How patrons can avoid bar fights in Pennsylvania

A few useful tips could go a long way in avoiding a bar fight and any personal injuries that might result.

You go out to a bar with your friends to wind down after a busy week of work, or to celebrate a recent promotion. Either way, you do not expect to get into a bar fight with other Pennsylvania locals. Unfortunately, there is no accounting for the actions of others, especially when those actions are fueled by alcohol. Thankfully, there are steps you can take to de-escalate such a situation and avoid injury.

Watch how much you drink

A lot of mishaps can be avoided simply by not drinking too much alcohol. Some people have a shift in personality when they drink, meaning they might become belligerent and look for someone to take their aggression out on. Not drinking too much allows you to be clear-headed to defuse a potentially dangerous situation and better keep from accidentally starting one yourself.

Turn yourself into a barrier

If the potential fight is between people you know, stand between them. You might also have to pull them apart, if it becomes necessary. Use your words to try to cool the combatants down, reminding them of the legal, physical and financial consequences of getting into a fight. Whichever tactics you use, try your best not to be too physical, as this can turn you into a target.

Remember to breathe

Because it is an automatic act, many forget how effective conscious breathing can be, and that is especially true when emotions are running high. If you feel yourself getting upset, or if someone is aiming her or his drunken aggression at you, take a moment to concentrate on your breathing rather than anything else going on around you. Disconnecting for a few moments can clear the air and keep fists from swinging.

Find help

Just like you were probably told when you were younger, it is a good idea to "look for an adult" when it comes to bar fights. This means getting help either from your friends, someone who works at the bar or security. Having more people on your side can provide you with a sense of security and cool the situation faster than you would be able to on your own.

Show your hands

If an aggressive person approaches you in a bar, put your hands up with your palms displayed to show you mean no harm. Should the person act as if he or she is about to hit you, press your hands in front of you. That way, you still present yourself as non-threatening and can better avoid becoming a victim of a crime, and you are able to protect yourself if the other person takes a swing at you.

You might not always be able to avoid sustaining a personal injury during a bar fight in Pennsylvania. Should the worst happen, sit down with a lawyer to discuss your legal options.