by John Boch
At a recent Chicago GSL meeting, civilian and law-enforcement firearms instructor Rocco Wlodarek from Black Flag Firearm Training spent a few minutes talking with the audience about three locations we are most vulnerable in our daily lives.
The first location was parking lots – specifically that last fifty feet as you’re returning to your vehicle. Why is this a dangerous place? Well, aside from lots of places for a bad guy to lurk, the average person’s mind is already thinking about other things – other destinations, chores or personal issues – and not situational awareness. Add to that one’s hands may be full carrying bags and there may be some fumbling for keys. Don’t be this person!
The second location is gas stations. Gas pumps create blind spots that help bad actors to approach unobserved. Doors are often unlocked and the ladies often leave their purses on the passenger seat or passenger seat floorboard. Further, you’re distracted operating the pump, including answering an increasing number of questions from gas pumps (billing zip codes, “rewards” membership, and car wash) before they begin pumping fuel. Bad guys know this too, and are using it to their advantage. Now you know this, too. Be vigilant, not distracted, when you fuel up.
Your own front door.
The last fifteen feet to our front door holds danger as well. Why? Because if you’re like most people, you’re already “at home” mentally as you park your car. You’re thinking about what’s for dinner or what you need to do once you get inside the house. You’re not watching the surroundings for bad guys and you’re not watching for someone to duck into your garage as the garage door begins to go down.
Bad guys are increasingly looking towards home invasions as a quick and easy way to find a home’s valuables. Plus, there’s no need to fight home safes when a homeowner will open them up with a little “convincing”.
In short, watch your own six as you come home each day.
IN SUMMARY… Maintain a heightened sense of awareness of your surroundings, particularly in these higher-risk locations. Remember, move with poise, alertness and a sense of purpose to make yourself look like a hard target.