August 28, 2018

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Officer Safety While Sitting in Your Police Car

Gordon Graham
Category: Law Enforcement

Gordon Graham here, with Today’s Tip from Lexipol. Today’s tip is about staying safe in your patrol car.  

A squad car can feel like a little bubble of safety. But it’s not.

A squad car can feel like a little bubble of safety. But it’s not. Don’t be lulled into this false sense of security. We are vulnerable to attack in our patrol vehicles. And we spend a lot of time there. So, what can we do to help ensure our safety while we’re in the car?  

Now you’ve heard me say, “Don’t sit in your car to write a citation.” And that’s still my best advice. But it’s just not possible everywhere. Because of in-car computers and electronic ticket writing systems, some officers MUST sit in their cars during vehicle stops.  

Look up as much as you can. Don’t sit in the car when you don’t need to. Prepare in advance, at least mentally, to address an attacker from behind-the-wheel. The first time you draw from behind the wheel should not be when you need your gun. Practice drawing while sitting in the car. Remember that you might be able to use your car to quickly drive out of a bad situation. Mentally rehearse driving away from danger. In some situations, your car could be useful as a weapon. Imagine yourself using your car as a sort of guided missile to stop a deadly threat. Constantly make and adjust contingency plans. You might call it “what if-ing.”  For example, think about what you would do if the guy you just stopped for speeding jumps out and attacks.  

Training and preparation is a good way to help avoid complacency. And Remember: Complacency Kills!   

And that’s Today’s Tip from Lexipol. Gordon Graham, signing off. 

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