Author Topic: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?  (Read 1347 times)

Offline FreeLancer

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Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« on: May 07, 2019, 04:42:27 PM »
I had an "interesting" incident on the way home yesterday that's had me thinking. 

It was rush hour in my canyon, where the two lanes going into the canyon merge on a right-hand curve and there's a single lane of traffic coming out of the canyon.  I was in the lane closest to the oncoming traffic and it was bumper to bumper for me and the lane to my right as we were still about 8 car-lengths from the merge point.  On my left, across the lane of oncoming traffic, is a dirt bank and I'm obviously boxed in by bumper to bumper traffic on the three other sides. 

All of a sudden there's three police cars with light's and sirens coming around the corner towards me in the other lane and it's unclear what their target is until they screech to a stop, side-by-side blocking the entire lane of on coming traffic, within a car-length from me, and suddenly six officers are out with side-arms pointed over my left shoulder and screaming "Show your hands!" 

Looking over my left shoulder I see a low-rider with a totally blacked-out driver's side window rolling down.  Fortunately, the guy stuck his hands out of the window, no shots were fired, and a couple minutes later I was home. 

But it got me thinking about just how perilous my position became in a matter of a few seconds.  If a muzzle had popped out of that window and bullets started flying, I would have been smack in the middle of the cross-fire with no good strategy except to exit my vehicle out the passenger side or go fetal position on the floorboards.  I was literally a sitting duck until I got around the corner and past the merge point.  Not a fun feeling.  I instantly thought about how nice an armored vehicle would've been in that kind of situation.

Thoughts?

Online Morning Sunshine

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2019, 05:11:10 PM »
not much we can do, I think.  You could go crazy imaging every single scenario that could happen to you.  Remember years ago, Sister wolf was driving and an over pass dropped on the car in front of her.  How do you prepare for that?

I think the big thing is the - oh, I can vaguely remember someone - Fitz, Artos? - having an acronym for Assess, Decide, and some other actions.  I think just being able to observe and make a quick decision is all one can do in that situation.

Offline mountainmoma

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2019, 05:17:22 PM »
Well likely best would be to exit out the passenger door while staying as flat as possible, and stay crouched/crawling to get forward/right to get a few more cars between.

As Morning Sunshine says, quick thinking and acting in all situations is what we can do. 

were you already throwing yourself low and towards the passenger seat as soon as you saw those police cars draw sidearms ?

Offline David in MN

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2019, 05:38:01 PM »
Synchronisity is amazing. I had a very similar thing happen yesterday. Coming back from the the gardening store I was going 65 in a 60 which is normal to me and I got not one but two state patrol come up behind me with no lights and no sirens and I panicked and got in the slow lane and both hammmered past going at least 100. I exited the highway and took back roads home.

You have zero control in a real confrontation. And the real scary part is that you could be witnessing an undercover FBI have a gun battle with the local police. There is so much you don't know. I know CIA agents who used machine guns to back down local PD. One more or less called me a fag for my semi-auto AR.

The problem is you just don't know what you are now a party to.

Offline iam4liberty

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2019, 06:56:08 PM »
Yikes!  Glad you two are ok.

I like to make sure I never allow less than half a car length in front of me and try to stay in lanes where I can exit.  It helps to have a big heavy vehicle which can push otherx out of the way if needed.  But even this may not be helpful in situation described.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2019, 07:53:06 PM »
Well likely best would be to exit out the passenger door while staying as flat as possible, and stay crouched/crawling to get forward/right to get a few more cars between.

As Morning Sunshine says, quick thinking and acting in all situations is what we can do. 

were you already throwing yourself low and towards the passenger seat as soon as you saw those police cars draw sidearms ?

I remember not having a clue who or what the cops could be aiming at because pimped out gangbanger lowriders are not uncommon and he wasn't driving erratically, so I reflexively wanted to look over my shoulder to figure out who the bad guy was.  I could clearly see flailing hands becoming more visible as the window was coming down, and I guess I instantly realized that the driver wasn't holding a weapon.  If he had pointed a weapon my instinct was to go out the passenger door but I also had the sense that I didn't want to be outside of my vehicle if shooting started and everyone gunned their engines to get the hell out of dodge. 

At least when I was there, the cops didn't seem to pay any attention to the rest of us.  They had a dirt backstop beyond the lowrider so they could have opened up without risk to bystanders, but the rest of us stuck in our cars would have been in the line of fire if the guy had been shooting out the window instead of flailing his hands.


Yikes!  Glad you two are ok.

I like to make sure I never allow less than half a car length in front of me and try to stay in lanes where I can exit.  It helps to have a big heavy vehicle which can push otherx out of the way if needed.  But even this may not be helpful in situation described.

I don't know what the cops would do if you plowed through their vehicles trying to get away from the crossfire.



I found a small local news blurb saying that car was pulled over related to a "shots fired" incident at a sushi place 10 miles away on the other end of the canyon.  No news on whether that driver was actually involved or arrested. 

Offline David in MN

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2019, 10:47:39 AM »
Another thing I thought of today. If I see a Dodge Challenger or Ford Explorer in all black with all tinted windows I assume trouble. Around here it's either a police car or a drug dealer. Might be different in other locales but that's the pattern here. Even in traffic I am aware if I see these and try to avoid being near. I don't want to be near bad guys and I hate driving near police because they could get a call and make an erratic driving move like I experienced the other day.

But again, these aren't popular cars. I see Explorers everywhere but no one tints the windshield in MN. And while a Dodge muscle car might be fun they're very impractical in places that get a lot of snow. They really stick out like sore thumbs.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2019, 01:07:26 PM »
It’s the same cars out here, too, along with the remnants of the Crown Vic’s.  My radar is pretty good for those silhouettes.

The ones that throw me are the undercovers Border Patrol uses on the 15 north of San Diego. They’re all over the map and don’t stick out like a sore thumb.  You’ll see a normal looking vehicle that pulled over a minivan and BP is yanking crap out on the side of the road.

Offline David in MN

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2019, 02:46:54 PM »
Our Border Patrol uses giant bright painted Suburbans last I saw. But they have to drive on unplowed dirt roads and launch boats. The MN/Canada border isn't severely patrolled and other than a rare poacher near the border it feels like a lot more of community service on the border. At least last I went a few years back. We do have a hilarious part of MN, the "Northwest Angle", only accessible by driving through Canada or boating (or driving in winter) across the Lake of the Woods due to a mapmaking error in 1783. It's led to some interesting border situations.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-46741175

When I stayed in Rincon Puerto Rico there were Border Patrol as well. I was shocked. For a sleepy side of a not too wealthy island one guy gets paid to dive about a 14 mile loop in a DECKED out off-road Jeep while getting a federal salary and his primary job is to go to beaches and watch Puerto Rican girls sunbathe? Where do I sign up?

But these aren't serious things. For the most part it ranges from community service to boondoggle. I knew a guy who did undercover drug work in South Minneapolis. He wasn't permitted to do traffic work. I never thought about it until he told me but who would pull over for the ratty El Camino and hand your license to a guy with a beard and a ponytail wearing a Harley Davidson shirt? If something really went down and he jumped out to save another officer it's really easy to understand that he's doing a great job impersonating a bad guy. That's why I'm so scared of "what I don't know". Turn the corner and see him tussling with a lady it's real easy to draw the wrong conclusion.

I'm also real skiddish that eventually some gang or drug cartel will realize that wearing fake uniforms and driving a tinted Dodge lets them pull over everyone. It's not hard to fit it and look close enough. If that happens you really have no idea what you're looking at.

I don't know what to say  other than my dad's advice of not being in a gunfight unless you know more than the other guy and know you can win. If you jump out the passenger what happens if the crackhead jumps out his passenger and runs and now you're doing a good job of imitating his co-conspirator? There's no good answer.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #9 on: May 09, 2019, 04:08:00 PM »
True.  Some day you're just going to die, and there's no way to predict or prepare for it.

Offline Smurf Hunter

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2019, 04:26:37 PM »
Last fall I took a vehicle based defensive pistol course.

A quick summary:

Cars are concealment, not cover.  Even 9mm got through the exterior sheet metal and penetrated interior material.  The trajectory was severely tweaked, but it got inside.

If you find yourself taking cover beside a vehicle, stay back a few feet from the car body.  There's more explained here: https://www.tactical-life.com/lifestyle/tactics/patrol-car-shootout-tactics/

You should practice, if only mentally, the sequence of mechanical motions of locking/unlocking doors, seatbelts and holster draws.  You could easily waste seconds pausing to think about unbuckling before drawing.  Same goes for muzzle discipline.  It's extremely difficult to impossible to draw a pistol while in the driver seat, crawl to the passenger seat and exit out the passenger door, all the while not covering anything improperly with your muzzle.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2019, 06:05:45 PM »
Check out this shootout from an hour ago in LA, where a police chase ended when the car was blocked by traffic at an intersection and the suspect in the passenger seat started waving an enormous revolver out the window.

https://youtu.be/91hEcOMBBhM


The woman driving the Prius surrendered and walked away from the car under her own power.  SWAT analyzed the car for an hour before going in and pulling the suspect out, likely fully exsanguinated.


They think this guy might be a hitman who killed a liquor store owner earlier, with surveillance cameras showing him using a similarly huge revolver.  I'm guessing it's at least a 44mag, but might be an X-Frame.

https://youtu.be/ySNNI-bIwYY

Offline Gamer

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2019, 06:19:17 PM »
Interesting 7-minute vid about bullet-proofing cars-

https://youtu.be/7g-noEfE5Dk

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #13 on: May 10, 2019, 06:32:11 PM »
Shooting at police with his BFR during the chase.




Offline mountainmoma

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #14 on: May 10, 2019, 06:38:37 PM »
Check out this shootout from an hour ago in LA, where a police chase ended when the car was blocked by traffic at an intersection and the suspect in the passenger seat started waving an enormous revolver out the window.

https://youtu.be/91hEcOMBBhM


The woman driving the Prius surrendered and walked away from the car under her own power.  SWAT analyzed the car for an hour before going in and pulling the suspect out, likely fully exsanguinated.


They think this guy might be a hitman who killed a liquor store owner earlier, with surveillance cameras showing him using a similarly huge revolver.  I'm guessing it's at least a 44mag, but might be an X-Frame.

https://youtu.be/ySNNI-bIwYY

a video showing it from another angle, the blue passenger pickup in the RH lane and ahead of the prius gets at least 2 shots thru the cab, you can see them come thru the windshield.  I think those were fired from officers in the opposing traffic lane, so those shots either went thru the prius or next to the prius, but if that driver of the blue pickup was sitting up, he would be dead.  This is definitely a takeaway for getting caught in crossfire !

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #15 on: May 10, 2019, 06:48:21 PM »

Offline mountainmoma

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #16 on: May 10, 2019, 07:08:36 PM »
Is it this one MM?

https://youtu.be/iRLSyMnE-yc

it might have been this one, everything beginning to less than 3 min mark, but yours is the same camera of the critical time for sure, same camera, different statin  -- also notice the car behind the prius backs away to  get out of line of site, pickup could have been forward more, but likely driver was down in the foot area of the passenger side, which was good he was no longer sitting up

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UoFu_eHlgio
« Last Edit: May 10, 2019, 07:17:47 PM by mountainmoma »

Offline David in MN

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #17 on: May 11, 2019, 08:33:21 AM »
It's very hard to tell if the blue truck was hit by a police ricochet or an AD from the revolver. Really could be either and it highlights the danger of being in the area. Anyone crazy enough take on 15 cops is clearly a danger to society as a whole. And it really made me think that if 15 officers think they have a shot you really have volley fire coming. Scary if you're downrange.

What the footage really highlights is the American (human maybe) impulse to stop a vehicle during a situation. In 99% of situations it probably is. If a car pulls next to you and 9 squad cars pull up behind you have no idea what is going on. I'd understand somebody who pulled off to let police pass. Very hard to assess the danger in that situation.

Offline Gamer

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Re: Surviving Crossfire in a Traffic Shootout?
« Reply #18 on: May 11, 2019, 12:04:07 PM »
Podcast members might be interested in this BULLETPROOF CARS dialogue between me ('Tungsten Kid') and a 'Gareth H' in the youtube comments in 2018 regarding this 'Bodyguard' vid; he seems to know his security stuff etc and I've asked him if he does it for a job, so if he replies I'll edit his answer into this post.

https://youtu.be/HncTXJLGumU

TK- Armoured bodywork yes, but they forgot to fit an armoured windscreen

GH- No, they didn't. To make a window bulletproof against an 7.62×54mmR shell would require a UL 752 Level 5 for a single shot and UL 752 Level 8 for multiple shots. That is 6cm thickness and completely impractical for the average ministerial car. So they usually go for a UL 752 Level 2 which is less than 3 cm thick. Strong enough to stop multiple shots from a .357 Magnum handgun, but not from this PSL rifle. It is obviously easier to armour plate the body.

TK- Thanks, but as a matter of interest why exactly is a thicker 6cm windscreen "completely impractical"?

GH- Because it is expensive, heavy, requires a customised made car, which would have very little manoeuvrability in emergency situations. Even the Audi A8 L Security, which is one of the most secure off-the-shelf cars you can buy, concentrates on body armour to protect against bomb damage and glass for shrapnel and small calibre fire. You just cannot buy cars with windows that can withstand this kind of shell to the windows. You have to have them custom made like the US president's state car (the Beast), which costs over a million to make, can only accelerate slowly due it its weight and cannot turn a corner at any kind of speed. It can only travel in motorcades. Hardly practical for driving a UK minister around London.

TK- Thanks, so what you're saying is that the standard procedure when under fire is to duck down into the shielding of the invulnerable bodywork armoured "box" so you don't get your head blown off if rifle fire starts coming through the glass..:)

GH- Yes, that is exactly what I am saying. Do you think they did not have expert advisers for this scene?

TK- Mind you, if the bad guys get their hands on RPG-type rocket launchers I doubt if even the armoured box could give protection.

GH- It depends on the RPG. Modern versions have shaped charges that will fire molten metal into a vehicle after initial penetration. So, you are right. I would not want to die that way.

TK- Thanks, so to sum up what we've learnt from you, you're saying that although most ministerial cars give total protection against HANDGUNS because the bullets can't penetrate the toughened windscreen and windows and armoured box, the cars DON'T give protection against high-velocity RIFLE bullets that are coming through the windscreen and windows, is that right?....In such a case the occupants would duck down into the safety of the armoured box IF they've still got heads..:)

GH- Yes. And taking out the driver with the first shot is pretty unprecedented. I don't know of any modern attack where this has happened, you can usually rely on the driver to take you clear. Any defence contractor would recommend going-low in such situations and wait for help. If you are overwhelmed then you just have to give up and hope for ransom. Certainly do not run.
« Last Edit: May 11, 2019, 12:27:14 PM by Gamer »