How To Survive If You’re In The Line Of Gunfire

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how to survive in the line of fire
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I was reading The Worst Case Scenario Handbook by Joshua Piven the other day and I discovered something I haven’t read in any other survival manual (at least as far as I remember). It was a chapter about survival when you’re being shot at. Very useful information, in my opinion.

I mean, when the crisis hits the USA, looters will start multiplying like you see it in zombie movies. And that’s when the shootings will start. Hungry, angry, desperate men will be on the streets, hunting for food, organizing riots that will inevitably end up in violence.

And if you look at these statistics, it’s only natural to imagine street shooting will become some sort of daily activity…



So here’s what you should do if you’re caught in the line of gunfire, according to Joshua Piven.

If you’re the primary target:



  • Get as far away as possible. An untrained shooter isn’t likely to be accurate at any distance greater than sixty feet.
  • Run fast, but do not move in a straight line—weave back and forth to make it more difficult for the shooter to draw a bead on you. The average shooter will not have the training necessary to hit a moving target at any real distance.
  • Do not bother to count shots. You will have no idea if the shooter has more ammunition. Counting is only for the movies.
  • Turn a corner as quickly as you can, particularly if your pursuer has a rifle or assault weapon. Rifles have much greater accuracy and range, and the person may be more likely to either aim or spray bullets in your direction.

If you’re not the primary target:

  • Get down, and stay down. If the intended target is near you or if the shooter is firing at random, get as low as possible. Do not crouch down; get flat on your stomach and stay there.
  • If you are outside and can get to a car, run to it and lie behind a tire on the opposite side of the car from the shooter. If no cars are present, lie in the gutter next to the curb. A car will stop or deflect a small-caliber bullet fired toward you. However, higher caliber bullets— such as those from an assault rifle or bullets that are designed to pierce armor—can easily penetrate a car and hit someone on the opposite side.
  • If you are inside a building and the shooter is inside, get to another room and lie flat. If you cannot get to another room, move behind any heavy, thick objects (a solid desk, filing cabinets, tables, a couch) for protection.
  • If you are face-to-face with the shooter, do anything you can to make yourself less of a target. Turn sideways, and stay low—stray bullets are likely to be at least a few feet above the ground.
  • If the shooter is outside, stay inside and stay away from doors and windows. Stay down until the shooting stops or until authorities arrive and give the all clear.

Now, I hope you won’t have to go through such an experience, but it’s better to know exactly what to do if you’re shot at or if there’s shooting going on in your perimeter. So keep these basic survival measures in mind and don’t forget to show them to your family and friends. Might save their lives someday.

For more practical information on survival topics, check out www.myfamilysurvivalplan.com.


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