A lot of people have a good reason to be worried about riots, and the worries are growing. There have been two waves of riots in the U.S. and a third wave might just take things to a whole new level. This next wave of rioting stands to involve more people, more unrest, more deaths, and more crime than ever before in U.S. history. The more people of different cultures and beliefs you put together, the more likely it is they will fight. A recipe for a real explosion of social chaos appears to be shaping up.
1. Know Your City Well
Knowing every street, every back alley and every dead end in your town is something you should collect information on in advance. You can do this by walking a lot (at safe hours of the day, depending on where you live) and paying attention to street names and road junctions, and even marking on a map all possible ways to get back home (and have a get home bag!) — and that includes escape from the interstate freeway, if you have an commute to and from work on state freeways or highways.
2. Blend In
If you look white-collar or even look like a tourist or someone else well to do, getting out from a riot is going to be tough. When things start taking a turn for the worse, one of the first things you should do is remove any sign that you have money or a high-paying job or are simply a tourist — you look like an easy target and someone to beat down first. To blend in, remove ALL accessories (watches, tie clip, hats, and ties) and don’t forget to ditch your sport coat or blazer and, if possible, put a t-shirt, sweatshirt or something more casual on.
3. Stay Calm
The key to doing all of this is to stay calm. The more afraid you appear to be, the more likely it is that rioters will notice. Avoid looking afraid and like you’re part of the “establishment” they hate. Instead, put on an instant poker face and take control of your demeanor: When rioters look your way, look pissed off, just like they do, even raise a fist and shout something (but don’t let the police see you raising your fists — this is for the rioters); then just run right passed the rioters, kicking at things on the ground, etc, as you run by, all part of your act.
4. Move Away From The Riot
The last thing you want is to start running the moment you see a way out. You never know who’s gonna come out and block your way or, even worse, a few rioters might start chasing you. The method to getting out safely from a riot is this: Move in the same direction and at the same pace with the rioters but be on the lookout for ways out of the turmoil. You have to move at a slight angle to advance towards the exit. Whether you can find a way out or not, put as much space between you and the rioters as you can.
5. Disappear Into The Shadows
The less visible you are, the less likely that they’ll pick on you. As you’re moving to safety, make sure you stay as much into the shadows as you can by avoiding well-lit areas, staying close to walls, trees and away from light poles. If possible, always wear dark colors because these won’t reflect as much light.
6. Comply And Avoid Eye Contact
If you don’t have time to pull off an act, like outlined above, or you don’t have time to lose your business attire our other nice clothing and are suddenly caught in a riot unexpectedly (which can happen, just depends on where you may work or do business or travel to), here are some different strategies that can work for you: As you’re moving through the riot, you need to avoid eye contact at all costs. Stare at them for more than a second and they’ll want to get to know you better — and figure out if you’re part of the “establishment”. It’s just human nature to feel challenged when someone maintains eye contact, especially when they feel in charge and are looking for someone to hate right at that moment.
7. If A Tear Gas Canister Is Headed Your Way, Run
Correction: Run like hell. In this case, forget what was said earlier about staying calm and moving at a slower pace. Trust us, when that canister is about to hit you, everyone’s going to run as fast as they can. In fact, this could actually be good news to you. The rioters panicking could mean your chance to break away free. But to take advantage of it, you need to know what your possible ways out are. When you’re seconds away from an encounter with tear gas, you may not have time to think, only time to run and, hopefully, you’ll do it in the right direction.