Thursday, May 18, 2006

How to survive motorcycle-riding assassins

Some tips from the PCIJ’s book, Staying Alive: A Safety Manual for Journalists

* Keep eyes and ears alert for vehicles, especially motorcycles, following you. A journalist driving his or her own vehicle must constantly check the rear view mirror for signs of a tail.

* When driving on wide lanes or avenues, drive close to the island to prevent motorcycles from approaching or riding abreast. As in the Damalerio case, the killer came from the left and had a clear shot of Damalerio, who was driving. Vary your routes and your schedules. When going home or to the office, take different routes and leave at different times. The easiest targets are those who keep to a predictable schedule and routine. A journalist’s predictable schedule makes it easy for assassins to conduct surveillance and plan a hit.

* Avoid walking in deserted and dark or dimly lit streets, which make you vulnerable to attack. If walking at night, do so facing oncoming vehicles. If you sense you are being followed, run to a place where there are people and call for help. If you think you are being followed, head straight for the nearest police precinct and report the incident to the police. At the end of the day, do not take your tail home with you. Try to shake him off by proceeding to the police station.

* When riding a taxi, constantly check for suspicious-looking vehicles or motorcycles that may be behind. If you think you are being followed, ask the taxi driver to speed up and honk loudly to draw attention, in order to unnerve and shake off persons who may be following you. Ask the driver to proceed to the nearest police precinct and report the incident.

* When riding a bus or a jeepney, avoid waiting for your ride alone. Blend into a crowd of commuters at a bus or jeepney stop. On a bus, avoid taking a seat near an open window where you can be an easy target. Pick a spot behind the driver or near the door for easy exit.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

These tips will come in handy but escaping a motorcycle-riding assassin or a psycho on a motorcycle is easier said than done.