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6 Tips on How to Prevent or Escape A Carjacking

Carjackings are a common way for criminals to violently seize your car and purse or wallet (if they happen to be in the car at the time). Tragically, some carjackings end with the victims being beaten, shot, stabbed, or run over by the perpetrators. The criminal may attack you when you are already in the car, getting in the car, or walking up to the vehicle. At any point we generally are not thinking that a criminal is about to strike. So what can we do to prevent such an attack? If attacked, what can we do to escape?

1. Be aware of where your car is.

Watch where you park and drive. Park close to wherever you need to go in a well lit area. Back into the parking space with a wall behind your car, if possible (harder for people to hide behind your car). Avoid high-crime areas (especially if they are known for carjackings).

Always — ALWAYS! — keep at least one car length between your car and the car ahead of you while you are driving. That way you will have room to maneuver and escape if you must. Keep your doors locked and windows up while driving.

2. Scan your surroundings.

When you are returning from shopping, take a quick look at your car as you approach. Is anyone hiding under it or behind it? Look for anything suspicious. Some criminals place a $20 bill under a windshield wiper. You might not notice it until you get in. When you see it and get out to pick it up, the thief uses that split second to jump in your car. If you are at a traffic light, do not zone out and look at your phone. Carjackers attack at traffic stops. Stay alert.

Here is a very good video from ABC News containing much helpful information about preventing a carjacking: