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September 11 Brings A Reminder To Remain Vigilant And Report Suspicious Activity
Updated September 11, 2017 6:56 AM
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(INDIANAPOLIS) - The Indiana Department of Homeland Security (IDHS) reminds Hoosiers to always be aware of their surroundings, remain vigilant in their communities and report any suspicious activity.

"September 11 had a huge impact on the way that Americans carry on their daily lives," said Bryan Langley, IDHS executive director. "While that horrific day 16 years ago struck fear in the hearts of many, it is my hope that citizens understand the importance of being ready for any event and how reporting suspicious activity may play an important role in preventing future violent situations."

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's "If You See Something, Say Something" campaign asks the public to be on the lookout for perpetrators of violent behavior or any situation that is out of the ordinary. The campaign also encourages the public to report any suspicious activity to law enforcement.

To report suspicious activity, contact on-site security or the local law enforcement's non-emergency line as soon as possible. If violence is imminent, call 9-1-1.

When reporting suspicious activity, it is important to take note of several key details, including:

  • When and where the suspicious activity was observed.
  • Any description of the individuals involved such as gender, age, physical description and unique characteristics.
  • The make and model of any vehicles involved and its direction of travel.
Suspicious activity includes, but is not limited to:
  • Unusual items or situations - an unattended package, a vehicle parked in an odd location, an individual who is overdressed for the weather or a strong odor coming from a building or vehicle.
  • Eliciting information - a person asking questions beyond curiosity about a building's purpose, operations or security procedures.
  • Surveillance - someone paying unusual attention to facilities or buildings beyond a casual or professional interest. This includes extended loitering without explanation or prolonged observation of a building.
In addition to the "If You See Something, Say Something" campaign, the IDHS "Ready: Whenever. Wherever." campaign recognizes that violent acts and dangerous events can occur anywhere, anytime - often with little or no warning. "Regular discussion, preparation and practice can increase the chances of being able to remain calm during a violent situation, fire or other life-threatening event," said Langley. "Ready: Whenever. Wherever. encourages Hoosiers to think about the different potential safety risks that could be encountered in public settings." Below are some tips to consider when attending events in public settings:
  • Maintain awareness of other people and developing situations in the surrounding areas.
  • Identify the emergency exits and safety barriers upon entering a building or event.
  • Arrange ahead of time where to meet family and friends in case of an emergency.
As the memories of September 11 come back into the minds of Hoosiers over the next few days, they are encouraged to consider how these two campaigns fit into their homes and communities by talking with family, friends and work colleagues. For more information, visit GetPrepared.in.gov.

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