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The carnival season in Dominica is yet another time of the year when a high level of consumer activity is displayed. Many use this opportunity to indulge in excesses, such as alcohol, cigarettes, liming, fêteing, and eating, some of which should be done in moderation, and others, should be avoided at all cost. As wise consumers we should be aware that moderation is always better than intemperance.

One of our basic rights as a consumer is the right to safe in goods and services. Unfortunately during the carnival season this right is often abused. The following are a few safety tips for consumers who are taking part in the carnival celebrations. Ensure:

Safety of property – Secure your home before leaving. House break-ins and car jacking are very common during the carnival season.

Safety of food is yet another important area. Examine vendors’ surroundings. The presence of running water and washroom facilities must be close by; avoid buying cooked food on the road ways; look for that food badge, purchase fruits as a first option or better yet, eat at home before you leave.

Ensure that venues are safe. Enquire about the security available at the parties that you wish to go to, have a clear idea of the exits and entrances in the case of emergencies.

There is safety in numbers – If possible avoid going to fetes alone it is always better to travel in numbers.

You should also avoid carrying large sums of cash when masquerading, take only what you need or walk with a debit card. Do not wear excessive jewelry, or the type that draws attention to you, there is a risk of making yourself a target for thieves.

Remember, although you have a right to enjoy carnival, but also you need to be responsible in your actions during this festive season.

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