JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - No one ever wants to think about “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” But an emergency situation can come out of nowhere. And you and your family need to have some practical knowledge if you’re going to survive. So we reached out to the Ridgeland Police Department to offer some survival techniques that could mean the difference between life or death.
Ridgeland Patrol Officer Alice Thompson is a 15-year veteran of several SWAT teams. She also trains officers on how to survive life or death situations.
She says, “You have to have that mindset to survive. If you don’t have that mindset, odds are going to be stacked against you most likely.”
We asked Officer Thompson what would she tell someone if they found themselves locked in the trunk of a car? It might seem far fetched, but it happens more than you may think. She told us, ”A lot of vehicles these days, you’ve got that lever on the inside. That actually glows in the dark. You can find that lever you can pop it.”
I put her advice to the test and I got inside the trunk of a car just to see if the interior latch really worked as quickly as she said. I climbed inside the trunk and sure enough, the latch lit up in the dark. And within 10 seconds I was free!
Thompson warns, “For whatever reason, if that lever doesn’t work, there are other things that you can do. Pull the interior carpet back and start tearing stuff up. you can’t get to the actual tail light to push it out, but you have wiring. Start ripping it out. You’re gonna short circuit the lights, the taillights, everything.”
This information is valuable and important to share - especially with young children. It’s also important to demonstrate to kids so if they find themselves in a scary situation, they know what to do. In this case I put my oldest son, who is 10, and my youngest, who is 3, to the test.Both boys got into the car and within seconds were able to locate the lever and free themselves.
And one more tip. What if you’re in a vehicle that’s submerged in water? Thompson says, “If you’re submerged in deep water, you finally are able to get out of the vehicle, do you have enough air in your own lungs to get out? Tires are a great source of air.”
Find the air valve, press the inner pin, and snatch that air. She says, “You’re not putting a tight seal with your mouth around it. You’re having something push down on then you get down to get enough of your mouth around it, take you a deep breath. You might have to take a couple of them.”
And with your lungs full you can make your way to the surface. Another thing to remember! In newer cars, if you’re in the trunk, you can likely kick in the back seat with your feet.