Poll: Precautions taken when approaching your car

This is a discussion on Poll: Precautions taken when approaching your car within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; When you have left your vehicle for a length of time, unmonitored and unsecured (as in a store parking lot), what steps do you take ...

View Poll Results: Poll: Precautions taken when approaching your car

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  • Generally monitor people in the vicinity.

    162 90.00%
  • Watch for people that are attuned to my actions.

    134 74.44%
  • Keep keys in hand.

    134 74.44%
  • Keep weapon in hand.

    4 2.22%
  • Approach from an angle, to afford a better view.

    52 28.89%
  • Evaluate the car's condition (ie flat tires, SuperGlued locks) prior to entry.

    91 50.56%
  • Look in the back seat area, prior to entry.

    106 58.89%
  • Unlock only the driver's door, either manually or with a key fob designed this way.

    110 61.11%
  • Lock the doors immediately upon entry.

    115 63.89%
  • Start the car and put into gear, prior to doing anything else.

    57 31.67%
  • Immediately leave, avoiding losing awareness of the "perimeter."

    56 31.11%
  • Other steps (specify).

    8 4.44%
Multiple Choice Poll.
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Thread: Poll: Precautions taken when approaching your car

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Poll: Precautions taken when approaching your car

    When you have left your vehicle for a length of time, unmonitored and unsecured (as in a store parking lot), what steps do you take each and every time you approach your car?

    This poll allows multiple choices to be checked. Check as many as apply to the standard, routine procedure you do every time you return to your car after leaving it unattended.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
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  3. #2
    Member Array Griblik's Avatar
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    Good things to think about, I've recently gone on a campaign to get these in my gf's standard procedure as well, with limited success...
    .40 is fine.

  4. #3
    Ex Member Array ibez's Avatar
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    I generally do 8 out of the 12 choices

  5. #4
    Member Array nlax2011's Avatar
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    Good tips. Nice to know I've been doing most of these already.

    For me especially, since I'm still waiting on the permit and not carrying, the major thing I do is just be extra aware of my surroundings. I try to park as close as possible to the store in a lighted area if at night, and when going back to the car I just try and keep an eye out for anyone that may try to follow me.

    As I'm approaching the car I'll try and look around it and under it to see if I can see someone trying to crouch behind it or if a tire is busted, etc...

  6. #5
    Member Array tk4878's Avatar
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    Since I work in crack central...I have had occasions where I have done all of the above (except my weapon was my knife).
    It just makes good sense. If you are aware of your surroundings, you can prevent or manage alot of problems. As for other: when I saw a man standing behind my car...I turned around and went back inside and called security. Why invite trouble? The guy ran off when security drove up. I like to think that my best weapon is my brain. I'm never without it and I use it well (for the most part).

  7. #6
    Member Array tellico's Avatar
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    My routine is comfortable, and does not look suspicious when done right, yet definitely looks non-victim.

    -always dig keys out and have in hand before even leaving the store (often means standing in the entrance digging in purse, but better there than at car)

    -move cell phone from purse to pocket

    - carry bags on weak side arm, with one in hand ready to toss at a BG

    -hand on purse strap, purse snugly under my arm

    -LOOK quickly over entire lot as you take the first step away from the building

    -walk with purpose

    -I have a habit of glancing underneath vehicles that I must pass by

    -don't unlock car until almost there- no need to let everyone know where you are heading by the light flash/beep until you are within reach of vehicle

    - After unlocking car, with ignition key in right hand, transfer bags to right forearm to make the entry move: left hand opens door, right arm sweeps bags into passenger seat as I get in, left thumb locks door as I'm closing the door, right arm immediately puts key in the ignition, cranks, and I let the car roll just a tiny hair- even before thoroughly looking- to signal to bg's that I'm not dallying around. get the car moving asap. Checking the backseat always as I approach and enter my car.

    -extra caution is used when a van is parked next to me, sometimes even approaching my own from the passenger side and dropping in groceries first while I further check out the situation.

    - try to park with the driver side towards the building, so there is a line of sight from anyone at the store to me and from me to the driver side door through the entire process.

    - if in doubt, I ask a security guard to just keep an eye on me from his post while I walk out to my car.

  8. #7
    VIP Member Array Tubby45's Avatar
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    I keep a watchful eye and use windows to check my surroundings and 6-o'clock. When I get in I search my mirrors and do a cursery sweep to check if anyone is approaching my vehicle. I have those blind spot mirrors on both sides, mainly for driving and manuevering purposes but I use those as my main mirrors and use the regular mirrors as my wide-outs. Doing this allows me to see directly beside my truck on both sides all the way to the ground so if someone is trying so sneak up alongside my truck I can see them.

  9. #8
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    I do 8 of your list plus a few others...check out surrounding cars...packages in weak hand...weapon ready...scan entire parking lot...when leaving, avoid being trapped by other cars (I always try to see the tires on the car ahead of me, giving me space to go around.)

    Stay armed...stay alert...stay safe!
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  10. #9
    New Member Array d3athp3nguin's Avatar
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    I checked "weapon" in addition to "keys" because I will usually hold my car key like a weapon if there are other people loitering near my car in a parking lot. They make an item you attach to your keychain called a kubotan, that serves a similar purpose. I don't have a carry permit yet, so this method will have to do.

    I would definitely favor general awareness over having your hand on your firearm as you near your car- the polls also reflect this. Simple awareness of your surroundings lets you ascertain whether that guy running towards you from the store is a mugger, or a shopkeeper trying to return the wallet you dropped...

  11. #10
    VIP Member Array glock27mark's Avatar
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    radars always on scan mode.
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    the world coming too"

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    U.S. ARMY FT.SILL, OKLA.

  12. #11
    VIP Member Array friesepferd's Avatar
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    my car is parked in a parking lot kinda of thing downtown where i live
    although the area is well lit and this town is extremely 'safe', i still take the following steps:
    1. left hand- keys in hand
    2. right hand- glove off (its cold here), and near gun, but not on
    3. always looking around for suspicious behavior
    4. when within range (but not too far away), unlock car with key remote- this turns on all interior lights, often surprising anyone near my car, and allowing me to see everything inside it. i have an SUV and keep the rear seats down, so i can easily see everything- no place to hide in vehicle
    5. always do a quick look around for any signs of damage to the vehicle, flat tires, etc.
    6. enter car, turn on, and drive off, always with wits about me

  13. #12
    VIP Member Array stormbringerr's Avatar
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    i have always done about half of these steps. a lot depends on the area that i have been parked in. i never keep my keys in hand while walking to my car,my hands may be needed for other things.
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  14. #13
    Member Array mslaughtertx's Avatar
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    I always check around the car and try to park in an area where I will only have another car on one side of mine (less hiding). It is better to be considered overly paranoid than to be taken by surprise.

  15. #14
    Distinguished Member Array C9H13NO3's Avatar
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    I observe reflections in cars to watch my six without looking like I'm watching my six.

  16. #15
    VIP Member Array goldshellback's Avatar
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    I'm just keeping an eye out and looking for anyone looking at me and mine.
    "Just getting a concealed carry permit means you haven't commited a crime yet. CCP holders commit crimes." Daniel Vice, senior attorney for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, quoted on Fox & Friends, 8 Jul, 2008

    (Sometimes) "a fight avioded is a fight won." ... claude clay

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