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How to Protect Yourself from Carjacking

Don’t make yourself an easy mark for a carjacker.


  • Step 1: Stay alert Stay alert at places carjackers like to strike -- red lights, gas stations, ATM machines, parking lots, shopping centers, car washes, convenience stores, hotels, valet parking areas, fast-food drive-throughs, and outside of retail stores.
  • Step 2: Keep your doors locked Keep your doors locked when you’re driving, and keep your windows up as much as possible -- especially when you’re stopped in traffic.
  • Step 3: Leave space at red light Leave space between your car and the car in front of you at a red light, so you have room to escape if someone tries to carjack you.
  • Step 4: Use care when parking Park carefully. Choose only well-lit spots and avoid remote areas.
  • TIP: When you’re returning to your car, always have your keys in your hand as you approach so you’re not fumbling around at your car door.
  • Step 5: Don’t let a stranger in If your car breaks down or is disabled in an accident and a stranger offers to help, do not open your window or door. If you don’t have a cell phone, ask them to call for help.
  • Step 6: Don’t fall for the “bump and rob” Don’t fall for the intentional fender bender, known as the 'bump and rob.' If you suspect that someone has hit you intentionally as a way to get you out of your car, note their license plate number and then drive directly to the nearest police station.
  • Step 7: Don’t jeopardize your life If you are faced with a carjacker, don’t fight him. Your car, no matter how snazzy, is not worth your life.
  • FACT: Sixty-eight percent of the carjackings that occurred between 1993 and 2002 took place at night.

You Will Need

  • Alertness
  • Common sense

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