The joy of the festive season can sometimes be overshadowed by the increasing accident rate that accompanies it. While many are celebrating the time off from work and school by throwing parties and spending time with family, others sadly spend these days in emergency rooms, as alcohol consumption, criminal intent and other factors taint what should be a joyous time.
At iER, we want to ensure that our clients are well taken care of, and the first step to being safe, is being mindful of the many dangers that are likely to occur at this time of the year.
Crime statistics are a harrowing look into the realities that face many South Africans, especially at the end of the year.
South Africa’s crime statistics indicated that 83 479 people were arrested for committing various crimes between the periods of October 2017 to March 2018. Road Accidents also surge on local roads, with Mpumalanga recording more than 550 accidents between December 1 and Christmas, which resulted in 111 fatalities.
The numbers prove that intervention is needed as the ‘silly season’ draws near.
So, how can you stay safe these holidays?
- Don’t drink and drive – Alcohol impairs your senses, and most people find a new sense of confidence bordering on bravado once their blood alcohol rises. If you are going to indulge in a few alcoholic beverages, be sure to use a designated driver, or one of the many public transport facilities.
- Lock up your valuable items! Most of us go away during the holidays, leaving our homes and possessions unattended. Find a house sitter that you trust if your trip exceeds a week, or if that isn’t possible, make sure to lock and secure every entrance to your home. Burglar bars, alarm systems and other precautions are advised, for extra security.
- Do not overload electrical outlets; inspect electrical decorations for damage before use. Fires are a huge issue in households during Christmas time, as many people choose to use loads of electrical decorations. Be mindful of these, and don’t leave them plugged in when you leave your home!
- Make sure your car is in good condition before any road trip.
Even though the festive season is fast paced and exciting, try to be as well rested as possible, in order to be alert when you’re out with friends, or driving your family to and from your destinations.
If anything does happen, remember that iER connects you to emergency response units – 24 hours a day, nationwide. The FREE iER App is a gateway to emergency response services, including a national network of private, semi-private and governmental emergency medical and non-medical response services.