Keep safety in mind as fall semester begins

New and returning ASU students can ensure that their semester is a safe one by observing local laws and basic safety messages.

ASU’s Police Department and the Tempe Police Department are planning to conduct a joint awareness campaign during the first weeks of school to enforce traffic laws and alcohol violations.

Officers from both agencies will be out in force during the first weeks of school making traffic safety a priority. High-traffic focus areas include University Drive and College Avenue, Apache Boulevard and College Avenue, and Apache Boulevard and McAlister Avenue.

Warnings will be provided during the first week of school. After that, tickets will be issued for violations. In addition, officers at the Polytechnic campus will enforce speeding violations with education and warnings during the first week of school and citations starting during the second week of school.

Police also are putting an alcohol task force into action that will strictly enforce all alcohol violations.

“We have a DUI task force in conjunction with the Tempe Police Department that will be out in force during the first weeks of school,” said James Hardina, ASU Police Department assistant chief.

Be in the know

Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to sign up for ASU Alert and ASU Advisory services that provide emergency messaging for the campus community through texts, emails and RSS feeds. ASU Alert messages also are posted to Facebook and Twitter.

ASU Alert is used during major emergencies and incidents that greatly affect university operations. ASU Advisory is considered a tier below ASU Alert, and communicates situations that may not be life threatening and typically affect certain areas of a campus.

The services are used only for emergencies, incidents that require notification and tests of the system. An ASURITE ID and password are needed to sign up. Text message charges may apply depending on individual cell phone plans. More information may be found at

In addition, ASU Police are conducting educational safety meetings to provide information to residential life students and staff about campus safety, including topics such as bike safety.

Bicycle safety

The ASU Police Department is reminding students that September is the month when most bike thefts occur on and around campus. Keep your bike safe by using two locks – a U-lock to secure the bike to a stationary object and a cable lock to doubly secure it and lock the wheels to the frame.

Learn how to keep your bike safe by watching a video demonstrating how to properly secure it. In addition, ASU Police will be using bait bikes equipped with GPS systems to catch thieves, and the department encourages students, faculty and staff to register bikes at

“If a bike is recovered by the police, a registered bike is much more likely to be returned to the owner because we have a record of who it belongs to,” Hardina said.

The university community can find out more about the ASU Police Department and interact directly with members of the department through the department’s Facebook page and Twitter feed.

Safety tips

Additional basic safety tips that members of the ASU community should keep in mind:

• Call 911 in an emergency. Call boxes highlighted at the top by a “blue light” dial directly into an emergency communication center and can be used during any emergency. If you are using a cell phone, give your location.

• Lock your doors. Do not prop doors. Warn others against leaving their doors open or unsecured.

• When going out, let others know what your plans are and where you will be so they know where to look for you if something should happen.

• Be aware of  your surroundings.

• Don’t leave valuable items in your car.

• Properly secure your bike to an authorized rack.

• Watch for passing trains. Never trespass on the tracks or jaywalk across the rails.

• Don’t give personal information to someone you don’t know.

• If someone demands your property, give it to them and immediately contact the police.

• If you are traveling at night, use the buddy system.

A free safety escort service is available on the Tempe campus. Call 480-965-1515 to arrange for an escort. For an escort on another campus or after hours of operation, call ASU Police at 480-965-3456, and an officer or police aide will provide an escort.

Additional information about staying safe at home, at parties, while driving and in other situations may be found at

More information about the ASU Police Department is available at