Archive for Safety Tips

Reminder: Neighborhood Watch Meeting 11/30, 7PM

A quick reminder that there will be a Neighborhood Watch Meeting tomorrow night, Thursday November 30th at 7PM at the Community Room at Flanner & Buchanan.

We will have a safety presentation from the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office and open Q & A with SPD.

See flyer for more details.


Speedway Neighborhood Watch Meeting Scheduled for November 30th

A Speedway Neighborhood Watch meeting has been scheduled for Thursday, November 30th at 7PM at Flanner & Buchanan’s Community Center.

Deputy Prosecutor Daphne Whitmire of the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office will offer a presentation on “Safety by Design: Burglary Prevention.”

Click flyer below for more details.


For more info on the presentation, see the MCPO flyer: Safety By Design – Burglary Prevention

CrimeStoppers Shred-it Day: October 22, 2016

Once again, CrimeStoppers of Central Indiana will hold its semiannual Community Shred-it Day on Saturday, October 22, 2016 from 10AM – 1PM at five central Indiana locations, including the Speedway Police Department.

Save your documents to be shredded, along with electronics. Please click the flyer below for complete details. Money raised goes to helping the community’s safety for the CrimeStoppers reward fund – and of course, prevent identity theft by disposing of your sensitive documents securely.


When to Call 911: Emergencies vs. Non-Emergencies

Post originally published on April 13, 2015. Updated April 10, 2018 to reflect the addition of the 311 Non-Emergency number for cell phones.

In response to many people who have asked when to call 911 vs. when to call the non-emergency line, we hope this post from the Speedway Police Department will offer some guidance and clarification. As of April 9, 2018, Marion County has implemented a non-emergency phone system for cell phones, where residents can cell 311. For those on a land line, continue to use the SPD non-emergency number of (317) 246-4300, which also can be found on the right sidebar of this site.

What is an Emergency?

An “emergency” is an event that poses immediate, significant threat to life and/or property. The following are examples of an emergency:

  • A request for medical assistance
  • A person threatening to harm themselves or others
  • A noise from the next dorm room or apartment that sounds like a violent physical encounter.
  • A crime in progress
  • A situation which requires a police officer at the scene (e.g. assaults, kidnappings, burglaries, domestic disputes, terrorist threats, robberies, vehicle theft that has just occurred, vehicle or hit and run accidents with known or suspected injuries, gang related disturbance calls or any disturbance call involving a weapon, etc.)
  • Fire, hazardous chemical spill, smoke in your house or building, sparking electrical hazards, or fire/smoke detector or carbon monoxide alarms are sounding
  • Suspicious criminal activity (e.g. alarms, shots fired, shouts for help, and sounds of breaking glass, unfamiliar person carrying items dorm room or apartment, an occupied suspicious vehicle)
  • If the situation changes before help arrives, call 9-1-1 again and give the call taker the updated information

Examples of Non-Emergency Calls

  • Directions
  • Lost or stolen property
  • To determine if someone has been arrested
  • Non-injury traffic accidents. If you are unsure of injuries it can be considered an emergency call
  • Loud music or loud party complaints, barking dogs
  • Juvenile complaints of a non-threatening nature such as skateboarding, or loitering
  • Parking complaints
  • Abandoned vehicles, unless suspected stolen
  • Delayed reports

When You Call 9-1-1 (Items You May Be Asked to Provide)

  • Briefly explain the nature of your emergency or complaint
  • Your name, address and telephone number
  • Location (the address where the incident is occurring)
    • The location of occurrence is so the police know where to send the help. That might be the first question a dispatcher or call taker will ask you. WHY? If the call is disconnected, or there is a phone problem, the location of the incident is the minimum amount of information needed to send help. Since the address has such great importance, please be sure to give a full description of your location. For example: Provide the building or apartment name and room number or where you are in the building; or Indy 500 Track.
    • If outside, provide a description of where you are. Be specific. For example, if you are at the track, state you are near the front entrance of turn #4, in the back of the restrooms.
    • If you are driving to your destination, and calling about something you saw on the way, provide the closest cross streets to the incident occurrence. For example, Crawfordsville and Cunningham.
    • Once an officer arrives at the location originally provided, it is not uncommon for the situation or location to have changed.  The police department will often use your location as a starting point to search for what you reported. If the officer is unable to find anything, they may respond back to your address and talk to you for additional information, but only if you want contact.
  • Once the police department has the very basic information they need to send help, the dispatcher will start asking more questions, such as:
    • Who caused the problem, when the incident occurred?
    • Why do you think the situation happened?

Time from the Incident to Your Call

If the problem you are reporting just occurred (or 5 -10 minutes before you called), the questions the police department asks will be different then if the situation occurred the night before. The next set of questions the police department asks may be about the person you think is responsible for causing the problem or the situation.

How to Describe a Person or Suspect

When providing a suspect description to an officer, describe that person in a certain manner. Start from the top of their head and work down to the toes. For example: White male adult about 5’ feet 7” tall, blond hair, blue eyes, with a mustache and goatee.

For the clothing description, start from the outside and move in towards the body from the top of the head and moving down to the toes. For example:
The subject is wearing a New York Yankees hat, red jacket, blue flannel shirt with a white t-shirt underneath, black belt with silver type belt buckle, blue jeans and sneakers.

Information Needed if a Vehicle was Involved

How would one give information to the dispatcher or call taker if a vehicle was involved? There are certain questions asked, and in a certain order for a vehicle description. The reason dispatchers ask these questions in this way is because the officer responding to the call may spot a similar vehicle on the way to your call, the same color or year or the same make or body style. If possible, provide the license plate number too.

Here is a list of questions the dispatcher or call taker may ask about the description of a vehicle:

  • License Plate
  • Color
  • Year
  • Make
  • Body Style

The Speedway Police Department encourages you to call if you feel something is suspicious or potentially warrants their attention. They are more than happy to patrol any areas necessary to help identify or deter any potential dangers. If you feel something to be suspicious NEVER hesitate to call the department. We hope this guide helps direct you to emergency vs. non-emergency lines – thank you!

Speedway Coyote Sightings Map

Speedway residents have been discussing sightings of coyotes on social media. This is actually not new, reports have been going on for many years.

We have compiled a map of the locations where residents have indicated they have seen coyotes at various times. PLEASE NOTE: This map only represents locations where coyotes have been seen over time, and does not reflect any specific number of coyotes.

If you wish to add a location where you have seen a coyote, please leave a comment below.

Here is information from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources on dealing with nuisance coyotes in populated areas.

The links contained are for informational purposes only and are not an endorsement to take any action regarding coyotes and should not be construed as such.

The Indiana DNR’s advice on trapping and shooting is general only. If you choose to deal with coyotes on your property, do so responsibly; know all applicable state laws and local ordinances BEFORE taking any action.

Questions? Contact the Indiana DNR at the “Nuisance Wildlife” link above.

September 9 & 10, 2014: Refuse To Be A Victim Seminar

Please join us for an interesting and very informative two-part presentation called “Refuse To Be A Victim” presented by the Train To Be Safe Academy.

We would like to help Speedway residents be informed and knowledgeable to help prevent crime in our town. In addition to being watchful over our neighborhoods and calling the the Speedway Police Department whenever you see or hear anything suspicious, there are many additional ways you can prevent yourself from becoming a victim of crime.

The seminar includes classroom instruction on a variety of crime prevention strategies, common weaknesses that criminals may take advantage of, and teaches a variety of corrective measures that are practical, inexpensive, and easy to follow. Strategies include home security, carjack avoidance techniques, cyber safety, and use of personal safety devices.

WhenTuesday, September 9th from 6:00PM to 8:30PM and Wednesday, September 10th from 6:00PM to 8:30PM.

Brief Description: Teaches the basic knowledge, skills, and attitude for developing a strategy for one’s personal safety.  This 5-hour seminar is split over two evenings.
Where: Community Westview Health Pavilion in the community room on the 2nd floor.
Cost: $20 per participant.

Click here for the RTBAV webpage and here for a promotional video.

Child Safety: Heatstroke Awareness

One of the most preventable causes of injury and death to children is leaving them alone in a hot car. Of the many (too many…) cases we hear about recently, many are not deliberate and are deemed accidental. State laws vary on the legality of leaving children unattended in cars, but regardless – if caregivers being distracted is a primary cause, then a heightened state of awareness is absolutely critical at all times to prevent this terrible tragedy from occurring to our most precious cargo. Above all – for not only heatstroke prevention but for the overall safety of your child – do not leave children unattended, even for “just a minute.”

Pediatrician: It’s easier than you think to forget your baby in hot car

It’s certainly also important for everyone to have a greater awareness of this issue and to not hesitate to take action if one sees an unattended child in a car. Here’s some information on heatstroke, including advice on what to do if you are a bystander: Leaving Kids Alone in Hot Cars: Know the Risks and Consequences



Speedway Police Department Offers Holiday Safety Tips


November 26, 2013

Holiday Safety Tips

Speedway- The holiday season is a special and exciting time of the year; it is also a time when people could become more vulnerable to theft and other types of crimes. The following tips are suggested by the Speedway Police Department to help keep you and your loved ones safe during the holiday season.


  • Shop during daylight hours and with a friend
  • If you must shop after dark, park in a well-lit location
  • Avoid parking next to vans, trucks or cars with dark tinted windows
  • Do not leave any valuables or packages in the vehicle where they can be seen
  • Lock your car doors
  • Keep control of your wallets and purses, do not leave them unattended To discourage purse-snatches, don’t overburden yourself with packages
  • Avoid carrying large amounts of cash
  • Be sure to locate your keys before getting to your car
  • Be aware of your surroundings at all times, especially while walking to your car
  • Do not approach your car alone if there are suspicious people in the area
  • If you feel uncomfortable, request mall security for an escort or wait until suspicious people relocate
  • If you must use an ATM, chose one that is located inside of a mall or in a well-lit location – know who and what is going on around you while using the machine

Online Shopping

  • Purchase from only reputable websites
  • Be wary of meeting strangers from online websites
  • Use only one credit card that has a low credit limit
  • Keep all receipts from online purchases
  • Check your credit card transactions online or the credit statements after the holidays and even run a credit check to make sure you weren’t the victim of fraud


  • If you can, leave small children with a trusted babysitter
  • Teach children to stay close to you at all times and never allow them to make unaccompanied trips to the restroom
  • Never leave your child alone in a vehicle
  • Teach your child to immediately inform you if a stranger is bothering them

At Home

  • Put lights on an automatic timer
  • If traveling have a trusted neighbor or family member watch your house and pick up newspapers and mail; or have the service temporarily suspended
  • Leave a radio or television on so the house looks and sounds occupied
  • Large displays of holiday gifts should not be visible through windows and or doors
  • Ensure that tree is mounted on a sturdy base so children do not tip over the tree
  • Make sure all doors and windows are locked at all times
  • Leave the garage door closed, even when you are home
  • Do not answer the door if you are not expecting anyone
  • Call 911 if you see suspicious behavior

If you will be traveling for the holiday

  • If you will be driving make sure your vehicle is in good working order and that the tires have the right amount of air
  • Travel with water and snacks in the vehicle just in case of inclement weather
  •  Have trusted neighbors retrieve mail and newspapers or have the service temporarily suspended
  • If it snows, ask a neighbor and or family to shovel driveway or park in the driveway so it looks as if someone is home
  • Close blinds and make sure all windows are locked
  • Put lights on timers
  • Leave a radio or television on so it sounds as if someone is home

Strangers at Your Door

  • Criminals sometimes pose as couriers delivering gifts
  • Criminals will take advantage of holiday generosity by soliciting door to door for charitable causes although there is no charity involved
  • You DO NOT have to answer the door! If you are suspicious of the person at your door, call police

Ultimately, we can never be too aware or too careful. The Speedway Police Department has plans in place to provide extra patrols in and around shopping locations throughout the town. Always remember public safety resources are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Never hesitate to call 911 or the non-emergency number at 244-9543. Speedway employees wish you and your family Seasons Greetings.

Media Contact: Lt. Trent Theobald , 317-246-4312

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