Getting captured isn't something most of us think about.
We just don't think we live in a world where someone might want to take us captive.
But it could happen to any of us, both at home and abroad.
Getting away before they can hurt or kill you would seem to be the highest priority in a hostage situation.
But how do you plan that escape so that it succeeds?
I spoke with my friend Reggie Bennett about this not long ago.
Here's a summary of what he had to tell me.
3 Tips For Escaping A Hostage Situation!
It takes special skills to get out of hostage scenario.
SERE programs teach their students survival, evasion, resistance, and escape.
You have to be mentally prepared for those things.
There will be both physical and mental stress involved.
You have to know yourself and know you're going to face these scenarios.
- You could be kidnapped for ransom.
- You could be held by terrorists.
- You could be taken by people who are trying to make some kind of twisted statement.
Whatever the reason, you might find yourself taken captive and then have to figure out how to escape.
Sometimes, all it takes is being in the wrong place at the wrong time… so what do you do?
Here are three tips for how to plan your escape so that when the moment comes, you can seize it and get away.
1. Maintain Situational Awareness At All Times
The first thing you have to do is know your surroundings.
If you break out of a closet and find yourself staring at a room full of terrorists, you didn't escape anything at all.
You've just made your situation worse.
When they put you back, they're going to restrain you worse than before, and they're going to be looking for escape attempts.
Think of your surroundings in terms of layers:
- What's immediately around you?
- What comes after that?
- Which of your captors is weakest?
- Which is friendliest?
- When are your captors least vigilant?
- Is there any dissent among them?
- Are there holes in their security?
- Who is the weak link in the chain?
Gather as much information as you can in order to determine the best set of circumstances to make your break.
2. Gather An Escape Kit
The second thing you need to do is assemble a secret escape kit.
This isn't a whole backpack.
It's just little things that will help you survive.
This includes doing things like hoarding food and water for later.
It might also be rope, wire, thread, or anything else you can use to improvise.
Plastic and things you can use to protect you from the elements is another item you might assemble.
Be prepared to think outside the box in order to use whatever you can get your hands on to your advantage.
3. Have A Plan
The third thing to keep in mind is that you HAVE to have a plan.
Just escaping isn't enough.
Once you break out of your immediate confinement… then what?
Where are you going to go?
Let's say you're overseas.
You might find yourself in a desert, or a forest, or an unfamiliar city.
Where are you now, and where should you get to?
Is there a border you could slip past to safety, a church that could provide sanctuary, or an embassy that would take you in?
It won't do any good to just get out and wander.
You'll get caught again if you do that.
Figure out what your plan is… and then act on it.
Every little bit of information you assemble along the way is just another tool in your toolbox.
Keep these tips in mind if you ever do find yourself on the wrong end of a hostage situation or kidnapping.