Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Students urged to have fun but stay safe during Freshers Week

Freshers heading to Lancaster’s two universities are being advised to consider their personal safety while making the most of their first few weeks away from home.


University of Cumbria students  arrive during the week of 19th September, with first year Lancaster University students starting their on 1st October.

Local police point out that Freshers Week often involves a lot of socialising, partying and drinking but sometimes students may be having so much fun they do not realise they could be putting themselves at risk.

Freshers will be finding their way around a new city or town for the first time and will definitely be soaking up the atmosphere – and probably quite a lot of alcohol - so police are advising that also need to make sure they stay safe while doing so.

Lancashire Police are advising students to -
  • Always stick to well lit main routes
  • If you go out as a group of friends – stay as a group
  • Remember, safety in numbers – so stick together and never walk home alone
  • Keep enough money for a taxi. Don’t spend your last fiver on a burger – get home safe instead
  • Get a taxi from a licensed firm or taxi rank
  • Take care of your cash, but only take out what you will realistically need for an evening and avoid using cash machines at night
 Alcohol is a traditional part of student life – but remember it isn’t a compulsory part of your university education! Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can affect your judgement, pose a health risk and leave you vulnerable to becoming a victim of crime.

Pace your drinks and consider alternating alcoholic drinks with a soft drink or water - you will last the night out and you’ll save a bit of cash too.

Drink spiking is rare (the amount of alcohol consumed is more often the problem.) Keep hold of your drink and don’t leave it on the side of the dance floor. Always watch your drink being poured – if someone offers to buy you a drink, go to the bar with them.

Remember that drink lowers inhibitions and makes you more vulnerable to theft, violence or sexual assault. If something happens to you, report it to the police.

Any bad behaviour may come at a cost – police officers take a zero tolerance attitude to drunken criminal behaviour. Penalty notices for disorder cost £80  - a fairly hefty fine for a student pocket – and a criminal record is not the kind of result you want to leave university with.

Most universities have a neighbourhood police team that is linked to the campus. You can find out their contact details by going to www.lancashire.police.uk and entering the campus postcode into the search engine.

• You can also contact police on 0845 1 25 35 45. In an emergency always dial 999. Lancashire Police is now on Twitter @LancsPolice and on Facebook – www.facebook.com/lancspolice.

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