While a firearm is an ultimate ‘equalizer’, for many, pepper spray is an alternative means of self defense (escape) for a variety of reasons.
When pepper spray is sprayed onto another person, it will cause inflammation, coughing, choking, nausea, and will dilate the eyes with temporary blindness (while not causing permanent damage). The typical range of pepper spray is about ten feet (some a bit further).
Here’s more about it:
Pepper Spray – Stream, Foam, Fog, or Gel
Pepper spray is available in a wide variety of container sizes, shapes, and formulas and is available from a wide range of manufacturers.
Pepper spray canisters are designed with different spray patterns – stream, foam, fog, gel.
The most common pepper spray discharge is the stream pattern as it can be aimed directly.
The fog pattern can be effective when trying to incapacitate more than one target at a time, however you may experience some blow-back yourself since it is a fog. Just move away or backward as you spray.
Foam or gel discharge may also be a good choice since the wind or blow-back will not be an issue.
Pepper Spray – Shelf Life
Pepper spray does have an expiration date posted on the container. However the spray will not suddenly lose its effectiveness on that date but it apparently may lose some pressure and potency over time.
Pepper Spray for a Key-chain and Joggers
Many women carry pepper spray – as they are potential targets for rape and crime.
You might carry pepper spray on a key-chain – useful while walking to or from your vehicle in a public place, etc… It’s best to get into the habit of holding the set of keys by the pepper spray canister itself. Otherwise, if suddenly attacked you will not have time to retrieve it from your purse, etc… Your keys should always be out before exiting a store (or wherever), with the attached canister of pepper spray.
Note: Walk confidently with situational awareness of what’s going on around you. Unfortunately too many people are narrowly focused in their own little world and oblivious to their surroundings as they walk — and could easily be surprised by a predator.
I recommend that women joggers should carry pepper spray designed with a hand strap.
Pepper Spray For 2 & 4 Legged Creatures
Not only is pepper spray effective for protection against 2 legged creatures, but it is also effective against the 4 legged variety. Typically, pepper spray designed for animals will have a higher concentration formula (e.g. Bear Spray).
This is the Bear Spray that we use here at the homestead in black-bear country, which I believe is the best on the market (which I supplement with a 45-Auto on my hip 😉 ) …
Frontiersman Bear Spray with Hip Holster
I also sometimes carry a ‘bear bell’ when hiking out back in the woods so as not to surprise a bear.
Pepper Spray laws
In today’s world of ever increasing laws and regulations, remember to check the pepper spray laws in your state, city, etc.. before carrying.
If you are going to Carry/use pepper spray make sure of the following:
1- KNOW HOW TO USE IT (maybe have an inert can for practice in drawing and spraying it). People may forget to flip the thumb switch or cover their own face with the opposite arm in an attack situation if they don’t practice.
2- MAKE SURE IT IS EASILY ACCESSIBLE- not buried in the bottom of a purse so you have to dig for it for five minutes while being attacked. Seconds count.
Curious to know if any of you carry pepper spray, or have ever had to use it…