The act of carrying a concealed handgun has been around long enough that today, there is an excellent array of tested and proven holsters, guns, and carry methods that resist accidentally exposing your weapon.
However, there are no 100% foolproof methods and there will always be unintentional exposures of your weapon.
Those accidents can have disastrous consequences for the carrier.
If you’re carrying concealed, it can be assumed that doing so is legal where you are. Yet it is important to keep in mind that the general population around you may not be aware that this is the case.
In today’s world, people are often on edge to the point where they will report anything to the authorities, just in case.
Their intentions may be good, but if the police arrive, it’s almost guaranteed that you’ll be prone on the sidewalk, wearing handcuffs as you try to explain yourself.
There are many ways that your handgun can accidentally become visible, too. Sometimes the wind can lift clothing. Other times, you may exit your vehicle only to find that your shirt has ridden up over the grip and come to rest on the inside, leaving the entire handgun and holster visible.
Your reaction to these unforeseeable accidents is important. If you act guilty and people see, it’s possible they’ll assume you’re up to something. This will make them more likely to alert the authorities.
By contrast, if you retain your composure and cover the weapon again without being too hasty, it’s more likely that people will assume that you’re somehow legitimately armed, which you are.
For an example, real police officers on duty aren’t ashamed of their fully exposed weapons in any way, but someone who was trying to impersonate a cop might not act as sure of themselves.
Author Don Myers talks about ways to educate yourself about this issue in his article “Exposure Equals Big Trouble” on USConcealedcarry.com:
“The aviation business spends considerable time learning from the misfortunes of others with the purpose of increasing our judgment to prevent making the same disastrous mistakes. We as citizens who carry concealed handguns are vulnerable to making costly errors too.” (Read more at USConcealedCarry.com)
When you’re still inside your vehicle, make an initial check of your wardrobe and weapon to ensure everything is in place. Once you have exited, a second check is important.
Keeping your gun side towards the inside of the vehicle helps avoid unintended sightings. It also allows you to take advantage of the window and paint reflections that can be used as mirrors to check yourself over before you walk away.