Staying safe on and off campus

Before international students leave their home country, they have been reminded by their parents, relatives and friends, education agents and other well-meaning individuals to stay safe in their new study destination. Suggestions like: “Use the buddy system. If you must travel somewhere alone, make sure a roommate, close friend or relative knows where you are going and when you are expected back. Keep dorm room or apartment doors locked at all times. Keep a list of emergency numbers by the phone…” The list of reminders is quite long – and rightly so.

At CIC Higher Education, student safety is of utmost concern to the institution and the CIC academic community. Thus, its safety guidelines emphasise the need for international students to be aware of their rights in Australia, to stay safe and to understand the rules both on and off campus.

The CIC safety booklet is replete with tips on staying safe around Melbourne – street, fire and beach safety; taking public transport; riding a bike; or driving around the city. In an emergency, the number to call is 000 for police, fire brigade or ambulance.

So here are some of the safety reminders:

STREET SAFETY

  1. Only cross the road when the green signal tells you to cross.
  2. At night, walk on well-lit roads or take a taxi.
  3. Only use your headphones in one ear when listening to music while walking.
  4. Keep expensive items out of sight and be aware of your surroundings in public.
  5. Keep your mobile phone in your pocket or bag, especially at night time.
  6. Leave your passport at home.
  7. Don’t carry a large amount of cash or use ATMs at night.
  8. Don’t invite strangers back to your accommodation.
  9. Don’t give out your phone number or address to strangers.

FIRE SAFETY

1. Think before you cook – never leave your cooking unattended.

2. Turn off your appliances when you are not using them including heaters when you are sleeping.

3. Never turn off smoke alarms.

4. Don’t put water on a hot fire or oil. If safe to do so, turn off the heat and put a cover on the pan.

5. Never smoke indoors.

SAFETY AROUND THE BEACH

  1. Never swim at night.
  2. Respect the ocean; do not litter.
  3. Only swim at beaches that have lifeguards.
  4. Always swim between the flags.
  5. Don’t enter the water unless you know how to swim.
  6. Be sun smart – the Aussie sun is very strong!
  7. Slip, slop, slap, seek. Slip on a t-shirt. Slop on some sunscreen. Slap on a hat. Seek shade.

WHEN DRIVING

  1. Watch out for trams, pedestrians and other road users.
  2. Never use your phone when driving.
  3. Every passenger must wear their seat belt.
  4. Follow the road rules and speed limit. For more information about driving in Victoria, visit vicroads.vic.gov.au/licences.

WHEN RIDING A BICYCLE

1. Always wear a helmet.

2. Your bicycle must have lights and a bell.

3. Stick to the bike lanes and tracks.

4. If riding at night, wear a high visibility vest.

WHEN TAKING PUBLIC TRANSPORT

  1. Purchase the full-fare myki card.
  2. Always have credit on your myki card to avoid a fine.
  3. Always tap-on at the start of your trip and tap-off at the end.
  4. Trams are free in the Melbourne central business district.