Carjacking is one of the fastest growing national crimes. Cars are currently more difficult to steal since many newer vehicles are now equipped with sophisticated anti-theft devices. So, apparently car thieves have turned to carjacking.
Here are ten precautions devised by the Texas Department of Public Safety that you can take to prevent being carjacked:
• Always check your rear view and side mirrors before exiting the car.
• When parking, choose a secured and well-lit parking lot or garage near heavy traffic.
• If possible, park at ground level to avoid the use of stairs and elevators.
• When returning home after dark, have someone turn on the outside light and meet you at the door.
• If pulling into the garage and you have the convenience of an electric garage door opener, keep your car doors locked until the door goes down.
• Always be cautious of surrounding obstructions and natural barriers where someone can hide.
• Never sit in your parked or stopped car while eating, sleeping, reading or applying makeup.
• Do not park next to suspicious vans, trucks or dumpsters.
• If approached by a stranger while in your car, drive off if possible or lean on your horn to attract attention.
• Do not open your vehicle door or window for any stranger.
Carjackers also may stage a minor accident, so if your car is bumped from behind and you don’t feel comfortable with the individual, drive to the nearest hospital, police or fire station for help. Or, better yet, call the police.
We purchased my daughter a new car before she graduated from high school so she would have not only the latest safety features (car crashes are the leading cause of teen deaths), but a new car is also less likely to break down. I also purchased her a nifty little self defense key chain on Amazon for under $3.00. According to the manufacturer, the Brutus is the only public safety bulldog key chain accessory that can be attached to keys or easily stowed away. Made of impact resistant ABS plastic, this key chain accessory is so strong it will give you the power of steel wrapped in a defenseless looking dog-shaped key chain accessory. Guard yourself against unwanted advances: put your fingers through the eyes of Brutus and watch the tips of his ears transform into pointed jabbers that will keep any attacker at bay. It’s not only cute, it’s effective.
So, please be safe.
Until next week…
Daun Thompson
Writer / Comedienne / Artist
Carjacking – Comedy Defensive Driving