Being Safe Over Break

On April 24, Alynna Mattox, 9, felt creative to pose behind this tree during a field trip to the arboretum. Mattox is preparing to go on a trip over spring break (Photo by AMarney).

On April 24, Alynna Mattox, 9, felt creative to pose behind this tree during a field trip to the arboretum. Mattox is preparing to go on a trip over spring break (Photo by AMarney).

Sarah McCoy, Staff Writer

While people are driving across the country, down the country, or just staying at home this spring break, there’s always a reason to try to stay safe in the environment surrounding. 

“Be aware of your surroundings wherever you’re at,” Deputy Petchnik, school resource officer, said, “Just like we train for ALICE, it doesn’t matter, that stuff goes everywhere, especially if you’re going down the coast or something like that onto a beach.”

Spring break is a time cherished by teachers, students and parents and is often a time for trips to various places. At times there are moments where people’s safety is endangered especially on these trips, so certain precautions are taken for these trips. 

“For our group there are seven of us. However we aren’t allowed to go anywhere without more than two people,” Amaya Myers, 12, who is going to gulf shores, Ala. said, “The only thing that I would find dangerous in our situation is me and two other girls are going by ourselves on a Segway adventure without parents.”

This ‘buddy system’ in a way provides a safer situation for anyone traveling, by sticking with at least another person people are less likely to be approached by dangerous strangers. Even when they are with other people there can still be a danger, and students should remove anything that would make it more approachable. For example, if student’s are keeping valuables on their person, they should try and limit how many there are.

“Leave your valuables in your room, hide them in your room so the staff of the hotel doesn’t steal them. If you’re going to the beach, obviously you’re going to take your cellphone with you, but know where it’s at,” Petchnik said.

While keeping valuables out of sight from public view is important, the journey to the destination of spring break is dangerous too. 

“ [My family] is driving to Orlando, but making several stops along the way, in Mount Vernon, Nashville and Atlanta. We’re also taking a day trip to Tampa,” Alynna Mattox, 10, said. 

People often forget to take breaks between driving when they’re excited and ready to get to a destination, or go a little too fast. This can result in many injuries and dangers becoming present, people should also continue to be aware of their surroundings not only in the car, but at the stops they make, such as gas stations, et cetera.

“I’m going to Arkansas to visit old friends,” Ashley Pahl, 10, said, “I plan to stay safe by watching my surroundings and to think before I do.”

People are around at all times, and since students don’t know who the people they are surrounded with, are, they should be alert in the situations there placed in.

“Just be aware of the creepers around, if there’s somebody walking down the beach, see what they’re doing. They’re always trying to sell stuff like that, but just be aware of your surroundings,” Petchnik said. 

Most importantly the thing for people to remember as they travel, work or just stay home for the break that’s been long-awaited is to stay safe while having fun.

“Have fun, be safe,” Petchnik said, “and be kind to your fellow people.”

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