarette. Then one pulled a gun and the boyfriend was beaten and held down on the picnic table as the four boys took turns raping the woman.

It’s impossible to fully anticipate the panicky chaos of a sudden threat forcing you to make split-second decisions. Nonetheless, understanding your options now will help your intuition choose an option then.

Enhancing Your Options

Deter a predator by carrying a Personal Security Alarm (screamer or noisemaker) & Pepper Spray in plain sight. Those pages show you how to most effectively use them.

Crime-Safety-Security > Outdoor Safety Overview > Force Predators

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