Did I Ever Tell You About The Time I Drove In The Joie Chitwood Hell Drivers Stuntshow?
Ever notice in SHTF disaster movies, the star always knows how to drive like an expert, dodging explosions, driving through falling buildings, fording raging rivers, evading zombie hoards? Some that come to mind are 2012, Dante's Peak, Deep Impact, and Volcano. While loads of fun to watch, how realistic is it for us to drive like that while trying to Get Out Of Dodge? Probably not very.
Most of us took driver's ed in high school. When I took it, we did a little serpentine course and a left-right-stop drill. I drive about 30,000 miles a year in moderate traffic. You might be in a similar situation. What is your plan to get home if SHTF or evacuate your community after a disaster? Will you drive off road? Perhaps you plan to drive on the sidewalks to get around traffic jams in the city. What will you do for the brigand roadblock between you and your family? Will you be in your Chevy Impala commuter car or in your '89 F350 4x4 dually?
Have you been to Gunsite or some other shooting school? Did you take that home canning class? What about the wilderness survival course you've been planning? All of those are important and can contribute greatly to your survival. But how good of a driver are you?
I encourage everyone to seek out some professional driver training. Over the years, I took a week of pursuit driving in the police academy, Emergency Vehicle Operators Course with the rescue squad, and a State Department protective detail escape and evasion course from a private company. In the latter one I drove door handle to door handle, practiced the PIT maneuver, did bootlegger turns and rammed vehicle roadblocks. I was a practice student for State Department instructors, and it was not only incredibly informative and practical, it was tons of fun! Through all of those courses, I improved my skills in various types of vehicles and it has made me a better driver on my daily commute, as well as better prepared to G.O.O.D. if needed.
Regarding the post title about Joie Chitwood, I really did drive in the stuntshow one time. Years ago, the Mid-Atlantic Chevy dealers had a three day pep rally for the salesmen from Maryland to South Carolina. They had sales seminars and the new model year cars to drive. They also had one of Dale Earnhardt's race cars out with one of his pit crew people so the salesmen could compete in tire changing. The highlight of each day was the Joie Chitwood Hell Drivers Stuntshow where they jump ramps, drive blindfolded, and drive up on two wheels. Another police officer and I were working security with your Chevy Caprice police cars all shined up nice. The last day, someone had the idea to conclude the Stuntshow by incorporating the track that had been laid out for the test drives, plus a little extra. They had the stunt drivers going around, through and over the track while the #3 car drove the track with us driving our two police cars after it with lights and siren blaring. Not really relevant to the post topic, but I've always enjoyed asking, "Did I ever tell you about the time I drove in the Joie Chitwood Hell Drivers Stuntshow?"
Where To Get Training
Check back in tomorrow for a look at different ways to improve your driving skill in other than normal situations. I've got some scoop on off-road schools, E&E, large vehicles and EVOC.