Date: May 24, 2001
Press Release Number: 79-2001
The busy summer travel season will soon be under way, and the Port Authority is urging millions of travelers who use its airports to take a few simple precautions to avoid being a crime victim.
Despite an extensive police presence at the airports – and a very low crime rate – travelers are urged to carefully guard their possessions.
Port Authority Executive Director Neil D. Levin said, “Our airports are among the safest in the world, and we continue to employ new techniques to target thieves who prey on our customers. A bicycle patrol program was launched last year to allow for faster response by police officers in crowded airport terminals or congested roadways. And a computerized crime analysis system has helped track crime trends.”
To help travelers get the most enjoyment possible out of Memorial Day, Fred Morrone, the Port Authority’s Director of Public Safety/Superintendent of Police, urges travelers to take these precautions:
· When parking your car, make sure all valuables are out of sight or locked in the trunk. And make sure you lock the door and take the keys.
· Don’t leave any possessions unattended. Professional luggage thieves can disappear with bags in a matter of seconds. And because of a heightened sense of awareness at the airports, any bag left unattended will be deemed suspicious.
· Be aware of your surroundings. Keep an eye on your possessions at all times, and tell your traveling companions to do the same.
· Plan ahead by checking on traffic conditions and airport parking availability. Rushing can cause distraction, which can cause travelers to forget to safeguard possessions.
· Don’t flaunt valuables, especially cash and jewelry, when traveling through the airport. It may give thieves an opportunity to take them.
· Don’t put a carry-on bag, purse or laptop computer on the x-ray conveyer belt until you are ready to go through the metal detector and reclaim the bag.
· Travelers who believe their property has been stolen should ask any airline or airport employee to immediately call the Port Authority Police. The sooner a crime is reported, the more likely the thief will be caught.