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How to Stay Safe This Fall

October 25, 2022

Fall is known for change; time change, temperature change, and change in clothing. Sometimes, change can welcome chaos. With the upcoming hectic season, we want to offer a few tips to keep you and your loved ones safe this autumn. Many of these tips may seem obvious, but it’s easy to overlook something so seemingly simple when you’re in the midst of chaos (no matter how fun that chaos may be). Below, you’ll find a few ways you can upgrade your preparedness this season, as well as some tips you can share with your family.

Here are the areas you should consider reevaluating as we get into the fall season:

  • Enhancing Your Everyday Carry
  • Protecting Your Vehicle
  • Safeguarding Your Home

Don’t forget to check out our bonus tips at the end! These are our top 5 safety tips to share with your family as we head into a new season. 

Modify Your Everyday Carry (EDC) for Fall

Time to bust out your favorite hoodie! Cooler temperatures mean you’ll naturally be wearing more clothes, which is great for the EDC community. Sweatshirts and jackets make it easier to conceal larger firearms without printing. Unfortunately, this is true for the “bad guys” as well, so we also recommend taking a look at your EDC bag to make sure you have everything, like a med kit and flashlight. Vertx Tactigami accessories are great to store these items, plus extra mags, or any other EDC essentials you can’t go without. 

Image of an EDC get home bag, or known as a bug out bag

Of course, we’d be foolish to not mention that it’s easier to wear body armor with the cooling weather. Consider switching from off-body carry to a concealable vest like our Discreet Executive Vestwhich provides a significant amount of coverage but doesn’t scream “I’m wearing body armor”.  

Customer reviews of the bulletproof concealable body armor vest say it is a great fit and comfortable body armor.

 

How to Protect Your Vehicle and Valuables Inside

An often neglected aspect to consider is the safety measures involving your vehicle. It’s wise to include a warm blanket in your car; under the circumstance of a breakdown, you won’t regret having a blanket to keep you warm, especially if you’re stranded for quite some time. 

Speaking of breaking down, colder weather also takes a toll on your vehicle’s battery.  Be sure that you have jumper cables in all your vehicles, and that everyone in your family knows how to use them.  Tire patch kits and a DC powered air pump are also great to have on hand. I also keep a get home bag in my truck.  It has all sorts of useful tools.  It obviously has one of our backpack inserts, a bleed control kit, a multitool, firestarter, gloves, and hat. 

Image of an emergency car tool kit.

Remember that blanket we mentioned above? You could also use it to hide your valuables in your car. The theft of personal items or gifts from cars are 28% higher on Black Friday than any other day of the year.* When you’re Black Friday shopping, remember to cover your valuables and Christmas gifts!

Studies show that property crime reaches its maximum during the winter months*. Therefore, it’s wise to park your car in your garage if you’re able. If not, be sure your home has a working safety light or flood lights to deter any unwanted visitors at night. The same can apply when parking in public. If you or your family are out and about at the grocery store, mall, or sporting event, try parking under a light. Not only will it cause someone to second-guess breaking in, but it also serves as a great landmark for finding your car quickly and easily.

Safeguarding Your Home for the Holidays

Dorothy said it best; there’s no place like home. When travel and deliveries are at an all time high, it’s important to remember your home safety. The first major fall holiday, Halloween, brings a 60% increase in property crime.* By making sure doors are locked and you keep your garage closed, you can deter any unwanted theft. If you haven’t already, consider an outdoor camera system like Ring, Blink, or Toucan to help monitor any movement. 

But what about all of those deliveries that may pile up as we get closer to the holidays? If you know you’ll be getting packages delivered, try to arrange deliveries on a day you know someone will be home. With Amazon, you can group items at checkout so everything arrives in one box, drawing less attention than a stack on the front porch. You can even have deliveries shipped to a secure locker location, which may not be as convenient, but ensures you are the only one retrieving the package.

With traveling increasing during the holiday season, up 54% over Thanksgiving and 23% during Christmas and New Year’s, according to the US Department of Transportation, make arrangements for a friend or neighbor to collect any mail delivered while you’re gone. A full mailbox can be a signal no one has been home. 

Image of delivery packages on a front porch.

Many people also use daylight savings as a reminder to check the carbon monoxide detectors and replace batteries for the winter. 

Bonus! Top 5 Safety Tips to Share With Your Family This Fall:

How to Stay Safe in a Parking Lot

It’s important to be fully aware and present in a parking lot. The first step would be to consider where you park. It’s best to park under lighting and away from vans with sliding doors. When walking in a parking lot, walk confident and keep your head on a swivel. You should be able to know who is walking in front, beside, or behind you.

Criminals often judge people by observing their body language and taking note if the potential victim presents awareness of their surroundings. Most attacks can be prevented by looking around to see if anyone is in the area or following you. 

Image of safety awareness walking in a parking lot

The only time you should use your cell phone in the parking lot is as an additional safety precaution. You could use your cell phone to call someone so a threatening person knows there is someone on the line to hear an attack. Otherwise,your cell phone is a distraction for you, and welcomes an opportunity for attack

How to Stay Safe When Trick-or-Treating

Tricks and treats aren’t the only thing you can get on Halloween. On average, crime-related claims spike by 24% on Halloween. With the cover of darkness and people gone from their homes and cars for extended periods of time, make sure you and your property aren’t a target by keeping your doors locked.

When it comes time for your kids to dress up and trick-or-treat, make sure they know a few simple situational awareness skills before heading out. If they will be going out with friends, make sure they stay together and have them check in with you every so often to keep you updated. If you are planning to go with them, designate meet-up spots along the way, like the top of a smaller cul-de-sac. That way, you can keep an eye on everyone moving from house to house and reconvene at checkpoints. Remind them to keep their head out of their phones and be aware of their surroundings as much as possible.

How to stay safe while trick or treating

In all of the excitement, make sure everyone is aware of cars. Halloween sees a 43% rise in pedestrian casualties, according to a study cited by the Institute for Childhood Preparedness.* Many families find it safer to trick-or-treat in a neighborhood instead of along a more trafficked road, but it’s always best practice to stay on the sidewalks.

How to Stay Safe when Shopping

We all know there is an insane amount of foot traffic around the holidays. Parking lots, malls, and stores are flooded with people. When leaving your car unattended to go shopping, again, it is important to keep your valuables covered and park under lighting. 

If you’re shopping with your kids, always keep them within reach. Have your kids walk in front of you if possible. If you choose to split up from your teenage kids, have them check in with you periodically. 

How to stay safe while black friday shopping.

It’s important to note as well that a high percentage of attacks occur near ATMs in busier locations, even if it is in broad daylight. Never flash your money, but keep it concealed until it is time to pay. In some cases it may be wise to have your money spread in different locations like your purse and pockets. 

How to Stay Safe at Night

It’s starting to get darker earlier, which makes it easier for people wanting to harm you to have the courage and cover of darkness on their side. When walking to your car, park under lighting and as close to an entrance as possible. Make sure your hands aren’t full and you have something easily accessible to defend yourself, like your firearm or pepper spray. As soon as you get into your car, lock the doors, and don’t sit scrolling on your phone, distracted, before driving away

Image of situational awareness in a dark parking lot

The darkness doesn’t have to be scary, but being aware of your surroundings and keeping your head up can make you less of a target. If you enjoy getting outside for exercise or a run, be mindful of where you choose to go, and keep your earbud volume down (and off noise cancellation) so you can hear what’s going on around you.


How to Stay Safe When Traveling

The great thing about our backpack armor is that it is TSA approved for travel! If you’re traveling to a city with a high crime rate, you’re able to take ballistic protection with you. Just because you’re in a gun free zone, doesn’t mean you should be completely without a line of defense. Consider traveling with armor in your backpack, wearing an Everyday Armor T-Shirt, or putting a ballistic insert in the purse. 

Image of TSA approved backpack armor for travel.

We’ve all seen Home Alone and know what robbers will do once they realize you’re out of town! Your home is vacant, you’re away, and who’s to stop them from breaking in? Be wise. Don’t post on social media that you’re traveling for the holidays or that you’re out of town.

Have someone you trust collect your packages if you do receive a delivery, or schedule deliveries for when you’re home to receive them.  

We know some of these may sound like common sense, but when life gets busy, you and your family's safety shouldn’t be something that gets put on the back burner. 

 

Sources: 

The theft of personal items or gifts from cars are 28% higher on Black Friday 

Halloween, brings a 60% increase in property crime

43% rise in pedestrian casualties during Halloween

 


100 Responses

Lesley Salmonson
Lesley Salmonson

October 27, 2022

Love this, thank you for all the great info!

Ronnie
Ronnie

October 27, 2022

A lot of info

Wake T
Wake T

October 27, 2022

Useful info. Always good to know.

Liz Kilcher
Liz Kilcher

October 27, 2022

great info

David White
David White

October 27, 2022

Good info, thanks for the insight!

Jason
Jason

October 27, 2022

Good tips.

James deVore
James deVore

October 27, 2022

Great piece on staying safe – especially as the days grow shorter and the nights grow longer.

Randall
Randall

October 27, 2022

Don’t have your head up and locked!

Kiel
Kiel

October 27, 2022

I think in oregon, staying safe means staying out of Portland and Salem… and voting out as much idiocy as possible.
Wearing protective gear can’t hurt…

Jared cole
Jared cole

October 27, 2022

Good info, especially the specific times of crime increasing.

Jeff82
Jeff82

October 27, 2022

When going on vacation: create an online account with the US Post Office and then you can use the “Hold Mail” feature from the comfort of your home. You can do similar things including scheduling deliveries with the other delivery services.

John Robles
John Robles

October 27, 2022

Great article with good information for everyone. I especially liked the sources listed at the bottom of the article. This blog post was well written and researched.

norman T.
norman T.

October 27, 2022

Great tips, but being aware is always the most important.

Kimberley Malachowski
Kimberley Malachowski

October 27, 2022

I ALWAYS TRY TO BE AWARE OF MY SURROUNDINGS!

Matt Smith
Matt Smith

October 27, 2022

Good info! Stay safe everybody!

Harlena
Harlena

October 27, 2022

I had no idea Halloween had such a huge increase in crime. It makes sense but wow!

Justin Rogers
Justin Rogers

October 27, 2022

Good info

Jim Moore
Jim Moore

October 27, 2022

Always good to review your plan. Bleed kit and some $ as well.

Zach Fojtik
Zach Fojtik

October 27, 2022

Thanks for the info!

jeff barnes
jeff barnes

October 27, 2022

Nice bags.

monique s
monique s

October 27, 2022

Thanks for the info and I love your bags

MARK LEVIN
MARK LEVIN

October 27, 2022

Some great tips

Matthew Sullivan
Matthew Sullivan

October 27, 2022

I always add a life straw to my kit… because you never know

Dan
Dan

October 27, 2022

Passed this on to some of my kids. thanks

Damize
Damize

October 27, 2022

Great advice to live by. My wife and I read the column and really thought about and implemented the life saving talking points. Thank you very much for the situational awareness.

Ruben R.
Ruben R.

October 27, 2022

Solid info.

Ash Matthews
Ash Matthews

October 27, 2022

Great ideas to put into practice!

Lee Anthony
Lee Anthony

October 27, 2022

Great article 🤘😎🤘

John Clark
John Clark

October 27, 2022

Good tips, too many people forget about situational awareness.

Mark Koop
Mark Koop

October 27, 2022

Great tips. Always in condition yellow.

MSG T
MSG T

October 27, 2022

Great article and great points. Practice all of these points every day. Make your practice sessions as real as possible. Stay vigilant.

Vinnniy
Vinnniy

October 27, 2022

Old world problems with new tech.

Rdzone1
Rdzone1

October 27, 2022

Very informative post. Thanks for the advice.

David Samples
David Samples

October 27, 2022

and don’t forget your hunter orange when out in the woods for any reason. hunting wood cutting or just enjoying the outdoors

Jeremy J.
Jeremy J.

October 27, 2022

Use common sense.

Michael
Michael

October 27, 2022

Spot on

mcole
mcole

October 27, 2022

Good info

Josh Whorton
Josh Whorton

October 27, 2022

All great advice. Be aware of a huge auto theft problem in the DFW area. Don’t leave your car at a hotel in Dallas without security. I found out the hard way.

Haven T.
Haven T.

October 27, 2022

Parking away from vans with sliding doors is something I’ve never considered before. Thank you.

John A
John A

October 27, 2022

Pretty much covers it!

Shon M
Shon M

October 27, 2022

Stay vigilant, be aware and live free!!!

Richard Ormandy
Richard Ormandy

October 27, 2022

Take a certified course in the Law of Self Defense. This training is critical knowledge for those who carry firearms.

Zach
Zach

October 27, 2022

Solid info

Matt
Matt

October 27, 2022

Situational awareness is always important.

Josh L
Josh L

October 27, 2022

Great tips!!

Paul McHam
Paul McHam

October 27, 2022

Good advice and a good article

Steven P
Steven P

October 27, 2022

As a SAR member I’d suggest a pair of battery powered jumper cables instead of plain ones. Then you don’t need another vehicle AND you can charge a phone if needed too.

Andrew Newton
Andrew Newton

October 27, 2022

Excellent advice for everyone.

Ken Chan
Ken Chan

October 27, 2022

It’s good practice to carry every chance you get until it feels natural. Better to have and not need, than to be without and regret.

Nikolai
Nikolai

October 27, 2022

Good details about specifics and reasons behind some habits for awareness. Worth passing along to others.

DM73
DM73

October 27, 2022

lots of good ideas, I would also add you can carry a small amount of cash in a pocket and if held up just drop the cash the criminal may just take that and run but it could give you an opportunity to draw your weapon.

Bob
Bob

October 27, 2022

I occasionally “pratice” getting mugged or drawn on when I’m in a certain area or situation, to keep my reflexes and muscle memory sharp. Try not to be too obvious, or do it with no one else around, so you don’t look too geeky or paranoid…

Alex sirotin
Alex sirotin

October 27, 2022

Great article

FJ
FJ

October 27, 2022

Really enjoyed this article! Things that are good to know!

FJ
FJ

October 27, 2022

Really enjoyed this article! Things that are good to know!

Rico
Rico

October 27, 2022

Good tips.

John B
John B

October 27, 2022

Great advice

Jim  H
Jim H

October 27, 2022

Some really great things to think about when out. I wish there was more to help out the “older” generation too.

E Baker
E Baker

October 27, 2022

Nice

Bernardina Sims
Bernardina Sims

October 27, 2022

Be aware of your surroundings and have a ring camera at your home!

JOEY GARCIA
JOEY GARCIA

October 27, 2022

I will be safe this beautiful season of fall 2022 – I really like the tip about cell phones while in a parking lot.

Steve
Steve

October 27, 2022

Get to the range and train weekly on defensive shooting not standing static and shooting at paper targets. Defensive shooting like IDPA or IPSC. Practice drawing from a holster, running and shooting in multiple positions under a timer with the goal being to get faster and more accurate each week.

Devin
Devin

October 27, 2022

Vehicle safety is a critical safety component often neglected. Thanks for highlighting winter preparations.

Chris k
Chris k

October 27, 2022

Fantastic article.

Jeremy B
Jeremy B

October 27, 2022

I love prepared.

Renee Wood
Renee Wood

October 27, 2022

Thank you for such great information so I can stay safe. I don’t even go to malls anymore because I don’t feel safe at all in their parking lots nowadays.

JT
JT

October 27, 2022

Pretty sweet gear

Edward
Edward

October 27, 2022

Great information.

Debra E
Debra E

October 27, 2022

solid advice stay alert stay alive

Brian
Brian

October 27, 2022

Very good tips

David Baumgartner
David Baumgartner

October 27, 2022

Thank you for sharing so many great tips, however like several others who commented I think that perhaps the most critical factor for safety is to always be situationally aware. A proper mindset for safety and constant situational awareness is your best bet for safety. Regardless of the time of the year or where you are located being mindful of your surroundings goes a very long way to keep you safe. Be aware of people, safe exits, concealment and cover.

Kendall
Kendall

October 27, 2022

Be sure to carry at least a small flashlight and please keep your head out of the phone !! A good pocket knife can always come in handy

Dan
Dan

October 27, 2022

We always have a fire extinguisher in our homes. We never ever wish to get to use them ever. Even our offices and stuff have contingencies, and everyone else should too on themselves. Having a kit is always being ready to prepare for anything.

JR
JR

October 27, 2022

Appreciate the tips.

Debra Shaw
Debra Shaw

October 27, 2022

All good tips

Adrian Acevedo
Adrian Acevedo

October 27, 2022

Great information

lonexstarxwolf
lonexstarxwolf

October 27, 2022

Great information

Bri
Bri

October 27, 2022

It’s good to know that the backpack amour is TSA approved, especially since I plan on traveling to Florida in a few weeks.

Silver Fox
Silver Fox

October 27, 2022

So much information on many subjects. I should reread it again.

Randy Jackson
Randy Jackson

October 27, 2022

Good Info

Jim T
Jim T

October 27, 2022

If you take medication, not having extras of that medication in your vehicle in the event that you become stranded could turn a bad situation from bad to much worse.

TJ
TJ

October 27, 2022

👍

DAVE
DAVE

October 27, 2022

Great Tips! Remember to add emergency medications to your bag (such as rescue inhaler) if it applies.

Justin
Justin

October 27, 2022

Great information and contributions everyone. I do have one thing to add: Stay calm. Just because the worst things can happen does not mean that they will. Be ready but don’t be afraid or overly stressed. Be safe and enjoy the season everyone.

Daniel Passer
Daniel Passer

October 27, 2022

I appreciate what may seem to be a counter intuitive suggestion to leave your lights on on Halloween night (in the linked article), in order to dissuade burglars and home break-ins, even when your home is not adorned with Halloween decorations and you are not planning on opening your door after dark when strangers ring your bell.

Dave
Dave

October 27, 2022

Good post. Really like the gear. The everyday is awesome. Hope to add more to my kit

dave churchya
dave churchya

October 27, 2022

Great info!

Gerald B
Gerald B

October 27, 2022

Thank you so much for the education!

Windex
Windex

October 27, 2022

Good advice, med kits and armor go together!

Palumbo
Palumbo

October 27, 2022

Great Advice more people should take this all into consideration

James Ingram
James Ingram

October 27, 2022

This is some very useful info

Marcus Fry
Marcus Fry

October 27, 2022

Always carry a flashlight, and no your cell phone does not count.

Tony L
Tony L

October 27, 2022

Carry OC spray, not just a firearm.

Mark Hulvey
Mark Hulvey

October 27, 2022

Great info! Even though it’s getting cooler we can still get dehydrated. Drink plenty of water.

Average Joe
Average Joe

October 27, 2022

Always great full for a TSA safe tip

Johnny S
Johnny S

October 27, 2022

Sound advice.
Be prepared, always expect the unexpected, be aware of your surroundings and no matter how safe and secure you feel, try to find ways to improve on it.

Gee
Gee

October 27, 2022

Very infomative and I learned a lot.

PsychMike
PsychMike

October 27, 2022

If you don’t already have them, install motion-sensing lights on the exterior of the house and in the driveway, especially in darker areas. These can be wired or wireless (battery operated). When they are activated, the light switching on can act as a warning that somebody or something is approaching. Less sophisticated than Ring type devices, but more effective than no lights at all.

1776
1776

October 27, 2022

Going off of what Chad boyd said, rotating through supplies not only helps keeping everything up to date, but also reminds you of what you have and provides experience in using it.

Frank Malinski
Frank Malinski

October 27, 2022

Instead of jumper cables, consider investing in a quality portable lithium battery jump starter.
You don’t need to connect to another vehicle, remain in a charged state for extended periods of time and often accommodate charging of electronic devices via USB. All in a (relatively) small package that you can keep in the truck or other storage space.

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