Shut up and Drive

Dear Black Bag Confidential Reader,

In this week’s mailbag, I’ll tackle all sorts of issues — from the best way to handle road rage to where you should hide your firearms to setting up a chokepoint if an intruder breaks in to your home.

I will also discuss a critical aspect of the ideal escape vehicle and how to easily sharpen your karambit knife.

Check it out.

How do I deal with road rage?

—Joe R.

The No. 1 thing you need to do is stay calm and swallow your pride. I know we all get worked up when driving, but do your very best to stay relaxed. You do NOT want to become a YouTube sensation because you gave the middle finger to a nun who accidently cut you off while she was trying to save a child from getting run over.

Get my point?

However, if you are the victim of someone experiencing road rage you need to get away from that person as quickly and safely as you can. For instance, try to drive the other direction. If they follow you or you feel threatened, call the police.

While waiting for police to arrive, I would drive towards the nearest police department — or even a crowded parking lot where there are lots of people around. Just remember not to yell at them or flip them the bird. It will only escalate the situation.

Useful tips on “escape” vehicles. However, all new vehicles are, in my view, a disaster because they don’t have keys, just clickers. Start the car with a push button. Under no circumstances lose the clicker or you’re out of luck… These electronics are no friend in a clutch.

—Matt D.

You are right. Pretty much all new vehicles have keys designed with a tiny transponder inside that prevents the vehicle from starting unless the key is present.

If you lose the keys to a newer car, you’ll have to get another one from the dealership. This is a good reason to check out older vehicles for bugging out — there are less electronic components that could fail on older cars.

Enjoyed your article on the karambit. I have taken lots of training with Steve Tarani and his instructors. Steve deploys the folding blade with the free hand very quickly and teaches his students likewise. Also, a karambit with a wave-shaped opening mechanism deploys open and ready when pulled out of a pocket. One method requires both hands, the other only one. Personally, I prefer the one-handed method. It is an awesome knife for self-defense.

—Jim D.

The karambit is a great design for a self-defense knife. As you mentioned, if you have trained with a folding blade and are able to quickly deploy the knife, then it’s a great option.

This is definitely the type of skill that takes repeated practice. You always want to be prepared because you never know when speed might be needed to defend your life.

Aren’t karambits a pain in the butt to sharpen?

—John G.

Since karambits have a curvature to the blade, they are slightly more difficult to sharpen. The thing is it really depends on the knife sharpener you are using. For example, using a triangle sharpener on a karambit is going to be much easier than using a sharpening stone.

In May, you wrote about one of your friends who was awakened at night by commotion outside his home. He quickly retrieved his firearm, and got his wife and daughters together. While he went downstairs and inspected the house, his wife and daughters set up a chokepoint upstairs. How do you set up a chokepoint?

—Lou G.

In broad terms, a chokepoint is basically an area of congestion. In military strategy, a chokepoint typically refers to a geographical area where an enemy is forced to pass through a narrow strait or opening.

Now, in the context of a home, you can call the stairs a chokepoint. Anyone going to the second story would be forced to come up the stairs.

In a home defense situation, if an intruder is inside, you can stand at the top of your stairs with a firearm. If anyone tries to get past you to the rest of your family, do what is necessary to stop them.

How can we protect ourselves if an intruder actually breaks in?

—Tiffany R.

You need to prepare a home defense plan in case this ever happens. If you wait until someone actually breaks in, it will be too late.

First, make sure you have security measures in place such as quality door locks and some type of alarm system, even if it’s just a doorstopper alarm. Next, be prepared to fight. What I mean is most people aren’t naturally violent, but if someone is inside your home they are most likely going to harm you, so you need to prepare to fight back.

Now, I’m a gun guy, so I always have a gun in a safe on my nightstand. I realize a gun doesn’t work for everyone, but you must have some way to defend yourself — whether it’s a baseball bat, golf club or knife.

Be sure to include in your plan what you will do if you hear your door kicked in. For instance, is your phone always nearby to call the police? Do you have other people in your home you need to defend? Do you have a room you can hide in until the police arrive?

These are the types of questions you need to ask yourself. And remember — be prepared to fight.

Where is a good place to hide firearms in your home?

—Max S.

In a perfect world, I recommend storing a gun in every room in your home so that you are always prepared to defend yourself no matter where you are. That being said, every firearm needs to be stored in a responsible way.

If you have children, every gun should be locked in some sort of safe. I personally have several small handgun safes around my home where I can quickly retrieve a gun if needed.

These safes can be pretty small, so you can store them in drawers or on bookshelves and they blend in for the most part. If you really want to get creative with where you hide your guns, there are companies, such as Tactical Walls, that sell furniture specially designed for storing firearms.

Stay safe,

Jason Hanson

Jason Hanson

Chris Campbell

Written By Jason Hanson

Jason Hanson is a former CIA officer and security specialist. He’s appeared on numerous television shows, including ABC’s Shark Tank and NBC’s Today show. To get free survival tips from Jason, click here.