Protecting yourself and your children: What to do during a stabbing incident

Psychologists and security experts advise on knife attacks

19 Apr 2024 02:46pm
A police officer reacts outside the Westfield Bondi Junction shopping mall after a stabbing incident in Sydney on April 13, 2024. - Photo by AFP
A police officer reacts outside the Westfield Bondi Junction shopping mall after a stabbing incident in Sydney on April 13, 2024. - Photo by AFP

SHAH ALAM - Recent stabbing incidents in Sydney have left Australians in shock after the two attacks that occurred within days of each other.

The nation faces a sobering reminder of the need for preparedness in uncertain times since one attack took place at a church in western Sydney on Monday and another one at Westfield Bondi Junction, where six people tragically killed on Saturday.

The Guardian reported that Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said it was understandable that people felt uneasy about the situation.

Security experts have gathered and stressed the importance of being alert and prepared, offering valuable advice on protecting individuals in the face of danger.

Stay aware of your surroundings

Experts said that staying vigilant and trusting instincts are crucial by suggesting that people pay attention to suspicious behaviour.

Thay also urged everyone to be mindful of exists, especially in unfamiliar places like shopping centers.

"Distractions such as phones and headphones can hinder awareness, so staying focused on the environment is crucial," security experts said as reported by The Guardian.

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Maintain calmness

Remaining calm during a crisis is challenging yet essential.

Pride Security Group managing director Richard Theodorakis highlighted the need to counter panic-induced 'brain fog' and 'tunnel vision.'

Meanwhile, La Trobe University psychology associate professor Neelofar Rehman Neelofar recommended focusing on controlled breathing to trigger the body's calming response, facilitating clearer decision-making.

Create distance and alert authorities

In the event of an unfolding threat, creating distance and barriers between oneself and the attacker is paramount.

Theodorakis advised staying calm, finding cover, and immediately alerting authorities.

He also warned against directly confronting an attacker, urging individuals to prioritise personal safety, escape the danger zone, and notify authorities promptly.

Children in emergencies

Children require special consideration during emergencies.

Security experts advised adults to pick them up when possible and move them to a safe area.

"It is important to provide comfort and reassurance to children through physical closeness and a calm demeanor, even in the absence of words," the experts said.

"While emergencies can be unpredictable and frightening, being alert, staying calm, and taking decisive actions can significantly enhance personal safety and the safety of those around us," they said.

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