Would you know if a strange vehicle was in your neighborhood?
A big part of home and neighborhood safety is being aware of things that happen around you. Being observant is a skill you can learn.
Discuss: As a family, try to name as many vehicles in your neighborhood as possible. Start with your next-door neighbors and work outward from them. Name the color, make, and model of the vehicles.
Discuss: What should you do if you see a strange vehicle in your neighborhood going slow and looking at homes and people?
If the driver seems to be slowing near homes, he/she might be looking for a house number, which may mean he/she might be visiting someone in the neighborhood. If the driver seems to be scanning the street looking at people, or trying to speak with children, be alert. You should take note of the vehicle color and style and tell an adult if the driver stops to talk with another child.
Discuss: What should you do if you are on the sidewalk and someone in a strange car stops to talk to you? What if he/she has lost a kitten or a puppy and would like you to help find it? What if he says he knows your mom and dad and that they want you to go with him?
Whenever someone in a strange car stops to talk to you when you are on the street, do not approach the car. Stay well back from it and walk away. Be ready to run away. Even if the person seems nice and is asking you for help to find a lost pet, for example, you must stay away from them. You can say “I’m not allowed to talk with strangers.” Then you should run home or to an adult you do know right away and tell them what has happened. Always be aware that the stranger could be telling you a lie. And never get into a stranger’s car.
(Featured image by Trong Nguyen @123rf.com)