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• Always start your travels with a full tank of gas, make sure your vehicle is in
top working condition, and check that you have a good spare tire.
• Know where local, city, and state police stations are located on your route.
• Keep an emergency kit in your car and make sure it at least includes an emergency
flashlight that doesn’t require batteries, a reflector, jumper cables, tie down
cords, a poncho, first aid kit, multi-purpose tool, emergency blanket, compass,
• Also, make sure you have an emergency escape hammer in your car that it is within
reach of the driver’s seat. Tens of thousands of people are trapped in their
vehicle every year from collisions or from being submerged in water. A seat belt
can easily become jammed during an accident and you will be unable to release it
in the normal way or your door may be jammed shut with your air bag pressed
so tightly up against you that you’re momentarily unable to move.
Now, imagine that your fuel tank has ruptured and your car is on fire or about
to burst into flames. This is a scenario played out thousands of times a year.
An escape tool can save your life in either of the above scenarios. You need to be
able to get to it quickly, which is why you should place it within easy reach. A
good escape tool can cut a seat belt, deflate an air bag, and bust out the side
• Park in well lit areas with moderate pedestrian traffic and always remember where
• When possible, back your car into parking spaces because it’s quicker if you have
to get away.
• Always lock your car after entering it and leaving it.
• Never leave keys in the ignition, even for a momentary errand.
• Carry a spare set of keys.
• Carry a pepper spray device that attaches to your key chain.
• If you break down or have trouble with your car, pull off the road, if possible,
activate your emergency flashers, and immediately call for help with your cell
phone. Remain in the car with its windows up and doors locked until you are absolutely
positive that it is safe to exit the vehicle, in which case you would leave your
hood up and place an emergency reflector ten to fifteen feet behind your car
and get back in it until help comes.
• If you’re being harassed by anyone in another vehicle or you feel you’re being
followed, use your cell phone to report the incident, and drive to the nearest
populated service station, strip mall or police station, and honk your horn for help.
• Never pick up hitchhikers or give strangers a ride.
• You can become a victim of a carjacking nearly anywhere. Carjackers, however,
are more likely to attack a motorist at common stopping points such as stop
signs, traffic lights, parking lots, gas stations, rest areas, restaurants, and fast
food drive-thrus. Most carjackings take place on weekends between 7 and 12 p.m.
• One of the best defenses against a carjacking is to keep your windows up and doors
locked. After getting into your car, lock the doors immediately. Should someone
attempt to order you out of your vehicle, put it in gear and drive away as fast
• Should someone attempt to carjack your vehicle while you’re getting in or out
of it, throw your keys in one direction and run the other direction. Just like
with money or valuables, if they come after you, instead of your car, then you’ll
know it was you they were really after to start with and you need to do whatever
it takes to not be taken hostage.
• Should someone attempt to get into your car while you’re in it and you can’t speed
away, throw your keys out of the car, or in the back seat and climb out the
opposite side they’re trying to get in. Then, run like the wind while screaming at
the top of your lungs for help.
• When leaving any area, make sure you’re not being followed. Car bump lures and
home invasions are one of the fastest growing crimes in this country and most
involve being followed home from a shopping center after being targeted for your
valuables or looks.
The automobile has become our primary mode of transportation, and the conveniences
it provides makes it one of the greatest inventions in recent history. Planning
ahead before we get behind the wheel is a good thing, both for our personal safety
as well as the safety of those whom we share the road with.
Having a car in good working order is important, and it is important we follow our
auto’s regular maintenance schedule. Women frequently find themselves at risk due
to mechanical failure, as predators can view this as a unique opportunity to take
advantage of a stranded victim.