February 24, 2018

Home Defense: Defensible Positions and Safe Rooms

Home Defense Defensible Positions and Safe Rooms

Home is the place where we lower our alert level and let our guard down. Being at home doesn’t mean you’re completely safe, just safer then when you’re out. Home invasions are on the rise and if the economy continues to struggle or gets worse, they will rise even faster. It’s impossible to give you a simple list of things you can do to make your home secure. I am going to cover some home defense principles over the course of a few different articles.

In this article I’ll cover safe rooms and defensible positions; some simple things you can either incorporate or just be aware of.
Defensible Position

A defensible position is simply a place in your home that is more easily defended then others. Many homes have choke-points that could be used to force Mr. Dirtbag and friends to slow down and group.

The most defensible position in my house in the main bedroom because it’s at the end of a 20 foot hallway. If Mr. Dirtbag wants to do us harm, he has to come up one flight of stairs, make a hard right and cross that 20 feet, all while dodging rounds.

When planning your position, consider lines of fire; if you shoot through your doorway, where is that round going to travel? Will it enter another room or possibly go through your external wall and into your neighbor’s house? If you live in an apartment or town home, this is something you’ll want to think through completely. (I’ll get into home defense guns soon and that will address this more.)

There may be situations in which the most defensible position is not an option. If the most defensible position is the main bedroom but your children’s rooms are on another level, for instance, you might choose one of their rooms to turn into a safe room.
Safe room

This is not the type of safe room that is an impenetrable steel room with its own electric and oxygen and water supply. I mean a room in your house that can offer you more protection because of the layout and/or some things you have done to harden it.
Hardening Your Safe Room

Here are a few things you can do to make it harder for your safe room to be breached:

  • Solid core door; doors with multiple panels have areas on them that will be easier to kick or punch through, but even that is better than a hollow core door.
  • Use three inch screws to secure the hinges to the stud; most hinges are only secured to the frame. This alone will make it harder to kick in.
  • Use a reinforced strike plate and use 3 inch screws to attach it as well.
  • Use three hinges if possible.
  • Use a dead bolt lock, most internal door locks are flimsy and are easily bypassed.

If you have read the article I wrote called Duct Tape and Plastic?,it might make sense to use the same room you seal off in a chemical event as your safe room.
Items to Keep in Your Safe Room

Phone lines are easy to bypass, either by cutting the line outside or taking the phone off the hook once inside. Because of this, you should have a cell phone inside your safe room, it does not have to have a contract, but have it plugged in to make sure it will turn on. FCC Tips for 911 Calling.

“If your wireless phone is not “initialized” (meaning you do not have a contract for service with a wireless service provider), and your emergency call gets disconnected, you must call the emergency operator back because the operator does not have your telephone number and cannot contact you.”

A flashlight. Here are some flashlight non-standard flashlight uses.

Nonperishable food and water bottles might be a good idea.

Joe Dirtbag hates noise. To make some, keep an extra key fob for your vehicle in your safe room and set off the alarm. You could also keep an air horn for the same purpose.

I recommend keeping your home defense gun and extra ammo in this room as well. If your safe room is your child room, a quick release safe is an excellent way to make it, well, safe.

If you have any other ideas or suggestions please add them in the comment section.

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