Another thread inspired this, and I thought it might be worth considering.
There are a lot of misconceptions about what constitutes concealment and cover. First the “tactical” definitions:
Concealment prevents you from being seen, but it won’t stop a bullet. Some examples, shrubbery, a large cardboard box, etc. We’ll get into some other things later.
Cover not only conceals you, but will stop a bullet. Some possible examples: the engine block of a car, a large tree, etc.
As you can see, it seems pretty straight forward, so why is it a problem. Here’s why:
Is a car door/body concealment or cover?
A car windshield?
Is a typical residential indoor wall cover or concealment?
Is a typical residential outside door cover or concealment?
Getting a little more difficult, how about a brick exterior wall?
How about those door facings we hear that we should use for cover?
How about a cinder block wall?
And a complicating issue is that something that may be cover to start with, may turn into concealment.
Or does any of this matter? Well, yes it does matter. If you get behind “cover” and it isn’t, you just may get shot.
My instructor for my level II handgun course at Blackwater said that he had seen a lot of penetration tests on a lot of different materials. But speaking specifically about car bodies, he said from his observation, nothing penetrated car bodies as efficiently as ……… let me get back to you on that. Actually the answer was 9mm. And yes, I asked, it included .40, .45, .357 Sig.
So having said that, if you’re sitting in your car and a BG shoots a 9mm or any of the others for that matter, there’s not that much difference, well, .45s tend not to penetrate as much because they’re so big. But that’s ok, a .45 will probably turn the car over anyway. Anyway if the BG shoots perpendicular to your door what happens?
Well one of several things, the bullet goes through one door and through the other, yep through both doors, or it hits some of the mechanics in the door and is deflected or stops, or it goes through the door and into an occupant. Car doors are not cover.
Perhaps more important considerations are things in our homes, especially walls, doors, and door facings. For a 9mm none of these are cover they just give the bullet a nasty disposition. What if the bullet hits a wall stud – gonna likely go right through it. Even if it doesn’t where’s the next round going?
How about that cinder block or brick wall? Well these tend to morph from cover to concealment. A 9mm will just about chew right through both sides of the cinder block and IIRC, it takes about three shots to shoot a brick out of a wall.
How about doors and door facings? Well most residential doors are concealment; you might want to remember that when you are approaching your door thinking there may be a BG on the other side with a gun.
Door facings refer to studs around the door way. They’re typically made up of two or three 2X4s nailed together for additional strength around the door opening, but they aren’t cover, at least not good cover, but they are better than pure concealment.
So what to make of all of this? Well, we need to think about these things and try to avoid thinking we’re safe behind something when we’re not. I’ve been hearing that criminals are teaching criminals to shoot through doors and walls.
I have no data to support what I am about to say, but I think IF I thought a gunfight may happen in my home and IF I had the time and opportunity, I believe I’d try to get my wife to the bath tub. If I understand this correctly, bath tubs are actually porcelain over steel! And a bath tube has two vertical walls.
Just some food for thought and hopefully some inspiration.