Accidents and other unpleasant events happen every day. Some are unpreventable, but a majority of these cases could have been avoided if those involved were simply aware of their surroundings and acted accordingly.
Follow the Signs
Upon entering any given area such as a building, a park or a theater — make sure to identify the possible exits and look for safety signs and symbols. It might be a bit tedious at first, but it becomes an unconscious thing as you continue practicing the habit. Being aware of fire exit locations increases your chances of survival when a fire does occur.
Of course, knowing the possible exits from a building or a general area also helps in cases of active shooters, acts of terrorism, or natural disasters. Workplace hazard signs are particularly important. They wouldn’t be there if there weren’t a threat of bodily harm or worse.
Survey Your Immediate Surroundings
Always look out for potential threats (accidental or incidental) in your immediate area. That means wet floors, pointed table edges, exposed electric cables and the like. Make sure you keep clear sight of things around you — so no stacking things too high you can’t see where you’re walking to. Do things in a proper pace. Running around gives your brain less time to react, which is why you bump into objects and people when you are in a rush.
Distraction Can Be Deadly
Being distracted can be a big problem, especially if you’re driving, operating heavy equipment or just by being near those two. A simple glance at your phone can lead to a collision, and a reflexive move in a workplace can lead to an accident. Even the simple act of walking becomes more dangerous if you are browsing your phone or simply not paying attention.
Simply being aware of your surroundings might not seem too important — but it can spell the difference between safety and disaster. Keep your eyes open for possible threats, don’t get too distracted and follow the signs.