Home Gun Nation Pro Tip: Your Car is NOT a Gun Safe

Pro Tip: Your Car is NOT a Gun Safe

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A little reminder courtesy of the Columbus, Ohio Police Department . . .

“We are absolutely alarmed by the number of guns that are taken from cars that are parked and unoccupied,” said Sergeant James Fuqua of the Columbus Division of Police. 

“If you leave your gun in a car whether it’s locked or not and your car is broken into, you have contributed to the possibility of a criminal going out to commit a heinous act against someone else in the City of Columbus,” Fuqua said.

The lesson here: don’t make thieves’ job easier . . .

Buckeye Firearms, a pro-gun lobby said, “Criminals don’t try to break into every car. They profile vehicles just like they profile potential victims on the street. They’re looking for an obvious and easy target. NRA decals on the window or gun-related bumper stickers are a clue that guns may be in the vehicle. Firearm accessories or hunting gear visible through the windows are also a tipoff. Where you park also matters. Don’t park on the street if you can, park in a garage or a secure lot. If you must park outside, park in a well-lit area. If you’re parking overnight, take all your valuables with you,” said Dean Rieck, Executive Director of Buckeye Firearms. Let me break it down for you: your car is not a gun safe. And as the holiday season ramps up, cases of car windows being smashed and valuables being stolen are just going to keep rising. It’s easy to to break a window in your car, truck or SUV and take whatever a thief wants. And if you’ve left your gun in there, congratulations, you just armed a criminal.

Yeah, you’re also out a chunk of money for the gun itself, but personally I’d be more concerned about the firearm that’s now in the hands of someone who thinks crime is the way to fund their lifestyle.

If you’re in a situation where leaving your handgun in your vehicle is the only option, get a real safe. Hornady’s RAPiD Vehicle Safe is a legit option (I own a couple myself). The RAPiD has a 14-gauge steel housing, internal hardened locking lugs, and a steel cable that can be attached to a seat frame. It can be opened using a four-to-six digit programmable security code, one of the RFID wristbands or key fobs it ships with, or one of a pair of barrel keys. Power comes from either four AAA batteries or a 12-volt car adapter.

Is this the perfect solution? No. There is no perfect solution, but it’s unlikely you’re going to run into a criminal doing a smash-and-grab while also carrying heavy-duty bolt cutters or some other tool that will give them access to the safe (assuming it’s properly installed).

That doesn’t mean you should leave a handgun in a gun safe in your car 24/7, either. The best place for your gun is in on your hip in a proper holster on your gun belt…so carry your gun. When it’s not being carried or when you have to go into a non-permissive area, store it securely.

If you’re at home, that’s going to be in your gun safe, not parked in your driveway in your car. Your car’s gun safe won’t do you much good if the entire car is stolen, will it?

Thus ends this friendly Your Car is Not a Gun Safe PSA.


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  1. Portable safe cabled to a seat frame, if needed. Otherwise, carry it. Concealed means concealed, right??

    No stickers. If you have a sticker that says “Come and Take It!” they will. This goes for your home, too.

    • This^^^ x 1000. Rarely if ever do I leave my firearm in a vehicle. When I do it is locked in a Snap Safe cabled to one of the floor anchors to latch the seats to and covered. Most generally I just go concealed and don’t worry about it. In the many decades I’ve been carrying concealed, I have never been called out for it.

  2. more victim blaming.

    if someone breaks into my car and steals my gun…… that’s on them.

    I did not “contribute” any more than other victims who lose money, prescriptions, their cars, or any other property.

    stop pushing the left-wing notion that it’s the property owners fault for owning “things”.

    • 10000000%

      This is NSSF Redflag Safe-storage BS. I’m surprised it wasn’t written by Larry Keane himself instead of one of his lackeys.

      The “I support the 2A, but…” Fudds in our community are exactly how we got to where we are right now losing most of our rights by negotiating them away to the antis.

      • @Craptacular

        “I don’t see a problem with blaming irresponsible victims.”

        You apparently don’t see a problem with you being incredibly naive either.

  3. And don’t leave your car parked in the driveway. There’s a reason why God created the garage.

    A security camera isn’t going to help, either. You’ll just end up with video footage of a thief wearing a hoodie and/or mask.

    • While more than a few thieves are dumb enough to show their face while doing things this is still good advice especially when your local DA’s will only prosecute you for having your gun stolen.

    • “And don’t leave your car parked in the driveway. There’s a reason why God created the garage. ”

      When family comes over to visit, the only place left to park is the driveway or the street.

      EDIT – I look at that picture of a fist going through that driver’s side window and imagine my pathetic and angry, very un-funny little-boy troll doing that to my ride.

      Because that’s all the impotent can do when too weak to stand up to power… 😉

    • Why is it we park our expensive vehicles in the driveway and store all of our junk in the garage?

      • Exactly. I don’t play that.

        When the wife unit located a house that she liked, I insisted that the garage was my territory. Both cars behind the big door, every night — and that included the company car. We’re down to only one car now, but I still have enough space there to put two vehicles.

        • We had a rash of cat converter thefts. Very expensive and at the time the parts just were not readily available. After it happened to people I knew I made room in the garage for both our cars.

          The weather is so mild here in CA that people get lazy and start using the garage only on occasion.

  4. No, your vehicle is not a gun safe. Or, a safe of any kind. Don’t leave anything in it you care about. Not your children, firearms, pets or other valuables. I’ve worked hundreds of “burglary of a convayence.” Most because they were left unlocked. Don’t be stupid.

  5. Some of us remember the good old days when many men routinely kept their rifles and shotguns on non locking gun racks where they were clearly visible through the rear window. This kept the guns handy for shooting coyotes, deer, elk, pheasants, prairie dogs, sage rats and other varmints. Two legged varmints were of course fair game. Such men would leave their rifles and shotguns in these racks with the doors unlocked and windows rolled down while they were at home or doing business in town.

    Gun theft wasn’t a big problem in spite of this apparent negligence. This is because it was generally open season on two legged varmints who were caught stealing, especially stealing firearms. Rather than lecture us about securing firearms from gun theft, we need to declare open season on gun thieves again. While we are at it, we need to eliminate gun free zones that compel people to leave their carry pistols in their cars.

    • Instead, the gun industry groups like the NSSF are blaming us their customers for issues caused at the top levels of the justice system where they let off violent criminals and thieves with a slap on in the wrist while they throw the book at us productive citizens for violating stupid nanny-state procedural rules that even the cops don’t fully understand.

      • Or could it be that it’s just plain smart to consider simple common-sense precautions to prevent property damage and theft?

        Your auto insurance agent will also advise you not to keep any expensive or important items in your car. Why not save yourself the hassle and expense of an insurance claim and try to avoid being put in that situation in the first place?

        Go onto your neighborhood website (like Nextdoor) and read the threads about groups of “youts” working their way through, going from car to car and finding several with their doors unlocked and even a few with the keys still in them. Yes, people still do stupid stuff like that. And that’s why I recommend putting your damn car in the garage.

  6. Huge part of the solution would be to get rid of restrictions on where one can carry so they don’t have to leave their gun in the car to go to the Post Office, etc.

    • Yep! That was my first reaction. The pistol in my car when I leave the house arrived in the car because it was in my holster when I got in the car. It will stay in that holster when I get out of the car, unless some idi0t politician has made a law that says I can’t take it where I am going when I get out of the car.

      My second reaction was wanting to tell the worthless damned government twit to get the hell out of my business.

      • Rusty, Unless the place I’m going to has a metal detector at the door, I check myself and then proceed anyway. Concealed means concealed. What the dopes don’t know won’t hurt them.

    • You will never be rid of these restrictions. Because a private business can ban guns from the property. However All government buildings should to free to carry in. Unless it’s a courthouse or a jail/prison.

  7. Never leave a loaded gun in your car. If you have to leave the gun in your car, unload it. If it’s a revolver, take the bullets with you. If it’s an assembly auto, take the magazine and make sure you eject the round in the chamber.

    I use a soft flexible eyeglass case/bag with strings on top. I tied the strings so the bullets won’t fall out. Then just carry your ammo in a pocket.

    Once back in your car. Load your gun.

    • Try going into a courthouse with a bunch of bullets and see how that works out…Heck, they don’t even let me through security with a pocket knife.

      • I walk into the court house with my concealed firearm and 2 knives all the time. Of course in our state it’s legal to do so. Votes matter.

        • to Mark N
          Even in the free state or I should say the free common wealth of Kentucky, you have to disarm. When going into a courthouse.
          And they returned my ammo and knife to me. I wore an NRA T shirt back then. The guards were very impressed. Happy in fact.

          The NRA still had alot of respect back then. No state is perfect. But the free states are certainly better.

          Don’t do what they say, the Libertarians when they say to stop voting. The reason why we have so many slave states, is because so many people stopped voting.

          You may have not be interested in politics. But politics has an interest in you.
          And “they” like it when you don’t vote.

  8. “Pro Tip: Your Car is NOT a Gun Safe”

    Oh please…
    This from a website that will sell you a headrest pistol safe.

    Give me a break.

      • There are those that keeping firearms in a vehicle will never be an issue regardless of how it’s stowed.

        I can’t advise anyone do that. If its in my vehicle then it’s being worn.

  9. ” but it’s unlikely you’re going to run into a criminal doing a smash-and-grab while also carrying heavy-duty bolt cutters or some other tool that will give them access to the safe (assuming it’s properly installed).”

    hmmm no. I guess it may depend on where you live.

    gangs today frequently send our crews to do smash n grab car break ins. The wander mostly through parking lots and along streets looking for target cars. somewhere close by is a car manned by other gang members with the necessary tools/implements to do things like cut cables and chains. When the crew breaks in and finds something that needs to be cut or pried open, especially a cable on a gun safe which they cut free and take the whole safe and simply cut it open later, the shadow car comes up and provides the tools or extra manpower needed.

    Big problem with that in a neighboring city just across the state line. They don’t do it here mostly because they might get shot if they are caught at it but we do have it happen occasionally. I think we had like three this year so far and two of them were shot with one gun safe cut loose and taken. The city across the state line has had over 200 so far this year with around 85 guns stolen in gun safes cut loose.

  10. Oh and don’t think the cops will show up anymore either. Tulsa just has you do an online report, doesn’t get the video footage from the hotel and doesn’t care.
    When you call them though they do make sure to ask about if a gun was taken so they can chastise you and if not the conversation is over. Just fill out a report online and let your insurance handle it the hotel and officers will tell ya.
    An inmate in a prison gets better service call than you do now. They report a cell theft they investigate, pull video etc.

  11. I can’t quite imagine anyone breaking into my raggedy minivan(ran great in the highway) to steal my gat. I don’t tempt fate is all I’ll say. Especially as we went on a couple days Wisconsin mini-vacation last week. Yep across a state line booger🙄

  12. VIDEO: Tragic Raid of 98 Year Old Woman’s Home. (note: I posted about this previously… but anyway the warrant was invalid and the 4th amendment was stomped to pieces here and the woman died the next day with this event probably the main contributing reason)

    • These cops are true believers in the First Amendment as well as the Second Amendment. After the performance by the cops in Maui (same police chief who was responsible for the pathetic response to the Mandalay Bay Hotel massacre in Los Vegas), even the folks in Hawaii might get a clue.

  13. I saw a video filmed at the park on top of Hayes Street Hill in San Francisco in broad day light. (This is the park with the famous view of the Victorians with the City in the background.) I used to get off the bus right there after work many years ago. Car pulls up, three guys jump out, smash multiple windows and cleans out the car of the possessions of some tourist family visiting the Bay Area. And then they were gone. This has become a regular occurrence in this formerly great city now circling the drain.
    There was a famous murder case where an illegal immigrant handling a firearm stolen from a vehicle that had been left by a federal LEO when he went into a no carry zone. The DA screwed up the case when he charged first degree murder instead of negligent homicide, even though the defendant said that he had unintentionally pulled the trigger, and the evidence established that the bullet ricocheted off the sidewalk 20′ before striking the victim.
    I absolutely HATE leaving a firearm n a vehicle for ANY reason. Those cables are useless.The only car safes that can’t be (easily) stolen are bolted to the car itself and hidden from view.

    • Could you try suggesting to the courts to install lockers before the magnetometers where folks can stash their carry pieces?

      They are gonna have to accept the fact that daily carry of guns *will* be a fact of life in California in the near future…

  14. Pro tip: Get rid of the f. ing gun free zones then there isn’t a reason to leave a firearm in a car. There, fixed it for ya.

  15. Ironically, the product video shows the lockbox mounted in a very visible location in the car. So, a “gun safe” with the “Hornady” brand prominently on it… is the equivalent of a “Glock Perfection” sticker on your window. “There’s a gun in here!”

  16. At the risk of revealing a secret to gun thieves, the compartment under the fold down seat of an extra cab Toyota Tacoma can discretely accommodate a Ruger Mini-14 with a Butler Creek folding stock complete with reflex sight. Just replace the plastic door with a kocking steel door

  17. And thieves know that vehicles parked outside a “No Guns Allowed” venue yield the greatest returns.

  18. Laws preventing Constitutional Carry force citizens to leave their firearms in vehicles at stores, etc. Criminals know that and act accordingly.

  19. My wife was parking at the Amtrak station in Milwaukee and the truck got broken into. Keep in mind that I believe in going on the DL, I don’t do stickers on my vehicles. They smashed her window in and rummaged the truck. This is what they didn’t take:
    -Kindle Paperwhite
    -Nintendo Switch (they broke it though, thanks a lot a-holes)
    -Bed Bath and Beyond gift cards (before they were bankrupt)
    -winning lottery tickets and cash

    They literally took nothing. I spent a while racking my brain on what they were looking for. After a while, I figured out it was guns. What was interesting is when she called the insurance company, they told her that without even being asked. The vehicles broken into were trucks at the parking lot, people who would commute into Chicago where they couldn’t carry.

    The police had a pre-filled out report sitting on the seat. This garbage is why “gun crime” will never be fixed and certainly not by bans. Gun laws should be action based, not possession based unless it’s of stolen firearms.

  20. Former mobster Sammy ‘The Bull’ Gravano has a message for ‘scumbag’ politicians.

  21. 25-year-old man accused of breaking into a dozen cars dies hours later in violent crash.

  22. A couple near me withdrew cash at their bank and placed it in the glove box of their car while dining at a popular cafe in a parking lot full of vehicles. Upon their return they discovered the car had a broken glass and the glove box emptied. Police said they probably were seen at the bank and followed since their car was the only one broken into. And this is in a very small town.

  23. With the exception of my old Benz, (Inherited, was my Mother’s car.) I have a hardened steel lock box bolted to the floor in each vehicle. In the SUV and in the Sedan I removed the plastic bucket in the console and built a steel box to fit. The PU and 2 1/2 ton have hard steel safe boxes inside the tool box. Again bolted to frame members.
    This was done before I ever heard of companies like the one in the article.
    Yes, I remember gun racks in truck windows and pistols tossed on dashboards. Seldom if ever heard of anyone stealing anything from vehicles.
    If where I’m going doesn’t have metal detectors and security at the door I check myself for exposure and printing. Concealed is concealed. Do what you need to do and never leave a firearm in a car. Or, if you have no choice to do anything else, lock the weapon in the trunk. Don’t leave anything of value in the passenger compartment. Window glass is not steel and locks.

  24. Maybe have fewer “gun free zones” in Ohio and I won’t be forced to leave it in my car unattended.

  25. Good post. I can add that when choosing a safe for weapons, I advise you to pay attention to https://inkassafes.com/gun-safes/, because fireproof gun safes are specially designed to withstand extreme temperatures and keep your weapons safe and sound. By the way, I advise this company because of their experts who have been manufacturing designs for over 20 years. They have invaluable industry knowledge that helps them create strong and durable designs with perfect locking systems.

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