How to Avoid Carjacking

A couple of months ago, a news cast was shown about the spree of car jacks in Reno, NV. The newscaster, a woman, asked a police officer what the best defense was...surprisingly he didn't say some of the most obvious
1) Keep you car doors locked at all times
2) Keep you car windows rolled up to the point that no one could actually open the car door through them
3) Be conscious about where you're driving, the area of the city and the people walking around you
4) Always drive so that if a car stops in front of you, you could easily drive around them if you had to
5) If someone puts their arm in your window, close your window while ducking below the window---as well as start to drive away with their arm in the window---they'll get the point
6) Keep your radio down so that you can hear anything abnormal around you

More Tips from Department of Public Safety of University of Southern California
"Carjacking is a serious, traumatic and often violent form of vehicle theft. It is a crime of opportunity that threatens an individual’s personal safety. Carjackers utilize particular conditions to select their victims, targeting vulnerable, unaware and/or unprepared people. It is important to appear confident and be aware of your surroundings at all times, especially when driving at reduced speeds and stopping or parking at:
  • Intersections controlled by stoplights or signs
  • Garages and commuter parking areas, shopping malls and grocery stores
  • Self-service gas stations and car washes
  • Drive-thru banks
  • Residential driveways and streets where people are often get into and out of cars
  • Freeway exits and entry ramps
The key to avoiding this crime is prevention. It is a good idea to think about what to do if you became a carjacking victim. You can reduce your risk by considering the following precautions:
  • Keep all doors locked and windows up when driving
  • Keep your valuables out of view
  • When possible, do not drive alone in remote or unfamiliar areas
  • Service your vehicle regularly to ensure it is working properly
  • Travel on main roads as much as possible
  • Try to drive in the lane nearest to the road’s center to distance any would-be pedestrian attacker and to avoid being pushed to the shoulder
  • Drive on well-lit streets at night
  • When stopped in traffic, leave enough space between vehicles to allow you to move forward
  • Do not park next to high-profile vehicles such as vans that could conceal a suspect
  • When walking to your car have keys in hand, and enter your vehicle quickly
  • Do not pull over if a suspicious driver motions you to do so
  • If you feel you are being followed by another vehicle, do not drive home
  • If you are involved in a minor accident or think your car was hit intentionally, do not check the damage in a remote area – motion the other driver to follow you to the nearest police station or open business to exchange information
  • If you are in an accident, take your keys and purse or wallet with you when you get out of the car"

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