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Hijack Safety For Women

One of the most common methods hijackers use at your home is to simply pull their car in behind your when you pull up in front of your gate.  They jump out and demand your car keys, house keys, cell phone, wallet, etc. If you are lucky enough to react in the right way, the best you can expect is to lose those items.  Things can rapidly deescalate into a life threatening situation however, so prevention is better than cure. Many years ago, I attended my first anti-hijacking course and I left feeling totally overwhelmed. The course consisted of about 20 short videos on how not to get hijacked, I received hundreds of statistics and facts and things that I had to do to stay safe.  I really tried to remember and practice my newly acquired knowledge. Within a few days I had all but forgotten the countless of things I was supposed to do to prevent being hijacked, there was simply too much information to process.  I also wondered what I would do if something went wrong and I actually found myself in a situation where I was faced by an attacker with a gun or a knife. Now, many years and plenty of experience later, I realize that each anti-hijack plan has to be different; tailor-made for the individual.  And the best person to do that is you.  You need to develop a hijack safety strategy, one which includes your family and anyone else who regularly rides with you A good way to begin your strategy is to consider where you are vulnerable.  Think about how you would hijack yourself.  Get together with you family or a group of friends and play the “Hi-jack game”.  In the game, you pretend to be hijackers and discuss where, when, how, who and with what type of weapon you would hijack people if you were to make a living doing it.  If there are more than 4 in your group, you can divide into two groups and while one group plan their crimes, the other can discuss how they can make themselves safe in the face of a hijacking. The fact is that 51% of hijackings happen right in your driveway in front of your home,both when you are leaving your driveway and when you arrive home. Think like a hijacker, do things that will make it more difficult for the hijackers to target you, thusreducing your chances of being hijacked by almost 50%. Do things differently. Instead of pulling up to your gate, park parallel and keep your eyes open for suspicious behavior.  If anything looks or feels funny, you can immediately drive away.  Once the gate is open, reverse into your drive (practice this if you need to, it is well worth the effort).  Stop inside your gate and wait until the gate it closed.  You can then reverse into you garage/parking area.  You can see a lot more out of your windscreen than you can out of the rearview mirror. It is also a good idea to remove potential hiding spots.  If you have bushes near your driveway or garage, cut away the bottom part so that you can see anyone who may already be waiting inside your yard. Remember that safety is not something that you can do once in a while.  Just as you plan you plan your day, your meals, etc., you need to plan your safety strategy.  You need to practice it and you need to improve it on a regular basis. Kelee Arrowsmith | +27 83 6262-888 | +507 677-22420 | kelee@advancedconflict.com

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