Statistically, how dangerous is our lifestyle? What are some precautions we can all take?

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#1
I am taking off Tuesday, I haven't been on the road extendedly since 2012, and reading the "Untrustworthy People" forum makes me feel disheartened and paranoid. What kind of precautions should one take? How many bad experiences have you personally had as far as theft and violence?
 

roughdraft

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#2
situational awareness
 

Jackthereaper

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#3
for what its worth i have seen many more people i rode mx with get hurt than freight,
 

Candice

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#4
Yeah I had a bad experience go to the tinder section my whole story is on here that guy wanted to know what online dating experience have we had on the rd mainly from tinder mine was from fb and never will I do it again
 

Candice

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#5
Either I will travel with them and my husband or they will have to b a chic if it’s just me it’s scary but as of hanging with other ppl and my husband I can do that will feel safe if he is there
 

WildDisciple

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#6
I carry a concealable tactical knife and a Mace canister usually, haven't had to use either yet but I'm a man also. Tbh I have been sexually assaulted twice, as a queer person, once while homebumming San Fran on a bunch of drugs (I'm now in recovery) and once by a formerly-good friend. I've found while travelling through, I'm relatively safe.
Wikipedia has a good sub-article on the statistical safety of hitchhiking, citing several studies...I'll grab the links when I get a chance.

Safe travels, comrades.
 

ScumRag

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#7
I carry a concealable tactical knife and a Mace canister usually, haven't had to use either yet but I'm a man also. Tbh I have been sexually assaulted twice, as a queer person, once while homebumming San Fran on a bunch of drugs (I'm now in recovery) and once by a formerly-good friend. I've found while travelling through, I'm relatively safe.
Wikipedia has a good sub-article on the statistical safety of hitchhiking, citing several studies...I'll grab the links when I get a chance.

Safe travels, comrades.

Sorry you had to experience that
 

WildDisciple

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#8
Thanks, solidarity is important in this realm, specifically solidarity with all women (whether one is a queer man or not, they experience the brunt of this phenomenon which includes transwomen for sure).

Here's what I was referring to...
Statistical Safety of Hitchhiking
 

WildDisciple

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#9
But, as always, having a reliable road dawg is the best solution to unsafe and dangerous situations. In my experience at least.
 

Coywolf

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#10
Ya, it totally depends on where you are at, what you are doing, and who you are with. @roughdraft had it right with situational awareness. When I am on the road I am WAY more careful than when I am not. I dont get as drunk, I dont take stupid chances that could get me hurt, sick, or arrested and I am REALLY careful of who I hang around, honestly its what makes me travel alone most of the time. I see people pull some dumb shit on the road, and its a miracle to me that they are still alive....like watching blackout drunk oogles wander around Davis yard in the middle of the day.....

Honestly, I have been in some very bad situations on the road; grow houses getting raided, MILLIONS of tweekers and junkies, guns drawn on me, almost being drugged and raped, evading gang members, evading by killer dogs, surrounded by drunk pissed off Native people on the Rez, almost getting hit by vehicles, things thrown from moving vehicles while hitching, almost drowning in flash floods, waking up to bears sniffing my head, the list goes on and on.....

The takeaway here is that it totally depends on the situation. travelling is dangerous, that is a REAL, HARD, fact, and no one should take that lightly. But as long as you trust your own instincts and decisions, its not anymore dangerous than living in LA or SF as a housie. Being hyper-aware all the time is KEY.

Another thing to remember, as shitty as it is, more than half of the shit we do in this lifestyle is illegal. Its bad enough to watch out for sketchy assholes, let alone always having one eye peeled for the law at all times.

EDIT: The danger factor always goes up 10-fold the minute you set foot into Florida.
 
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#11
I carry Mace, tactical knives and hornet/wasp spray (disclaimer: only for self-defense-according to the Milwaukee CO. DA's office that I talked to; it is a disorderly conduct charge if you use it for non-self-defense and a felony if you blind the person on purpose. Check with your local district attorney's office on hornet/wasp spray or any other sprays to be on the safe side). If you have your state's concealed carry weapon's permit and plan to travel, check with the other states Attorney General's office also there is websites that post laws what you can carry or not. Some states do honor other states CCW permits.

A belt and stick is a fine weapon too.

Always know your surroundings, if something doesn't look right, avoid the situation for example: you see a group of young people hanging underneath a bridge wearing hoodies, breaking bottles or whatever, just avoid the area. Always look ahead and scan the area.

Back in summer of 2016, I ran into a guy while I was waiting for a train here in Wisconsin. He was drinking a bottle of Jim Bean and wanted me to join him. I refused and moved on because I didn't know who he was, he could of been an escape prisoner or a fugitive on the run. He could of hurt me and take my stuff. Never know.

That's my 2 cents!
 

Dameon

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#12
The death counts are higher among the traveler community, but mostly from drugs and alcohol. You honestly don't have to be super afraid of getting murdered; most people don't want a murder charge, but landing in the hospital isn't really something you want. Generally, just respect people, be honest, don't fuck anybody over, and share, and you're fine. The company you keep can attract fights or turn on you, so watch who you hang out with. If somebody's into alcohol and violence, odds are good that at some point the violence will be toward you.

Cop violence is also common. When you're dealing with the cops, always keep your hands away from your pockets, announce what you're doing ("Okay, I'm reaching for my wallet in my back left pocket now"), and move a little slower than you normally would. Don't talk shit to them, don't give them an excuse to drive you off somewhere out of sight and beat the crap out of you or purposely stick you in the drunk tank with an angry drunk skinhead.
 

Human

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#13
Wear helmets, masks, carry bear mace, condoms, and keep a cellphone- working or not to call your local organized squad.
Or just say hey love and learn. If you're smart, or even not, you'll be fine just learn from the mistakes. I'd also say there's a lot to learn in people. Be cautious and never go somewhere alone with someone you don't know specially if drugs or alcohol is involved... Basically just stay aware and present minded!
 
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#14
i always used to carry mace and a knife, thank heavens never had to use it. i second the comment that booze and drugs are the #1 danger (on top of sheer sober foolishness). almost all the insane bad shit ive ever seen or heard of involved someone blacked out or strung out. its such a big part of the culture and so not worth it, i'm not sXe just don't fuck around, life's too short especially when it involves freight trains, cops, living outside, randos with nothing to lose, etc. it makes the odds go from sketchy to terrible.
 

Anagor

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#17
The death counts are higher among the traveler community, but mostly from drugs and alcohol.
Agreed. Drugs, alcohol and unfortunately suicide as well.

You honestly don't have to be super afraid of getting murdered; most people don't want a murder charge, but landing in the hospital isn't really something you want.
There are people out there who would attack you for no reason. Just because you are there. But that never happened to me, travelling in UK and EU. Knock on wood.

Most violence I witnessed (I was never in a fight) were because of come reason. Sometimes a silly reason, but there was a reason.

That's why I never let people provoke me. Happened that I was playing my harmonica at night and some guys walked by and one was like "useless scum ... get a job" and so on. In those situations I just ignored that.

I mean, don't get me wrong. If I care about someone's opinion and this someone has a problem with me, I would discuss that. But why risking a confrontation with someone who is onviously in an aggressive mood. I don't care what idiots thinking about me, anyway. ;)

Generally, just respect people, be honest, don't fuck anybody over, and share, and you're fine.
Yes, absolutely.

Obviously doesn't help if people are about to rob you for money or are about to rape you and so on, but it eliminates many causes for trouble and violence. :)

The company you keep can attract fights or turn on you, so watch who you hang out with. If somebody's into alcohol and violence, odds are good that at some point the violence will be toward you.
Yep. Always trust your gut feeling. Once I was about to sleep next to a very good friend of mine in a doorway. He really is one of my best friends. But he got really drunk and then he tends to be at least verbally agressive. Like some people walking by (quite big guys), one is dropping a can on the pavement and my friend would yell at them "there is a bin here, dont drop it in front of my doorway you fucking cunt ... idiot ..." and so on. After a few of those incidents I told him I would leave. Sleep somewhere else. He understood that and next morning he apologized and said it was a good decision to go away.

I mean he was not so drunk that he needed help or company. And I would always backed him up if he would get in trouble. But I can't stand it when people I'm with a constantly calling for trouble without reason.

Cop violence is also common. When you're dealing with the cops, always keep your hands away from your pockets, announce what you're doing ("Okay, I'm reaching for my wallet in my back left pocket now"), and move a little slower than you normally would. Don't talk shit to them, don't give them an excuse to drive you off somewhere out of sight and beat the crap out of you or purposely stick you in the drunk tank with an angry drunk skinhead.
Yep. Cop violence is not as much a problem where I was, compared to the US. I mean, in UK the normal cops don't even carry a firearm. There is cop violence (as in every other country) but I only read about it, never witnessed it.

But yeah, when dealing with cops I always stayed polite. Not kissing their ass in a manner of speaking, but calm and decent. You could say "as polite as necessary, as unhelpful as possible".

Always be careful what you say. Don't give any information you are not legally required to give.

That's really important. Watch your mouth. Imagine cops turn up while a friend of you is still sleeping. Don't wake him up saying "James, wake up, we have to go". Maybe later if the cops ask for names he would give a false name. And then the cops would be like "but your mate called you James before?!?"

And never admit something that is not plain obvious.
 
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#19
Either I will travel with them and my husband or they will have to b a chic if it’s just me it’s scary but as of hanging with other ppl and my husband I can do that will feel safe if he is there
While I understand that you may have had an unfortunate circumstance in the past, please don't make blanket statements about men like that. There are plenty of us on this site who would be perfectly fine to travel with.
 

Candice

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#20
While I understand that you may have had an unfortunate circumstance in the past, please don't make blanket statements about men like that. There are plenty of us on this site who would be perfectly fine to travel with.
I wast meaning all guys are bad I was saying after my experience I don’t trust and I choose not to travel with anyone without my husband and men are stronger than most women and if I was to travel alone with another female if she acted up I could possibly put her out and the issue wouldn’t be as difficult but with hubby open to making new friends with all and will feel safe with traveling with all sorry but this is my opinion for me not meaning to offend anyone
 

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