Three ways to stay safe from terrorism threat in London
On 13th November, Islamic State’s attack on Paris claimed 130 lives and left hundreds injured. London stays on guard, as it could be a potential bombing site. The following are some tips for Londoners to secure safe and sound journey.
1. Keep up with the local news
“Local” here is London, not the place that you come from. It is mandatory for people to catch up with daily news for their safety and well-being.
The BBC, The Guardian, etc., irrespective of what your preference is, make sure you check online news every hour.
Apart from official news websites, social media is a real time channel that you might find more convenient. Twitter and Facebook have millions of users, including you. The search function allows you to find out any information. But have you ever used it to get an update of your destination?
On Thursday night 19th November, Baker Street station was closed. A car whose doors were left open next to the station was assumed to have a bomb inside it. Commuters were evacuated from the underground while the police investigated the suspected vehicle. After more than one hour, the underground reopened. Some of the commuters could have saved themselves from the nerve-wracking situation if they simply had searched #Bakerstreetstation before heading there.
2. Be vigilant
When terrorists first walked through the entrance door of Paris Bataclan, the audience thought it was a part of the show. For a rock show on a Friday night, becoming a terrorists’ target is the last thing that could come to the audience’s attention.
From the case of Bataclan, carefully observing the situation instead of taking time to understand what is going on may give you extra minutes to run away from the trouble. Whether heading for a lecture or a friends’ gathering, your first and foremost concern is to keep yourself and other people (if possible) safe.
If you encounter any suspicious activities, please do not hesitate to report to the authorities. Clarified information of “suspicious activity” can be found in Metropolitan Police Website.
3. Watch where you stand
People tend to prioritise the most favourable positions for their purpose. An ideal spot in a theatre show would be in the front row. In an underground platform, the favourable position would be the area under the countdown sign.
When it comes to a terrorist attack, these most crowded areas, which are far from exit and lack hard cover, are prone to high level of casualties. If you cannot avoid places that are likely to be attacked, having in mind a clear map of where you stand, where you can hide and where you can escape through would be brilliant. Weird? Sparing some of your minutes on BBC advice during an attack would clear your doubt.
“However much we prepare, we in the UK face the same threat.” Prime Minister David Cameron urged people to remain vigilant and otherwise go about their normal lives. London daily life paces as usual, but please remain alert.