If your car can help you avoid a carjacking attempt, you’d be a fool not to use it as the primary agent in your Active Self Protection! This driver used his car well both before and during, and this carjacking never stood a chance.
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What does this armored car owner teach us about escaping a carjacking?
- Transitional spaces are places where we MUST be more careful of potential attack. A transitional space is any location that (1) allows attackers to prey on potential victims with an element of surprise and (2) provides ready escape for the attackers. Wherever your car is stopped is a place where a carjacking can happen, so be aware of that chance!
- In any territorial or predatorial violence, the attacker gets to set the time and circumstances of the attack. They will almost always launch that attack from ambush, or as we like to call it in Umas, from “obscurity.” Surviving that ambush is one of the most important keys to successfully defending yourself. Here the car owner had time because they had the armored car to protect them from the carjacking attempt!
- A life of self-protection must be dedicated to avoidance, de-escalation, and escape whenever possible. You win 100% of the fights that you don’t get in, so make a commitment to de-escalate, escape, or evade any encounter you possibly can. Having good situational awareness will give you more time and opportunity to see problems coming and formulate a plan to stay away and protect yourself without danger to yourself or others. This is always our first choice as self-defenders. Perhaps the best way to win a carjacking attempt is to escape!
- I can’t believe how often I have to say this, but LOCK YOUR CAR DOORS. When you get in the car, lock the doors. If your car automatically unlocks the doors when you put it in park or shut the engine off, read your owner’s manual and change that setting. Your car door is a great barrier to keep between you and any potential carjacking, so keep it locked for your safety! Your order of operations should be get in the car, lock the doors, start the car, seatbelt on, drive off.
- Your car is not a private space, and you must continue to think of yourself like you’re in public. If ever you wonder if people don’t think of themselves as in public in the car, pay attention to drivers in their cars and see how often they are picking their nose or singing along at high volume. Don’t let your smartphone take all your attention when you’re in the car, either! Think of yourself as walking down the street and pay attention accordingly. Situational awareness in your car can let you escape a carjacking faster than this guy did!
Attitude. Skills. Plan.
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