Distanced encounter - just a thought.

This is a discussion on Distanced encounter - just a thought. within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; We tend, logically I reckon, that an ''encounter'' from which we cannot escape would be in region of ''bad breath'' distance or a little over. ...

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Thread: Distanced encounter - just a thought.

  1. #1
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    Distanced encounter - just a thought.

    We tend, logically I reckon, that an ''encounter'' from which we cannot escape would be in region of ''bad breath'' distance or a little over.

    I got to wondering tho - ''what if'' regarding something a bit different - but unlikely.

    You are in a large but fairly quiet parking lot, daylight - parking up and preparing to get out and enter a store. Before you can complete this, you are aware of a close miss by an incoming round - not however a pistol round as the signature tells you it is a rifle shot.

    The only cover you have is your vehicle so - that is what you have to use - and escape to better cover is maybe 30 or more paces away - meaning covering open ground. Maybe a ''duck & dive'' might be considered by some.

    You have your pistol but no higher power weapon with you. You have a cell so can call 911 but in the shorter term prior to cavalry appearing - what might you do.? Your best guess as to range is - long!!! - using realization of bullet arrival and subsequent shot sound time discrepancy.

    Stay the heck put I guess is only answer but - did make me think a bit.... thinking back perhaps to DC sniper type situation.



    Were this to occur out in the boonies tho - and no cell signal - then what? Maybe a disgruntled and totally maladjusted maniac ''hunter'' looking for ''fun''. But even tho you have vehicular cover - nowhere else to go with ease, no way to know how long you may be vulnerable or even if you are being seen as ''prey''. Wait 'till dark?? Probably here the need for some field skills, tactics etc.


    OK humor me - just seeing what folks might think
    Chris - P95
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    Senior Member Array GoodSamaritan's Avatar
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    Depending on terrain and the direction the round is coming from, I would most likely get as low as possible and try to drive myself to cover, keeping the bulk of my vehicle between me and the BG as much as possible.

    Even if there is no immediate cover a moving target is still harder to hit than a stationary one.

    If by some fluke the vehicle became disabled and was the only cover available (center of a mall parking lot with no other cars) I might try playing possum and wait for a closer shot or for the BG to move on to a more exciting target.

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    Quote Originally Posted by P95Carry
    Stay the heck put I guess is only answer but - did make me think a bit.... thinking back perhaps to DC sniper type situation.

    Were this to occur out in the boonies tho - and no cell signal - then what? Maybe a disgruntled and totally maladjusted maniac ''hunter'' looking for ''fun''. But even tho you have vehicular cover - nowhere else to go with ease, no way to know how long you may be vulnerable or even if you are being seen as ''prey''. Wait 'till dark?? Probably here the need for some field skills, tactics etc.
    I would stay put until I assessed, as best I could, where it came from and where I might move to safely, after calling 911. If this was a deliberate shot at me for some reason, I would not want to be siitting there waiting for him to come see if there was a job he needed to finish. If no other cars were close, I probably would, in the end, try to get the car started and out of there. Otherwise I would try to change positions on foot while remaining covered (and concealed). In the boonies with no cell signal, same deal but would definitely get out of there in my car.
    Bumper
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    VIP Member Array Euclidean's Avatar
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    Well I see two possible sub scenarios:

    #1. We have a situation similar to that of the Tyler, Texas tragedy where the rifleman's presence is visible even if it is an encounter at a greater distance than we normally associate with self defense scenarios.

    #2. The shooter is shooting at us from a long distance away from a location we can't discern.

    We have to treat it like #2 until we know differently.

    Vehicles are concealment, not cover. If that's what was there I would go real low real quick and start crawling for a better position. Make him guess where I am.

    A thought occurs to me in that it is significantly plausible I might be in parking garage if this happens. I'd try to get around a corner and go to higher ground. Most parking garages I've seen follow the pattern of a switchback staircase so it's possible to get a vantage point where you could be looking down at him, thus turning the tides.

    And if not, many parking lots have large concrete bases around their lights. If there's nothing else especially, such an object would provide some cover.

    I know in the local Home Depot/Wally World lot there's a spot where the elevation changes radically and there's a walled in area there. It wouldn't be too ridiculous to suppose you could jump in this pit where he could neither see you nor shoot you.

    Some catridges, like the .270, have a distinctive sound I'd know anywhere. You know that if he's using a rifle in that chambering odds are 99% good it's a bolt action, so unless he's a real hot shot you may be able to count to 4 shots and then make a short run from cover to cover.

    Putting this out in the sticks changes the whole situation. That's one I would have to think about some more.

    Being able to see where it's coming from changes it all too.

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    Excellent - great stuff
    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

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    I dont know about yall, but a hiding behind a vehicle is not that great. Having shot the heck out of cars and trucks myself, just about any medium (AK,SKS,30-30) round will pentrate and just about every high powered (.270.308, 30-06) will blow though that thin sheet metal like it aint even there.

    In the event of no available cover closeby,the best thing to do is to get behind the opposite front tire and use the engine for cover. It aint much with todays engines, but its the best thing going.

    Ive seen footage of police shootings where police cars were swiss cheesed by people that were hell bent on killing somebody. A door is better than nothing in a pistol fight, but the smart thing to do if the BG pulls out a rifle is to get behind the trunk and use the whole length of the car for cover.

    That being said, there is no future in engaing in a rifle fight with a pistol.

    IF cover is 30 yards away, the more distance the shooter has the better your chances are of making it. If it were a concrete dirt filled planter or something like it that was used for cover in the Hollywood bank shootout, thats where Im getting to. Several officers took cover behind them and they took multiple AK rounds with concrete getting splatterd all around them but they lived to tell the story.

    If Im in the woods, Ill try to figure out where the shot is coming from and keep a tree in between me and him while exiting out.Ive stalked many people like that and using slow movement and keeping a tree in view while never seeing them is the way to walk up to someone within slapping distance before they even know you're there. It works the same way when trying to get away. You can do it while watching the shooter. When he moves, you move. As long as hes moving hes not shooting and if he does its not accurate fire and the odds would be in your favor.

    Just so yall dont think Im crazy, I have taught both of my sons these techniques and they are both absolute hell in a paintball fight. ecspecially with city slickers. It almost aint fair...

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    Key, ignition, start car and drive away very fast and erratically. Dial 911 as soon as I am out of the zone. If possible block the entrance to the area to prevent further potential victims from driving in and parking.

    -Scott-

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    Assuming that I think I'm dealing with a long-range sniper, and have just pulled in, and haven't left my car, yet, then I'm not going to give my sniper a stationary target. I'm going to drive away as quickly as possible. I'll report the sniper while exiting the area. In the rural scenario, if I haven't left the car, then I'm going to exit the area as quickly as possible, trying to take advantage of whatever cover there is.

    There is little to no percentage in a handgun vs sniper scenario. I'm not going to leave my cover, voluntarily. If I were already out of the car, then I would put as much cover between me and the perceived direction of the shooter as possible. I'd use whatever I had at hand, engine block, wheels, concrete pole base, planters, whatever. Then, I'd try to evade, oblique to the line of fire. If I have a cell phone, I'm calling for help. If not, I'm focusing on cover and evasion.
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    In the Charles Whitman vein, you're pretty well F***ed. Two things: first, bullets ricochet along flat surfaces. If I were the sniper, you were my sole target, with no cover/concealment, other than your car, and let's say I was using a G3(or other s/a rifle), if I didn't get you with the first round, I'd use a mag, along the edge of your vehicle- just about guaranteed to tag something, at least a foot or knee. If you got in the car, I'd just need to use a few rounds through the roof. If I were a real devious A-hole, I'd have gotten some incendiary AP rounds (surplus) loaded up, and put a couple into the region of your gas tank. (ha, ha! Lookie the little sticky-man running around on fire! :1saufen: )

    Second point: distance is your friend. If Gomer isn't really serious with his rifle, the first miss is likely to be followed by more of the same, as long as you are near the limit of his "comfort-zone". This is actually something I've thought seriously about, as I work on the OU campus. Lots of hard cover, but also a lot of corners you could be pinned in for hours.........

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    P95Carry,

    I think it's wise to anticipate "unlikely" encounters. I don't like depending on statistics for gunfights to protect me - you know average four feet, two shots, or whatever. My encounter may not be average.

    Most have focused on excape where that is available, e.g. car etc., and I agree; evade and escape (E&E) is generally the best response. But E&E is not always possible and sometimes may not be desireable. What if there are loved ones that are cut off from you and hence you can't just E&E.

    In the case where you can't leave, you must utilize cover to the max and hope the BG will make a mistake(s) and you'll catch a break. I think this very theme is a reason why we need to practice some long shots, not just the up close an personal stuff.

    With all else equal, a rifle against a handgun is especially tough and the outcome is almost predicatable. However, all things are rarely equal and maybe cover, tactics, and honed skill are in our favor.

    I'll have nightmares tonight!

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    I carry a rifle in the truck usually , so if I can get to it the odds may get more even. I also know a fair amount of fieldcraft , so hiding in the woods and flanking may be an option.

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    I think I'm in the "floor it and get the hell out of there" camp. If he already missed when I was sitting still or moving slowly, chances are he'll miss again if I'm moving quickly and weaving back and forth.

    Another possiblility is to drive the car up to the door of the store and bail out. I guess my point is that I'm not going to just sit there and wait for him to nail me, and I'm not going to give up what little cover I have (the car) unless I can get to better cover pretty darn quick.

    Am I right or wrong? No clue, that's the whole point of these "scenarios."
    "Being a predator isn't always comfortable but the only other option is to be prey. That is not an acceptable option." ~Phil Messina

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    Senior Member Array Tom357's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tangle
    ...Most have focused on excape where that is available, e.g. car etc., and I agree; evade and escape (E&E) is generally the best response. But E&E is not always possible and sometimes may not be desireable. What if there are loved ones that are cut off from you and hence you can't just E&E....
    What we would do alone, and what we would do with our families present, are two very different scenarios. I think it is true with any of these scenarios we discuss, that someone can come up with complications that contradict solutions offered for the original scenario, making no answer the One Right Answer (tm).

    I agree that practicing longer range shooting is necessary, but in this scenario, taken as described, handgun vs long-range sniper, without mention of family, returning fire with a handgun is only buying time for the sniper. Clearance to shoot is a two-way street.

    I suspect that those of us who had to live with Mohammad and Malvo in the area have given these kinds of scenarios some serious thought. I'd be interested to know how the DC Snipers changed your behavior in the open. I know that, for me, I changed how I scan, where I park, what I do when I'm filling up my car, how I traverse the parking lot to and from a store, and what kind of cover I notice.
    - Tom
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom357
    What we would do alone, and what we would do with our families present, are two very different scenarios. I think it is true with any of these scenarios we discuss, that someone can come up with complications that contradict solutions offered for the original scenario, making no answer the One Right Answer (tm).
    I wasn't trying to come up with complications outside the scope of the "original scenario" which was actually two variations of a general senario - a rifle against a handgun. One was that you were in your vehicle,

    "...The only cover you have is your vehicle so..."

    and the other was in the boonies and no vehicle was mentioned,

    "...Were this to occur out in the boonies tho - and no cell signal - then what?...Wait 'till dark?? Probably here the need for some field skills, tactics etc..."

    It seemed to me the original post was soliciting more thought than just get in the car and go and that was indicated by the boonie scenario.

    I agree the family example I used introduced a new twist, and in hind sight perhaps a bad choice. The point I was trying to make, however, was in line with the boonie example where an attempt to run/escape might not be the best option.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom357
    I agree that practicing longer range shooting is necessary, but in this scenario, taken as described, handgun vs long-range sniper, without mention of family, returning fire with a handgun is only buying time for the sniper. Clearance to shoot is a two-way street.
    I didn't mean to suggest that we "swap" fire with a sniper. As I tried to emphasize in my post, given we are "pinned" (in the boonie example) we are going to need everything to go our way and I reiterate, we really need the BG to make a mistake or two or the fight is pretty predictable.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom357
    I suspect that those of us who had to live with Mohammad and Malvo in the area have given these kinds of scenarios some serious thought. I'd be interested to know how the DC Snipers changed your behavior in the open. I know that, for me, I changed how I scan, where I park, what I do when I'm filling up my car, how I traverse the parking lot to and from a store, and what kind of cover I notice.
    I agree, however in the original scenario we were already in the situation, so you are doing what you said I did - offering solutions, pre-engagement tactics, that don't apply to the original scenario. Still excellent points.

    However, I wonder for those of use who have not experienced the sniper threat, if we actually employee tactics to help us avoid a sniper situation. If the sniper is concealed some 100 yards or so away, I guess I don't know of many precautions that would be effective and still be able to function. I suppose we could try to identify lines of fire and avoid those and try to stay behind cover to and from our car. I'm not sure we can sustain such measures on an on going basis.

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    Tangle - indeed, I was in a sense outlining what is all but the impossible situation and, re the boonies aspect - again we have vehicle but have come under fire while still in it or just gotten out. We have to react to that one first shot. assuming multiples in this case not incoming (yet!).

    True in both cases - pedal to metal could well be best risk to take - but also I felt we might consider all other options - and input has been very stimulating. I think the other option I would try for in either case is a zig-zag run for cover of any sort - the vehicle being less than favorite. Take that chance maybe. That could work if a bolt rifle - less attractive for someone with a semi - AK, Bushy etc.

    Priority to me would be establishing range and location of shooter. If of course he was smart and determined he will not stay in position for consecutive shots.

    If he did however - then having reached some cover we have more time to plan and even, in boonies - go into field craft mode where with stealth and determination even yet, the handgun might prove an equalizer.

    Thx for all thoughts - it is I admit far fetched but - who knows ever what might go down and so - always interesting to explore just what we might do and what options folks see.
    Chris - P95
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    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

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