Always, always, always carry OC (pepper) spray.* It will help you defend yourself in situations where deadly force is not being used against you, and therefore, you cannot use deadly force to stop it. Always be prepared with OC spray as a self-defense option for non-lethal attacks.
As part of its “Daily Defense” educational videos, Brownells—the national gunsmith and firearms retail store based in Iowa—has produced two videos focusing on the use of OC spray.
Here is the introduction to the videos: “Pepper spray is a non-lethal self-defense option to use against attackers that are not enough of a threat to justify using deadly force. Before you carry pepper spray, make sure it’s legal in your state or city. And remember that it has limitations. Pepper spray will reduce an attacker’s capacity but not his willingness to attack you. Some individuals may be less physically incapacitated by it than others, so be prepared for it not to be as effective as you were expecting!
“Pepper spray is strictly a close-range tool, so an attacker who is farther away than arm’s length may not get a sufficient dose to be incapacitated. Depending on conditions, you may get a substantial dose. It’s a good idea to expose yourself to a little pepper spray under controlled conditions. You’ll be less likely to be surprised and incapacitated by its effects during a self-defense encounter. Decontaminate yourself after any exposure to pepper spray. This typically involves removing contaminated clothing and washing the pepper spray residue and oils off your skin.
“The cannister will lose pressure over time, so keep an eye on its expiration date. Be careful how you carry pepper spray to make sure it can’t be released accidentally. Avoid exposing it to extreme heat and cold. Periodically shake the cannister to keep the particulates evenly mixed with the aerosol.”
[ Read the SemperVerus article, Why Use and How to Choose Pepper Spray ]
Pew Pew Tactical’s article on OC spray includes the warning against having a weak posture when spraying an attacker. Instead, it recommends adopting a fighting stance: “Take a step back to increase the distance between you and the attacker and narrow your profile. Bend your knees to lower your center of gravity and make it harder to fall or be knocked to the ground. Keep both hands up to protect your face and body, and keep your elbows at least slightly bent.”
[ Read articles in the SemperVerus category of Training ]
* Pepper spray is not legal in all areas of the US or in every location. Check your local and state laws and regulations before purchasing or carrying OC spray.
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