One way to prepare for potential emergencies is to read and learn from informative books with practical, usable information. “Camping’s Forgotten Skills: Backwoods Tips From a Boundary Waters Guide” by Cliff Jacobson is a literary resource that should be part of any survival or prepper library.
A while back, I wrote about places to scavenge for supplies in a post-apocalyptic scenario. I thought I came up with quite a few ideas, but Reality Survival & Prepping made a list that’s over twice as long. When thinking about scavenging, everyone’s first instinct is to head for grocery stores and restaurants. But if […]
Choosing a weapon, and accessories is always going to be dependent on what they are being used for. For instance, you might be looking for an easy to use pistol for home protection, or the best red dot sight, to help make hunting trips more successful. It’s no different with survivalism; you need to make […]
According to a 2015 survey, 62.7 percent of people in the United States live in the city, despite US cities taking up just 3.5 percent of the total land area. No doubt, living in a city provides plenty of advantages, from dining and entertainment options to proximity to your place of employment. One advantage that […]
According to a 2015 survey, 62.7 percent of people in the United States live in the city, despite US cities taking up just 3.5 percent of the total land area. No doubt, living in a city provides plenty of advantages, from dining and entertainment options to proximity to your place of employment. One advantage that […]
In my opinion, conceal carry is the best method to carry a personal protection handgun. To me and most folks, it has numerous advantageous over open carrying. Naturally, in a bad situation you wish to capitalize on all the advantages you can in order to survive and concealed carry gives you some advantage. In my role as a firearms sales person at a big box store, firearms instructor and educator, I constantly get approached by folks that are seeking firearms for personal carry. In most cases, the individuals are new to carrying a handgun; in some cases they have some experience with handguns, but not carrying.
And finally you have those with lots of carrying experience, but no exposure to training for bad events. In all cases the buyers are purchasing a personal protection handgun for the right reasons, but have a total lack of understanding about carrying in particular, the full dynamics of how to carry and the vital role it plays when you need to access your weapon rapidly.
So with that in mind, I wish to cover “five” major factors that you should consider when buying a carry handgun. Keep in mind you cannot pick any one of the 5 factors independently. The value in their roles is the sum total of all the factors combined. If you chose any of the factors independently or only pick a couple of them, then you are likely to fall short of the full advantages of carrying a concealed handgun.
It always amazes me, the number of folks that want to buy a small handgun, just because it is small. In most cases this is the first indication that the individual has very limited handgun shooting experience. So the first step in the process is to educate the individual about the role of ‘grip’. As mentioned in my previous articles “grip’ is one of the most important factors in buying a handgun. So it is important if you are considering a carry handgun, purchase one that you can grip well. Small handguns are exceedingly hard to grip correctly and thus more difficult to shoot, which means less practicing if you do not enjoying shooting it. So as much as one might think small is good, in most cases as it pertains to hand guns, small in not good. It is much better to buy a larger handgun that you can grip well and shoot comfortably than to buy a small one that you hate shooting. This point goes deeper than just practice. It also affects your mentality when a bad event happens. So if you have a handgun that you do not like shooting, you may have a reluctance to pull it out when you need to, due the negative feelings and lack of confidence you have about shooting the gun. Then what you thought was an advantage has now turned into a disadvantage, right when you need all the advantages you can muster.
Also Read: 20 Things You Need In Your Get Home Bag
So when choosing a carry handgun instead of first looking for something small, focus on a handgun that you “grip” well, feels comfortable in your hand when shooting. You will be far more confident should you ever need to draw your weapon.
Carrying concealed is an art. It is not always easy nor does it work well without planning. Carrying a handgun for personal protection takes planning, preparation and wardrobe consideration. In order to carry effectively you must do some planning. That means you must first determine how you wish to carry and then make subsequent decisions based on that decision. I cover the topic in more detail below, but I feel inside the waist band (IWB) is the best location to conceal a carry handgun.
The next part of the planning phase is to find a very snug, well fitting holster that will provide retention for your handgun. This process has two components: (1) the holster and (2) your ability to comfortably wear the holster. Though these two components must be considered together, they also are totally independent.
As mentioned above, you want to find a holster that fits the requirements mentioned above. I prefer a kydex one that allows you the ability to change the cant. For those that are not familiar with “cant”, let me explain. The “cant” of a holster is the angle in which the holster sets in relationship to your body. I like mine to cant slightly forward thus allowing me to grasp the handgun easier and it keeps the grip close to my side when bending over. I feel leather or holsters made of malleable material inhibit your ability to reholster your handgun and sometimes can make it harder to draw from.
Related Article: Urban Survival
Once you have found a good holster, now comes the hard part for most folks, what to wear when conceal carrying. Get ready because I am going to cover territory here that some might be sensitive. The recommendations below are for both men and women. If you are going to wear a handgun for personal protection, then you must have the mindset that you are going to need to dress differently and take that into consideration every time you get dressed and buy clothes.
If you are used to wearing your shirts tucked in, now you will need to buy shirts that are designed to be worn untucked. In most cases to wear inside the waist band you will need to wear your shirt untucked. In colder weather you can wear a tucked in shirt then a sweater or jacket over it to conceal your weapon.
Wearing inside the waist band has several more aspects that you need to take into consideration. If you are overweight or like to wear your pants or skirts very tight. Then you are going to have a problem. In each of these cases, to address the extra space need by your handgun and holster you will need to buy pants and skirts that are at least one inch larger than you normally wear.
Also Read: Survival Situational Awareness
Next you need to consider a belt that is firm enough to hold the weight of your handgun and holster. That means even when you dress up, you are going to need a belt that has more rigidity to it. A flimsy belt or a leather one that stretches will make carrying your firearm cumbersome and uncomfortable.
Attire is the one consideration that most folks completely forget about. Most folks that wish to carry feel that they can do so with their existing wardrobe. In most cases that is NOT the case. Dena Adams makes some great undergarments for women that enable them to carry a wide range of handguns completely concealed and still wear very feminine clothing. However, in most cases, you will need to revise your attire to comfortably carry your CONCEALED handgun. For me, that meant changing the type of shirts I wore. I traditionally wore all my shirts tucked in. But when I started carrying more inside the waist band I had to start buying shirts that were designed to be worn untucked. I also had to buy belts that were able to hold my holster more secure to my side.
So once you begin wearing your concealed carry handgun more frequently you will then learn that you must dress differently. Women have another option most men don’t and that is purse carry. Again, many women look for something small to carry in their purses. My limited experience in trying to find anything in a woman’s purse is that something small is sure to get lost in there.
Related: How to Spot Someone Carrying a Gun
So what can a woman do to enhance the finding their weapon in a time of need. Here is my suggestion. Go to your local hardware store and buy and piece of Velcro that is about 4 inches by 4 inches. Then empty your purse and glue the Velcro to the inside of your purse on one of the lateral sides. Next buy a holster that has Velcro on the outside of it. Stick that to the Velcro in your purse in a position such that when you open your purse, your handgun is perfectly positioned for you to withdraw it. This will greatly enhance the likelihood of finding and drawing your handgun from your purse smoothly, quickly and confidently in the event a bad situation should arise. Remember, drawing from your purse should be practiced often so you can become very comfortable with the technique. This brings us to Accessibility.
This is the most important aspect of carrying a handgun for personal protection. If you cannot readily access your firearm when you need it then you are at a major disadvantage. There are lots of sources that provide a wide range of data on shootings, but most confirm that shootings are usually fast, last less than 5 seconds and involve at least 8 shots fired. So if you cannot access your weapon fast and get on target, you are most likely not going to be in a good position. Just a note here…. Just because you draw your weapon does not mean you are going to fire it. In many cases, weapons are drawn, but the need to fire it does not happen. However, the fact that you felt the situation was significant enough for you to draw your weapon, then you must be prepared to use it.
One of the most common forms of carry that I get asked about and many buyers consider is “pocket carry”. Pocket Carry to me, is most likely one of the two worst places to carry your “primary” handgun, ankle carry being the other. The reasons for my position on this are based on the following factors. First, you must have a very small handgun to fit in your pocket. So as mentioned above, the small size will make it hard to shoot, fairly inaccurate and there are far less rounds in the magazine than I would like. Secondly, it is going to be extremely or almost impossible to retrieve your handgun from your pocket while you are experiencing a bad event, just getting the handgun out of your pocket without any extraneous factors can be problematic itself. But add to it you may be running, knelling, squatting or laying down in response to the bad event that is in progress. That even makes it more unlikely you will be able to get your weapon out of your pocket in a timely manner. So my recommendation is that you never want your “primary” personal protection handgun in your pocket or on your ankle.
In my experience the best way to carry a handgun is inside the waist band. I carry my two “go to” weapons (Sig P320 compact or Sig M11-A1) inside the waistband at 4:30 at about a 12 degree cant forward. Again, for those that might not understand this terminology, the 4:30 location is just past your hip. I feel the 4:30 location allows you to readily access your weapon while in almost any position and even while running and the 12 degree cant keeps the grip of the weapon close to you body even when bending over, thus not exposing the fact you are wearing a handgun.
Many well respected firearms experts like the appendix position and I think there is nothing wrong with that location as well. But for me and my size, the 4:30 position is more comfortable.
Now I will say that there are times when I was working private security and or based on my attire I would wear in the middle of back. There are several factors you must take into consideration when wearing in that location. First, your holster must be reversed. So if you are right handed, you will need a left handed holster to correctly position the handgun in the middle of your back. Secondly, you must consider it is going to be much harder to access your weapon and that it takes extra practice to be proficient at drawing your weapon from this position. And finally, when you are sitting down it can be very uncomfortable and in some cases your handgun can get caught on seats, if the back rest has opening in it. So there several limitations you must consider when wearing in the position.
Also Read: First Aid – An Essential Survival Skill
In an article posted by Greg Ellifritz titled “STAND, MOVE, OR SEEK COVER…WHAT WORKS IN A GUNFIGHT? They found if you stood still during a shoot out there was an 85% chance you would get shot, if you moved it dropped to 47% and if you found cover it dropped to 26%. So as we all know, there is tremendous value in moving when the shooting begins. With that said, it is important and vital that you can access your weapon while you are moving and seeking cover. So it needs to be in a location that you can readily access in those situations.
Thus, I highly recommend that your personal protection handgun should be worn on your waist, where it is readily accessible no matter how compromised your position.
The last thing you want in a bad situation where you need to draw your weapon is to wonder whether it is going to function or not. Nothing can be scarier than not having confidence in your weapon. To prevent this from happening your must do a few things.
First, spend your time researching the firearm you think you might like to purchase, secondly, get lot of advice from seasoned experts and finally shoot the firearm before you buy it. Remember, the Manufacturer should be your first consideration, followed by Grip, Trigger Control, mag capacity are your main aspects of choosing your handgun. You can read my article on this site on “How to Choose the Best Personal Protection Handgun”. My top 4 personal protection handguns you may wish to explore are the Sig P320 compact, Sig M11-A1, Ruger SR9C, Glock 19 Gen 4. I firmly believe the Sig P320 is the best personal protection handgun on the market.
Secondly, get good training from a well qualified instructor. There are lots of firearms instructors out there, but there are very few good ones… Find a good one…. Then practice practice practice. Be exceedingly comfortable handling and shooting your firearm. Semi-automatic pistols can experience malfunctions due to not holding the gun’s frame firmly enough when shooting, which can allow the frame to move back at the same time the slide moves back. This is called “limp wristing” and it can happen to even strong men who have the wrong grip or arm position as they fire the gun. It is one of the last things you want to happen, so having a good grip is essential to functionality.
The discussion is always about what round is the best for personal protection based on the effectiveness of the bullet. I strongly endorse the 9mm round. Here are my reasons for that caliber, not necessarily in the order of importance, but as a sum total of all the factors.
- It is the cheapest of all ammo so you are more likely to practice more.
- Most 9mm handguns have larger capacity magazines than other calibers, so you have more rounds if you need them.
- There are more handguns made in 9mm than any other caliber, so you are more likely to find one that fits your grip.
- The lethality of a 9mm is the same as a .40 or .45 when a vital area is hit.
- It is easy to manage the recoil and shoot thus you are more likely to hit your target.
- The various sizes of 9mm make it an easy caliber to carry.
The second component of effectiveness is to get good training. To know the correct method for drawing from a holster, have an experienced instructor teach to the skills of safely drawing, presenting of your firearm, quick target acquisition and trigger control. In addition, you must learn the correct and safe means to reholster your handgun. There are numerous videos on Youtube that demonstrate great techniques for drawing from your holster. However, there is no better way to learn the skill than from a qualified instructor.
Also Read: B.O.L.T Pistol (Bug Out Long Term)
The most important aspect of effectiveness is practice. If you do not practice drawing from concealment, drawing from your purse, quickly acquiring your target and placing rounds accurately, then you are setting yourself up for failure if a bad situation should occur and you need to use your handgun. Practice creates confidence, helps you overcome fear, and builds muscle and mental memory; all important factors when dealing with a crisis situation.
So, in summary, concealed carry is not as easy as most folks assume it is. It requires you to take several aspects into consideration prior to putting conceal carry into action. Naturally, you hope you never had to access your handgun in response to bad situation. However, if you do, you want to be able to do safely, quickly and confidently.
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What is Urban Survival Syndrome? Are you suffering from urban survival syndrome? What exactly are we talking about? When you hear the term urban survival syndrome you might think of a an over-the-top prepper that is spending and planning to survive in the his urban environment no matter what the collapse brings. that is not …
Opening doors is more than just a metaphor for moving forward. Sometimes, you truly need to open a door. And sometimes that door is locked. You might be surprised at just how often the skill of unlocking doors can come in handy once you have it. I recently lost a key to a cupboard and I haven’t bothered […]
The post 3 Ways to Open Locked Doors During an Urban Disaster appeared first on Urban Survival Site.
The winds of change are blowing, and we need to be ready when they do. In addition to the current political climate, we also have the actual climate to deal with, and for most of us, that means dealing with winter temperatures and conditions.
Surviving a disaster in July is one thing – you may be hot, but you can reasonably take care of yourself in a manner that keeps you alive as long as you have food, water, and shelter with no extra effort.
Winter, on the other hand, is an entirely different survival beast. In some climates, you can be dead within minutes if exposed to the weather without proper attire and equipment.
The two biggest causes that I see, over and over, when somebody gets into trouble or even dies because of winter conditions are lack of knowledge and lack of preparedness. One usually goes hand in hand with the other, but there are those out here who know what to do, but don’t believe anything will happen to them.
Those are the ones who really upset me because they KNEW. So, the first bit of advice that I’m going to offer is this: don’t make the potentially lethal mistake of thinking that it won’t happen to you. If you knock on the pearly gates and ask to interview folks who knew but didn’t prepare, they’ll no doubt tell you one thing: they didn’t think it would really happen.
So, learn from their mistakes.
“Usual” Disasters to Expect in Winter
This is going to depend heavily on your location. If you’re in the northern US, you’re going to see lots of snow, ice, and brutally cold temperatures. If you’re in the southern part of the US, you won’t likely see as much snow, but you may see heavy rains and low temperatures.
Along with that winter weather, there are some “usual” disasters that you should pretty much assume are likely possibilities. These aren’t considering things like WWIII, so account for the big disasters separately!
If you’ve lived through a northern winter in an older house, I bet you can remember at least one morning when you got up, went to turn on the water to make coffee or brush your teeth, and got nothin’. Faucet wide open, but not a drop coming out. Congratulations – you’ve lived through frozen pipes.
Now, this is a situation that can range from inconvenient to financially disastrous depending upon whether they just froze, or if they froze and burst. If they just froze, you have to wait it out. A blow dryer is often helpful, but not always, depending on where it was frozen.
If they burst, look out. It’s going to be expensive and messy. You’re going to have to replace the pipe, plus when it defrosts, you’re going to have water everywhere. Or, depending on where it froze, you may have a burst that leaks immediately.
Frozen Car Doors/Locks
I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve gone outside to get in my car and the locks were frozen, or the doors were completely frozen shut. Fortunately, this is a relatively easy fix – buy a house with a garage. Just kidding – there really are a couple of quick fixes.
There are commercial de-icers you can use, but the easiest way is to just find the door that seems the least stuck and push into it all the way down the sides and top in order to pop the ice loose. If this fails, try a hairdryer. If you just force the door open, you risk damaging the seals, so be gentle.
Same thing with the key; don’t torque on it when it’s obviously not working. If the lock freezes, try warming the key, then putting it into the lock because what’s happened is that water’s gotten down in there and frozen the mechanism together. Hand sanitizer works too as long as it’s the alcohol-based type. And again, there are commercial de-icers.
If you’ve ever been through a good blizzard (or a bad one, depending upon your take on blizzards), then you know that they’re deathtraps if you’re not careful.
Just a few concerns that accompany blizzards are:
- Collapsed roofs
- Downed powerlines
- Decreased or no visibility during the storm.
- Extreme wind
- Downed trees that can prevent you from leaving the house
- Deep snowdrifts
Your best bet when you know that a blizzard is coming is to get ready to hunker down. This means:
- Have your food, water, and meds stockpiled
- Have plenty of wood ready in a location close enough to the house that you don’t have to go far to get it
- Have a rope tied from the house to necessary points that you may need to get to outside, such as to the barn or the emergency vehicles
- Have candles and other non-electrical sources of light handy
- Have a back-up heat source because there’s a good chance that you’ll lose power in the storm
- Have plenty of blankets ready
It’s impossible to avoid unless you don’t ever leave the house. At some point in the winter, you’re going to drive on ice. I can’t overemphasize the value of tire chains and caution. Between the two, you have a pretty good chance of getting where you’re going if you absolutely must drive.
If you begin to skid on ice, steer into the skid rather than away from it in order to help you regain control. Don’t hit the breaks – tap them instead. Leave plenty of room between you and the car in front of you and pay extra close attention to your surroundings. If kids or dogs run out in front of you, your stopping time is going to be much slower than on a dry road.
Losing power in winter can quickly become a critical situation, and the weight of snow on lines frequently causes it. You need to be prepared regardless of whether you live in an apartment or in a farmhouse in the country. You’re going to need two things: at least one source of heat to keep you warm and one to heat up food/water. Lights are nice, too.
I recommend keeping some kind of space heater that doesn’t require electricity, such as a camp heater that runs on oil or propane. Fireplaces are great too, if you have one. Best of all would be a wood-burning stove, if you’re in a place where you can have one.
A Few Suggestions
If you get stuck outside in a survival situation in the summer, you’ll likely survive as long as you can find food and water. Not so in the winter. I know that we’ve talked mostly about city survival, but these rules apply to anywhere.
It’s imperative that the first thing you do if SHTF during the winter is make sure that you have solid shelter and a source of heat that will keep you from freezing to death. Be aware that this is going to be everybody else’s goal too, so if it gets really bad, you want to stay out of sight.
After you have shelter, then it’s time to make sure that you have the other two keys that are critical to your survival: water and food. Hopefully you’ve managed to stockpile enough and are able to just hunker down in your home and wait it out, but if not, have a backup plan. Then have a backup plan for your backup plan.
Contingencies are always a good thing when you’re trying to manage something as fickle as the weather!
Check your supplies, especially the ones in your car, every week or so to make sure that they’re still dry, unfrozen, and in good shape. Nothing would suck more than pulling out the one clean, dry change of clothes you think you have, only to find out that they’ve had a quart of oil leak all over them. Keep track of that!
Surviving winter is a different animal than surviving other times of the year, but if you manage it properly and plan it well, things can most certainly turn out just fine!
Just learn the tricks and be prepared – it’s all you can do!
This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.
Even though the stock market is soaring, our nation is in more danger than ever because of extreme natural disasters and rogue factions itching to run riot.
Now consider these problems along with the very real potential for food shortages, an escalation of the war with North Korea, and general increases in contagious diseases.
No matter how much or little prepping you have done, the fact remains something can still catch you off guard at any time. If you are in a city, and need a place to hide, it is very easy to make a bad decision.
Have a look at 10 places you might go to without thinking, and wind up with even more problems than you had before.
Open Areas Above Ground
There are many situations where you will need to get out of the building you are in as quickly as possible. If there is a fire, flood, or the building is struck by some kind of bomb, then you have to get out before the building collapses.
Once you are clear of the building, the worst thing you can do is stay out in the open, as a lot of bad things can happen:
- Debris and smoke from the building can easily fly in all directions and land on you.
- If you ran outside because of an earthquake, surrounding buildings may also begin to cave in and send debris in all directions.
- If the situation involves several buildings, other people will also be panicking and trying to get out of the buildings as fast as possible. You can easily be stampeded or injured as people try to get away from danger as quickly as possible.
- Do not make the mistake of trying to get in your car and hoping it will shelter you. A car has an even weaker frame than a building. Falling debris can easily crush it and leave you trapped inside. In addition, if there is a bad enough panic, people may literally try to tear your vehicle apart or take other actions to prevent you from leaving the scene.
After you successfully leave a building that you feel is dangerous, the best thing you can do is get underground as quickly as possible.
Find out in time which manhole covers in your city offer safe access tunnels or other areas to hide in. In general, service tunnels will be safer than subways or other popular public areas in situations where hostile forces are attempting to take over the city.
Upper Floors of Any Building
Unless you are dealing with a hurricane or other flood that prevents you from getting to the ground level, stay away from the upper floors of a building. The upper floors are always the weakest, and also the hardest to escape from on your own.
No matter whether you are afraid of your building being taken over by hostile forces, or you must escape a fire, once you reach the top floor, you can still wind up being trapped. If you must go to the upper floors of a building, try to have the following on hand:
- A cell phone, pocket mirror, or something else you can use to signal that you need help
- Heavy duty rope and hooks that you can use to attach the rope to another building. You will need to practice your skills to make it safely from one building to another.
- An ax for breaking down walls or through roofs An ax can also be used for defense if nothing else is available.
Places With Easily to See Doors or Windows
The ability to get out of a building easily can also spell disaster if unwanted people can get to you and trap you in your location. If you are truly trying to hide from other people, the worst thing you can do is be anywhere near a door or window.
If there is a visible door or window that can be breached, people looking for you or anything of value will try to get in. If you have a panic room or a basement hiding place, maintain their exits without drawing unwanted attention:
- Use poison ivy, nettles, and other noxious plants to cover secret entrances and exits. This includes exit points coming up from tunnels or other underground locations. Just remember to have coveralls and suitable tools for cutting the vegetation away so that you can make your escape with as little pain as possible.
- Cover up a back door, side entrance, or window with faux siding. Repaint your home or take other steps to make the covering look as permanent as possible. You should still be able to knock the covering out with ease in time of need. Your goal is to make the window or exit invisible to outside observers. Even if neighbors do remember a window or door in that location, the covering will hopefully make people overlook the area since they will think it is closed off.
- Try to make at least one exit tunnel in your basement or crawlway to a location at or near the boundary of your property. Be sure you know where all gas and other maintenance lines are so you do not tunnel in those areas.
Near Roadways or Other Traffic Areas
Regardless of the crisis type, people will be trying to escape in their vehicles, and the worst thing you can do is try to hide in a traffic jam or near a crowded roadway.
In these instances, road blocks, surveillance teams, and even hostile forces can see you and control you with relative ease. No matter whether you have plans to get out of the city, or you decide to stay close to home, it is never a good idea to be near roadways or heavy traffic.
If you must use roadways or be near them, you can choose one of two times:
- First, if you are certain that you can get through a roadblock or other impediment with no problems, then do so when it would be normal for people like you to be passing through the area.
- Second, you can try to slip through when there is a situation going on. If someone else panics or causes a disruption that leads to a grouping of people around an area away from a passage point, you can try to slip through.
One has only to look at the number of mass shootings in “gun free” school zones to know they are absolutely the most dangerous places on Earth. Aside from that, never forget that Timothy McVeigh and many others intent on mayhem these days don’t need guns to destroy schools.
People with criminal intent will go there first because they know they will have as much time as they want to carry out their sick plans before someone with a gun gets there to stop them at the scene or apprehend them later on. No matter where you go, if you are in a city and need a safe place to go, avoid schools at all cost.
While most people in the United States don’t give it much thought, schools are also likely to be the target of hostile takeover in a time of riots and other forms of severe national distress. Any criminal or terrorist will flock to a school first because it is poorly defended and helpless children in harm’s way makes for a huge media splash.
Schools are also not the best places to go in the event of a natural disaster. Even though they often have generators and the room to accommodate large numbers of people, many of these buildings are on the verge of being structurally unsound.
Check the maintenance records and needs of local schools, and you may be surprised to find out they may not hold up very well in the face of a hurricane or other severe weather condition. Without a question, if you are in an inner city area or other poor neighborhood, the schools may be in worse condition than other buildings in the area.
In many senses, hospitals are as dangerous as schools, and for the same reasons. Hospitals may have weak or failing building structures, and they also house vulnerable people whose condition may easily grab media attention.
While hospitals do have better security staffing than schools, it may still not be enough to overcome problems created by large numbers of people in panic mode. If the situation is bad enough, people may even try to storm the hospital to steal food, drugs, or anything else than can be of use.
At this time, we would all like to think that in time of need, hospitals will be safe from scavenging and other predatory behaviors because our culture has deeply ingrained values about the sanctity of a medical setting.
That being said, we also live in a culture of sick video games and the unhealthy crossing of many other boundaries. Do not be surprised if at some point hospitals also become prey to predation during times of crisis.
Depending on the situation, hospitals can also be places where you can catch some very dangerous diseases. Right now, hospitals do have better air filtering systems than you would find in other areas. On the other side of the equation, if the cause of the crisis is disease related, that also means people infected will go to the hospital for treatment.
As a result, if you are still healthy, going to the hospital may expose you to the disease unnecessarily.
When I was growing up, my mother always said “if you are in a bad way and have no place else to turn, go to the church”. While many of the things my mother said have withstood the test of time, I cannot help but question going to a church for safety in time of need.
As with schools, churches have become the target of lunatics and predators seeking to harm the unarmed and the vulnerable.
To add insult to injury, as our society slips closer and closer to complete mass disruption, it is possible that churches will be targeted just to kill off those who avow a specific faith. Our history as far back as time goes is one in which people are ruthlessly slaughtered for their beliefs and affiliations.
Depending on the type of crisis, going to a church for shelter may truly be the worst thing you can do. While a church may offer suitable shelter from a blizzard or other relatively short term situation, I don’t recommend it for matters where civil unrest is expected.
Above Ground Areas of Malls or Other Public Gathering Locations
Large numbers of people in malls or other large public shelters can pose a number of problems. First, under stressful situations, you never know what, when, or how a stampede will get started. As the waves of panic ripple through the crowd, it may be impossible for you to escape.
If you are dealing with any kind of hostile takeover, rest assured that occupying forces will always look to subdue the largest numbers of able bodied people as quickly as possible. This, in turn, means, they will go to the malls and other areas where large numbers of people will prevent evacuation and escape.
Needless to say, if you are concerned about air raids, bombings, or other hostile acts, the enemy will still seek to hit maximize casualties by hitting large and popular public areas.
It is important to remember that underground areas of malls may still provide a safe place to hide in the city. For example, older malls may actually have long forgotten bomb shelters in the basement, or other areas that are fortified enough to ensure some degree of safety.
Therefore, if you have malls nearby, make it a point to see if underground parking garages or other underground facilities housed in the mall may be of use in a time of need.
During crisis, there is a natural tendency for people to try and organize in order to regain stability as quickly as possible. Some say temporary camps may be useful in the first hours or days after some natural disasters.
Here are just a few problems that you might face if staying at a temporary shelter in a city for too long:
- Within a fairly short period of time, criminals and other unsavory people will try to take advantage of the situation, trying to rob you or hurt you. Order can, and does, break down very quickly in temporary camps despite access to food and other basics.
- As with hospitals, you may also wind up being exposed to many illnesses, which is especially important if the crisis occurs during the flu season or another time when communicable diseases are likely to spread quickly in tight quarters.
- If extensive areas of the outer society collapse, you will be a sitting duck and forced to go wherever you are told to go. While this may not be a problem if it is our national guard, police, or FEMA officials directing you to a safer location, it can be a huge problem if an invading force or hostile insurgents take over the camp.
Overall, temporary camps set up for crisis management can be of help, especially if you have no bug out plans or do not know where to begin to put your life back together after a large scale crisis.
It is still worth your while to get out of the camp as quickly as possible so that you can avoid problems associated with living in such close contact with others.
Places Where You Do Not Blend in With Others
Many people believe there is safety in numbers. As long as you are wearing the same kinds of clothes and act the same as the local people, then it is possible for you to hide in plain sight even in a big city during a major crisis.
On the other hand, if you don’t fit into the local scenery, then you may become a target for just about anyone that decides they have a reason to attack you. The only way to make sure you will be safe merging into a crowd for any reason during a crisis is to practice your skills now.
Just because you live in a city, that doesn’t mean your local area cannot be hit by massive floods, fires, or hostile takeovers. In fact, if you are in a city during a major crisis, the sheer number of people trying to deal with the situation can easily work against you.
When facing these kinds of situations, you must always think objectively about possible places where you can go to be safe.
Avoiding the ten problem areas listed in this article, and you may have a better chance of survival and find a suitable shelter before it’s too late!
This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.
Urban Prepping: 6 Places You Didn’t Know You Can Stash Stuff The urban sprawl will be filled with more resources than the wilderness. It will be filled with more threats and more people looking for those resources. That doesn’t make it easy. Still, you could have a situation where things are going to work out …
The post Urban Prepping: 6 Places You Didn’t Know You Can Stash Stuff appeared first on SHTF Prepping & Homesteading Central.
There are ways to “live” survival and train every single day, even while we commute, work, eat and run errands. Habits determine our default responses when we are on autopilot, which is much of the time, whether we admit it or not.
Setting good habits and weaving situational awareness and emergency response exercises into our daily routines turns preparedness into something that we live every day instead of something we think about from time to time.
Why does it count? Well, it does, because many times having good habits allows you to train your survival skills while staying under the radar.
Here’s how to do it.
- Choosing your habits, enables you to live your life. Otherwise, you will get lived by life instead of living life.
- Use Visualization and Actualization exercises to reprogram default responses with more effective responses of your own choosing.
- Caches enable you to carry less while still having access to more.
- Carry only what you need. “Skills trump gear” is misguided. Having both saves lives.
- If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.
- Always have an escape plan/exit strategy.
How on earth did a gunfighter like Porter Rockwell live long enough to die of old age? Porter’s secret was his habits.
Orrin Porter Rockwell was known as the best tracker in the western territories.
He was a legendary marksman and worked as a bounty hunter, guide, body guard and law man in the old west.
Porter put a lot of folks in the dirt, and even more behind bars, which made for a lot of enemies.
Tactically, Porter had a lot stacked against him. O.P. Rockwell was every bit as famous or infamous as Wyatt Earp, Bat Masterson or Tom Horn, in his day, and historians say Rockwell killed more men then all three gunfighters combined. Porter is somewhat of a legal anomaly as historical evidence records at least two dozen deaths at his hands, with Rockwell being exonerated in every case.
He frequently traveled alone on the trail to guide parties West or tracking down fugitives. Every young gunslinger wanting to make a name for himself would have been a potential enemy and Porter often found himself outnumbered by much larger war parties or mobs, but he seemed to have faith that as long has he had more bullets than he did enemies, there was little to fear.
Porter also had a wicked Achilles heel. He drank too much.
Porter Rockwell solved his problem with a little white dog, which he carried with him on the back of his horse. The little dog served as a biological alarm system and Porter trained the dog to lick his face to wake him instead of barking.
He also removed the trigger guards from a pair of pistols, which he carried in his coat pockets, so cold fingers would not hang up on the trigger guards and he could train his guns on potential enemies as they parlayed and spoke on the trail. This gave him a decided advantage should the situation take a turn for the worse as they sorted out who was who.
Some say it was a covenant with God that protected Porter. If that was true, maybe God did so by showing Porter a better way to get the drop on his enemies.
Malcom Gladwell argues that Goliath never stood a chance because God showed David a more effective strategy. Using a sling parted with tradition.
Tradition required that David fight the giant in hand to hand combat using a sword. Had he done so, the story surely would have gone very differently. If Gladwell is right about David, I do not reckon that Porter Rockwell’s enemies stood much of a chance either.
Whether or not Porter’s and David’s strategies were divine or secular in origin, you can form tactically-sound habits and weave effective survival strategy into your daily life just like they did.
Rules to Live By
Many Survivalists have a list of rules they refer to as: Rules of Engagement, Battle Order, Code of Conduct or simply “The Rules.” They are collections of strategies and tactics.
Here are some of mine:
1. Play “What if …?”
By the 80’s, research showed that playing “What if …?” was a more effective training technique than many imagined. Playing “What if …?” now encompasses a range of mental training techniques, including “Visualization and Actualization.”
Professional athletes now visualize themselves pitching, batting, shooting baskets and throwing passes, over and over, before they ever lace up their shoes. Put Visualization and Actualization to work to improve your emergency preparedness and situational awareness.
As you go about your day, consider possible threats and visualize effective responses to them. Soon enough, you will have reset some of your default responses with more effective responses of your own choosing.
2. Include Others in Your Training
Whether training in my home, on the range or visualizing a scenario in my mind, before I draw my weapon, I often do something else first … I alert my wife to the threat and step away from her.
I do this before I draw my weapon because I know that the moment I do, I become a bullet magnet. If your pattern of life typically involves others, be sure to include them in your training.
3. Mind Over Mattress
Do not linger in bed. The second that alarm clock goes off, count down, “3, … 2, … 1, … Go!” and get on your feet before you turn it off. Start every day with a small victory to set the tone and set a good habit for emergency response at the same time.
4. Use Checklists
Flashback to bad YouTube video: “I don’t need no pen or paper in the bush. I’m always at 110% whenever I’m in the woods or when it hits the fan.”
While research does show that leisurely strolls in natural settings reduce rumination, emergencies often involve stress, pain, blood loss, hypothermia, dehydration, sleep deprivation and numerous other factors that degrade performance.
If there is ever a time a checklist would make sure you do not forget anything important, it is in an emergency, but you will fight just like you train. If you do not habitually use checklists in training, you will not likely use them in an emergency.
5. Dress for Survival
As you dress for the day, layer for the coldest nighttime temperature as opposed to the daytime temperature because you never know when you spend an unplanned night out. When you buy new clothing, pay attention to the messages it communicates to others.
Keep clothing low key, but functional. Put together a turnout bag to get ready quickly in emergencies without forgetting anything.
6. Be Aware of Your Surroundings
- Use Cooper’s Color Codes, or a similar system, to maintain awareness and improve both reaction time and effectiveness.
- Do not walk or drive with your eyes glued to a screen! This is what officers on sting operations do when they are trying to look like bait to muggers and carjackers.
- Look for things that are out of place. If you see military age males lounging around during the middle of the work day, something probably is not right. Not seeing any women or children around can also be a bad sign.
- If something does not feel right, it probably isn’t. Academia sometimes overemphasizes left brain thinking. The right brain is where intuition takes place. It is where you inductive reasoning and synthesis take place. Do not think with half your brain. When you use your whole brain, your chances of survival increase.
7. Carry Only What You Need
I also often hear the space-shuttle door-gun qualified crowd of high-speed, low-drag operators enlightening one and all, preaching the carry of a little less than needed. “It encourages problem solving.” they say.
Coming back down to earth, if you can round up two brain cells to rub together, either you need a piece of kit or you don’t. If you carry one less bullet, trauma dressing, battery or bobby pin than needed, I should not have to tell you exactly how the story ends, and it will not matter how many millions of dollars the government spent training you.
Do learn the skills, but counting on your environment to cough up critical resources precisely when and where you need them contravenes thousands of years of human development. Man has carried survival kits for at least that long.
Carrying less than needed is a fine way to train when you have a safety backup. On game day, it is simply another sorry justification of incompetence.
8. Cache Supplies
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Want to carry less? By caching supplies in AO’s (Areas of Operations) and routes of travel, you can carry less and still have supplies nearby should you need them.
Do you have a cache at work? Near your home, but not on your property? Caches can take many forms. Not all of them are hidden or even need to be, but some of the best hidden caches are hidden in plain sight.
9. Scan Waist and Hands
Master Po might tell you his eyes will betray his actions, but your attacker is going to kill you with his hands or the weapon he is holding, so that is what you need to check.
10. Carry Concealed
Carry concealed and your sidearm and knife are aces in the hole. Carry openly and you might as well wear a t-shirt that says, “Shoot me first.” An openly displayed firearm or knife gives an enemy more information than you should.
11. Carry Survival/Self-Recovery (SSR) Equipment
SSR gear goes in your pockets or on your belt or otherwise strapped to your body, not in your pack which is easily and oft separated from you. Do you carry a pocket SSR kit in your every day carry?
I have carried one for years and it has helped me on countless occasions. The key is keeping the core small enough and modular so that you never have to leave it behind.
12. Always Have an Exit Strategy/Escape Plan
- Park so you can exit in as many directions as possible.
- When you stop in traffic, stop far enough behind the car in front of you that you can get around him to either side. In most vehicles, if you are fare enough back that you can see the vehicles’ rear tires touching the pavement, you should have enough room.
- Take the scenic route and circle buildings before you enter them.
- When entering buildings, make a mental note of potential exits are and where cover and concealment exist.
- When visiting new areas, study maps, carry a map and compass and learn where key resources, such as friendly consulates, churches and hospitals are located.
13. Urban Setting
To escape from restraints, carry, cache and be able to procure or create restraint escape kit. To escape from rooms, building or vehicles, you need destructive entry/exit tools like:
- Pry bar, tool to cut seatbelts with, glass breaker
- Bypass tools
- Lock picks
There might be other situations when you need to escape, and items you might use to escape, as follows:
- Property: footwear
- Neighborhood: turnout bag and go bag
- City: bug out bag, transportation, money and a safe destination
- State: Money
- Country: Documents, International travel bag and more money
When you’re a prepper, anything you do is very much connected with your survival goals, while staying under the radar is a must. Will you be able to do it?
This article has been written by Cache Valley Prepper for Survivopedia.
True Urban Scenario While the wasteland model of the urban sprawl tends to grace the pages of books and big screens. I envision a much different scenario. Rather than a world of desolation I see nearly the opposite. There are 8 and a half million people in New York City. How many of these people […]
The post Practice Advanced Urban Survival with Skill Over Gear appeared first on Preparing for shtf.
We’ve thought about doing a bug out bag guide so many times before it’d be impossible to count, but somehow in 4 years, still haven’t actually published one. The why comes down to the fact that, unlike comprehensive lists – like of all the survival gear you might or might not want to have, or […]
This is just the start of the post What’s In Your Bug Out Bag?. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
What’s In Your Bug Out Bag?, written by Elise Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
When you emerged from your emergency storm shelter, you immediately noticed the eerie quiet of a total area power outage, reminding you of a cemetery. A lone dog barking in the distance snapped you out of the shock of all the destruction you were staring at.
It looked like all your neighbors had evacuated at the last minute, so all you needed was tumbleweeds and you’d have a ‘ghost town’.
You walked out into the street around the strewn wreckage, and noticed movement about a block down and saw three muscular young men with tattoos and large backpacks suspiciously looking into somebody’s damaged home. One of them was carrying a crowbar.
They spotted you and watched you move around the damaged area of your home. You got behind a corner of your house and checked your G 20-C loaded with heavy duty Buffalo 180 grain Jacketed hollow points for one in the chamber, palm slapped the bottom of the mag, re-holstered, peeked around the corner of the house and this time the menacing trio were walking slowly down the street. Coming straight toward you. And now one of them was carrying a gun…
That’s a scenario that can happen. What do you do next? Do you have the guts to make the right move to survive?
“The Hurricane was merciless and It swore on the Bible that it would destroy your home, kill your family, and send an evil scourge of demon scavengers to loot and pillage what was left of your now accursed, and worthless life. If you were lucky they would kill you quickly, instead of leaving you broken, to lay in your own filth, weak and pitiful before God, while you died slowly in agony, torment, and eternal remorse… because you never were prepared.”
Extreme Catastrophes Require Extreme Actions
SHTF experiences vary in ways that require dedicated preparation modifications and specific tactical protocols. In scenarios where emergency resources of police and first responders are rapidly deployed, population remains under control even if the problem is in progress (a concentrated forest fire, or protest anarchy), and police usually remain on the scene for the duration.
But in the aftermath of a major widespread (hurricane, tsunami, super ice storm blizzard, volcanic eruption, major earthquakes), the police will not always be there to try to keep everybody safe due to the sheer enormity of area. And courts have ruled that they are not liable if they can’t guarantee your personal safety, even if you pay them with your tax dollars.
This means the police and even first responders will likely not even be available for emergency calls in your area for long periods of time in the aftermath of an extreme event. Cell towers will also be damaged and your phones often won’t even connect. The notion of police security no longer exists.
This is why if it gets really bad with no end in sight, the National Guard will be deployed to try to restore order and facilitate aid.
Certain predators know this only too well. The specific category for the criminal activities in such a scenario is called looting. As seen in news clips, It is often a fiendish out of control riot-like action that begins to resemble one of those Zombie movies. But there’s a new and more insidious type of criminal looting trend happening recently which is reminiscent of the likes of ancient hordes of plundering vandals and vikings.
Police investigations have found that in recent looting crimes the perpetrators now have the iniquitous audacity to organize ahead of time for a potential ‘Loot-Fest’ by recruiting partners-in-crime on Facebook or Twitter and other social media to hook up for planned looting before an imminent storm!
While the rest of us are desperately trying to get ready to survive a really bad weather event, the almost unfathomable reality is that loot gangs are, instead, actually prepping for the LOOTING. They are assessing in advance the ripe targets they know will be absent, and then hitting their marks immediately after it.
Often the leaders of the looters directs which stores or business to hit and they usually have weapons to intimidate the owners to leave, or to breach the entrance and stand intimidation guard while their cohorts haul out the loot. But these prime looting locations clean
out fast, and sometimes the feeding frenzy often winds up with fires and vandalism and deadly violence after the initial sacking is over due to the pumped up mob mentality.
What to Expect in the Aftermath
The main difference between looters and other criminals is twofold.
First, they are more vile and psychotic than an average thief. They are more despicable than other predators because they focus on taking advantage of unfortunate people when they are helpless and in trouble. They are like overgrown sewer rats sneaking around where they don’t belong and cannibalizing anything they can devour in a violent feeding frenzy without concern for people’s feelings for heirlooms, irreplaceable lifetime treasures, and even their lives.
Secondly looters are predictable. You absolutely know they’ll be there after a disaster. They’ll ooze out of the cracks like filthy cockroaches, knowing that they don’t have to fear official ‘exterminators’ for now, and then they crawl around people’s property randomly in the aftermath, not to help people, but to loot and pillage, and even worse.
There’s never been a major disaster without them. They are a certain threat that will put you in imminent danger if you are a target of their interest.
As soon as the police announced that they, too, would be evacuating with the citizens in areas of Florida’s hurricanes last month and police protection and 911 would be temporarily suspended, scores of looters started slithering into the area even as water began to rise and the last leaving cops were busting them as fast as they could.
Video first seen on Fox News.
Looters take advantage of property destruction, chaos, and lack of patrolling police to advance their evil deeds. They know they don’t have to waste too much time casing the area or breaking in or even worrying about the owners being home or alarms bringing cops because invariably all power will be out to a badly hit area.
How Bad the Looting Get?
The looters’ modus operandi is to move fast, pick mostly on businesses, but then there’s the ‘pro looters’. The ones you rarely here about. They’re not interested in pairs of Michael Jordan gym shoes or cigarettes or computers from Walmart. These are the ones that like to hit quickly evacuated homes for left behind expensive personal items like jewelry, cash, guns, coins, etc.
But the bad angle to this is they are potentially violent home invaders as well who actually prefer their target house occupied with live victims who chose to ride out the storm so they could torture them into telling where their personal valuables were making their looting easier! After all, why not?
They know there’s no police available and most of the neighbors evacuated. Whose going to stop them? They’ve been known to stab and cut children and threaten to kill them if the family didn’t open the safe or give up where they hide their valuables.
In the island chains where last month’s hurricane damage was so bad that people were walking around in a shocked daze, desperately scavenging for drinking water and food, looters were attacking and robbing these poor survivors of whatever they managed to find and were carrying! Guns are mostly prohibited in these places, so the loathsome looters knew there wouldn’t be much, if any, resistance. Because they, of course, they had weapons.
In Puerto Rico’s recent apocalyptic event, early humanitarian aid and Red Cross type supply trucks were overwhelmed by violent gangs of looters who threatened the unarmed aid workers and stole everything for themselves! Some of the first government calls for assistance on the island (which was totally without power) was for more security personnel to be included along with water and food to break up the onslaught of roving gangs.
All the horror stories aren’t in yet because of the media and island access restrictions and censorship, but there’s sure to be some ugly ones we’ll eventually be hearing about. Even those who are sworn to help and protect are often worse than the criminals. And local corrupt police have been known to become just as bad, or worse, than the criminals they should be stopping!
Protecting Your Castle
It’s bad enough if you are worried about anarchy and predators in some other type of social breakdown while you’re safe and secure in your well stocked and fortified bug out location (BOL) compound.
What happens when a whole wall in your home is gone and every window and door blown out and is literally wide ‘open for business’? BAD business! So that’s the first problem you’ll face.
There’s absolutely no protection and nothing to even slow down, let alone prevent, somebody from walking right into your house unannounced and ravaging what they want, then dancing down the street to assault more victims?
Nothing, that is, but you.
Prepare Your Gun
So the first thing you do when coming out of your mole hole or back from the BOL to assess the storm damage to your house and try to salvage what’s left, is to make damn sure you’re well armed and carrying while you’re doing that. If normal police service is not happening, you have every 2nd Amendment right to protect yourself.
Hide Your Energy Sources
The second thing is to make sure your survival essentials like food and water are intact and your back up lighting supplies are okay. Virtually all these types of super storms immediately kill the area power. And there’s no telling anymore how long the power will be out.
The quick fix for most people is a small gas generator. These are okay temporarily but you have to stock up on many many gallons of gas to last days and days. A far better alternative would be a back up battery bank with/solar/small windmill charging set up that runs silent, and self sustains much longer. A running gas generator might also attract unwanted company.
Establish Your Perimeter Security
Thirdly, treat you exposed house like a remote military basecamp. Establish your perimeter security —that you should have prepared in advance for- by setting up your outside perimeter trip wire anti-intrusion alert devices and blocking open access to your house with entry obstructions.
Even downed tree branches or other materials can inhibit an intruder’s entry long enough for you to be ready for action.
Find a Safe Spot
Next you should find a last ditch defense spot in your house away from the openings that might let intruders flank you from behind.
It should allow you to move around and scan through window or door openings to see around outside of your house but be back inside enough without anybody outside easily seeing you so you can then quickly fall back to and cover any main openings the looters may attempt to use if something bad is coming.
Use furniture or other objects and materials to provide barrier cover and stealth. This is where you would sleep at night also so you cannot be easily rushed and physically grabbed before you can get off some firepower.
If you were really prepared you could set up very bright flood lights on a switch to literally blind anybody as soon as they got close both at night and during the day. Have very high lumen tactical lights on your firearms at least.
And lastly, if you do live in a high risk area like parts of Florida and the East/West Coast, and California, everybody knows that the climate is getting worse due to so called climate change but more likely due to out of control geoengineering crimes, get together with any of your neighbors who might want to talk about setting up a mutually shared aftermath plan if they also decide to try to ‘ride out’ or get stuck by a surprise event.
Ya Loot, We Shoot!
In the 1992, LA riots authorities supposedly didn’t prosecute property owners standing their ground when looters turned violent and deadly and major orders were often given out in such extraordinary situations that police and guard will shoot to kill all looters.
In the infamous ’68 Chicago race riots, entire neighborhoods were looting stores, private residences and themselves. Mayor Daily made the public announcement that he ordered police to ‘shoot to kill’ all looters on sight. Most of the looters weren’t even armed.
But that didn’t seem to bother them. They must have figured there’s not enough cops to cover everything. They forgot that the cops made up for that with a lot of extra ammo and a little heavier firepower than their service pistols. This became very ugly.
But the orders were legal in a state of emergency martial law. Looters were, and still are, considered to be very bad hombres by the State. So what does that mean for you?
Check your local laws. The bottom line will be that police and National Guard enforcement of order is very different from you guarding your home. You still can’t shoot anybody just for stealing stuff from abandoned unsecure homes down the block. And how would you know for the most part that they aren’t just regular neighbor folks from around the corner ‘scavenging’ for food or water because they are completely destroyed, in desperate need, and no help is coming soon?
That being said, I’m sure that some states have laws that you can shoot at people stealing your physical property even though your life wasn’t in immediate danger.
I personally wouldn’t do that. Maybe I’d warn them with some airburst fireworks ‘from heaven’ just over their heads and ask them where they wanted their remains sent if they didn’t immediately leave. Most first type sneak looters will depart forthwith. If they tried to attack you that’s a different story.
But the important idea is to find out if you live in a Castle Doctrine law state where you can legally sit there on your property with a locked and loaded high capacity weapon and defend against those attempting to breach your property with deadly force if necessary.
I think Florida is pretty okay with this, but as the storm tracks Northward up the coast, and the spread of totalitarian local laws continue, I just don’t know anymore…
The general rule is that if you are on your property and allowed to stand your ground (as opposed to being forced to first try to flee by law), you are allowed to resist an intruder looting your home with deadly force only if you are also in fear for your life or great bodily harm from the looter.
And I certainly would be seriously concerned about being killed by one of these psychos if they had the balls to keep coming toward me after I warned them to get off my property and they had weapons!
This article has been written by Mahatma Muhjesbude for Survivopedia.
Let’s face it, prepping can get expensive. I don’t care who you are, unless you have a rather sizeable income, trying to be prepared to survive a disaster is going to take e sizeable chunk out of your budget; that is, unless you are extremely careful with your money and know how to make the most of it.
Most of us who call ourselves preppers aren’t wealthy. Oh, there are wealthy preppers; but for the most part, they’re the ones who are buying their survival retreats in New Zeeland or buying a private island.
While they may read some of the same materials you and I read, their idea of prepping is a whole lot different, simply because they can afford to do things that you and I can’t afford to do.
“I would like to see a web page or series on “the Poor Prepper”. I am on social security and have very limited funds. I would like to know what to begin with and where I should put my priorities. I would also be interested in what gives the greatest reward for the money.”
What if you are on a limited income; what do you do then? Is it still possible to be a prepper, even if you’re living on Social Security or some other form of fixed income?
What do You Need?
To start with, we’ve got to understand what we need to have, in order to survive. Otherwise, it’s real easy to get caught up in thinking we have to have the latest survival gadget.
Granted, some of those gadgets are nice, but you don’t necessarily need to have them, in order to survive.
The basic survival needs are:
- Maintaining your body heat – You can die from hypothermia (loss of body heat) in less than 30 minutes.
- Drink enough clean water – The human body uses water for a lot of things; so you can only go about 3 days without water. It has to be clean water too, as many harmful bacteria and other microorganisms can be found in unpurified water.
- Have enough food – You can live about 30 days without food; longer if you’re overweight. But survival is going to tax your energy, meaning that you’ll burn more calories than you’re accustomed to.
To provide yourself with these three basic needs, as well as taking care of some other basics, you’ll also need:
- To be able to start and maintain a fire – We use fire to keep warm, provide light, cook our food and can even use it to purify water.
- Take care of our health – This means treating injuries, treating sickness and personal hygiene, which is necessary to prevent disease.
- Defend ourselves – There are two-legged predators out there, who would like nothing more than to steal what you have, especially in a post-disaster situation.
These six areas are your priorities, so when you make decisions on what to stockpile and how to spend your money, keep them in mind. Your first priority should be to make sure that you can keep warm in the winter. Then that you have a means of purifying water, and then that you have food to eat. The other things come after that.
The Big Challenge, Stockpiling
While you can spend a whole lot of money on survival equipment, you don’t really have to. I’ll talk more about that in a minute. Your real area of expense is going to be in stockpiling supplies; especially food. But with some judicious buying, you can even do that on a tight budget.
The first thing we have to take into consideration is that this is survival, not normal living. That means that we have to be ready to give up a lot of things that we enjoy, for the sake of surviving. Many of the things we enjoy in life are actually luxuries, not necessities. We might convince ourselves they are necessities, but they are not.
When it comes to building any stockpile, it’s difficult to do it all at once. Rather, try to build a small stockpile and then make it grow gradually. In other words, start out by building a one-month stockpile. Once you have that, work on increasing it to two months. That two months can then be expanded to three; and on and on, until you get to a year, or whatever end point you have picked.
Working on a stockpile slowly allows you to make it a part of your budget, spending whatever you feel like you can afford on prepping. Even if this is only $5 a week, that’s probably more than your neighbors are investing in their future. Five dollars can go a long way, if you use it judiciously.
Building a stockpile slowly allows you to spread the expense over a longer period of time. While you may feel an imperative to do everything right now, that’s really not possible. Rather, work on making your prepping a part of your life, where you are doing it little by little. Remember, everything you do improves your chances of survival a little bit more. So even if you don’t reach all your goals this month, you should be better off at the end of the month, than you were at the beginning.
Stockpiling water shouldn’t cost you anything. You don’t have to buy bottled water to build a stockpile of water. Rather, use the tap water from your home, storing it in whatever containers you can find. Plastic milk jugs work extremely well; but if you don’t buy milk in plastic jugs, you can use just about any sort of closable container, jars, bottles and jugs.
There are many ways you can save on food. Start by taking advantage of sales and coupons, buying whatever you can use that you can get at a discounted rate. Buying in bulk helps with this too, as part of what you are paying for is always the packaging. Just make sure that it is food which will keep for a prolonged period of time.
The most expensive part of building any food stockpile is protein, specifically animal protein. This is the big challenge for most of us. You can start by using other sources of protein, rather than animal protein. Beans are an excellent source of protein and are very inexpensive. So, beans need to become a part of your stockpile.
For the rest, your best deals are going to be buying canned meats. I’ve found some excellent deals on canned chicken, more than any other meat. You can also do extremely well with Spam, potted meat and Vienna sausage. While these may not be your favorites, they will provide you with the nutrition you need.
Make Your Own
One of the best ways of saving money is by doing things yourself, rather than paying someone else to do it for you. I’ve made a lot of my own survival gear, from solar panels to knives, even firearms. This has saved me a lot of money, freeing up that money for other needs. If you’re on Social Security, you obviously have time, so why not use some of that time to make your own survival gear.
Probably the best way of using that time to help you with prepping is to grow a huge vegetable garden and can the produce you grow. I imagine that once a major disaster hits and society breaks down, we’re all going to be doing a lot of gardening. Better to get a head-start on it and preserve some of that food for a time of need.
Make Use of Garage Sales
You can actually find a variety of different survival supplies at local garage sales, if you take the time to look. While you won’t be able to find everything, there are some key items that you are probably going to be able to get a great deal on, at one garage sale or another.
- Candles – Candles are a time-honored source of light, which people have used for centuries. But buying candles in the store today can be a bit expensive. So instead, buy them at garage sales. I find candles there all the time. They can either be used as-is or melted down and remade into more practical survival candles.
- Rugged Clothing – When you’re in survival mode, you’re going to be much harder on your clothes than you normally are. Make sure that you have a good supply of rugged “work clothes,” including some good hiking or work boots.
- Canning Supplies – Canning is one of the easiest forms of food preservation to learn; and it’s extremely secure. If you are going to try your hand at gardening for food, something we all should do, then you’re going to need canning jars. Don’t pay full price for them; you can always find canning jars at garage sales.
- Blankets – If you’re going to be heating with wood, then you may find that you have trouble getting your home as warm as you would like. The way our ancestors handled that was to pile lots of blankets on the bed. Extra blankets can also be put over windows, to act as insulation and help keep your home warmer.
- Food – Yes, you can actually find food at garage sales, believe it or not. Often, this will be bulk food, which is ideal for your prepping needs.
- Gardening Supplies – From pots to plants to tools, you can find all sorts of gardening supplies at garage sales, usually from people who have given up.
- Hunting and Fishing Gear – It’s not uncommon to find camouflage gear or fishing poles at garage sales; ones that people either outgrew or replace with newer ones. That’s fine, you can use them.
For much of my life I was way down there on the income curve. Working as a missionary doesn’t exactly bring in a huge income. Yet even though we didn’t have much, we still managed to prepare for Y2K and other disasters. How did we do it? Following the steps that I’ve just mentioned.
Take them one by one and be ready to make the most out of anything. This is what real survival is all about!
This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.
When disaster strikes your city and you are away from home, one of the best things you can do to survive is to become what is called the gray man. No, being a gray man doesn’t mean wearing gray clothing. It primarily means three things: blend in with the crowd, steer clear of confrontation, and […]
The post 10 Gray Man Tips To Help You Blend In During A Crisis appeared first on Urban Survival Site.
I’m a big fan of Altoids. I especially like the hard to find Spearmint type. One of the added benefits of sucking on these little tablets of mint are the tins after you finish the batch off.
I have used these tins to make small survival kits and med kits or “boo-boo” kits. I’ve also compiled a list of my favorite Altoids tins used for survival.
One of my favorite Altoids kits that I came across was the Urban Survival Kit by The Urban Prepper (see this article). He packed in a bunch of good stuff in his kit. My only issue was how expensive some of those items were.
I recently decided to make my own Urban “Survival” Kit. Now, when I say survival, I’m not talking Wilderness Survival. I’m talking about having items that I would like (need) to have during the day in the environment that I work in. Disclaimer – This kit works for me! I will add to it and take away from it as necessary.
The point here is that you can make an Urban Survival Kit and make it your own, to fit your own needs. Everyone will place different items in their kit. I’m sure I will be switching out some items as I need too. Another added benefit to this kit is that all of these items were purchased at the dollar store.
Here are my items and the reasons behind it…
- Nail Clippers – My nails grow fast. Although I normally trim them at home, there are times when I need to take care of a hangnail. This one also has a file that allows you to clean under your nails too. If I ever get dirty (changing a tire, etc…), I can go to the restroom and clean up.
- File – Sometimes, the nails need a little filing. I actually had to cut this one back a little to fit in the tin.
- Tweezers – For that occasional splinter that needs a little bit of help.
- Sewing Kit – I purchased a bigger sewing kit from the dollar store. But I decided to just use the small box with the needles, safety pins, and buttons. I also took a sewing needle with some thread and added it to the box. You never know when you’re going to lose or need to repair a button or rip.
- Breath Strips – I usually have Altoids in my pack (of course), but these are so small and are available just in case my breath needs a little help.
- Razor Blade – It won’t replace your EDC blade, but if you need to slice or cut something in a pinch, it is a sharp option.
- Hair Ties – I’m using these as ranger bands. The tin closes well enough as it is, but this was just something a little extra.
On the trip to the dollar store, I also purchased baby wipes. Although they don’t fit in the Altoids tin, they do fit in my pack. They are perfect for washing your hands or even cleaning up a stain on your clothes.
Added Bonus – Altoids Emergency Candle
As an added bonus, I would like to show you the Altoids Tin Emergency Candle I made. My wife had a candle in which she wanted to repurpose the container itself. I used the opportunity to use the melted wax as part of this Emergency Candle.
I purchased wicks at a hobby store and cut them down. After melting the wax, I simply poured it into the tin with the wicks. The wax hardened quickly. I made two. I suggest not over-filling the wax. The tin still closes and carries really nicely in any pack. You’ll have to be careful though if you are leaving it in a hot car. I haven’t tried it yet, but I would assume that the wax could melt and if it turned over, would cause a mess. Check out the pics and the video below.
A post shared by Todd Sepulveda (@todd_sepulveda) on Jul 3, 2017 at 3:07pm PDT
The post A CHEAP Altoids Urban Survival Kit and An Added Bonus appeared first on Ed That Matters.
No matter how many times it is said, it can never be said or heard enough: “The best self defense firearm for you is the one you are proficient with, feel confident with, and are carrying in a time of need.”
In an urban environment, you have to defend yourself at close, intermediate, and long ranges. This is why you need to develop proficiency with at least one weapon in each of the three main categories of firearms: handguns, shotguns, and rifles.
For each of these groups, there are questions to think about and answer for yourself in order to decide which weapon will best meet your needs.
Since .22 Caliber handguns and rifles are often underestimated as defensive rounds, I created a category just for them. In most cases, as a beginner, you will be starting with a .22 and then moving onto higher powered weapons.
This is the weapon you should always carry and have on hand when a rifle or shotgun is impractical. Choose a defensive handgun that is comfortable to shoot under any circumstances and feels comfortable to carry all day.
While those questions are a matter of personal taste, reliability and stopping power (should be powerful enough to put an attacker down with the first or second shot) are much easier to gauge via known facts about specific handgun models.
In pistols, the most popular defense calibers are the 9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP. All are good choices, but I prefer the 9mm for its larger magazine capacity and the .45 ACP for its knock down power with lighter recoil than the .40 S&W. For open or concealed carrying, I prefer to carry a full-size pistol at all times.
My recommendations for pistols are the following:
- In the 9mm – the Glock 17 with it’s 17 rounds per magazine. This pistol is safe to be use by adults and older teenagers after instruction.
- In the .45ACP category – the Springfield XD-M with it’s 13 rounds per magazine. This pistol is to be used by adults only who can handle the heavier recoil.
Revolvers are an excellent option, and a good choice for inexperienced shooters since they are a rather simple handgun to operate. They are also very reliable and do not require buying and using spare magazines. I would choose the Ruger stainless steel GP100 in .357 magnum/.38 Special with a four inch barrel. I would recommend this revolver for adults and older teenagers that can safely handle them after training.
If you live in a dangerous area, or want a handgun that might be used against bears or big cats, a S&W 629 .44 magnum revolver would be suitable. I would recommend this revolver for adults only because of the heavy recoil.
In a time of social unrest it’s to your advantage to use the same caliber ammunition as the police and the military do. This makes it easier to scrounge up extra ammunition in your calibers during and after these periods of unrest.
For most modern pistols and revolvers, it is easy enough to get spare parts or repairs. However, as laws continue to change, these options may become limited. Now is the time to buy parts kits, accessories, and any tools you might need to make basic repairs or manage deeper cleaning.
The shotgun is an excellent and formidable home and personal defense weapon. Shotguns come in pump action, semi-auto, double barrel, and single barrel.
My personal preference is the pump action because of the distinctive sound it makes when being racked. If there is one gun in this group that will act as a deterrent that reduces the need to open fire, the pump action models can do the job. If they can’t, you will still have an excellent weapon to resolve the matter with.
Pump action shotguns are rugged, reliable, simple to operate, and best of all easy to learn and teach.
Shotguns can be concealable if it is done right. The first thing that you must consider is how to make the shotgun a more compact weapon. To shorten the overall length, I would use the shortest legal tactical barrel and stock combination possible. The standard stock would be replaced with either a cruiser or a folding stock that folds over the top of the shotgun. Finally to help support the weight and add control ability I would attach a single point sling.
For a shotgun to be concealed properly you must be wearing clothing that can cover the shotgun without standing out. Here, loose fitting clothing and a long cold weather or rain coat would help, but the clothing must fit the season and temperatures.
One of the things I like most about a lot of the pump shotguns is that changing barrels is very easy. To make the most of your pump action shotgun, you should have at least two barrels for it. This gives you two guns for the price of one.
The first one should be a field barrel with multiple choke tubes. This one is your hunting and varmint control barrel. The second barrel should be a shorter tactical barrel in the 18-20 inch range. This one is for home defense purposes. It is quicker handling in tight quarters and gives a wider shot spread at short ranges. The tactical barrels come either rifled or smooth bore.
What to choose from so many pump action shotguns?
For adults and older teenagers that will not have any problems with recoil or operating a pump action shotgun, the Parkerized Mossburg 590-A1 in 12 Gauge should work well. This shotgun was designed for the military and is a very heavy duty shotgun that holds 9 rounds of 3 inch shotgun shells. If need be a M-7 or M-9 bayonet can be mounted under the tube magazine for further self defense.
For smaller framed adults, teenagers, and older children that can operate a pump action shotgun, I would recommend the Remington 870 Shotguns in 20 Gauge. An 18-20 inch barrel can still be used for defense and a 26-28 inch barrel for hunting.
For individuals that can’t operate either pump action or semi-auto shotguns, the double barrel shotgun may be a viable answer. If you can handle the recoil of a 12 Gauge shell, but can’t work the pump action or semi-auto action, the 12 Gauge double barrel shotguns should work fine. The same is true for those individuals who can handle the 20 Gauge recoil, but can’t work pump or semi-auto actions.
My recommendation in this group is the Stoeger Double Defense over/under double barreled shotgun for adults and older teenagers that have no issues with 12 Gauge recoil. This shotgun comes with a fiber optic front sight and a picatinny rail for your optics or rear sights. It shoots 2 3/4” or 3” shells. These shotguns are well made and very reliable. It is easier for most people to aim and shoot an over/under shotgun, because of it’s similarities to shooting a rifle. Most people prefer it over the side-by-side double barrel shotguns, because they are more accurate and are easier to aim.
Smaller framed adults, teenagers, and older children that can handle the 20 Gauge recoil and would rather not shoot an over/under double barreled shotguns can try the Stoeger Coach double barreled shotguns with a 20” barrel. These are well made and very reliable shotguns that can shoot 2 3/4” or 3” shotgun shells.
As with handguns, in a time of social unrest it’s to your advantage to have and use the same Gauge shotgun ammunition as the police and the military do. This makes it easier to scrounge up extra shotgun ammunition in your gauges during and after these periods of unrest. Now is a good time to find out what is most commonly being used in your area.
For most shotguns today, it is very easy to get repair or spare parts. You can get them today by ordering direct from the shotgun manufacturers or from firearm part dealers. In a time of social conflict, repair or spare parts will not be available on the open market. It is best to purchase extra kits now while you can.
As with any other weapon, it will be a matter of personal preference in terms of which one feels most comfortable and easy to carry. You will still need to choose a rifle that is reliable and can put down an attacker with the first shot, if you have to face the aftermath of a disaster in your urban location.
If you need a few recommendations for semi-autos and bolt action rifles in today’s popular calibers, here are some options. As with the other categories, each of these models has a long standing reputation for reliability and has suitable stopping power for most situations.
The Springfield Saint (Military Spec) AR-15 in the 5.56×45 can also shoot the .223 Remington. This gun is very easy to shoot and works well with high capacity magazines or drums. Because of its low recoil, I recommend it for adults, teenagers and slender built individuals after proper training.
In the 7.62×51, the Springfield M1A would be an excellent choice. I highly recommend the M1A for it’s knock down power, durability, an reliability. It shoots very accurately from 20 round magazines, and is an excellent hunting or battle rifle. I would recommend this rifle for adults and older teenagers that can take the recoil after proper training.
In 7.62×39, the AK-47 is my hands down favorite weapon. This weapon is a proven warhorse rifle that has stood the test of time. It is extremely reliable, low recoiled, shoots high capacity magazines and drums, and has good knock down power. I would recommend this weapon to all shooters except young children after proper training.
My choice for a bolt action rifle is the Ruger Gunsite Scout in .308. This is a well built rifle that is very accurate, reliable, has an 18 inch tactical barrel, and uses ten round magazines. This rifle can be scoped two ways; by a regular scope, or by using a scout scope on the picatinny scope rail. If you don’t wish to scope this rifle, it comes standard with front blade and rear aperture sights. This rifle has a bit of a recoil, so it is best for adults and teenage shooters that can take it after proper training.
For those individuals that would like to shoot semi-auto rifles, but have recoil issues, I would recommend an AR-15 that shoots the 9mm pistol round. This AR could be a companion rifle to anyone that is carrying a Glock 9mm semi-auto pistol. Both of these weapons can use the large capacity Glock magazines when needed. This rifle is safe to use by all shooters after proper training.
If you choose a gun that uses ammunition other than what the local military, police, or sheriffs use, it would be to your advantage to stock up on them now.
For most centerfire rifles of today, it is also easy to get repair or spare parts. You can get them by ordering direct from the manufacturers or from firearm part dealers. Get them now while they are still available and easy to get with relatively little effort.
AR-15s with a folding stock or a collapsible stock and AK-47 rifles with a side folding stock or an under folding stocks can be concealed. It will depend upon the climate, time of day, and the type of clothing being used. Concealing other full sized centerfire rifles will depend on their size and weight. Some are very hard or impossible to conceal.
What About .22 Caliber Rifles and Handguns?
.22 caliber rifles and handguns are great learning and practice tools for shooters of all skill levels. It is also an underestimated defensive round, and will put down attackers quite well with good shot placement.
Training and practice are the keys to being a good marksman and with these firearms. Ammo for these weapons is also cheaper than for higher powered guns, so you will find training and practice more affordable.
I recommend the following .22 caliber rifles and handguns for training and defense:
- For a semi-auto rifle – Ruger 10/22 in stainless steel with a black synthetic stock. This rifle can be scoped or use the metal adjustable sights. The 10/22 is a tough, reliable little rifle with a lot of accessories. Upgrades are also available. If taken care of, this 10/22 will last a life time.
- For a lever action rifle – Henry Lever Action .22 caliber. This is a very well made and dependable rifle that shoots .22 LR, .22L, and .22S.This rifle has adjustable sights or can be scoped.
- For a semi-auto pistol – Ruger Mark III Hunter. This is a .22LR very well made, reliable, stainless steel pistol with adjustable sights, and a 10 round magazine.
- For a .22 caliber revolver – Taurus Tracker in .22LR. This is a very well made and dependable SA/DA stainless steel revolver, with a 4 inch barrel, and a 9 round cylinder capacity.
Typically, .22RL ammunition is not used by most local military, police, or sheriffs. It would be to your advantage to stock up on this ammo now because it will disappear very quickly in time of need. At this time the ammunition is priced reasonably, but you never know when the next shortage will come.
For most .22 caliber handguns and rifles today, it is easy to get repair or spare parts by ordering direct from the manufacturers or from firearm part dealers. It is best to buy extra parts now while you can get them at a reasonable price on the open market.
In a time of social conflict, you have to defend yourself at close, intermediate, and long ranges in an urban environment that goes crazy. Proficiency with handguns, shotguns, and rifles will go a long way to helping you achieve that goal.
Each of these weapon types have their advantages and disadvantages, as do specific models in each category. Regardless of how many models you try out, the best one is always going to be the one you are comfortable with and actually have on hand in a time of need.
Prepare your guns and practice your shooting skills, so you could survive the disaster!
This article has been written by Fred Tyrell for Survivopedia.
Both during a grid-down disaster or in your everyday life, you may find yourself driving through a dangerous area. There are dangerous neighborhoods throughout the world, and odds are you’re already thinking of a certain neighborhood in your town or city. The day may come when you get lost and find yourself in the wrong […]
There are literally millions of cold weapons that already exist in urban settings, and the best ones tend to be those that don’t look like weapons at first glance, and can be easily concealed.
Here are five basic categories of cold weapons to consider.
Before choosing one for your defense, think if you can wield the weapon effectively and efficiently, how will you train your skills and stay in good form with each weapon that you decide to carry.
A cold weapon can be defined as any device used for self-defense or killing that does not use fire or explosives to propel a projectile.
1. Edged weapons
These weapons are very common, and have been used throughout history for hunting or combat. They are the best to use for cutting, hacking, slashing, or stabbing in close combat. While some edged weapons focus on sharpened edges, others also have points that are used for thrusting rather than slashing.
Edged weapons are usually suitable for trained adults and teenagers, but they can also be used by children in an emergency. There are many edged weapons that you can purchase or make from metal or plastic.
This is a heavy duty fighting knife designed for hand to hand or close combat fighting.
A good example of this type of knife is the USMC KA-BAR. While these knives are designed with military personnel in mind, they are also freely available on the civilian market.
Homemade metal shanks or shivs
These are primitive and very easy to make deep cover knives. Metal shanks are easy to make from just about any piece of metal that measures 6 inches long (with three inches for the blade and three for the handle).
The basic design can be cut out with a hacksaw and then sharpened with a file. The handle can be wrapped with tape or cloth to protect the user. This shank can do great bodily harm and can be used to stab the victim multiple times without breaking.
Are made from a piece of glass about a half of an inch thick and about 6 to 8 inches long. The blade can be 4 to 5 inches long. The handle should be about 3 inches long and wrapped in cloth or tape to protect your hands.
A glass shank will usually only withstand one use before weakening and falling apart. When the victim is stabbed with this weapon, it will break and shatter into many small pieces that can make nasty to fatal wound.
Obsidian stone knives
These are very sharp stone knives that ancient man used for fighting, hunting, game dressing, and utilities. The blades were made by a process called knapping; where small slivers of obsidian were broken off in order to make a blade sharp and to sharpen the edge. The knife blade was then secured into a handle by wrapping thin wet leather strips around the blade and handle.
Plastic non-metallic knives
Since these knives use no metal in there construction, they are very hard to detect by X-rays or metal detectors. These knives are made of hard plastics or polymers and can be made into any design and length.
The strength and durability of the knife, however, will depend largely on the material used to create the blade and handle. In the case of polymers or other non-metallic resins, the hardening or curing process can also play a large role in how well the knife stands up to different kinds of usage.
Double edged blade designs are useful for slipping between ribs to do great bodily harm, or to kill.
A long knife (8 – 12 inch blades) with a blade double-edged at the point. These knives can do a considerable amount of damage, and can kill when wielded for that purpose.
Spears with metal, obsidian points, or fire hardened tips
A spear can be used as a thrusting weapon in close quarters, or can be thrown to stop an individual at a distance. Spears should have a 6 to 8 foot shaft made of hard wood that is as straight as possible. The spearhead can be made of metal, obsidian, stone, or have a fire hardened tip.
You can also disguise spears as walking sticks. To do this, the spear point can be concealed under a tight fitting cover made of the same material as the shaft. When a spear is needed, just remove the spearhead cover.
2. Blunt force trauma weapons
These are primitive weapons designed to deliver blunt trauma force to inflict damage on the target. Most of these weapons are club-like in the sense that they depend on the weight of the weapon and the strength of the user to inflict damage.
These weapons should be used by strong adults or teenagers. Children can also use the lighter weight devices in an emergency.
Baseball and T-ball bats
Usually made of wood or aluminum. In countries where baseball is not commonly played, baseball bats are often thought of as weapons and are not legal to carry or possess. T-ball bats are also used in this manner. Since they are smaller and lighter, they can be easier for children and people with less physical strength to wield.
A large metal flashlight, like a Maglite can make a very effective improvised club. Though not specifically classified as a weapon, it is often carried for self-defense by security guards, bouncers and civilians, especially in countries where carrying weapons is restricted.
A hand weapon featuring a leather-covered bludgeon filled with small lead shot; and a short, flexible shaft or strap. It can break a bone, knock you out cold, or kill. These weapons have been outlawed in the US since the 1980’s, however that doesn’t change the fact that they are very easy to make and conceal.
Shillelagh (Irish walking stick)
This is a wooden club cut as a walking stick, typically made from a Blackthorn tree. Shillelaghs also usually have a large knob on one end, and a slight tapered point on the other end.
This is a small weapon that looks like the small bunched fist or paw of a monkey. One end of the monkey fist is a rope, while the other holds a metal weight inside a winding of rope. The rope is designed to be extended or shortened to suit your needs.
Video first seen on EveryDay Knife Guy.
A monkey fist can easily fit on your key chain, and can also be used to store paracord for emergency needs. As innocent and small as these weapons look, they can inflict lethal injuries.
3. Object throwing weapons
These weapons can be used by all age groups and are simple to make and use.
The sling is inexpensive and easy to build (see my article on how to build and use one). It has historically been used for hunting game and in combat. They are typically used to throw blunt projectiles such as stone, clay balls, or pieces of metal.
Have a Y-shaped handle made of wood or metal with an elastic strip or rubber surgical tubing between the prongs. Sling shots are also used for launching stones and other small projectiles. Modern metal and rubber surgical tubing sling shots are powerful enough to kill small game as well as critically injure, or kill a human.
This is a type of throwing weapon made of wooden, stone or metal weights at the ends of three interconnected cords. Usually, one cord is longer than the other two so that the heavier weights fly at the front parallel to each other and hit either side of the targets legs. The lighter weighted cord then wraps around the legs of the target. Bolas are used primarily for capturing animals, however they can critically injure, or kill a human depending on how they are aimed.
Longbows can be made easily enough from natural materials as can the arrows. Crossbows are harder to construct, however they can be every bit as lethal, if not more so than a handgun. Aside from the fact that crossbows can launch their projectiles across great distances, they are also extremely quiet and are very hard to regulate.
You can build a crossbow with a minimal amount of skill in wood and metalworking.
4. Farming, gardening, and hand tools
Many agricultural tools have been used throughout history as improvised weapons for self and property defense as well as warfare. In medieval times, farmers pressed into military service often carried only their own farming tools. These tools can be used as weapons by all age groups.
- Sickles – A hand-held agricultural tool designed with curved blades for harvesting. It is a good weapon for slashing and stabbing.
- Hoe – One of the most practical weapons among farmers because it can be used as a staff for striking and blocking, or as an edged weapon.
- Pickaxe handles – Pickaxes are common tools in the United States, thus replacement handles are still widely available. These handles have a good weight to them can be used as a club or staff.
- Machete – A machete is a broad blade tool that can function as a knife or an ax. Themacheteblade is used for cutting, while the weighted upper blade provides force for chopping. Because the machete is common in many tropical countries, it is often the weapon of choice for insurrections or uprising. In combat the machete is used like a short sword.
- Axes – An ax is a tool typically used for chopping, shaping, or splitting wood. Combat axes are usually either a bit larger or smaller than utility axes. The lighter weight ones can be wielded with one hand, while the larger, heavier ones require two hands. Combat axes also usually have thinner, more narrow blades designed to make deeper wounds.
- Wire or rope – Use rope or wire to make a garrote. These weapons can be disguised as belts to hold your pants up. If you make a garrote, be sure to install safety handles on it to keep you from getting cut. Garrotes are outlawed in most countries, however they are so easy to make, disguise, and carry, it is impossible to say if these laws have any tangible effect.
- Hand tool kits – These are the multi-purpose tool kits you usually keep around the house or in your vehicle. Screwdrivers can make excellent weapons, as can wrenches and hammers. Razor blade utility knives can also make excellent slashing weapons. Considering that the perpetrators of 9/11 used simple box cutter knives against unarmed citizens, it is plain enough to see just how dangerous various components of hand tool kits can be.
5. Improvised weapons
Improvised weapons are common everyday objects that can be used as defensive weapons. These objects are not physically altered in any way to make them into more functional weapons. They are generally utilized in their normal state.
Once you see the weapon potential of an object, you will still need to figure out how to carry and wield it for self defense. The truth is that almost anything can be used effectively as an improvised weapon and in many cases can be normally carried on the average person’s body.
These weapons can be used by people of all age groups. Since all of these items are plain everyday items, you will not need special permits to carry them around. Some, however, may be banned from carrying on planes or other sensitive areas.
Small metal pocket nail clippers with a metal file/nail cleaner can make an excellent slashing weapon. Just grip the file/ nail cleaner in your dominant hand so that it extends about an inch beyond the thumb and first finger. Aim for the attacker’s eyes, face, hands, or any area that is sensitive to pain and exposed.
Pens and Pencils
Pens and pencils make good thrusting weapons when held in your hands. Your target areas will be the face, arms, and chest. The wounds made by these weapons can critically injure or cause death. You can also buy tactical pens that include other weaponized options such as blades and bright flashlights. Just make sure they are legal to carry in your area.
House or car keys
Key chains holding at least 3 or more keys make a good defensive weapon. Just set the keys so that the shafts stick out between the fingers of your dominant hand and then make a fist. Once again, you will be aiming for the arms, chest, or face. If the attacker isn’t wearing heavy garments, you can also try a blow to the abdomen.
A good way to use a belt to defend yourself is to hold it by the buckle and use the leather portion as a whip. The target areas will be the face, neck, back, or any other place that would cause a lot of pain.
These sprays can be just as, if not more effective than mace or pepper spray. Be sure to aim for the face and eyes of your attacker. While these sprays won’t kill, they can distract an attacker long enough so that you can escape.
Contrary to the belief of some, the lack of guns will not make times safer. If anything, relying only on cold weapons can easily increase stress levels and lead to far more violence due to a reduction in the sense of personal security and safety.
Even so, having a cold weapon on hand or being able to turn a regular item into one, is a lifesaving skill! Do you master it?
This article has been written by Fred Tyrell for Survivopedia.
If hunkering down is your choice, either due to your living circumstance, or simply to avoid the hordes on the highway, your bug-in bag should have all the essentials you need.
Anything less will not only waste your time, space and money, but will pin your hopes to a fool’s promise, endangering you and others too. And water is one of those issues that you just can’t take easily when bugging in.
You probably know that a single gallon of water weighs about 8 pounds and takes up quite a bit of space. If you are having problems keeping 1-2 gallons in your living space on a regular basis, you’ll find it almost impossible to store enough water away for your long term survival.
This is just one of many reasons why you should only store away 5-10 gallons of water to get you started in a crisis, and devote your prepping to smart management and finding ways to procure water. Pulling water from the air is one of the solutions, and there are several ways you can do it.
Once you pull the moisture from the air, you will still need to make sure it is fit for drinking and bathing. But all of these obstacles can be overcome with solutions that are small enough and easy enough to store in your bug in bag.
Keep reading to see how to solve the water problem when you’re bugging in!
6 Ways to Make the Most Out of Your Water
Even though there are actually thousands of gallons of water sitting in the air around you, actually converting that water vapor into usable water can take a bit of effort.
You still need to know how to conserve water and recycle it as much as possible. If you have to fine tune water production systems, you will have a bit more time to achieve that goal.
Use Dirty Water and Dosage for Flushing the Toilet
You might know already that the fastest and easiest way to cut back on toilet water usage is to gather water from other activities such as cooking and cleaning, and then simply dump it down the toilet.
On a day to day basis, you can also fill a ½ gallon milk container with water, cap it up, and set it in the toilet tank. This will take up area that would normally be taken up by water that would be used for flushing the toilet even though it isn’t necessarily needed.
You can add more milk jugs if you find that you want to reduce the amount of water used for flushing even more.
Smart Cooking Will Save Your Water
When preparing meals, combine as many things as possible so that you do not have to waste water. You can also reduce the amount of water used to cook many items by using lower cooking temperatures or other methods.
For example, if you want to make spaghetti or macaroni, try boiling just enough water to cover the pasta. Thermos cooking also offers a number of ways to reduce both the amount of water used to cook food and also the energy required.
Change Your Washing Routine
When it comes to washing your hands and face, there are a number of ways to save water that don’t necessarily rely on pre-moistened wipes or other stores that will run out.
To begin, instead of turning on the tap, and letting it run, pour water into a bowl instead. From there, dip your hands in the bowl and lather up. Once that is accomplished, take a towel or sponge to get the majority of the soap off your face.
Follow up with some additional splashes of water to get the remainder of the soap off your face. From start to finish, you should only need about ½ gallon versus 2 – 5 gallons for each minute that a faucet would be running. You can also use small bowls for brushing teeth and then a larger one for sponge baths.
Don’t Cut Off House Cleaning
Contrary to popular belief, don’t believe that all house cleaning will end in the post crisis world. If you do not keep floors, walls, furniture, and other internal landscape parts clean, you will soon be in a disease filled, hazardous environment.
From that perspective, toilets and sinks will still require water for cleaning. In the case of toilets, you can use leftover water from cooking or other cleaning chores, just as you would for flushing the toilet.
Grow Food that Doesn’t Rely Much on Water
If you are planning to bug in, then it makes sense that any food growing will occur indoors. First of all, switch to a low-water garden so you could grow your food with a minimum consumption of water.
There are also a number of growing methods that reduce reliance on water to well below what you would use in a conventional outdoor garden and also a container garden. This includes utilizing different potting arrangements and also tried and true ways to preserve moisture as much as possible.
For example, just because your container garden is indoors, that doesn’t mean you can’t use plastic mulches or other covers that will prevent water from evaporating back into the air.
There are also a number of misting techniques you can use when watering plants to ensure they get as much moisture as possible where it is actually needed. For some species of plants, this includes misting under the leaves, since this is where the leaf is actually able to take in the most water.
If the outdoors are dry enough, you will see tree leaves turn upside down so that those pores can take in the rain as quickly as possible. From that perspective, if you mist under the leaves instead of on top, the plant will get more water, and less will evaporate off the top areas that may have wax or some other natural coating to help prevent evaporation.
How Much Water Do You Need Each Day?
Before making any plans for pulling water from the air, you need to know how much water you’ll need per person. Under normal conditions, you can expect to use 80 – 100 gallons of water per day.
Here are some rough estimates to go by based on routine needs in a survival situation compared to routine times:
The Basic Ways to Pull Water from the Air or Ground
There are many people interested in pulling water from the air, or from brackish environments. Some of the most innovative methods are making use of wind turbines or with alternative blade forms.
Even though these systems tend to rely on condensers and coolants, they can still offer some useful insights. If you can design something based on these systems, or integrate passive heating and cooling into the design, you will spend less money and have a system that will work in any emergency type.
Remember that the ultimate survival water purifier and generator must have the following features:
- It must use as little energy as possible
- It must be easy to build and maintain
- Must require a minimum of moving parts in order to reduce energy consumption and the need to replace parts
- Must produce enough water on a daily basis for your needs
- Must be portable or easy enough to move around in case you have to leave your current location or put the equipment in an area where it can gather more water.
These methods are designed to work when there is a sudden change in air temperature, which affects how much water vapor the air can hold. Typically, when temperatures drop, this will increase the odds of precipitation.
There are many different ways to use condensation methods to retrieve water from outdoor settings, however they may not yield as much water, if any from indoor locations. Regardless of the system that you use, the hours before sunrise are apt to yield the most water because they are the coolest hours of the day.
Pulling water from the earth is actually fairly easy. Just dig a hole and place a bowl, pot, or cup in the center of the hole. Next, spread some plastic sheeting across. Make sure that the edges of the plastic are sealed off. Use a rock in the center of the plastic so that the lowest point of the plastic is aimed into the cup or bowl. As the ground temperature changes, water vapor will rise up and be trapped by the plastic.
From there, the water droplets will roll down to the center point of the plastic and finally drop into the vessel waiting below. Depending on the moisture levels in the soil, you can collect as little as a cup or as much as several gallons of water in a single night.
Water stills can also be very useful if you have used cooking water or other water that needs to be purified before it can be used for consumption and bathing. Basically, in these systems, the water may be in a bowl, cup, or even housed in the ground as in the method listed above.
For this version, the plastic tent will have an upward high point instead of a low point. As the sun or other heat source causes an increased temperature inside the tent, water vapor rises up and encounters the top of the tent.
From there, water droplets adhere to the sides, and then to waiting cups along the inner ring of the plastic. This water will, or should be, free of chemicals, heavy metals, bacteria, salts, and minerals. Therefore, not only can you use this system to produce fresh water, you can also use it as a final stage for purifying any water that may be on hand.
As with other systems that use plastic, always make sure that the plastic remains clean and free of bacteria, mold, mildew, or other forms of soiling that can make the water unfit to drink. For long term usage, you may prefer a glass tent, however this will weigh more and require additional support structures for daily needs.
Once you start your indoor container garden, simply enclose the entire area in plastic (basically you will be creating an indoor greenhouse), and then make depressions in the roof that will point to cups or pots waiting below.
This method is one of the most passive and easiest methods for gathering water from the air, and will also help conserve overall moisture used for growing food.
You probably know that silicon and table salt are two commonly available desiccants. If you are seeking to make water for consumption, bathing, or other purposes, then use salt as the desiccant in your system. If you look at some commercial atmospheric water generation systems, you will find that many different desiccants are used for this purpose.
When choosing the chemicals, consider how much energy it will require to remove the chemical from the water, and also how much water yield you will get with each desiccant when compared to table salt.
These systems are somewhat similar to a modern air conditioner in the sense that they blow air over cold coils in order to reduce the air’s temperature, which causes moisture to drop into a waiting receptacle.
While these systems can pull a good bit of water from the air, the coolants can be quite expensive, as can the electricity required to run them. In a bug-in situation where you have limited power and resources, this system may not be a viable option.
Even if you can purchase a miniature system that runs on batteries or solar power, it will not produce as much water as other methods. It may also be very noisy and break down sooner rather than later.
Think in advance about how you can take advantage of new technologies and ideas to make your bug in location more suitable from a food, water, and breathable air perspective.
There are options open to you, and it only takes will to experiment with new materials and concepts to put up a comprehensive plan that would later save you and your family!
This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.
Contrary to popular belief, men who target women for harassment, stalking, rape, and other forms of sexual predation do not limit themselves to targeting strangers. In fact, a significant percentage of rapes are “date rapes”, and other situations where the woman actually knows her attacker.
If you are a woman, remain safe from sexual predators following these 10 tricks!
They will help you correctly asses the situations where you know the man in question, and will also give you hints on how to recognize malicious intent in strangers.
Avoid Traveling Alone
Sexual predators are similar to any other criminal in the sense that they will target those they perceive as the weakest. Typically, this means if you are traveling alone, a sexual predator will think you are an easy mark.
Whether you just go to the store, or go out for a short walk, try traveling with someone else. You never know if a stalker has been waiting for just the right moment, or a complete stranger with criminal intent may decide to attack you.
If you travel alone, here are some things you can do to remain as safe as possible.
Always remain in well-lit areas and as close to a group as possible.
When in a store, after you pay for your purchases, ask for an escort to your vehicle.
Have a running conversation with someone on your cell phone. Make sure the person knows where you are. If you suspect someone strange is around, tell the person you are talking with.
If a stranger approaches you, do not leave the safety of the place you are in. You can always take that person’s number, and contact them later on if you want to have coffee, lunch, or go on a date.
When in doubt, always, go back to “old fashioned” respect and do not allow yourself to be rushed or swayed by something that occurs “out of the blue”. Just because you don’t know who approached you, it doesn’t mean that person hasn’t been stalking you, or doesn’t know who you are.
Considering the increasing number of date rapes and other forms of sexual predation, wait until you gather some facts before you go anywhere with that person.
Be Careful With Makeup, Jewelry, and Clothing Choices
As Western and Islamic cultures continue to meet and find places of disagreement, it is often said that the Islamic treatment of women is far worse than anything you would find in the United States of America. Irresponsible flashing of expensive jewelry, or wearing garments inappropriate for a specific settings, can spell trouble for a woman.
There are also specific meanings for makeup choices that cannot be ignored. What a woman wears or her body language could never be an excuse for sexual harassment or rape, but when you are in a public setting or with people of the opposite gender, it has an impact on the situation. You will always be best served by wearing clothes that are respectful of your body and your goals.
Aside from avoiding wearing expensive jewelry or clothes that make you look like you are for sale, it never hurts to wear clothes that you can defend yourself in.
For example, if you are fan of high heels, do not hesitate to wear heels that are sturdy enough and sharp enough to cause some damage to an attacker’s foot.
You should be able to run comfortably, and have confidence that the shoes will not fall apart or you’d twist an ankle when you need to kick or move for self-defense.
Blue jeans or pants are always going to be easier to defend yourself in, especially if they are loose fitting and do not restrict motion in your legs and hips.
Try to avoid garments that will wrap around your arms or legs or in some way prevent you from moving freely and easily.
While a long flowing scarf or shawl can be used to disguise the motion of your hands and arms, it can also be used to strangle you. Therefore it is still best to avoid garments that are too drapey, or can be used to restrict your movements if an attacker grabs them.
If you wear clothes that are not easy to defend yourself in, make sure that you are with someone you trust completely, and that you are safe in the setting you will be in. There is a big difference between traveling to a family member’s home for a holiday dinner and going to a restaurant in an area with a high crime rate.
In the latter case, no matter how much you may trust the person you are with, there is still a risk because of the setting you are going into. Even though wearing sensible clothes based on your location will not necessarily prevent an attack, it may still give you an edge when it comes to defending yourself and preventing a sexual attack.
Be Aware of Your Surroundings and Self Defense Training
Sexual predators are also similar to other criminals in the sense that they will look for people that aren’t really paying attention to what’s going on around them.
Situational awareness is one of the most important things you can do for yourself; both to stave off a sexual predator as well as any other kind of criminal. While there are no concrete answers for why it works, the fact remains when people are aware that you know they are around, and that you see them, it seems to deter criminal activity.
Today, many people think they know what situation awareness, is yet they are sadly ignorant. It’s about a lot more than knowing how to use window glass to see what’s going on around you, as well as other well-known tricks.
There is a specific body language that you must use, as well as how you look at people. Even if you think you are very proficient insofar as knowing what’s going on around you, and conveying that fact, you will be well served by taking a class in self-defense. These classes can and should teach you the difference between awareness and hyper-vigilance.
Typically, if you appear nervous, or transmit signals that you are unsure of yourself, it can put you in danger, even though the predator knows you see them. You should also learn some basic techniques for getting away from an attacker regardless of whether or not you are carrying a weapon.
Keep a Record of Suspicious Activity
As noted earlier, many women are surprised when they know the person that attacks them. Even if the situation isn’t a date rape or one in which the woman knows the man personally, they may recognize the attacker by sight.
It is always very important to listen to your instincts. If you pay attention, when you see a man for the first time, you may feel a specific repulsion, or a sense that something isn’t right.
In this era of cell phones with good quality cameras, it only takes a second to snap a picture and make a note to yourself. Later on you can always ask your friends or other people that you trust if they know the individual or if they have seen him around.
You may be surprised to find out that you aren’t the only one that has a strange sense about the man in question. This act alone, can also raise awareness for other women that may be at risk from this individual.
Just remember to conceal your actions as much as possible when taking the picture, as you don’t want to convey interest or create a situation where the potential predator can open a conversation with you or try to pursue you.
Keep Your Technologies Updated
Not so long ago, you would have been technologically advanced if you had a “panic button” on the keyless entry device for your vehicle that would cause the horn to honk. If you weren’t that close to your vehicle it was completely useless.
Today there are several technologies that women can take advantage of to stay safe and just about any setting. Here are a few important ones to consider.
These devices can be kept on a keychain or in your pocket. As long as they have a SIM card in them, they will transmit your location. You can also choose devices that will let other people hear what is going on around you.
Simply leave this information with a friend or someone else that you trust, so that if you go missing, that person can give the necessary information about how to find you.
This is a special nail polish that will change colors when dipped into a drink that has known date rape drugs in it. Even if you make a mistake and go out with someone that has this kind of intent, finding out about the drugs before you swallow them can save you from disaster.
Video first seen on FOX 10 Phoenix.
Know the Signs You are Being Followed
Depending on the skill of your potential attacker, you may or may not detect if you are being followed. In the end, always assume that you are being followed, especially if you have a strange sense about a man in your area. When in doubt, walk into a public place where other people may act as a deterrent.
Here are some clues that may help you to determine if you are being followed, however this list is not exhaustive.
If you speed up or slow down your walking pace, the person following you may also adjust his pace.
When looking into a window that reveals the man behind you, or into a mirror, you may notice that they are staring at you or focused on you in some way.
While walking along a street, or through a mall, or even in a store, go to an area where you would not expect this man to follow (a restroom area, a lingerie department, or someplace else where it may seem strange). Pay careful attention: if the man is especially sloppy, he may follow you right into an area that isn’t normal for men to enter.
If you have a more experienced stalker on your hands, the man may stop short of the department you’re heading into or the store you are aiming for. Spend some time in that area, and while you are browsing around, look to see if he is nearby or watching. Don’t assume you are safe, just because the man seems to have walked by your area, or is someplace else yet still in visual distance.
Your litmus test, if you are in a store, should be if the man is visible at or near the checkout area. This includes outside or any other area where it would be easy for him to spot you again and follow you.
Before an actual attack occurs, any criminal or predator must get within 1 to 2 feet of you. Some men may try to advance quickly, while others may try to casually approach and start a conversation. Always be ready to defend yourself without appearing hyper vigilant or nervous.
Social Background Check Before You Go on a Date
Your greatest defense against getting involved with sexual predator is the experiences of other women. No matter whether you are new in an area, or away at college among strangers, immerse in the female social network around you. Include in your network women that know the area, and have a good sense of who the men around are.
Even if you have had several conversations with a specific man, and think you will be safe, remember that date rapists have some very polished social skills. As a result, they are very good at biding their time, and they will attack when you least expect it.
If the man in question is a relative stranger to the area, try to find out about other women in the area and where the man lived before. Try to find contacts that know the man in question for at least five to ten years. Female family members, former romantic partners, and others familiar with the man in question can all be a big help to you.
At the very least, try to establish a connection with your potential date on social networking sites, and review friend lists and conversations. If you cannot see the man’s friend list, or feel that information is being hidden from you, do not enter into a dating situation.
While this may seem extreme, remember that abuser doesn’t change just because they move from one area to another. Old social connections that may have kept up on social networking can still offer valuable clues and give you a chance to avoid a very nasty situation.
Make Self and Mutual Respect a Relationship Foundation
Do you remember the days when words like respect and morals had a tangible cultural meaning? Many women considers themselves “liberated” and look down on a man that wants to hold a car door open for them, etc., we have lost cultural signs of respect for ourselves and the opposite gender.
As corny as it may seem, without these ingrained cultural cues, it becomes difficult to read the intentions of people around you and remain within acceptable relationship boundaries. While most men may not enter a relationship with the intent to sexually abuse or harm their partner, the lack of cultural guidelines and self-discipline might lead to that.
No woman should enter into a date or relationship without the clear understanding that both parties must establish respect for themselves and each other. Even though this won’t necessarily guarantee your safety from a sexual predator, it can help you to avoid making some serious mistakes while playing the field.
Demand Reduced Legal Restrictions on Women for Self Defense Scenarios
Did you know a woman can face criminal charges if she brandishes a gun even though she is afraid she may be raped or attacked? These are just some of the many gun control laws that serve to intimidate and harm a woman’s right to protect herself.
Because women are at such a high risk from sexual predators, and also because men know women are less likely to carry a gun, it is absolutely necessary to significantly lower the “shoot don’t shoot” standards for women who carry guns.
The bottom line is, if a woman feels she is threatened with any kind of physical harm, she should be allowed to stand her ground, brandish her gun and to use it as she sees fit without fear of facing criminal charges.
Sadly, more than a few women have avoided being raped or murdered, yet wound up in prison because gun control laws dictated they somehow committed a crime. This problem can only be addressed through getting rid of these laws, and to set unfairly convicted women free; plus pay them for wrongful conviction.
Today, sexual predation on women is reaching epidemic proportions. Knowing how to defend yourself is crucial, as well as knowing how to prevent a situation from happening.
Would you know what to do to stay safe? Would you know how to survive an attacker?
This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.
Our country has been plastered by hurricanes lately.
First there was Hurricane Harvey, which turned much of Houston, Texas into a lake, along with Corpus Christi, Rockport and the surrounding area. Then there was Hurricane Irma, which brushed by Puerto Rico and then tried to devour the Florida Peninsula. Finally, the third villain in this story was Hurricane Maria, which demolished Puerto Rico.
While Hurricane Maria was the “weakest” of the three, only a Category IV hurricane, it probably did the most damage. That damage is exacerbated by the fact that Puerto Rico is an island, making it harder to get relief workers and supplies in. Unlike Houston, access to Puerto Rico is limited to a few ports and airports, both of which were damaged by the storm.
Thousands of homes in Puerto Rico were destroyed by the hurricane, some only having their roofs torn off, while others were flattened entirely. Entire apartment buildings are standing with the façade torn off by the high winds, leaving the apartments exposed to the elements.
But the really serious damage from the hurricane wasn’t to people’s homes, although that is rather serious, but rather to the electrical grid. Over 95% of the island is currently without electrical power, not because of damage to the power plants, but rather to the near-total destruction of the transmission lines that carry the electricity produced to people’s homes, offices, stores and companies.
Without electricity, much of what people depend on to survive is eliminated. There is no running water, no communications, and most stores are unable to operate.
Between the lack of electric power to run their cash registers and the communications necessary to reorder stock, even if they sell their inventory for cash, using hand-written receipts, the stores will be empty of critical supplies, such as food, within less than three days.
But coming up with that cash will be difficult for most people, as the ATM machines that they need to use and the computers for the banks are without power and communications as well. Since few people hold onto much cash these days, but rather use plastic for all their purchases, they are left without the ability to buy even the most basic necessities of life.
While relief efforts are pouring in, there isn’t enough and it’s not getting there fast enough. Unlike the rest of the country, the people of Puerto Rico are limited by being on an island. There isn’t anyplace they can go themselves, to get away from the problems or get what they need.
But getting supplies to the island is only the beginning of the problems. Once the supplies get there, workers encounter problems moving them to those in need. Roads are damaged or blocked by felled trees and other debris and gasoline is in short supply. Those nearest the ports and airports have the best chances of receiving relief supplies, while others, on more remote areas, may receive none.
The problems that ordinary people have are bad enough. But they don’t hold a candle up to the problems faced by those with serious medical conditions. Hospitals are overrun, between the people who were injured by the hurricane and the normal problems they have to deal with.
On top of that, diesel fuel to run the hospitals’ generators is running short, limiting their ability to treat patients.
The lack of electricity is causing other medical problems as well, such as there not being power to run kidney dialysis machines. People with kidney failure need this treatment three times per week. Without it, their body accumulates too many minerals in the bloodstream and organs, leading to heavy-metal poisoning and death.
The same can be said for many other medical treatments which require electricity to run the equipment.
Medicines themselves are becoming an issue as well. While pharmacies and hospitals were well stocked before the storm, some medicines are running short. The worst of this are medicines which require refrigeration, like insulin. Without refrigeration to keep insulin supplies fresh, diabetics will soon find themselves without this life-saving drug.
Recovery from the Disaster
Rebuilding and restoring Puerto Rico is going to be a major project. The damage was so severe and widespread, that there isn’t any place “safe” on the island that people can go to, to get away from the problems. That also means that there is no good starting point to work from in rebuilding the island. If only part had been damaged, they could use that as a base for rebuilding the rest.
Unsurprisingly, officials have decided that the first focus of restoration has to be government facilities and hospitals. While that makes sense from the viewpoint of needing those to be functional in order to rebuild the rest of the island, it can also be seen as government bureaucrats taking care of themselves.
The first thing that has to be restored is the electrical grid. With so much of the grid damaged, repairs are impossible. Rather, the distribution grid needs to be rebuilt. This little project is projected to take six months, which probably means it will take much longer.
In the mean time, the loss of electricity will mean that people will be without clean running water, power in their homes, refrigeration and the distribution of products to retail stores will be severely limited. As all the farms in the country were destroyed by the hurricane, all food will need to be shipped in for at least the next year, until the 2018 harvest comes in.
While the death toll from the hurricane is officially stated as 16 people, that number will surely rise. Between the lack of necessary medical attention and the lack of clean water, they can expect to see more and more people dying, either of pre-existing conditions or from disease spreading easily due to lack of sanitation. The situation isn’t pretty and it’s likely to get worse, even with all of the efforts being thrown into relief and recovery.
This problem is amplified by the Puerto Rican government’s poor financial condition. With an economy that is near the bankruptcy point, there isn’t the money needed to rebuild the island. Fortunately for them, President Trump has waived the normal requirement for states to pay 25% of disaster relief and recovery funds.
Lessons to be Learned
This disaster was just about as serious as they come. While the process of rebuilding won’t be as bad as it would have been with an EMP, the outright destruction is much worse. The people of Puerto Rico, American citizens, are going to be hard pressed to survive this disaster and come out on top.
Video first seen on The Oregonian.
Nevertheless, there are a lot of lessons that you and I can learn from this disaster. Lessons that we should apply to our own prepping plans, so that when our turn comes, we are not left in the same boat as our countrymen find themselves.
If we don’t take the opportunity to learn, then we could say that their suffering would be in vain.
One of the biggest lessons that we can take away from this hurricane, as well as the ones that hit Houston and Florida is that American homes are not built to withstand natural disasters, especially disasters that involve enormous amounts of water. Our homes are easily damaged in any sort of flooding, which ends up soaking into the materials and destroying them.
Granted, many of the homes which were the worst hit in the hurricane are those of the poor. As such, they aren’t built according to normal American standards, but rather, in any way possible. So they are not as strong as a typical American home.
But that really doesn’t make much difference.
In a time of major disaster, we have to assume that our home will be damaged, unless you happen to live in a concrete box. With that in mind, there are two things that we should do.
The first is to be ready to make emergency repairs to our home, having the necessary tools, materials and skills on hand to accomplish those repairs. The second is to have an alternate means of shelter that we can use, if our homes become completely destroyed.
I had previously thought of using a travel trailer as my alternate shelter, in case of a hurricane destroying my home (I live in a hurricane zone as well). However, looking at the damage in Puerto Rico, it is clear that such an idea was ill-founded; a travel trailer would not survive.
It would be best to have a shelter somewhere away from your home, the classic survival retreat that we all aspire to. But if you can’t afford that, at least make sure that you have a good tent or two that you can count on.
The lack of clean water in Puerto Rico is going to account for many deaths. Had those people but had some means of purifying their water, they could survive. Yet few actually did. While I have no idea how many preppers there are in Puerto Rico, it is clear that there aren’t enough.
But I see something else here as well. This is one area, in which we, as preppers, can really serve our communities, earning their respect and hopefully giving them a reason to not attack us. That is, for us to be ready to provide water filtration to those around us. For us, this is easy, as we already plan on purifying our own water. All we really need to do is increase our capacity.
Another lesson that we can take away from this is the need to be ready to harvest rainwater. While a lot of us are already using rainwater capture, we probably don’t have anywhere near the capacity needed to capture even an infinitesimal amount of the water that would fall on our homes in a hurricane. Increasing that capacity would also increase our chances of survival.
With the island’s farms in a shambles, food is going to be a real challenge for the next year, with prices considerably higher than normal. While food shortages aren’t a major issue yet, they soon will be, as people and stores run out. FEMA and other relief agencies just can’t get food to the island quick enough.
This pretty much answers the question of whether or not it is unreasonable to have a year’s worth of food stockpiled. For the people of Puerto Rico, a one year supply of food seems like a minimum, right now. Those that don’t have that much (most people) are probably going to end up losing weight.
There’s something else that this disaster brings up in the food area, as well. That is, protecting your food stockpile from destruction. If my home had been in Puerto Rico for the hurricane, it looks to me like much of my food stockpile would have been damaged or even floated away. I need to rethink my food storage, looking for ways to make sure that my food stays at my home site, even if my home becomes damaged.
One way to do this is to bury some of it. Five gallon buckets, filled with food will bury just fine, protecting the food. About the only thing that could happen to it, to destroy it, would be driving a vehicle over the top.
As usual, the electrical grid is one of the first things damaged by any storm. Therefore, none of us can count on electricity after a disaster. We either need to be ready to do without, or to produce our own.
In this case, people who had solar panels or wind turbines probably saw them damaged by the storm. High winds can be hard on both, especially if they are not properly anchored. In that case, their preparedness wouldn’t have helped them at all.
When Hurricane Harvey was headed for my home, before turning and making landfall at Rockport, I took down my wind turbine, strapping it down behind a cement wall to protect it from the storm. Had it been up and the hurricane hit our area, I am sure that it would have been destroyed.
As I mentioned above, one of the biggest problems facing the citizens of Puerto Rico is medical services and supplies. This is not uncommon in any disaster situation, as medical services tend to become overwhelmed.
But there is a big difference in this case, that is, their generators are going to prove to not be enough. When the supply of fuel is exhausted, the hospitals and all their equipment will be down.
The only medical services we can truly count on in a time of emergency are those that are already in our possession. If anything, we had better count on needing more than we thing, not less. Chances are, we’re going to find ourselves in a position where we won’t be able to count on the medical community.
It didn’t take long for the two-legged predators to come out of the woodwork and start taking what they wanted. I’ve heard stories of gunmen at gas stations, threatening others so that they could get in line first. While a fairly simple example, this is indicative of what is going on in other areas as well.
As supplies become even shorter, people will become more desperate. More and more acts of violence will break forth, with people fighting over food, water and other basic necessities. Those who are not prepared to defend themselves will be the loser in this game.
Once again, FEMA has proven that they are unprepared to deal with any emergency, especially a major one. While their workers are hard at it, trying to coordinate relief efforts, they are behind the curve. Without others pitching in to help out, FEMA will be unable to meet all the needs.
There is a stark difference between what is happening in Puerto Rico and what has happened in Houston. While I don’t have any actual figures for how much aid is reaching Puerto Rico or how much of that is from FEMA, most of it seems to be coming from FEMA or through the Red Cross. On the other hand, the large Christian community in Texas provided most of the help to the citizens of Houston. In fact, there was so much aid given by the Christian Community, that news agencies who are normally hostile to Christians commented positively about it.
Anyone who is dependent on the government to provide them with aid is asking for trouble. While government relief workers do their best, it’s never enough.
We must be ready to take care of ourselves, and if possible, those around us as well. Are you prepared?
This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.
Venison or big game jerky is common, but few use small game animals as the basis of that frontier staple. Making jerky is a great way to clean out the freezer at the end of the season and create tasty snacks out of last year’s harvest.
The problem with dealing with hurricanes, tropical storms, or other storm systems that bring a lot of rain in a little time is that you’re not just dealing with the storms. Though that’s certainly bad enough, sometimes it’s what comes after that does more damage than the actual storm.
What am I talking about? Flooding. I live in a hurricane zone, and we have a saying: hide from the winds, but run from the water. That’s because there usually very few lives lost due to damage from the high winds; most lives are lost to flooding.
On top of that, much of the extensive damage is also caused by flooding. How do you deal with the remains?
The actual storm itself rarely lasts more than a few hours but it can take weeks for a river to crest after the storm is past.
For example, the St. Johns River that runs from Vero Beach in Southeast Florida, up the middle of the state, then empties into the Atlantic Ocean in Jacksonville, is a north-flowing, lazy river. That can make for a bad situation for a couple of reasons.
First, it’s common for hurricanes to hit the southern part of the state then pound the rest of it with heavy downfalls. Since the St. Johns both starts and empties into the Atlantic Ocean, it can get a storm surge from both ends if the storm hits just right.
Add in a foot or two of heavy rain to a state that’s not very far from sea level and you’re going to see major flooding in the dry areas, too.
So, you have the initial surge, which can push it off the banks, then you have water draining toward it from all directions inland then you have to factor in the slow rate at which it runs – .3 mph. That means that, assuming we’re lucky enough to have dry weather for a couple of weeks after the hurricane, it can take the river up to a week or so to crest; if it rains it can take even longer than that. And, since it’s lazy, it’s not receding for several days to a week.
So it’s not uncommon for a house near the St. Johns to make it through the hurricane just fine, but flood three or four days later, and stay that way for a few days. And this is a problem that happens all over the world; I just used the St. Johns because it’s one that I have first-hand experience with.
The reason that I took the time to go into this is because it’s important to understand that time plays a huge factor in things. Houses, yards, manufacturing plants, and buildings can be flooded for days, or even a week.
This opens up the door to a tremendous amount of potential toxins to flow, mix, and/or grow:
- Septic waste: A septic tank may be able to handle a little bit of flooding, especially if it’s localized, but if the land is submerged for several days, it’s a different story. The leech field and even the tank itself are leaking into the floodwaters.
- Fertilizers and pesticides: Again, a quick wash of floodwater may contaminate things a little, but when the water has plenty of time to sit and thoroughly saturate the soil deep down, it draws up toxins that have been soaking into the ground for months or years and spreads it far and wide.
- Sewage plants: It’s practically a given that at least one sewage plant is going to suffer spillage during a flood.
- Landfills: if it’s in a flood zone, it’s going to share the wonders of decomposing food, feminine hygiene products, diapers, and all the other stuff you’d typically want to make tea with. Home garbage containers also spill into floodwaters, so that’s another source of loveliness.
- Dead Fish: between the contamination and the change in temperature and pH levels, there’s almost always a huge amount of dead fish that add to the contamination of the water, and also end up scattered on the banks, leaving the lovely smell – and health hazard – of dead fish strung along the shore, baking in the sun.
- Mold: now that there’s a lovely, poisonous soup sitting in a building, or even on the ground, stewing in the heat, mold, and mildew start to grow. This creates another hazard that’s hazardous to you, both if you touch it and if you breathe it.
- Storm debris: the winds and rushing water bring down trees and tree limbs, roof shingles, siding, fences, signs, and many other hazards that flow in the water and are left scattered behind once the water recedes, leaving physical hazards as well as chemical ones.
Now that you have an idea of just how damaging floods are, you need to know how to deal with the aftermath.
Just like food is going to be scarce before the storm, cleaning supplies are going to be in demand following it. Stock up on garbage bags, bleach, rubber gloves, paper towels, rags, and whatever else you may need to clean up your area. Of course, if you prepare for a hurricane throughout the year, this may not be an issue for you.
Don’t Swim in It
After learning about all of the disgusting contents in floodwaters, the last thing you would probably think to do is swim in it. But many people don’t.
Kids of all ages like to get out and wade in the floodwaters, and even after the waters start to go down, it’s hot and people want to go swimming in the river.
Don’t. Just because the water has receded doesn’t mean that the toxins aren’t still there.
Pay attention to local EPA and Fish and Wildlife folks who monitor the level of contamination in the water and don’t go back in until they deem it safe.
Often, if you’re on city water, your city will issue a boil-water alert until they’re sure that the water is safe to drink again. Heed these warnings – they’re given for a reason. Usually, this is just for drinking water, but sometimes they’ll issue one for water used for hygiene as well.
It’s best to stockpile some water, both because your power may be out for awhile and because of the danger of contamination after the storm.
Test Your Soil
Though most of the time, the soil will be OK a few weeks or months after the flood, have it tested. The contaminants stay in it for a long time after the waters recede.
As a matter of fact, I once lost an entire litter of 4-week-old puppies to Parvo two weeks after a flood because the ground had been contaminated via rats’ nests that had been flooded.
As we know, rats also caused a couple of plagues, so this isn’t something to take lightly.
Wear Sturdy Shoes
By now, you’ve probably figured out that the ground is gross even after the waters recede. If you have to wade in the water, wear rubber boots that are higher than the water so that your feet don’t come into contact with water.
However, it’s best not to wade in the water at all because there are all kinds of things – boards with nails, broken glass, etc. – that you can’t see and will cut your shoes right along with your feet. Then all of those lovely contaminants are in your bloodstream.
Wear Gloves and Masks
Once you have to go in and start doing cleanup, you don’t want to touch the contaminated debris with your bare hands and you don’t want to breathe the air in enclosed spaces because of the mold and mildew. It can and will cause serious health issues once you suck it into your lungs. Medical masks are fairly cheap, especially compared to funeral expenses.
Dispose of Debris Appropriately
At the time of this writing, it’s three weeks post-Irma and there are still huge piles of yard debris lining the streets and stacked in parking lots. Follow local ordinances and be patient. If you want to dispose of it yourself rather than wait for city or county waste companies to get to you, there are often designated drop-off areas where you can haul it to.
Typically, these drop zones are for yard debris only. Drywall, fencing, shingles, flooded household goods and furniture, or any other non-bushy stuff isn’t accepted. Check for area dumps to haul building debris to, or call your municipality to find out if they’ve made special arrangements to pick up this type of waste.
Watch your Pets
Dogs and cats just love to roll in gross stuff and eat dead things that they shouldn’t.
There’s also the danger of nails, glass, and disease (see afore-mentioned Parvo) that are dangers to your animals. Horses are at particular risk, too, because of the way that their hooves are made. A nail can easily penetrate the sole, so be sure to police the yard and turnout areas where your pets will be roaming before you let them out.
Floods cause millions of dollars of damage and lives are lost both to the rushing waters and the hazards that accompany the water, both during and after the event.
Use common sense and follow precautions set forth by your local authorities. Post-disaster really isn’t a time to ignore safety directions because if warnings are issued, you can guarantee that there’s some level of risk.
That’s why you need to stay prepared and to know how to keep you and your family safe!
Have you been through floods and have suggestions, tips, or a story you’d like to share? If so, please do so in the comments section below.
This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.
I want to be clear about something right up front: I am not condoning grand theft auto. Hot-wiring is a very useful skill, but not so you can steal cars. However, after the SHTF there could be situations where you desperately need a vehicle to escape danger, go on food and water runs, get an […]
As recently as last week, the worst mass shooting in US history was the terrorist-related incident that took place in the Pulse night club in Orlando, Florida. Forty-nine people were killed in that incident, a number dwarfed by the 58 people killed and more than 500 injured in at the Harvest Music Festival in Las Vegas on October 1st.
This was clearly a well thought out attack, carried out by Stephen Craig Paddock, a 64-year-old white man.
As of this time, little is known of the killer himself, who ended his own life before police could arrive to apprehend him.
However, the killer was not completely unknown in Las Vegas, where he has had several gambling transactions in the tens of thousands of dollars over the last few months. Whether those transactions were wins or losses, it appears that he might have been spending whatever money he had, before writing the final act of his life.
Just arranging the logistics of this attack destroys the idea of it being spontaneous or emotional. This was clearly a cold-blooded killer at his worst. It took time to accumulate the arms and ammo, then to move them into his shooting perch in order to be ready.
A few days before the attack, the killer rented a room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, which overlooked the venue for the music festival. This gave him time to move his arsenal, which consisted of over 10 rifles, into the room and prepare for the attack.
Police have not yet revealed what those rifles were, but it is possible that he had fully-automatic weapons at his disposal. How he prevented hotel employees from having an idea of what he was up to is one of the many mysteries that the police have yet to resolve.
As the festival was underway, the killer broke open his hotel windows and opened fire on the crowd of 22,000 people below. At that distance, he probably wasn’t aiming for specific targets, but rather just shooting into the crowd to see how many people he could hit. Reports from several of the people who survived the event say that the gunfire started slow, but then accelerated to the point where it sounded like a machine gun.
Video first seen on Guardian Wires.
The distance gave him another advantage as well, as anyone who was carrying concealed would be unable to fire back at him effectively. Being on the 32nd floor means that he was 320 feet above the people he was shooting at, as well as about 400 feet away from the concert venue.
It would take a trained sniper, with a pretty good rifle and scope, to hit him from that distance.
The gunman must have expended over 700 rounds in the several minutes he was firing, as that’s how many victims there were. While some of those people may not have been hit by his shots, but rather injured in the crowd’s attempts to flee the scene, there were probably also shots that didn’t hit anyone.
Additional guns and ammo were found in his home in nearby Mesquite, Nevada.
What’s the Motivation?
It is too soon to know what motivated the killer to open fire on that crowd. Police will be investigating this incident for months, trying to track down every lead and determine what was behind the attack. One of their most important tasks in that investigation will be to determine the motive of the killer.
Nevertheless, this event has several traits in common with other mass shooting events. Specifically, we have a lone gunman who has planned out the event carefully. It is yet to be revealed whether the police found any evidence of this planning in his home, but they did find additional guns and ammo, which could be an indicator.
He also seems to be somewhat of a loner, unmarried, even though he did have a live-in girlfriend. Finally, he killed himself before the police could take him into custody, something that is extremely common in mass shootings of this type.
So, even though we don’t know yet whether he had any signs of mental illness, the possibility that this was no more than another tragic mass shooting seems rather likely. Much still needs to be done to establish that, or any other motive.
But that hasn’t stopped ISIS from taking credit for it. As they have done before, they are once again saying that this was motivated by their call for lone-wolf attacks here in the USA. This alone doesn’t prove anything, as ISIS hasn’t provided any information to back up their claim.
It could be nothing more than them trying to take credit for something that they had nothing to do with, simply to make themselves seem more formidable. If so, this wouldn’t be the first time the terrorist organization made such an unfounded claim.
There has been one witness who came forth claiming that Paddock converted to Islam a few months ago. If that is true, then it would collaborate the claim by ISIS, assuming they had something to do with his conversion. They are actively trying to recruit new converts, who they immediately try to turn into murderers.
Should this be the case, it would definitely be the most effective attack that this terrorist organization has ever made on our soil. It would also be a very difficult sort of attack to counter, as our First Amendment guarantees the freedom of speech. Eliminating their ability to recruit over the internet would also hinder people’s First Amendment rights.
Democrats Jumping into Action
As always, the reactions of various groups are predictable. Democrat lawmakers are following their normal philosophy of not letting any crisis go to waste. There have already been calls for passing new legislation curtailing our Second Amendment rights.
As per usual, the proposed actions by Democrats would have done nothing to eliminate this attack, had they been in place and been perfectly enforced. But then, any “common sense” legislation they propose to deal with gun violence is the same. That’s probably because they really aren’t interested in stopping crime, but rather in disarming the population. With that as the goal, their solutions to the problem are always illogical and unfounded.
But then, everything the progressive left does is based upon emotion and not logic. They want something they can sell to their support base as a “feel good” measure. Whether or not it actually works is immaterial. If it doesn’t, they can always say that more restrictions are needed.
Hillary Clinton, who claims to have retired from politics, has given her two-cents worth as well, using this attack to condemn the Hearing Protection Act, a Republican initiative to eliminate the tight controls that currently exist on the sale of firearm suppressors. According to her “expert opinion,” more people would have been killed, if that bill had been passed.
Once again, we have a progressive liberal proving how little they know about guns. A rifle that would allow a shooter to kill at over 500 feet, as this one did, would have to fire a supersonic bullet. Suppressors, which many refer to as silencers, are not effective for supersonic rounds. Besides, once people started falling victim to the firing, it wouldn’t matter if they could hear the shots or not, people would still run from the danger, just as they did.
So, What Can be Done?
This attack presents an extremely difficult problem; both from a defensive point of view and from a legal one.
On the legal side, I wouldn’t be surprised if the shooter bought all of his firearms and ammo perfectly legally. Until we can develop a means of looking into people’s hearts and determining their future actions, there is no legal action we can take, which will eliminate their ability to do such heinous acts. Even then, the legality of such actions would be very questionable.
If the shooter did not buy his firearms legally, then the problem won’t be solved by passing more laws, at least not the ones that Democrats love to propose. Better enforcement of existing laws might help, but even then, a determined criminal will always be able to get guns. Just look at what happens in countries where guns are illegal; criminals still get their hands on guns.
What liberals really want is to repeal the laws of nature, rather than man’s laws. That’s what it would take to eliminate guns altogether; making it so that they could not work. But last I checked, no legislative body on the face of this earth has the authority to change natural laws.
On an individual basis, there is little that any of us could do to prevent being the victim of such an attack, other than to not be in such a place. Terrorists of all kinds, whether homegrown or international, prefer a “target rich environment,” where they can find the most potential victims. The only defense against that is to avoid places that would make attractive targets.
Even running is a poor defense from this sort of attack, as the killer was situated in a perch which allowed him an incredible view of his target area.
With everyone else running around to escape the venue, running would merely put you in the crowd which was being shot at. You might actually be better off staying put, allowing everyone else to run away from you and making yourself an unattractive target to go after.
I have carried concealed for years, and in this case, it would not have done me any good. There is no pistol on the market, which can shoot accurately at over 500 feet. If I were to be there and did shoot back, chances are I would end up putting a bullet through the window of someone else’s hotel room, possibly even killing them. There would be essentially no chance that I could hit the killer. For that, I would need a high-powered hunting rifle, with a good scope mounted on it.
This was a tragic event, but I doubt that it was a preventable one. As murders go, this one was just about perfect.
The only thing the killer did “wrong” was that it would be too easy to identify him. But then, he wasn’t concerned about that, as he had obviously planned on taking his own life, as the final act in this tragedy.
What you can do? Stay alert, and stay prepared!
This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.
The emotions that accompany living through a disaster then surviving the aftermath are many and complex.
Those of us who are fortunate enough to have a few limbs down or maybe lose some screens or a few roof shingles breathe a sigh of relief, but then feel unnecessarily guilty because we got lucky while our neighbors a few streets over are without power or lost belongings due to flooding, or had a tree fall in their car.
Even if we’re without power, many of us would rather stay in our own homes rather than go stay with a friend, especially if it’s a long-term thing.
Part of that is because home is home. All of your stuff is there and it’s still your sanctuary, even if it’s dark and hot. Part of it is also to protect your property. Unfortunately, the vultures circle after disasters and if they know that a household has evacuated, then the home is fair game for looting.
So, the alternative to imposing on friends – even if they don’t feel that you’re imposing – and leaving your belongings unprotected is staying in your home.
We have a laugh-or-cry joke that our houses turn into giant tents or RVs after a storm and we’re camping in our homes.
And that’s seriously, literally what we’re doing. There’s no power, which means there’s no lights, no air conditioning, no technology, no hot showers, no refrigeration, and often no stove because most stoves here are electric.
The main difference is that we still have our beds, there aren’t as many bugs, and the toilet almost always works. That’s about it.
So, how do you live in a house that’s been turned into a large tent? You take a deep breath, be thankful you still have a house to camp in, find shortcuts and you need to know how to do it safely.
I probably don’t have to stress the importance of preparation in general, but I will share some details that I’ve learned from experience.
First, don’t wait till the last minute. Ideally, you should have most, if not all, of everything that you need stockpiled. If you don’t, get your rear to the store as soon as you hear the first whisper of impending disaster. If you wait, you’ll be too late.
Now, you probably think that if you have water, canned soups, and maybe ice stocked back, you’ll be fine. Well, yeah, but you don’t need to live that rustically.
Stock up on regular items, too. Chips, juice, a pack or two of Oreos, and maybe a case of beer or a couple of bottles of wine if that’s your thing.
Those types of comfort items make a bad situation a little more comfortable—not that I’m suggesting you drink yourself silly during a hurricane when you’re going to need your wits about you, but you may want to have a beer with dinner after the hurricane, when you’re grilling the stuff from your freezer, and the stores may not have any.
Here are a few more items to stockpile:
- Gasoline for generators and all vehicles
- Propane for the grill
- A generator will make your life a thousand times easier. You don’t appreciate a fridge and fan till you don’t have them
- Comfort foods such as chips
- Canned soups, canned fruits, and other foods that require minimal preparation and no refrigeration
- Board games
- Ice – frozen jugs full of water
- Hand sanitizer
- Batteries for your flashlights and games
- Jar candles or tea light candles – they burn for a few hours and if you drop them in a heat-proof jar, you get quite a bit of light with minimal heat.
- Matches and/or lighters
- Cold/hot neck wraps
- Baby wipes
- Water, sports drinks, instant coffee/tea
- Lighter fluid
- A large cooler
- Extension cord to run outside to the generator
You’ll be surprised how much the items on this list will come in handy and will mke your life easier if you have to essentially camp in your own house.
Don’t Mess with Power Lines
It never fails that at least one person dies after a storm because they don’t heed his warning. Power Lines carry more than enough juice to kill you. Even if they’re dead, if your chainsaw accidentally hits on one, it can kick back and kill you.
As a matter of fact, this just happened during hurricane Irma. A guy was on a ladder trimming limbs off the power line, and his chainsaw snagged, hit the wire, kicked back up, and hit him in the neck. Completely horrible, and needless, way to die.
If the wires are down, assume they’re hot and stay away from them. Move animals if you need to so that they won’t get hurt either by the wire or the downed limbs and debris.
Don’t Use Grills or Generators Inside
There were four fatalities in my area because people were running their generators inside the house and died from carbon monoxide poisoning.
Running a generator in the house, even if it’s well-ventilated, is akin to sitting in your car in the garage, with a tube running from the exhaust to the cracked window. Seriously. A generator should always be at least 15 feet away from the house – thus the extension cords on the list above.
Grills pose a double hazard if you use them in the house – you’re breathing the smoke and gas/lighter fluid fumes, and you’re also running the risk of burning your house down. That’s certainly an instance of going from bad to worse! Seriously though, keep the grills – whether they’re little camp grills or full-sized outdoor grills where they belong – outside!
Here are some alternative methods to cooking without power that may be better for you.
Keep Your Food Cold
Food poisoning would most certainly make urban camping life miserable, especially if it gets so bad that you need to go to a hospital that you can’t reach or that is likely already inundated with disaster-related illnesses and injuries in addition to its standard load. Keeping your food at a safe temperature will go a long way toward helping keep you well.
There’s a saying in the food industry – keep your hot food hot and your cold food cold. It’s pretty self-explanatory, except for one are that many people overlook, especially when camping, urban or otherwise. That’s what to do with food after you’ve already cooked it.
It’s tempting to leave food out for several hours, especially when you have limited cooler or fridge space, but in order to close that room-temperature window of time when illness-causing bacteria likes to grow, get it cold again within two hours of cooking, or one hour if it’s over 90 degrees where the food is sitting.
Here’s a cool way to make a refrigeration unit with clay pots.
Now, to reduce the chance of raw food spoiling and making you sick, here are some suggestions:
- Keep meats separate from all other foods, and keep fowl away from red meat to prevent the spread of salmonella
- Don’t let your food float in ice water in the cooler.
- Once the ice has melted and the water in your cooler is no longer icy cold, dump it. It’s now a cesspool for bacteria. Use it to flush the commode.
- Cook thawed meats within a couple hours after they’ve reached room temperature if you don’t have a source of refrigeration or within a few days if you’ve kept them cold. Watch for signs of spoilage such as smell, discoloration, or sliminess.
- If your meat thaws, don’t just wait for it to go bad. Cook it up – that will buy you a couple of extra days if you can refrigerate it afterwards. If you have too much to eat by yourself, give it to a neighbor or somebody else that’s in need. I promise you that for many folks, a hamburger or a piece of real chicken will taste magnificent if they’ve been living on canned food for three days. Whatever you do, don’t waste it if you can avoid it.
Clean Up Flood Waters
Rule number one in staying healthy while you’re urban camping. If your place was flooded, clean it up. Seriously – flood waters are cesspools for disease.
Scrub everything that you can with hot, soapy water and disinfect with bleach. Especially if your power is off, mold and mildew that can damage everything from your respiratory system to your heart and nervous system will start to grow within just a couple of days. The first thing you need to do is clean up any flood waters. Afterward, wash your hands.
Be Careful with Open Fires
Cooking on an open fire or even having a burn pile to clean up the yard can turn catastrophic quickly. Within just a few days after falling, tree leaves and limbs are excellent tinder, regardless of whether it’s roasting outside or freezing, and a stray ash or spark can turn into an inferno in the blink of an eye.
Be even more careful with outdoor fires than you normally would because you may be existing in perfect-storm circumstances – plenty of dry fuel and a team of first responders that are stretched beyond their limits.
There are several different ways to cook when the power is out, so fire may not be your best option. If it is, be careful.
Maintain Personal Hygiene and a Clean Living Space
As with any SHTF scenario, hygiene is a must. If you have no restroom, make sure that your modified one is in an area that isn’t going to affect your food and water supply or stink up the area where you’re going to be living.
Also, wash your hands frequently (hand sanitizer is awesome in this situation) and keep counters and other areas where food may come into contact clean. Dispose of food waste far away from the house.
Urban camping isn’t going to be a walk in the park, but you can make it as comfortable as possible by avoiding sickness and making the best of things.
Maintaining a positive morale is every bit as critical as maintaining a healthy body – when you start to feel sorry for yourself, or angry, think about the family of the man who died in the chainsaw accident, the family who lost their home, and the small businesses that sustained catastrophic damage to inventory or storefront.
Things could always be worse; at least you have a house to “urban camp” in and friends and family who are healthy enough to be so cranky due to the circumstances that you want to smack them.
It may be tough, but you’ll get over it. And that’s all that matters in the end – everything else is just stuff.
If you’ve lived through a situation that required urban camping and have some hints and tips to share please do so in the comments section below.
This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.
You can go several days without food, but going without water for more than a day isn’t an option. Especially if the disaster destroyed your home or took out your power, you’ll fade fast after twenty-four hours.
Your judgement and cognitive processes will be compromised and your energy will flag. Then after a few days, your organs will shut down and you’ll die.
It’s as simple as that. If your disaster involves extremes of temperature of the need to stay on the move, your window is even shorter.
So what do you do to stay hydrated when you’re in a disaster?
Prepare in Advance!
I can tell you from personal experience (I live in Orlando, Florida) that if a major weather event is announced, people lose their minds. Many of them quite literally buy 15 or 20 cases of water that they won’t need but that makes it impossible for you to buy a single case.
Of course, after the emergency is past, they’ll return it all en mass (seriously – I’m writing this immediately post-hurricane and it’s happening as I type). But that won’t do you any good for the days that you may be out of power.
So, it all goes back to being prepared before the emergency is upon you. Most everybody drinks bottled water so keep a couple of cases around. Restock as you use it then you don’t have to worry about that dingbat that believes the sky is falling and she needs 15 cases of water and 40 cans of tuna.
Gallons of water are dirt cheap, too, and you can get more water into the same space as a case would consume.
If you don’t have enough stocked back to allot a gallon per person per day in case you lose power or something else interrupts your access to water, get it in gear. As soon as you hear the first whisper of a significant weather event, go shopping.
Please, though, buy what you need, but don’t be ridiculous about it. A gallon of drinking water per person per day is enough for hydration and minimal personal needs such as brushing your teeth or cooking a can of condensed soup.
When calculating your water needs, take extreme weather into account. If your power is out and you don’t have air conditioning – or heat – your body will need more water to stay hydrated. In the heat, you’ll sweat it out. So include at least an additional 8 ounces, and 16 are better.
If you’re going to be working hard and sweating profusely, allow an extra 36 ounces. As a baseline to determine your water needs if you’re inside and not sweating it out, divide your body weight in half and that’s the number of ounces your body needs. If you need to trim it back a little, that’s fine for a short time. But don’t cut it back by much.
You Don’t Need Bottled Water
If you don’t have the space to stockpile enough water on a regular basis, or you just got caught unprepared, then chances are good that you’ll be facing empty shelves at the store.
I personally always keep a couple of cases of water around just because we go through it, but when that a hurricane is heading our way, I stockpile tap water in milk jugs.
I don’t recommend storing water in milk jugs long-term because the plastic is thin and easy to puncture, but for the short-term, they’re great. There’s nothing wrong with faucet water in the case of emergency, and it won’t cost you anything over your regular water bill.
The same thing goes for ice. Most of us are big fans of multi-purpose products, so once you fill up your jugs with water, pop them in the freezer. Then you’ll have ice and drinking water in the same container, and solid blocks of ice melt much slower than smaller cubes.
One water need that many people don’t consider is having enough to flush the toilet. After a few days in 90-degree weather, an unflushed toilet gets foul and can actually be a health hazard.
So what do you do? Fill up the bathtub before the storm! That water will even work for drinking water if need be, or can be used for personal hygiene or washing the dishes before you use it to flush the commode.
Consider Alternate Hydration Methods
It’s always the water that people rush to snatch off the shelves, but it’s not your only option for proper hydration.
It’s most certainly the best, but it’s not the only option. You can use sports drinks – not energy drinks! – to meet some of your hydration needs.
You can also use sparkling water, seltzer water, mineral water, or club soda because they’re just different forms of carbonated water.
Club soda usually has small amounts of table salt, potassium bicarbonate, or sodium bicarbonate to add a slightly salty flavor. It always surprises me when I see the water shelves cleared off but the club soda is still well-stocked.
Other comparable substitutes for part of your water needs are tea and coffee, but they’re diuretics, so don’t substitute more than a cup or two and go for.
Coconut water is also an excellent substitute – maybe even better for water for hydration. A note of warning for those of you who haven’t had coconut water: it’s an acquired taste and it doesn’t taste like coconut.
Sports drinks and club soda may be most effective following physical exertion because your body has just expelled minerals as well as water and these drinks are specifically designed to replace what you lost.
You may not consider it, but pre-made Jell-O is also hydrating but it’s also full of sugar, so tread carefully.
Adhere to Water Advisories
If you’re on city water, you probably won’t lose water, but that doesn’t mean it’s safe to drink. Main lines break or flood water breeches them somewhere along the way and contaminate it so pay special attention to local official warnings to boil water.
If you’re on a well, it’s always best to assume the worst and boil your water for at least a minute before you drink it. Sanitation tablets also work, but you need to let the water sit for an hour or so in order to give the sanitizing solution time to work.
This isn’t just a matter of being cautious – it may actually mean the difference between being healthy and being sick. In another article, I discussed the dangers of post-disaster contaminated water, but to summarize, the bugs that contaminate your water often cause diarrhea or vomiting – both of which contribute to rapid dehydration.
So, your drink water to hydrate and it’s swimming with bacteria that make you lose hydration. Boil and sanitize your water if there’s any doubt whatsoever about its cleanliness.
And whatever you do, don’t drink from springs, ponds, or rivers without purifying and sanitizing it first.
Water isn’t optional regardless of your situation. If you need to ration, do so, but make sure that you’re getting at least the minimal amount to keep you going. You can skimp on food to a certain extent, but water isn’t an area where you can really do that.
Prepare in advance and follow safety precautions after a disaster!
As we all know, the best way to avoid being caught without what you need is to be prepared well in advance so that you don’t have to beat the neighbors to a limited water supply.
This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.
Imagine you’re driving your car through the city on a typical day. You take a turn, and suddenly find yourself surrounded by a rioting mass of protesters. Would you be able to escape them safely? Riots are much more dangerous than many people think. If you find yourself surrounded by a mob of angry people, […]
It’s no news to preppers that keeping your home safe is important. We’ve got that part down. What’s a little more tricky is knowing which home security improvements are the most important for you to do, so you don’t end up spending money buffing up security in areas that are perfectly fine, and accidentally overlooking […]
This is just the start of the post What Are the Most Important Home Security Improvements to Make?. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
What Are the Most Important Home Security Improvements to Make?, written by Elise Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
There’s a lot of survival info out there on bug out preparation. Even FEMA has directives on evacuations. But that didn’t stop the recent hurricane disasters from destroying the best laid bug out plans and killing people in the process.
The problem is, everything you thought you knew about SHTF bugging out is probably WRONG! As Mike Tyson once paraphrased from an original historic quote, ‘Everybody has a plan…until they get punched in the face’.
With more potential weather disasters still threatening to thrash lives and properties by smacking down mercilessly on the South East Coast during the height of ‘hurricane season’, here’s how NOT to die during the bug out itself…
Don’t Rely on Government Orders
These recent Harvey and Irma hurricane disasters caused the end of the world as they knew it for so many unfortunate people in the aftermath, and were among the strangest storms in meteorology annals, but these were not the worst or deadliest coastal storms in history.
In the 1900’s, the best weather forecasting usually relied upon how much your joints ached and what you noticed when you looked out your window about as far as your eyes could see. There was no real warning in Texas when a Cat 4 hurricane blasted in with a storm surge that made landfall at Galveston, and took enough people by surprise to kill upwards of 8 thousand before they could escape.
In later years, local governments began to develop evacuation plans and emergency backup procedures for public safety by relying on modern weather prediction science to eliminate the element of surprise.
However, as usual, the government eventually botched up these strategies as well. When Rita thundered down to Texas in 2005 at a brutal category five level, the governor’s office issued mandatory immediate evacuation orders when it was all but too late for the greater Houston metropolis.
Over 113 people died and numerous injured when all was said and done, but the problem was that almost 100 of them were killed in the evacuation itself! Imagine trying desperately to survive but winding up driving in your own funeral procession?
Rita was such a gruesome bug out debacle that this time, during Harvey’s recent retro two step storm stomp on Houston, the authorities -and I use that term with visceral scorn- decided to ultimately leave it up to the individual citizen’s discretion to bug out, or not.
Houston officials made excuses, but the real reason they copped out was so that they could not repeat Rita’s flawed decision making mistake and be blamed for screwing up, if anything went wrong, Which, of course, could detrimentally affect future political stature.
The fact I’m going to try to get everyone reading this to accept is that you simply cannot depend on government information or timely help, especially in a serious evacuation scenario. They can’t even get in urgent supplies and relief effort moving fast enough because of all the ‘red tape’. Private volunteer first responders are doing most of the heavy helping at this point in time.
Video first seen on News Today.
The Government is Not Here to Help
The truth about the government being ‘here to help’ is one of the dirtiest secrets in the great American Book of Secrets. The gruesome reality is that you are worth more to the Government DEAD, than alive. Especially if the IRS doesn’t make a lot of tax dollars off of you. In fact, you’re a spreadsheet liability if you’re on welfare, food stamps, or some other socialist dole program.
The bottom line revenue math is all the Govt really cares about. So between estate taxes and getting you off social security and medicare and you no longer using what clean air and water we have left in a government polluted world after you die…well, you get the graveyard picture?
The government’s sole (certainly not to be confused with ‘soul’ because they don’t have one) purpose in any major emergency is only twofold.
First preserve the safety of their own power elite entity, and then only make decisions that prioritize the strength of their political power base. This is the only reason that FEMA exists. On the surface, it appears to be a governmental humanitarian organization to really help the people for the benefit of nanny state propaganda.
But its primary function is to protect the government power elite during emergencies by controlling the masses or incarcerating them in the camps if necessary, to prevent the formation of strong enclaves of anti-government resistance due to an epiphany in realization that the government is mostly part of the problem, and not the solution.
All totalitarian dictatorship countries around the world have similar methodology backed by military force. Government FEMA evacuations should be the LAST resort for any knowledgeable well-prepared prepper. Because virtually all government sponsored evacuations are too little too late and amount to nothing more than another catastrophe in the making.
So first and foremost, your bug out success depends only upon your own plans and self-reliance skills. Forget about shelters or counting on neighbors being a good bet in any grand scale emergency. There are many media suppressed horror stories about the way these stockyard emergency shelters wind up in almost all cases.
During Katrina, these shelters were virtual prison dormitories that got so bad that security guards fled these sites that then turned into hell camps of violence, crime, rape, and death.
There’s some anecdotal evidence, but hard documented facts are long covered up by now, that one of the reasons there was a gun confiscation orders during Katrina were so that looting wars wouldn’t cause so much carnage that unfavorable mainstream media coverage would be bad for government business.
Never mind that the regular citizens would also be disarmed and at the mercy of violent criminals who still got their hands-on guns because they stole them from homes and people before the police did.
In emergency survival preparations, no ‘one plan fits all’. There are some basics, but generally plans vary and adapt according the demographics, area climate, magnitude and types of disasters. So we have some apostasy and schisms among preppers. We can have either ‘bugging out’ or ‘bugging in’, also known as ‘surviving in place’, for the same emergency.
To me and many other experts, ‘surviving in place’ is a euphemism for soiling all your clean underwear while waiting in sheer terror to see if you die or not.
The Nitty Gritty Dirt Bug Out
There’s an interesting clash of aphorisms many of us learned coming up in life that our parents and teachers would mentor. You remember, ‘the early bird always gets the worm’. And my favorite, the legendary race between the ‘Hare and the Tortoise’, both of which are nothing as they seem.
The ‘early bird’ metaphor was really designed to get everybody up early enough to put in a long, hard day’s work as in ‘make hey while the sun shines’ so the government can milk more taxes out of you.
But the rabbit and the turtle race was nothing less than the power elite brainwashing you into believing that ‘slowly but surely’ was the best way to go in life. All the while the wealthy power elite was moving as fast as they could in life to take advantage of the most beneficial, but sparse, opportunities as soon as possible…while the rest of the masses of dumb asses would ‘snooze, and ya lose’.
It’s the same thing with bugging out. First know that despite the other placating but specious notion that prepping for ‘surviving in place’ would be a good alternative to bugging out has a lot of alternative following, however, it is simply wrong and stupid in most cases, and almost suicidal in some of the serious disasters like we’ve seen.
I realize too well that not everyone can bug out easily, or even at all. The critically injured, very elderly, or mobility disabled and travel disadvantaged come to mind first.
But if they reach out and develop a serious plan, way BEFORE the bad events so that they are prepared, it is not impossible for disabled persons to safely bug out. In fact, the strategy I’m about to reveal will accommodate the solution to a minimum amount of stress and danger and a maximum level of success.
Get Out of Dodge Way Before the Gunfight Starts
Think ‘fast, but not furious’. In these recent hurricane predicaments, the government’s entire emergency early warning weather system is ‘bass ackward’. They start off with a good advanced catch of a potential storm disaster-sometimes several days in advance, which allows plenty of time for safe evacuations and preparation, but this never happens!
What does happen to most people instead is a common syndrome that in my experienced opinion is sponsored by the ignorant control freak government disaster authorities, and contributes to the problems that reduce your chances of a successful evacuation. It’s called imminent fear induced procrastination.
They keep everybody focused on the track of the storm, like a gambler at a poker game of death, intently studying the other players, waiting to bet their lives on getting the winning hand, hoping that their luck changes on the odds that a hurricane hand can change dramatically at the last minute…
This causes a feeding frenzy to clean out the local food stores so they have enough to stuff down their pie holes as they stay superglued to their TV or computer screen, waiting for the metal monster truck to splat them like a paintball, when they could already be safe and sound someplace else.
This creates a mentality that ‘well, maybe it won’t hit us directly and we don’t have to do anything but have a few beers to calm down, while we wait it out?’ Or, ‘maybe it just won’t be so bad’?
Which wastes valuable time better spent hightailing it out on the road not yet critically infested with boiling road raging bumper to bumper traffic crawling slower and slower until…it grinds to dreadful stop. And now you’re trapped. In a potentially worse situation than had you at least prepared well to survive in place and not evacuated at all.
And then panic will set in. But again, the virtual reality is that almost everyone–with the exception of highly trained professional responders or experienced military operators–always panics. It’s unnatural not to panic in such terrifying life threatening SHTF situations.
But the simple procedures we’ll show you here will guarantee a much less stressful and safer alternative.
So the number one message here is don’t prepare for the evacuation by primarily planning to ride out the storm in place. This is only for persons whose original plan to bug out failed because for some insane reason they didn’t read this information and somehow couldn’t get out in time and/or then had no other choice.
And also, don’t just wait for the Govt holy decree telling to ‘get on your mark, get set, GO!’ and then proceed like the obedient lil’ doggies’ who then all at once get whipped along by the police cowboys, to join the vast growing herd of panic driven cattle heading for their last roundup, at the last most dangerous minute to FEMA CAMP corrals.
Instead, prepare to BEAT the storm AND the evacuation! In other words…
“The only sure way to not be a disaster victim is to NOT be there when the disaster happens!”
The Best Way to Bug Out
1. Have a Bug Out Location (BOL) in Advance
No serious self-reliant prepper should be without one, especially if you live in a major city or other very disaster-prone area. The best option, of course, would be to be already living in a safe rural area with well-prepared survival set up at your home.
The second would be a 2nd home or cabin somewhere more secluded that’s stocked and ready. The next option would be to have a safe, relatively remote, piece of empty land to pull your BOT (Bug Out Trailer) to and set up for a long-term stay.
Next have a small BOT packed and ready to rock at a moment’s hook up at your residence, and a designated BOL like a public camp ground or something to rent or go to for an extended set up in advance.
After that, well, improvise as best as you can. If you don’t have a trailer, you can be surprised what you can fit in a truck, minivan, or even a compact car for extended camping at safer location. If you have a good friend or relative in a safe location, that could work out well.
The idea is to know where you’re going, and be ready as best you can to move out immediately after you make your own decision to ‘go’.
2. Don’t Overplan the Escape Trip Itself
I see so many Bug Out Preps that are a waste of time. Bugging out is simply going from one place to another to avoid serious catastrophe. You don’t need to hire a semi-tractor truck moving van to take everything but the kitchen sink.
The critical point is not so much ‘How’ you do it, But ‘When’. If you leave early enough and know your best route to destination, you don’t need five alternative routes which will be just as dangerously congested as a main one if you leave too late.
The idea is leave early enough so that your Bug Out resembles more of an anytime weekend getaway drive to the country! No stress, no shutdowns, plenty of gas along the way, and so on. If you leave early enough you can probably stop for dinner before you reach your BOL! You don’t need extensive prepping or a plan B, C, or D, if you have a good plan A.
3. When to Move Out!
And that’s the critical analysis. The short answer is that ideally, if there’s any chance at all that a hurricane will affect your residence, you want to be sitting and watching the weather radar on your TV at your Bug Out Location while the storm is still off far enough off the coastline.
In other words, If I lived in Florida near the ocean in the path of hurricane Maria AND it was aiming directly at my town, and just saw what it did to Puerto Rico early this morning, I’d ignore the weather reports hoping that Jose would somehow deflect Maria’s landfall.
By now I’d already be about six hours into my bug out, calmly cruising across the Northern Florida State line, blowing kisses and waving the bird at all those hungry gators and snakes, at the normal speed limit. I’d be heading further inland to a safe location where I’d be sitting in front of the TV safely and comfortably, watching all the destruction and praying for the poor souls who didn’t make it out in time.
It’s always better to be safe than sorry. You can always come back if it missed your area. But if you check in to Hurricane Hotel by trying to ‘survive in place’, you might just never check out?
Video first seen on Dane Wigington.
It surprises me that so many don’t quite grasp the fact that major metropolitan areas will always be a death trap in apocalyptic scenarios.
They will rapidly breed everything from scarcity of every necessary life sustaining essential, to neverending disasters from criminal anarchy, to disease by unsanitary conditions, such as are now happening in Florida, to intense, systematic looting and murdering.
That’s why having a well thought out BOL is so important. Sure, you don’t need one way up in mountainous no man’s land just to escape and hole up from coastal storms, a couple hundred miles inland on elevated terrain would work for that. But it would be more prudent to put in a little more effort, and have a BOL that fits all or at least most catastrophic events. Maybe a group effort with family and friends to minimize cost?
The big cities and most of the smaller ones will be uninhabitable if the so-called long overdue massive power outage, total economic collapse, nuclear war, or out of control plague or pandemic hit us.
Bugging out, smartly, and sooner rather than later, is the ‘only way to go’!
This article has been written by Mahatma Muhjesbude for Survivopedia.
The recent one-two punch of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma have left the country reeling, as any such event does.
But this time, it wasn’t just one such event that struck the country, but two, with a mere eight days between the end of one and landfall of the next. Never before in our nation’s history, has there been so much destruction wrought in such a short amount of time.
In the past, natural disasters of this magnitude have become watershed moments for various presidents.
When Hurricane Katrina nailed New Orleans and the Gulf Coast in 2005, President Bush was lambasted thoroughly in the press for the poor response. Granted, not all of that poor response was his fault or even his administrations. But it happened on his watch, so he got the blame.
Specifically, Bush was blamed because it took three days for any government response to arrive in New Orleans. That’s enough time for people to start dying from the lack of adequate shelter and clean drinking water. Part of that delay was caused by the difficulty of getting through the deadfall trees on the highways, but the biggest part was that FEMA couldn’t move, until the state Governor declared a state of emergency.
The poor press generated by Hurricane Katrina stuck with President Bush until the end of his presidency. It’s even been said that the bad press that Bush received from Hurricane Katrina had a part in President Obama winning the election in November of 2008, as McCain was tainted by simply being in the same political party as Bush.
Seven years after Katrina, Superstorm Sandy, the conflux of two hurricanes, struck the New Jersey seashore, once again destroying homes and leaving people without the basic necessities of life. As with Katriana, FEMA was slow getting their act together; but this time, it couldn’t be blamed on the state’s governor. Rather, it simply demonstrated how inefficient FMEA is.
There are many examples of this, most notably the fact that they didn’t put out requests for bids until two days after the hurricane hit the coast. Considering that the National Hurricane Center had been tracking the storm since it formed off the West-African coast, that was inexcusable.
But the media hushed that up. In fact, President Obama didn’t receive any bad press in the national media.
However, that’s not to say that Hurricane Sandy had no affect on Obama’s presidency; it did. In fact, it had a huge affect. Days before the hurricane hit, Obama was running severely behind in the polls.
But Hurricane Sandy changed all that. Hitting just over a week before the elections, it allowed Obama to look good, as he authorized relief efforts and financial aid to the victims, as well as visiting the area to show his support and concern.
In both cases:
- The sitting presidents sent aid, petitioned Congress for disaster relief funds, gave speeches and visited the afflicted areas, although Bush delayed his visit to avoid getting in way of relief efforts.
- People were displaced from their homes, lost property and in some cases lost their lives.
- Thousands of homes were without electric power, in some cases for as long as seven weeks.
- FEMA’s efforts at bringing disaster relief were slow and poorly managed. They apparently hadn’t learned much in the intervening seven years.
- People were digging in dumpsters, trying to find something to eat.
But in one case, the sitting president came out smelling like a rose and in the other, like he had fallen in a septic tank.
What Was the Difference?
The difference was how the media handled the event.
Hurricanes are a big visual event for the media, with lots of good footage and pictures of flooding, general destruction, families in refugee centers and relief workers. People all over the nation are concerned and interested, so they can count on lots of viewers tuning in to see their “exclusive coverage.”
As such, it’s a major opportunity for politicians to make political hay. They get to stand in front of the cameras, talking about how bad it is, how much they support the victims and how much they are personally doing to get those people help.
Spending authorization bills get lots of “pork” projects attached to them, because nobody would dare vote against relief for the victims. For politicians with the right media connections, disasters are a great opportunity all around, too bad about those people who got hurt and lost their homes.
Since the media hated Bush, both for being a Republican and personally, they did everything they could to make him look bad in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. But Obama was their fair-haired boy and he could do no wrong in their eyes.
So, as they did throughout his presidency and even during the campaign, they simply ignored anything that might make him look bad, refusing to report it. That left them with lots of good shots of President Obama looking concerned.
Since reality in the 21st Century is defined by televisions, computer monitors and handheld devices, all that most people know, is what the media tells them. This gives the media a huge amount of influence over society, influence that they use for the political benefit of their masters.
With the mainstream media totally sold out to the progressive-liberal left, what the low-information voters are receiving is political propaganda, not anything that even resembles the truth. Fake news has taken over, and the purveyors of that fake news have an agenda that they are trying to fulfill. It doesn’t matter how much they loudly and publically proclaim their innocence and lack of bias, it’s all a lie.
So, How Does this Affect Trump?
Enter President Donald Trump, a true enemy of the media. Trump’s war with the mainstream media has become famous, with neither side backing down. The mainstream media had thrown all their weight behind Hillary Clinton in the presidential race and they lost. Like the rest of those on the left, they don’t know how to handle that, so they’ve doubled down, attacking Trump at every turn.
When Donald Trump and his wife went to Houston, to see the damage and relief efforts for themselves, the media freaked out about the First Lady’s high heel shoes, accusing her of being “out of touch” with the victims, by wearing high heels to go to a flooded region of the country. Of course, they didn’t say anything when she got off of Air Force One, wearing a sensible pair of sneakers. Oops.
You would think that even the media would learn from a mistake like that, but they didn’t.
A few days later, when the Trumps went back to Houston again, we were treated to an instant replay, as the mainstream media once again started a Twitter firestorm about Melania getting on board Air Force One in heels. As with the first time, there was nothing that even vaguely resembled a retraction or apology when she once again got off the airplane in tennies.
That’s it. That’s the coverage that the media gave Donald Trump from Hurricane Harvey. There was nothing about FEMA and their relief efforts. Nothing about Trump’s request for billions in relief funds. There wasn’t even any photos about Trump and his wife helping out at a relief center.
Not even a word about Trump giving one million dollars of his own money to help Hurricane Harvey victims. Rather, they pushed a photo showing Obama feeding the hungry in a shelter, claiming that it was hurricane relief, when it wasn’t.
Such is the objectivity of the media today. Their whole purpose is to make Democrats look good and Republicans look bad. To do so, they hide any good news about Republicans and hide any bad news about Democrats.
Of course, they’re talking into an echo chamber, repeating the same things over and over again; telling their audience how bad Republicans are. But who is that audience? The low-information voters who don’t bother researching anything for themselves and merely repeat whatever Democrat talking points the media tells them to believe.
They apparently haven’t learned yet. Bashing Republicans isn’t going to win them any elections. The Democrat Party doesn’t even have a message anymore. Their supposed “message” is to talk about how bad they think Trump is, based purely on the name calling they’ve been doing. As if name calling is any sort of evidence. Yet apparently they think it is.
But it Doesn’t Stop There!
It’s bad enough to have the mainstream media giving a false narrative and convincing the low-information voters that Trump and the Republican party are bad. But that’s just the foundation level of what they’re doing.
From there it gets even more interesting. Conspiracy theories don’t just exist in the far right of the political spectrum, the far left has their own collection of conspiracy theorists at work.
According to this group of pseudo-scientists and pseudo-political theorists, Hurricanes Harvey and Irma are Donald Trump’s fault. Yes folks, our president apparently hates the American people so much, that he’s intentionally trying to ruin their lives and even kill them. He is doing this by hand-crafting hurricanes out of thin air.
One theory holds that Donald Trump ordered cloud seeding to create the hurricanes, using some ultra-secret magic dust, that they can sprinkle in clouds, causing any sort of natural disaster they want.
Cloud seeding does apparently exist, and it’s been done to cause rain during a drought. But there’s a huge difference between causing a little rain to fall on some farmlands, and creating a storm that’s 400 miles across and has winds in excess of 150 miles per hour.
Then there’s the theory of hurricanes being caused by global warming, or “climate change” as it’s called now. The global warming narrative has been debunked so many times now, that it’s not even funny. Yet there are still lots of people who stick to that story, saying that the rest of us are criminal for not accepting “settled science.” Settled? It’s only settled in their warped minds.
Once again, we can go back to the Mayans to disprove that pseudo-science. If global warming caused hurricanes, how could there have been hurricanes in Mesoamerica over 1,000 years ago? How could those hurricanes have continued to exist through the mini ice-age?
Yet the global warming crowd is trying to blame Trump for these hurricanes; not for anything he’s done, which created more warming; but rather for pulling the US out of the Paris accord. Apparently, pulling out of an agreement that wasn’t going to make any discernible difference anyway is enough to cause hurricanes to start attacking our country. I never knew nature could read.
The cause of hurricanes is known. While we are powerless to do anything to stop it, we can see from the recent hurricane activity that the National Hurricane Center is good at predicting the actions of these hurricanes and warning people of what is to come.
No matter how much pseudo-science they invent to try and pin them on Donald Trump, it’s not going to work. The only people who will believe them are those that already hate Trump and are looking for whatever excuse they can find to talk about how bad he is.
Whatever they do and say on politics, you need to be prepared and expect the worse!
This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.
Ezekiel 4:2 – Then lay siege to it: Erect siege works against it, build a ramp up to it, set up camps against it and put battering rams around it. History Walls were used to protect societies for a very long time. Uruk in Mesopotamia was one of the earliest examples of fortified walls that […]
During a natural disaster, you may be forced to evacuate your home, and told to shut off your gas, water and electricity. Let’s hope you know how to do it. If you don’t here are some instructions!
You have to love autumn. The leaves are changing, the air is cooling down, and the joy of the holiday season is right around the corner.
Fall is also a time to do your canning in preparation for winter. Now, if you live on a farm, you have to harvest what you have and can it, but if you’re an urban prepper who has to buy produce, then you have to plan a little better.
Unlike a farm garden that likely provides months, if not years, of food, urban preppers have to decide how much food will be necessary to get through the winter.
Then they have to decide how much you need to can based on how much space you have, how much money you have to spend on produce, how much time you have, and how much you want to invest in store-bought goods.
Then of course, you have to figure out what’s available.
So, let’s talk a little about what you need to do to optimize your fall canning plan.
Determine What’s Available
This is the first step that you need to take before making any kind of plans at all. Are you planning on making blueberry pie filling or strawberry jam? If so, you’re out of luck if you’re planning on sourcing your produce locally. Both of those are spring and summer crops and are already done for the season.
Blueberries peak in the spring in Florida, so I can’t find them locally now. Even though strawberries grow in some places as late as November, they’re a summer fruit and peak season for them is May and June, so you may have problems finding them locally. My point is to keep an eye on the seasons for the produce that you want to can.
As awesome as it would be to have unlimited space to store canned goods and unlimited funds to buy the produce, that’s not the reality for most of us. So, we have to decide what you want to can and what you’re willing to buy.
I would suggest making a list of foods that you eat the most during the winter months. Spaghetti, salsa, jalapeno peppers, pickles, vegetable or vegetable beef soup. Apple pies, apple sauce, strawberry jelly. Green beans, chili. Choose what you eat the most. Then decide how often you eat them.
Say you eat spaghetti once a week and there are four people in your family. You need at least a pint, if not a quart, or sauce for each time. It’s easy to figure – do you use the whole jar of Prego when you make spaghetti? If so, you use a quart.
Now, knowing that, go through and organize the foods you eat the most and figure out how much of them you need to get you through three months, six months, and a year.
Now that you know that eat a quart of spaghetti sauce a week, that’s four a month, which means 12 quarts in 3 months, 24 quarts in 6 months, and 48 quarts in a year. Remember that this is planning to eat it every single week. If there’s a pretty decent likelihood that you’ll skip a week here and there, then dial those numbers back by a few jars.
Now do the same with each of your top foods. And don’t forget the apple pie filling. As a matter of fact, include enough to give away few jars at Christmas! J
After you know what and how much you eat, it’s time to do a space analysis. Do you have enough space to store all of that for the amount of time that you want to cover? If not, it’s time to do two things. First, pick the ones that you absolutely want to can.
Maybe you have a favorite peach crisp recipe and store-bought peaches just won’t do. Nor, for that matter, is it easy to find canned peach pie filling. You have to buy canned peaches and it’s just not the same. Maybe you can’t stand the taste of mushy store-bought green beans. Put these must-have items at the top of your list.
Now that you’ve pared down the list, you have two options. You can make enough of those favorite items to get you through till next fall, or you can pick some items off of the non-must-have list to fill in some spaces to get you through a shorter time period. This is a good plan if you’re stocking up for a set amount of time, for instance, you want to have three months of food stockpiled.
Finally, you need to go through the non-essential list and decide which items are cheaper to buy at the store. I do love home-canned green beans, but unless they’re on your must-have list, I’d buy them at the store. It’s cheaper, especially if you use coupons, and it’s more efficient for you. It leaves you time to peel all those apples or blanch the tomatoes.
That’s one of the primary skills that you need to develop as an urban prepper – the value of store-bought over home-canned. You have limited space and, unfortunately, can’t grow thirty tomato plants for $20 like a rural prepper can so you have to take cost into consideration. That’s going to vary by location; for instance, I can buy cheap citrus fruits and strawberries dirt cheap because they’re grown right here.
Most of the non-citrus tree fruits, on the other hand – peaches, apricots, apples, cherries – are crazy expensive because they don’t grow down here.
Personally, I always choose to can tomatoes and apples if I can find them in bulk (sort of) at one of my local farmers markets because tomatoes are versatile – soups, sauces, salsas – and apples are expensive.
I also can entire meals in a jar, including vegetable soup, so that all I have to do is pour it in a pan and heat it up on nights that I don’t feel like cooking. As a matter of fact, a lot of my canned goods are either ready to eat or close enough.
Now that you have an idea of what you want to can and what’s in season, you need to find a source. Honestly, I found my favorite two farmers markets and my U-Pick blueberry/strawberry farm on Facebook and by Googling “farmers markets near me.” A lot of times, you can also find them under community events if you go to your town’s website.
Look around at other towns that are within driving distance. If you live in a city but more rural places are within an easy drive, search those places too. It’s a guarantee that food is going to be cheaper at rural, local farmers markets. And you may find a food co-op, too. Score!
Finally, the best source of organic, safe food is … you. Do some container gardening. You’d be surprised by how many tomatoes you can grow right on your porch or balcony, and strawberry hangers are adorable. Plus, that’s basically free food.
Urban prepping is tough – a lot tougher than being a country prepper. I know, because I’ve been both. I worked harder when I lived on the farm, but I was also in better shape and had a real sense of accomplishment every time I popped open a jar of jam or sliced up a fresh jalapeno pepper for my homemade salsa. And those fresh eggs and milk!
But, that’s not my life right now, so I, like you, do the best I can to eat healthy foods and prepare myself for emergencies given my current living arrangements. And I look at it this way – I’ve learned a ton because I’ve had to be resourceful, and even when I make it back to the country, I won’t be doing things the way I used to! Raised beds, container gardening – yeah, those tricks are going with me for sure!
Good luck with your fall canning and if you have any questions or comments, please share in the comments section below.
This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.
The worst has happened. Just look how hard Texas was hit by Harvey Hurricane.
Disaster has struck and you were caught flat-footed and unprepared. Or maybe you were prepared, but didn’t stockpile enough, or your supply was compromised.
For whatever reason, you go to the grocery store because you’re out of water and food but the shelves are bare. So where do you turn when you need to buy food but the grocery store shelves are empty?
First, if you were caught without any type of prepping, you should have been prepared, and are now learning the hard way why! But, that’s spilt milk, so the only place to look is forward. Fortunately, there are a few tricks.
Nowhere in this list will you find any method that suggests that you steal from your neighbors, loot stores, or ransack empty houses. And if you do, unless we’re in the middle of an apocalypse and those people are dead or gone for good, then shame on you.
And be aware that if you do get caught, it may not be by the police – you may find yourself looking down the wrong end of the owner’s .45.
Video first seen on KENS 5.
Grocery Store Dumpsters
Before you get all high and mighty about this, let me remind you that grocery stores regularly throw out perfectly good food because it’s a couple of days old or, in the case of power outages, have to throw all perishable goods out due to policy. The kicker here is that they’re not even allowed to give it away for free.
If the power goes out for more than just a half-day or day, or whatever, they generally have a CYA policy that, even though the food is still semi-frozen and people are standing at their doors going hungry, they have to pitch it.
So, dumpsters behind grocery stores are a great place to store perfectly good food. A word of warning here, though: If you’re digging through meat, don’t take any that isn’t still at least cold, especially fowl. Salmonella is not your friend.
This a good place to score produce, milk, bread, frozen foods, baked goods, or deli items for free. But keep an eye out and be there as soon as employees can make it back to the store, because they’ll be throwing everything out immediately.
Food pantries typically try to stock up before a storm because they know that people are going to need help. Unlike the commoner, they have a relationship with local grocery stores and can get meat, produce, and bakery items that are a day or two old or are otherwise not ideal to sell at the store, but are still perfectly edible.
Just as with grocery stores, be there as soon as you can get there, because they’ll run out fast.
Emergency and Homeless Shelters
These two places are typically targeted as drop-spots for food and water because it’s a given that everybody there has nothing and the entire goal of a shelter is to provide a safe haven for people in need.
Soup kitchens are the same, though they will often run out quickly either because the food was compromised or because so many people show up with empty bellies after a disaster.
Local farmers tend to be a generous lot, and also often have generators to keep them from losing all of their produce, which are their livelihood as well as their own food source.
You’ll often find these set up along the road offering produce and home-canned goods, and maybe even eggs and bread, or search for one on USDA website. Sometimes they’ll be giving food away, but usually you’ll pay for it. If it’s a little extra, that’s sort of what you get for not being prepared.
Designated Assistance Locations
The county, state, and federal government emergency response teams will designate specific locations where they will portion out food, water, ice, and often paper goods, hygiene items, and clothes.
These spots may even be equipped with phones so that you can contact loved ones, a food or barbecue area, and air-conditioned or heated areas where you can get out of the weather for a few minutes. Their resources are considerably vaster, but they’re not unlimited, especially in the first few days post-disaster.
There’s always going to be a few restaurants that have backup generators and/or use gas stoves so that they can operate even without electricity.
When Hurricanes Charley and Ivan went through, I was living in Southwest Florida and working as a waitress. We were one of only a handful of restaurant in ten miles that was open because we had a generator and gas stoves.
The owner, a brilliant man, saw the opportunity coming and stocked up on food right before the storms, opened as soon as the roads opened, and made an absolute killing even though he sold most everything at a discount.
I lived close and was able to make it to work. Let me tell you, those few days when there was no power were some of my most profitable of my entire stint there.
So, if you have money, some local restaurants will likely be open if it’s a disaster like this. Also, even if they can’t open, they’ll likely go in to clean out the freezers, so their dumpsters will be full, too.
You can also possibly get lucky enough that they’ll give it to you instead of wasting it or sell it to you.
Do you have a friend who had the foresight to stockpile but had damage to his home? Consider trading your spare bedroom or couch for some of his food.
You may also be able to barter with neighbors who need help clearing trees or stabilizing porches or roofs – your work in exchange for food.
This isn’t an option that is available to or feasible for everyone, but if you happen to live in an area that is abundant with berries, nuts, and wildlife, and you’re equipped and knowledgeable enough to hunt or gather, then this may be an option for you.
If you don’t know what you’re doing, you’re better off skipping this step because one berry will feed you, but another may kill you.
These are about the extent of places that you’ll be able to find food after a SHTF situation, so you better be ready to beat other people in your shoes to the punch by being out and on patrol early. The takeaway here is that you’re going to be stuck either going through dumpsters or paying – often through the nose – for food at restaurants or from roadside stands.
If you can’t make it on your own, know where your local shelters are and keep an ear out for designated food and water allocation stations.
If you’re without food because you were unprepared or underprepared, don’t make the same mistake twice. There’s really no place that isn’t susceptible to some sort of disaster – hurricanes, blizzards, tornadoes, floods – so don’t be caught unaware.
If you’re unfortunate enough to find yourself in need of food after a disaster, at least learn your lesson: know what to do and where to find food by researching food sources in advance!
If you can think of any resources that I missed, please share them with us in the comments section below.
This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.
Time can be your greatest friend or your biggest enemy in a survival situation. Consider the phenomenon of cabin fever, which turns people in close proximity against each other, or having to pass time as a group through the night; how about when you have no choice but to wait for rescue? Here are a couple tips on how you can keep your mind occupied and avoid the passing of time getting to you…
“A key ingredient in any survival situation is the mental attitude of the individual(s) involved.” FM21-76 US Army Survival Manual
By Alex Coyne, a contributing author of Survival Cache & SHTFBlog.com
Social interaction is an essential part of human nature. Movies like I Am Legend and Cast Away portray this well – Robert Neville takes to placing mannequins over town, and Chuck Noland eventually starts speaking to Wilson, a Wilson-branded volleyball. Many, recounting time served in the military, recall the social interaction between people the most; never discount its value.
Developing a Quiet Mind
Knowing how to meditate and quiet the mind is a vital skill; after a while, one becomes unaware of the amount of time that has passed and one is able to focus on the total absence of thought or, if needed, solving a particularly complex problem by focusing on the details. Practice meditation for at least ten minutes per day to start. Allow for thoughts to drift – this is completely normal. You can light a candle to aid in focus.
Schedule your time whether you are alone or in a group. Knowing what to do and more or less when will help take the edge off. Have a routine, even if it’s a simple one that starts with a walk, a swim or a morning coffee. Having a schedule will also help to avoid general chaos if and when in a group and divide the responsibilities equally.
Also Read: The Prepper Learning Curve
Playing Cards and Other Games
Don’t underestimate what you can do with a deck of playing cards. Part of staving off boredom is keeping your hands and mind occupied and even when you are alone, cards can do just that. Groups of people can pass hours away by playing Poker, Blackjack, Rummy, Bridge, Snap or a range of other card games. The same is true for other games and puzzles – anything goes, as long as you’re keeping busy.
Practice or learn a new skill. This is something which will undoubtedly come in handy in whichever situation you find yourself in, and if you have a large amount of time to kill you might as well put it to good use. Skills can include anything from getting to know the area to learning how to carve objects from wood.
Music and Art
Ancient tribes of the world are known for their music and art; both can be used as ways to relaxation, and you would be surprised how many art supplies can be made from what’s around you if you have nothing else. Simple pants and pigments can be made by grounding up natural substances – ochre is just one of many examples; charcoal can be made by charring wood. It goes without saying that it can be a more than sufficient distraction in times of need.
Related: Fortifying Your Home
The same is true for music – yes, it is also able to aid in meditation for people to attain a sort of trance state, and it serves the goal of keeping the mind and body occupied.
The Use of Stimulants
When a great deal of time has to be passed for reasons of safety, for example when keeping a look-out throughout the night, the use of (legal) stimulants such as caffeine is worth mentioning. Caffeine has been shown to increase alertness and wakefulness, which could be exactly what you need to get you through a dark, cold and dangerous night in the wilderness. Always take care with the use of stimulants: Check with a medical professional and avoid stimulants entirely should you have any type of heart condition.
How have you had to pass the time? We’d like to hear more about your stories in the comments.
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Unless you live in Texas, you may not have noticed that San Antonio, the state’s second largest city, flooded once again last week. While any flood is an aberration, the city of San Antonio is known for them.
While large parts of the state are known for being arid, the farther east you go, the more rainfall there is. San Antonio is kind of in the middle, but still receives more than its fair share of flooding.
This latest flood ends a period of drought that has plagued central and southern Texas all year long. Its sudden, unexpected arrival reminds us all of the high danger from flooding that large parts of the nation regularly face.
Flash floods can occur at any time, even when there is not any rainfall, all the way to the visible horizon.
What makes San Antonio so flood prone is that it is nestled in the San Antonio River Valley, a wide, rather shallow valley, which has been carved out by the river’s past floods. Coming from the northwest and flowing towards Corpus Christi and the Gulf of Mexico.
The river carries water from the Texas Panhandle region, as well as from New Mexico. The accumulated water from rainfall upstream of San Antonio has flooded the entire valley at times, since long before the Alamo Mission was founded, let alone the town of San Antonio.
But San Antonio is not the only place in the country which is feeling the effects of flooding. New Orleans is once again flooding, after a mere day of heavy rain. In the case of New Orleans, like in the case of San Antonio, sitting in a natural depression merely adds to the effect of any flooding.
Even so, the flooding in New Orleans is nothing, compared to the flooding that hit the state of Louisiana last year. That flood impacted one-third of the state’s parishes (what the rest of us call “counties”), causing somewhere between $10 and $15 billion in property damage.
The simple fact is that any low-lying area is subject to flooding when there are heavy rains, and we have no control over the rain.
Oh, cloud seeding can be used to cause rain in response to a drought, but that requires existing clouds and it can only cause rain, it can’t stop rain or even control it. When it decides to rain, the best we can do is give thanks for it and hope that we don’t get too much so you could live your life as usual, and not turn to your survival reserves.
Flooding has plagued mankind since the beginning of time. Part of this is that we tend to build our cities in places which are prone to flooding. Mankind has always needed water, so we build besides lakes and rivers.
Specifically, we find that low-lying areas beside rivers are ideal locations for cities and towns, as well as being ideal locations for floods.
With that in mind, it’s clear that any of us could end up in the same straights as the citizens of San Antonio, finding ourselves in the midst of a sudden, unexpected flood. Therefore, we have to be ready for such a time, so that we can protect our home and possessions.
Is Your Home Prone to Flooding?
To start with, we need to find our if we are in a flood plain or not. If you own your home, this should have come up as part of the mortgage process. Mortgage companies typically require you to buy flood insurance, if your home is in what is known as a “100 year flood zone.”
Basically, this designation means that the home is likely to experience a flood sometime within 100 years. But even if you don’t live in an area designated like this, you may still be at risk of flooding; or you could be living near an area that is subject to flooding, like I am.
Although my home is on slightly higher ground, much of the area around me is a 100 year flood zone. So, I may not end up with my home flooded, but I could end up essentially trapped on an island, waiting for the waters to subside, if a hurricane were to dump enough water on our area.
While mortgage companies are very interested in protecting their investment, they aren’t perfect. So you should check on your home’s location, verifying for yourself how much of a risk of flood there is.
One way to do this is using a topographical map. That will show your altitude above sea level, as well as all the land around you. In fact, that’s how I found that I’m on higher ground, with my home less likely to be flooded.
You can get topographical maps from the US Geological Survey, either printed ones, or digital ones, from their website at: www.USGS.gov. While there are other sources, this is one of the rare cases in which the government is actually cheaper.
One key element in looking at any flood risk is relativity. There are different levels of flooding, based upon the amount of rainfall. You also need to look at terrain in a relative manner. The point isn’t so much how high your home is above sea level, as it is how high it is above or below the surrounding terrain.
Water will always seek to flow to the lowest point. So, water on a hill behind your home will flow towards your home, unless the slope of the hill is greater in the direction of your neighbor’s house.
But the water shouldn’t stop at your home, unless you are the lowest point around. Rather than trying to enter into your home, it should flow past it, and continue on downhill. As long as there are areas that are lower than you are, you should be relatively safe, depending on how much the water rises.
Of course, you want to understand how much lower the land downhill is. If it’s only a foot or two downhill and there’s a heavy rainfall, you might still end up with flooding. For me, the altitude I live at is close enough to the land around me, that it would only take a couple of feet of water for me to be worried about my home.
The second factor here is the slope of the land. I’ve been known to say that the land where I live is so flat, that they build overpasses on the highways so that our children will know what hills are. Water drains slower off of flat land, than it does off of sloping land.
So if it rained hard enough, the fact that I’m a couple of feet higher than the surrounding area really won’t be of much help. The water won’t flow off my property fast enough to keep my home high and dry.
Before putting your topographical map away, you want to determine two more things. Those are: where would the water be coming from if it is flowing downhill towards you and where would the water be coming from if the waters were rising?
You see, there are two different ways in which we can have flooding, from rainfall flowing down to us or from rising waters. In order to be able to protect our homes from flooding, we need to have a pretty good idea of which kind of flooding we’re going to be dealing with.
So How Can You Protect Your Home?
San Antonio, New Orleans and other cities have spent millions, maybe even billions of dollars installing flood control measures. Yet they don’t stop all flooding; why is that? It’s simply because all those flood control measures are based upon specific assumptions about how much extra water they have to protect the city from. When water levels are higher than that, the measures taken aren’t enough.
When that happens, it’s up to us to protect our own homes or to abandon them. Personally, I don’t like the idea of abandoning my home. But unless I could properly protect it, I might find myself forced to do just that.
The age-old method of flood control is to use sandbags. I’ve seen pictures a number of times through the years, of homes which were surrounded by sandbag walls, keeping flood waters out. While this could be considered taking extreme action, it’s a whole lot better than having your home flooded.
Of course, that means having enough sandbags and sand to build the wall. It also means making a pretty good guess as to how high you need that wall to be. If you don’t build the wall high enough, it’s not going to do a bit of good anyway. You may as well not have it, if you don’t have a wall which is higher than the highest point the waters reach.
One of the biggest mistakes people make is to try and sandbag just the doorways of their home. That will help, if you only have a couple of inches of water. In such a case, it will keep the water from flowing under the doors. But that’s it.
The problem is that most walls have some sort of vents in them. Brick walls will have occasional spots where there is no mortar between two bricks, usually in the next to the bottom course of bricks.
These vents allow air to pass through the brick wall; but they’ll also allow water to pass through, meaning that the brick wall isn’t waterproof. Of course, that can be helped by simply caulking in the crack and allowing the caulking time to dry.
Even with a wall of sandbags around your home, there is still a chance of seepage through them. A good sandbag wall is tight, without any spaces. But you might end up with some small ones, which the water can get through.
So in addition to the wall, you need to make sure that you have a good all-purpose utility pump or two and enough hose to send the water back over the wall. Dig a sump and put the pump in there.
There are a couple of towns in North Dakota which have problems with flooding every spring. This is because the nearby river actually flows north for a short distance.
What that means is that the loop that goes back north doesn’t thaw as fast as the more southern parts, blocking the river’s flow and causing flooding. So towns and individual farmers have to build dikes to protect themselves from flooding.
Video first seen on PreparedBC.
Building a dike is essentially the same as a permanent sandbag wall, except that it is made of dirt, not sand. While the dirt gets wet and muddy, it is compacted by its own weight, so the water only seeps in so far. It never gets to the point where the dike melts in a massive mudslide.
There are other commercially available means of flood control, such as the Quick Dam. This is made of bags of water absorbing material. The water causes them to inflate, accomplishing the same thing that sandbags do.
But they are much easier to install than sandbags. However, they are only a few inches thick, so you’d need to build up a wall, much like building with sandbags, if you had a serious flood situation.
There are also large tubes, such as the “Tiger Dam” from US Flood Control, which can actually be placed and filled with water, forming much the same sort of barrier as sandbags do. The basic difference is that they are much faster and easier to put in place.
A Final Note, Just for Preppers
The risk of flood means that all your preps are at risk of being destroyed by flooding. This is something you and I can’t afford. Therefore, an important part of establishing your flood plan is to ensure that our food and other supplies won’t be destroyed if our home becomes flooded.
Don’t just depend on your ability to keep the water out of your home; protect your supplies as well. Should your home flood, you’ll need those supplies more than ever.
This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.
In today’s modern world, robberies, shootings, muggings, and other criminal activities have become more common place.
If you don’t know what to do in these situations, the odds are you could become a victim of a shooting.
Here are some things you can do if you wind up in the middle of a shooting and need to avoid getting hurt.
Scenario 1: The Shooter is In Your Area, But Not Close to You
If you are not armed or don’t have sufficient training with the gun you are carrying, the best thing you can do is run away from the shooter and get to a safe location.
Once there, call 911 and report the incident.
Scenario 2: The Shooter is So Close You Cannot Run Away, But You Can Still Hide
Depending on the situation, you may only have enough time to find a place to hide, but not completely leave the scene. Evaluate possible covers that will give you the most protection and also the ability to maneuver if you need to – a school, restaurant, other place of business, or a even a home.
Here’s what to do to save yourself.
Find a Hiding Spot
Find a room that is out of the shooters view and away from the path of murder, and destruction.
The room must offer some protection from incoming bullets such as thick heavy doors and walls.
Lock or Block the Door
The hiding area door should be heavy duty, lockable, and without windows (unless they are steel wire reinforced safety glass).
If not lockable, it must be possible to barricade the door closed. Use heavy items like tables and chairs, heavy storage boxes or anything else that could greatly slow the shooter down. The shooter must be made to feel that it will take too long to break into this area.
If they think it will take too long to get in, or it isn’t worth the time or trouble, they may leave the area to look for easier targets.
Put a Solid Barrier between you and the Shooter
It is always to your advantage to know as much as possible about the construction of any building that you are in.
For example, if you are in a store, is the back delivery area divided from the rest of the store by a cement wall? What about the bathrooms, specialty centers, or other areas that may have a cement or other thick wall that can be put between you and the active shooter?
If you are in a restaurant, pay attention to counters and other areas that may be fortified.
Find Safety in Small Spaces
Always know where the staircases and paths to the cellar or basement are located. There is a chance the active shooter will be pointing upward, not down while on his/her path of destruction. In addition, staircases may have closets or small rooms under them that may be built of cinder block. They may also have metal lining or some other heavy material that will make them more resistant to bullets.
Aside from that, the shooter may be looking to find as many people as possible, so there is a chance they will look for bigger, more obvious rooms instead of waste time with what looks like a closet.
While You Are Hiding in Place
Once you find a suitable location, it will still take some work to remain safe. If you have children hiding with you, they have to follow these guidelines too. You should also be teaching your children about how to hide, and stay safe when hiding as soon as they are old enough to remember and understand what you are telling them.
Stay away from the door and make no noise. Do not talk, whisper, or pray out loud. Turn cell phone ringers and vibrators off. There must be complete silence. If someone can’t comply, gag them! Everyone’s survival depends on it.
These days, many people also have service animals or small pets with them. It can be very hard to keep a dog from whimpering, barking, or even growling if they sense an emotionally charged situation. If you have a service animal, practice hiding drills with them. This includes making sure they will stay as silent and still as possible until you direct them to pursue more normal activities.
Crouch behind heavy items that can offer protection from incoming fire like heavy furniture, tables, or full large shipping containers.
If there is a closet or bathroom in the room, hide in there. The additional walls will give some extra protection from gun fire. In addition, if the shooter looks into the outer room and sees no one, they may not bother to look in the other enclosed areas within the room.
Dial 911 to let the police know that there is an active shooter at your location. If the shooter is close, keep the phone line open for police to hear what is going on. Do not put the speaker phone on. Remember, you don’t want any stray sounds to give away your location.
Sometimes shooters will yell, knock on doors, and pretend to be police to fool hiding individuals to come out of hiding. Don’t open the door for any reason. If you have a cell phone with you, find out from the emergency dispatch if the police have arrived, and if they are at your door. Be as quiet as you can. Wait for confirmation before coming out of hiding.
Scenario 3: When You Can’t Get Into a Room
Consider a situation where you are in the middle area of a store, or some other area where it is not very easy to get to a room or other safe enclosure. The first thing you will have to do is decide which direction is best to go in when you have a chance.
Usually, the back of the store will have a loading area, as well as rest rooms and building maintenance rooms. Unless you are a dealing with a work place violence scenario, these rooms may be the best ones to head for. You may be very tempted to head for the front of the store, but you run the risk of being caught in the crossfire, especially if the police are surrounding the area.
Once you have a general direction to head in, you can use the aisles and anything else in the area for cover. Do not rely on the shelves or items on them to stop bullets.
Stay as low as you can to the ground, and also try to avoid aisles with anything that might explode or catch fire if a bullet hits it.
Scenario 4: Hiding Outside
Many people think that if they are outside, there is no real need to worry about the presence of an active shooter. On the other side of the equation, if the shooter sees you, they may shoot through a window or decide to go outside and see if there are other targets of interest.
You should still focus in getting as far away from the scene as possible, but it may still be necessary to hide.
Here are some things you can do:
- If you are outside and shots are being fired in your general direction, try to hide behind a concrete wall or a large dirt mound. These items offer both good cover and concealment.
- Places that offer concealment will only hide your presence, but they will not stop the bullets from hitting you. Tall grass, bushes, or even wooden signs will work for this purpose. If at all possible, lay flat on the ground so that you don’t cast a shadow. Try to pick an area that has a slight depression so that you won’t be as likely to be hit by a stray bullet. At night, you can use darker shadow areas as hiding places. Try to choose a spot where a flashlight shining won’t give away your presence.
- If there is a car nearby, try to stay near the engine area, as it is the most likely to stop the bullets. Remember, the shooter may see your feet under the car, so try to remain crouched, but keep your feet so they are not visible behind the tires.
- Deep drainage ditches with 3-4 foot diameter conduit piping can also be used as a temporary hiding place. Here you would be out of sight and hopefully out of mind.
- Getting into a storm sewer drainage system or under ground utility service tunnels may not be easy, but it will provide excellent cover and safety from a topside active shooter. Just remove the cover and drop down to safety, replace the cover if possible, and move out of the well lit areas.
What To Do While Hiding in Place Outdoors
As with hiding indoors, make sure you remain as quiet as possible. This includes making sure the cell phone ringer and vibrator are turned off.
Keep a low profile and stay down as low as possible. Do not move unless you absolutely have to.
Call 911 to give the police your location and tell them if the active shooter is still in your area. Keep the phone line open for the police to monitor the situation.
Never light matches, turn on lights, or turn on anything that might reveal your presence. This is especially important if you decide to take refuge in a tunnel, conduit, or other dark area. If an active shooter suspects that people are hiding in these locations, they may follow you in. Staying as invisible and quiet as possible will be to your advantage.
Scenario 5: Escaping While in Plain Sight of the Attacker
Even though there may be no cover available, there may still be a chance for you to escape, if you know what to do. Here are some tips that you can help you avoid as many bullets as possible:
Zig Zag Running
When running away from an active shooter, never run in a straight line. Always run in a zig zag pattern.
Doing this forces the shooter to keep changing his shooting and aiming angle.
Don’t be an Easy Target
If there are closer individuals running in a straight line, the shooter will usually switch to shooting the easier targets.
Look for the Dark Side
It is possible to use darkness or low lighting conditions to escape from an active shooter at night even if they see you. The trick here is to get the shooter to fire at something other than yourself.
Once the shooter fires, they will have just destroyed their night vision, and it will take a minute or two for them to spot you again. Use that time wisely to either take cover or travel as far away as you can. Remember to stay low and move fast.
When escaping at nighttime, be aware of how much the moon lights up the escape route. If it is a full moon, there will be enough light for the shooter to see you clearly and take the shot. If there is a new moon or no moonlight at all, the lack of lighting will help to conceal you and will make it easier to escape.
Against the Light
In daylight, try to get in a position where the sunlight is low on the horizon and behind you. Here the shooter has to deal with bright sunlight and must overcome its blinding effects to shoot at you. This kind of lighting can also produce shadows that will serve to hide you.
Even though the area you must run through is in plain sight, that doesn’t mean the land is totally flat or with no place to hide. There will always be little depressions or rises in the land that might be used to hide in or behind. Drainage ditches and other depressions will work for this purpose.
If there is a fire hydrant or a traffic light control box in this area, use it as a temporary cover, then move out again towards a safer location. Remember to zig zag until you reach an area of safety.
Using a storm sewer or an utility conduct service tunnel would be an excellent way to get safely across this area and beyond.
No matter whether you took refuge indoors or outside, there is still a chance that the shooter will remain close by for some time.
If you happen to be carrying a gun, or can make a weapon from something nearby, try and neutralize the shooter. Even something as simple as a broken bottle or a piece of metal can be used to injure or kill an attacker. The keys to succeeding will still include training and practice with improvised weapons as well as knowing what to look for insofar as a viable opening to use the weapon.
In today’s high crime areas it is important to know how to stay safe and not to become a victim. Learn how to be street smart, learn how and when to hide, and how to blend in with your surroundings.
Along with situation awareness, practice hiding as well as escape methods that will serve you well in time of need. It takes practice to get a survivor mindset and skills!
This article has been written by Fred Tyrell for Survivopedia.
With summer comes great joy, but great dangers also lurk around almost every corner. Okay, the situation may not be as dramatic as I describe it, but the thing is, summer’s heat waves do present a clear and present danger to one’s health, especially in a survival situation.
The thing with summer is that almost all of us are gearing up for going out and experiencing epic adventures. Summer is vacation season and the best time of the year for businesses such as water parks, hot air balloon rides, bungee jumping resorts, para-sailing docks, and so on and so forth.
You see where this is going, right? Keep reading to find out!
Well, while you’re standing in line at any of these fine establishments, the thought that goes through your mind is probably, “This is how I’m going to die?”
Truth be told, this pessimistic state of mind is the logical consequence of years of horror stories pushed by the mainstream media, depicting terrifying accidents and misfortunes that people suffered during their summer holiday.
People died in all sorts of gruesome circumstances while having the time of their lives, i.e. when their hot-air balloon drifted into high-power lines, their parachute failed or their boat flipped at high speeds or on rushing rivers. Folks died or lost limbs while enjoying the ultimate ride at amusement parks or when hiking without proper training/guidance etc.
The nightmarish stories of good times gone bad go on and on.
And then there’s always death from exposure. To give you a grim statistic, heat exposure kills thirty outdoor workers on average on a yearly basis.
What we’re about talking here are agricultural, roofing, construction and landscaping workers; these folks are particularly at risk, especially during heat waves which promote heat-related deaths and illnesses such as heat stroke and heart attacks.
Keep in mind that the elderly are particularly affected by heat waves and in some geographical locations (like Arizona), air conditioning is not a luxury, but a necessity.
#1 Killer in the Summer Is…
So, let’s begin with the biggest killer during the summer season, which is heat, obviously.
Prolonged exposure to heat – especially humid heat – would have immediate effects on one’s health and state of mind alike. Heat stroke and heat exhaustion are the most common issues associated with scorching heat, but sometimes the effects of prolonged exposure to excessive heat may take odd forms.
The most important thing one must realize during the summer is that dehydration is a killer. To stay properly hydrated, you should drink at least 2 liters of water per day (or approximately half a gallon), but that’s an average figure and it depends upon your age, gender, physical condition, and circumstances.
For example, you’ll require way more than 2 liters of water per day if you’re hiking in scorching heat or if you’re working out, rather than staying indoors in a house without air conditioning etc. That’s common sense, though.
If you don’t drink enough water to replace the loss of fluids which occurs via sweating, you’ll put your body in a state of emergency, as your body is losing salt and water and not getting enough electrolytes.
Salt, magnesium, and potassium imbalances caused by dehydration may cause cramps, cardiac arrhythmia, dizziness, and confusion – basically your brain doesn’t work right.
For people who aren’t used to heat, there’s also always the risk of heat edema and, worst case scenario, a fatal heat stroke when your body gives up and stops sweating. This occurs when you’re exposed to extreme heat for long periods of time and is called anhidrosis.
However, the most common problem that occurs during a summer heat wave is heat exhaustion.
Heat exhaustion is a consequence of one’s body losing significant amounts of salt and water; sans electrolytes, the body can’t cope with heat anymore. Salt and potassium are the two primary minerals that control your blood pressure and when you sweat, they’re two of the first that you lose.
Obviously, heat exhaustion and all heat related ailments are particularly dangerous in a survival situation, i.e. when you’re outdoors hiking, climbing, or whatever.
Heat exhaustion’s first symptom is when the core temperature rising above 98.6, your normal body temperature, resulting in intense thirst, heavy sweating, dizziness, and an overwhelming feel of fatigue. Your body is literally starting to cook.
The first thing that you need to do is get out of the heat if possible and hydrate, obviously. Avoid strenuous activities during the day in open sunny spots, especially if there’s a heat-wave warning.
Now, if heat exhaustion sets in, you must find a cool, shaded location and remove the victim’s clothes, including (especially) the shoes and socks then, apply wet clothes to the victim’s face, head, neck, and if possible, their feet.
Spray with cool water if possible. Encourage the victim to drink as much water as possible. Sport drinks (if available) are great, as they contain minerals and vitamins (the famous electrolytes included) together with sugar, which gives the body a boost but push water, too.
Try to get medical aid as soon as possible, especially if you spot the early signs of a heat stroke (way worse than heat exhaustion), which include:
- profuse sweating or hot,
- dry skin,
- a core temperature of around 104 degrees F (or higher),
- feeling cold (yes, it seems strange, but it’s a fact),
- loss of consciousness, and/or seizures.
All of these symptoms are signaling that the body’s mechanisms for coping with heat have failed and he/she’s at the death’s door. Heat strokes are very serious as they have a mortality rate of about ten percent, and yes, people really do die in extreme heat conditions, and it’s not rare.
Most people who die during heat waves are elderly folk living in big cities in the upper floors of buildings, especially old, inadequately ventilated condo buildings. Just in the US, over 600 people die annually and thousands visit emergency rooms due to extreme heat conditions.
Since we’ve already established that heat is a silent killer, as the weather gets more extreme, avoid the main danger by staying out of the sun. If you’re outdoors on foot, avoid traveling during the day, and do it by night, like Bedouins.
If you find yourself traveling or lost in the wilds in the heat, drinking lots of water and covering your head and your entire body in white (best case scenario) sheets would go a long way toward preserving your body’s reserve of electrolytes if traveling during the day.
The rule of the thumb is that when your core temperature gets above 104 degrees Fahrenheit, you’re in serious trouble.
Obese and elderly people are especially vulnerable to heat, and small children have tiny hearts which are not always capable of cooling their bodies efficiently. Kids also have a slow sweat response, which puts them in danger in extreme situations.
And here are a few more hints on surviving the heat:
- try to avoid caffeine and alcoholic beverages (they act as diuretics) during heat waves,
- maintain a proper level of hydration at all times,
- when indoors, try to eliminate extra sources of heat (computers and appliances left running, computers, etc.),
- don’t eat big, protein-rich meals as they warm the body by increasing metabolic heat, be ready to recognize the early symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke and take action.
Beware the Dangers in the Water!
Another thing to keep in mind during the hot summer season is that jumping in public swimming pools, lakes and ponds are not the best ideas for beating the heat wave. You should think at least twice before diving in these cesspools, which are giant petri dishes by any definition, leaving aside that going into cold water when you body is overheated can bring on a heart attack.
Even chlorinated swimming pools are filled with chlorine-resistant bacteria (think Cryptosporidium, a bacteria living in the stomach, E.coli etc.) which can cause all sorts of disease, especially for people with immune issues.
Freshwater lakes and rivers are also home to a myriad of bacteria, viruses, and amoebas. All these tiny bugs that flourish in warm water may cause diarrhea and vomiting, which are exacerbating the dangers of dehydration, if you catch my drift.
And with dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke are just around the corner, provided you don’t deal with it immediately. It doesn’t take more than a few minutes – less than 30 – for the situation to go from bad to worse if the conditions are right.
Besides the relatively harmless e Coli and Cryptosporidium, there are killer bacteria and viruses in lakes and rivers, which can infect you via water getting inside the nasal passage and then to the brain.
For example, Naegleria fowleri can cause a deadly infection of your CNS (central nervous system), called amoebic meningo-encephalitis.
There are dangers in paradise too, especially during the summer season when these places are packed full of people trying to relax and enjoy their vacations.
When Summer Turns into Disaster
The beach may look like paradise on Earth, but it’s not all fun and serenity. Beaches are also filled with dangers, and we’re not talking about heat stroke alone. Coastal areas in some parts of the planet are prone to tsunamis and others to hurricanes.
One may say that beaches are prime real estate when it comes to natural disasters, hence, stay frosty and learn your escape routes just in case disaster hits. Most coastal areas are using early warning systems including sensors which monitor storm and earthquake activity and issue hurricane/tsunami alerts.
Toxic algal blooms happen almost every summer in places like Florida, on its Gulf Coast especially. Algal blooms kill fish and shellfish and they also render them unsafe to eat. Remember to avoid eating shellfish and fish from areas affected by toxic algal blooms; also, avoid swimming in waters infested by these critters.
Even if shark attacks are relatively rare, keep in mind that where there are fish in the ocean, there also might be sharks, hence avoid swimming near fishing areas and also avoid murky waters and areas were fishing boats and diving sea birds abound.
It’s also important to remember not to swim alone, sharks or not, and never at dawn or dusk because that’s when sharks feed. Watches and jewelry gleam like fish scales in the water, so get rid of them.
Another danger for beach goers is rip currents, which may pull even the Olympic swimming champion away from the shore. These fast-moving currents of water kill at least one hundred people annually, especially at surf beaches, and those are just US figures.
If you’re caught in such a rip current, try not to fight it. Go with the current and swim parallel to the beach, and try to swim back to shore once you manage to pull out of the current. If that doesn’t do the job, try to float/tread water until the current stops and try to call for help.
Edge Sports Have Their Price
Parasailing is an awesome summer activity for thousands of Americans. If you’re not from this planet, parasailing means that you’re towed behind a boat using a parachute canopy while flying like Superman.
Even though this may sound safe as far as extreme sports go, the majority of fatal parasailing accidents occur as a result of high wind conditions. To play it safe, make sure the weather is friendly before engaging in such crazy activities, alright?
Scuba diving is another all-time favorite activity doing the summer season, but is plunging in deep blue waters safe? Well, pretty much yes, but there are caveats to that.
The most common causes of death during scuba diving are oxygen supply problems, cardiac issues, and emergency ascent. To play it safe when scuba diving, make sure you are prepared for the water and you’ve learned all the techniques from your instructor.
Next on the list is skydiving. Skydiving is immensely fun for those crazy bastards with no self-preservation instincts. I’m kidding, but yes, skydiving is becoming increasingly popular among certain folk during summer vacation.
Even though you’re more susceptible to death by a lightning strike or a bee sting than due to skydiving gone wrong, make sure to look for riggers, jumpers and pilots with proper certification before making the big jump into the abyss. The same goes for bungee jumping.
White water rafting is another dangerous summer activity and there are tons of potential hazards involved in this awesome water sport. To reduce risks associated with white water rafting, never boat alone, wear a life jacket and a helmet at all times, and don’t overestimate your skills.
If you’re a hot air balloon aficionado, make sure your ‘ballooner” has all the necessary paperwork and be aware of adverse weather conditions, especially wind, before getting in the basket.
Whatever you do during summer, stay safe and be aware of the dangers. Ultimately, learn your lesson about first aid and surviving without medical assistance. Click the banner below to get the knowledge!
I hope the article helped. If you have other ideas or comments, feel free to use the dedicated section below!
There is no such thing as a gun that does not need routine cleaning and maintenance. You can count on Murphy’s law to render your gun useless at the worst possible moment unless you take good care of it.
Even when a gun is in storage it should be cleaned and lightly oiled a couple of times a year. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
But how often is often enough? Many people still have questions about cleaning their guns, and our reader T. – who owns a Ruger LCR – is only one of them. Keep reading to get the answer!
“How often should I send my Ruger 357mag LCR (5-shot) to the factory to be deep cleaned, inspected, parts replaced as necessary? I really don’t want this job and quotes seem reasonable under $100. I shoot ~10min/week or 9hrs/year mostly HSM .357 Mag, 125 Grain JHP Ammo. Asking b/c my 6.5 year old Glock 27 acting up so had to send it in recently.
The Ruger LCR (5 shot) in .357 Magnum was designed primarily looking for a light weight, compact, easy-to-conceal revolver for self defense. Each time you fire your revolver, it must be cleaned and examined for signs of excess wear and tear.
Cleaning the revolver removes bullet and powder residue from all cylinder parts, the action, and the barrel in revolvers, while lubrication helps to keep the revolver operating smoothly without binding up or freezing under heavy use.
While the Ruger LCR can shoot 125 grain magnum ammo, I don’t recommend using this weight constantly because it puts a lot of wear on the internal parts. Not only will you have to deep clean the gun more often, it will more than likely wear out in just a few years.
For range practice I would recommend shooting either 38 Special or .38 Special + P ammunition. This will keep the wear and tear down to a minimum.
Finally only shoot a few .357 Magnum rounds (5 to 10) every 2 – 3 months to keep you in practice with the recoil and the muzzle flash – both of which are more intense with this revolver than they would be with a heavier weapon.
Simple Wipe Down Cleaning For the Ruger LCR
If you don’t wish to clean your revolver at the range after shooting, at least wipe down all exterior parts of the revolver.
This will remove powder residue and finger oils that can cause your weapon to start rusting. This is only a quick fix and a standard cleaning should be done as soon as possible.
Standard Cleaning of a Ruger LCR Revolver
- Always open the cylinder and make sure there are no bullets in it.
- Be sure you have all of your cleaning supplies together where the revolver cleaning will take place.
- Tie a clean, soft cloth or rag around the rear cylinder opening. This will prevent the revolver from being damaged while you are pushing the bore brush through the barrel. It will also keep dirt from the bore brush from getting into that area.
- Choose the correct size bore brush and dip it in cleaning solvent.
- Insert the bore brush into the front of the barrel. Continue feeding until it passes through the barrel and exits the other end. Then pull the cleaning rod back through the barrel and out the muzzle. Sometimes if the barrel is really dirty, I will repeat dip the bore brush in solvent again to finish removing the fouling.
- Next dip a fresh cleaning patch in cleaning solvent. Then run it down the barrel from the muzzle to the cone of the barrel. As a rule of thumb I use one solvent covered patch, and then follow it up with 2 or 3 dry patches. Keep doing this until the dry patches come out clean. After the barrel is cleaned, remove the rag covering the rear cylinder opening.
- Clean around the muzzle with a small toothbrush or gun cleaning brush. Next, put some solvent on the brush and clean the rear cylinder opening.
- Use the toothbrush with a little more solvent on it and brush the cylinder on the outside and on each end.
- Next, use a small cleaning brush or tooth brush and solvent to clean the extractor rod. Be sure to clean the front, back, and outside of the cylinder. Push in the cylinder extraction rod, and clean the star. Do not forget to clean the rest of the rod that was sitting between the cylinders.
- Take a bore brush and cleaning solvent to clean each of the cylinders the same way you cleaned the barrel. Don’t forget to go all the way through on each side of the cylinder.
- To clean each individual cylinder, first use a clean patch with solvent followed by 2-3 dry clean patches to remove any residue.
- Get another clean cloth and apply some gun oil to it. Use this to wipe down the outside of the revolver without oiling the grips. Then oil the inside of the barrel and each of the cylinders.
- Wipe off all excess oil with a clean rag. Don’t forget to oil the ejection rod and ejector. Use just a drop of oil, and work the rod a few times to spread the oil.
- Finish the cleaning process by using a silicon gun cloth to polish up the gun.
How to Lubricate the Ruger LCR revolvers
Each time you do a standard cleaning, or deep cleaning for the Ruger LCR, you should also take the time to lubricate the following parts.
Start off by lubricating the cylinder and the ejector:
- Apply lubricant to two spots only. First, apply a small drop on the ejector where it contacts the cylinder, then work it in.
- Next put a small drop on the crane pivot and clean off the any excess.
- Wipe off any excess lube, wipe down the entire, revolver and use compressed air to clean out and dry the firing pin channel.
Hammer pivot pin lubrication
Ruger recommends that you lube the hammer pivot pin every 1,000 rounds of live fire or dry firing.
- After you are sure the revolver is unloaded, remove the grip with a 1/8” or smaller punch and a small hammer.
- Open the cylinder then tap the pin out just a bit .10” (taking care not to push it out too far).
- Put one drop of lube in the pin hole and then flip it over and put one drop of lube on the pin itself. To help spread out the lubricant, twist the pin back and forth.
- After you have pushed the pin back in, Ruger recommends that you dry fire the revolver 5-10 times to work the lubrication into the action. Use snap caps for dry firing.
Crane pivot screw and fire control housing retaining screw torque check
Ruger recommends this be preformed every 1000 trigger pulls dry fire or live fire.
- To keep the screws from losing there torque setting I would recommend using lock-tight.
- For this procedure you will need a torque wrench that reads inch lbs. and a T10 Torx bit.
- The fire control housing screw torque settings are 6-9 inch lbs.
- The crane pivot screw torque settings are 23-27 inch lbs.
- After everything is properly torqued. Re-install the grip.
5 Deep Cleaning Q&A for the Ruger LCR
1. What is Deep Cleaning?
Deep cleaning is the total disassembly, and thorough cleaning of a firearm. If your firearm is used heavily, a more through disassembly and cleaning should be performed. This will extend the life of the weapon, and also ensure that it fires correctly each time you use it.
2. What are the signs that a gun needs deep cleaning?
- Trigger has trouble operating the cylinder.
- Trouble opening the cylinder.
- Misfires when trigger is pulled.
3. How often should you do it?
- After shooting about 500 rounds of cheap dirty ammunition.
- Have not fired the revolver in more than a year.
- The revolver has fallen in either salt water, or dirty fresh water.
4. Is this a good time to have your firearm inspected?
Yes! It is always a good time to inspect the Ruger LCR when they are totally disassembled as you can see the parts easily and examine them.
5. What are the costs to have your firearm deep cleaned and inspected?
Prices will vary depending on where you live and the fees set by each gunsmith. They can range anywhere from $50.00 and up plus the cost of the replacement parts and their hand fitting if necessary.
If you send your Ruger LCR to Ruger for deep cleaning and inspection, the cost may be more than having a local gunsmith do the work. As per the Ruger website, The average cost would be:
- $85 for reconditioning – Replacement of worn internal parts (does not include main components).
- $80 Labor charge.
- Cost of parts.
- $30 Return mail fee.
How to Do a Deep Cleaning on a Ruger LCR
Always take the time to read the manual that came with your revolver, and seek help from a gunsmith if you aren’t sure how to proceed.
Before you begin to do a deep cleaning and weapon inspection, be sure that you have all cleaning supplies and tools with you in the cleaning area.
- Make sure that the revolver is unloaded.
- Remove the grip screw and the grip.
- Use an air line or canned air to spray out the fire control housing and the trigger area to ensure that all dust and other debris are removed.
- Use a toothbrush or small gun cleaning brush soaked in solvent to scrub the forcing cone area to remove all build up. Take the time now to inspect the forcing cone area for any cracks or chips.
- Scrub the area under the ejector and firing pin area to remove all debris and build up. Now take the time to inspect the frame, ejector star, firing pin area, and the cylinder stop for wear and tear or broken parts.
- Perform a basic bore and cylinder cleaning by soaking the bore brush in solvent and scrubbing the bore and all five chambers.
- Run cleaning patches through them until they are clean.
- Wipe down the entire revolver to ensure it is clean and dry.
Ruger LCR Upper Frame Disassembly
- There are two screws that hold the assembly together. The first one out is on the trigger shroud top left side (beware the hex nut will fall out of the right side). The other screw is at the front of the revolver.
- Hold revolver in right hand to keep it together.
- Release and open cylinder.
- Remove front screw.
- Cylinder will come right out.
- Remove cylinder locking pin. Upper frame needs to be raised upward. Use paper clip to push pin out. Upper assembly will come apart. Cylinder latch will come up with it.
- Upper assembly will move forward and then you can lift it up and out.
- Latching assembly will be separated from the upper assembly. Do not loose the latching assembly spring! It is a very small and thin spring.
- Clean and inspect lower assembly for worn or damaged parts. The best way to clean the lower frame is to use a cleaning brush followed by using compressed air. This will remove any dirt or grime that found its way into this area.
Video first seen on Zolen Boogaerts.
Reassembling the Revolver
- Put cylinder latching assembly back in with spring facing forward. It will drop right in and catches in place. Warning! Do not lose the small spring!
- Re-install the cylinder latch pin.
- Put the top section back in the frame with the rear section corners pointing down. Then push backwards to let it slide back into place.
- Now hold the revolver in your right hand with the thumb and first finger at the back and the right hand middle finger pushing backwards on the trigger guard.
- With your left hand, put the top screw back in place to hold the upper assembly in place.
- Put the cylinder in place in the up position.
- Install front screw.
- Install hex nut in recess for the top screw and screw into place.
- Function test revolver by opening and closing the cylinder and pulling the trigger.
If you do not know how to clean your guns, you will be at a serious and expensive disadvantage now, and have many more problems in a social collapse scenario. Take your time now and learn how to clean your Ruger LCR, and practice your skills so you would be a better shooter.
A gun in perfect condition for shooting is one of the layers of your survival defense. Click the banner to find out how to build the rest!
This article has been written by Fred Tyrell for Survivopedia.
Although technically a terrorist attack can happen anywhere, it is far more likely to happen in an urban area. In addition, it is more likely to happen at a large gathering such as a concert or sporting event. So whether you live in an urban area or just visit one occasionally to see a singer […]
Lock picking is one of the few hobbies I have that is truly useful in my everyday life. Sure, knowing how to sharpen knives to a mirror edge or start a fire using raw materials is (in my opinion) important, but in my day to day 21st century life, knowing how to bypass locks has […]
This is just the start of the post Best Lock Picking Practice Locks for Each Experience Level. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
Best Lock Picking Practice Locks for Each Experience Level, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
Fighting off an attacker isn’t just about hitting your opponent hard enough to make them stop trying to hurt you. It is also about making sure that any blows sent your way don’t harm important parts of your body.
When you are in this kind of fight, some of your efforts will aim defending vital body parts even if you’re also trying to strike your opponent. Staying safe comes first!
Here are five body parts that you must defend regardless of the nature of the attack. While not using other body parts will spell trouble, harming these five parts can cause permanent injury or loss of life. Keep reading!
But before going any further, there’s a DISCLAIMER that we should insist on.
Reading this article, or others, or watching videos is not enough to prepare you for an attack. You must practice these moves constantly so that you don’t panic or suffer from other adrenalin response related issues. Practice will also help you build speed, precision, and power behind each move.
In a fight, you may have, at most, 1 to 2 seconds (and that includes situations where you maintained good and accurate situation awareness and/or didn’t stray into a dangerous location) to make a good move and neutralize your opponent enough to stop them long enough to escape or prevent further attack if you decide to remain on the scene.
Watch Your Head
Aside from avoiding damage to your eyes, ears, and nose, protecting your head also helps you avoid loss of consciousness.
Pay attention to how the attacker moves. Usually, if someone is going to punch or use a small knife, their arm will move inward.
If the person moves towards the center of your body, move in the opposite direction instead of trying to “escape” by moving in the same direction or “away”. Even though this may feel like you are putting your head in line with being struck, it may throw off the attacker’s aim.
Remember, the attacker will expect you to startle and move your head away, and may already be compensating for that move so that they hit as squarely as possible.
If the blow cannot be avoided, try to move so that your forehead takes the blow instead of your nose, jaws, or eyes. This may be as simple as suddenly squatting down or using some other means to reduce the height of your head as quickly as possible.
You can also turn this move into the prelude to striking at the attacker’s legs by rolling into them, or smashing into their groin, knees, or other stable or sensitive areas. Clench your neck so that if a blow does land, it will not knock your head back and cause further damage to your neck.
In some cases, an attacker might throw a rock or something else heavy to your head or face. If you can’t move out of the way fast enough, cover your eyes and nose with your arms. Or, if you are already on the ground, tuck your head between your knees, and then cover the back of your neck with your arms.
Protect Your Neck
While your neck is a relatively small target, it is also a key one that many assailants will aim for first, so strengthen this part of your body as much as possible. Neck exercises won’t prevent you from choking, but additional strength in this area makes it easier to defend against any head and jaw blows that reach you.
If an attack is coming, keep your chin tucked in so that it is harder to reach your throat. Throughout the encounter, do not arc your head back, as it gives the attacker a perfect chance to grab your neck.
Make it a point to keep your arms and hands close enough to your head and neck so that you can block incoming blows easily, and also attack sensitive nerve junctions in the attacker’s arms.
Having your hands and arms ready to defend this region can also give you fast access to any other targets that open up on the attacker’s body as they try to strike. Remember, to land blows to your head, neck, and jaw, the attacker must reach in towards you.
There are many maneuvers to destabilize the attacker and send them flying past you as well as ones that can be used to attack in a more direct fashion. Remain calm and you will see the openings that will help you stave off the attack with as little injury as possible.
It may also help to keep your body in a position where one shoulder or the other is pointed towards the attacker. To make it work, however, you have to attack without revealing your intentions by rotating into an optimal position.
Once someone grabs ahold of your neck, it is still possible to escape, however you will need to use these maneuvers in a matter of seconds:
- If the attacker is trying to choke you from the front, he/she will more than likely be looking to crush your throat.
- To get out of this attack, put your hands together as if in prayer, and bring them up hard and fast between your attacker’s arms.
- As your arms contact the inner arm area of your attacker, you can try gouging your elbows into the pressure points in the bicep and also midway up the forearm.
From there, you can use different pressure points to inflict maximum pain to the attacker, however they may not be enough to enable you to escape. Here are just a few options:
- Continue the motion until your hands grasp the side of the attacker’s head. Next, lock your hands, and gouge your thumbs into the attacker’s eyes as hard as you can. If you cannot reach the side of attacker’s head, then just poke your fingers into their eyes.
- You can also try sticking your thumbs hard into the mandibular nerve just below the ear, twist your thumbs, and pull forward. If you do this maneuver right, it will cause immense pain and cause the attacker to gag. It can also dislocate the attacker’s jaw if you pull forward hard enough.
- The area just under the nose is also a trigger point for immense pain if you hit it just right. Needless to say, you can always aim for the attacker’s nose and try to break it. These maneuvers may not work as well because your attacker may try to bite you.
- When working with nerve points, no matter where they are on the body, do not give up if the first blow or attempt doesn’t neutralize the attacker. In many cases, hitting a second time will neutralize the attacker because the nerve was weakened by the first blow, and may give in completely with the second one. If all else fails, try again; although if you practice diligently, two should be enough because you will know where to hit and have a well honed technique to work with.
Once you have inflicted some pain to the attacker, knee male attacker’s in the groin, perform a headbutt, or use other methods to break the attacker’s hold.
If you are a woman wearing high heels, you can also place the outside of your foot against the attacker’s inner leg, and stamp down hard. Practice this maneuver so that you have a good idea of how to jam your heel into the attacker’s ankle bone.
Don’t aim for the attacker’s foot, as they may be wearing steel toed boots, or something else that will make your heel less effective. On the other hand, even an ankle covered in a boot can be impacted with this method.
Don’t Drop Your Jaw!
A blow that lands squarely on your jaw can render you unconscious and lead to permanent injury.
While tucking your jaw into your neck can protect both vital areas, there are some additional things you must do to prevent damage to your jaw.
As simple as it sounds, keep your jaw as tightly clenched as possible. If a blow does land on your jaw, this will reduce the risk of breaking your jaw, and also help reduce damage to your teeth. A clenched jaw also moves less, which means that there is less chance of being knocked unconscious.
Warming up your jaw with a few exercises can also help reduce injury. But if you are caught unawares, you will not have time to prepare your jaw muscles.
On the other hand, if you have a good level of situation awareness, you will probably have one minute or two needed for these exercises. Individuals that have experience with gaining control of adrenalin responses may also use these exercises as a trigger that will help them prepare mentally and emotionally for conflict.
Solar Plexus and Abdomen
This is one part of your body where some of your defense can be grounded in exercises done before you ever get into a fight. Strong, non-bloated, abdominal muscles will be able to take a blow with less injury and pain.
There are many exercises and methods you can use to build up this core area of your body. Aside from improving the chance of recovering faster from a blow to this part of the body, any move you make will have more power behind it.
If you need to defend against a knife attack or some other weapon other than hands and fists, you will need to use more offensive moves than you would for breaking an attack to your neck.
Here are a few things you can try. Instead of dropping your arms and hands from their defensive position near your head and neck, use your feet and legs instead. Among other things, you can continue pivoting and moving so that your side remains facing the attacker.
If the attacker gets too close, you can pivot slightly towards them and use your knees or feet to attack their shin, groin, or knees. As with blows to the face, someone with a knife may expect you to continue pivoting away rather than take a chance of being stabbed or struck with a weapon.
The opposite move may throw your attacker off for a fraction of a second as long as you don’t give away what you are about to do. Needless to say, if you can kick the knife away or disable their arms first, you will be in a better position.
As you pivot, look for an opening where you can grab the attackers outstretched arm and pull them forward. If at all possible, try to combine this with stamping on the foot, or using your knee to kick behind their knee in order to drop them to the ground.
These actions must be taken very quickly, as they will leave your head and neck unprotected. If you practice enough different kicks and rolls, you can use different maneuvers that still keep your hands free for defending your head and neck.
Unlike other vital parts of your body, you can harm your back or spine more with improper technique than your attacker can with primary blows. A as a general guide, you better keep your back away from your attacker. If you are facing multiple attackers, put your back against a wall so that none of them can get behind you.
It is crucial to practice falling, rolling, and other techniques used during an attack scenario. No matter how much you practice, or how hard you train, you can expect to find yourself on the ground. To protect your back, knowing how to break a fall and roll will:
- protect your back and neck much better than simply landing where ever and how ever the fight sends you
- can also move you away from the attacker
- can be used to set yourself in a position where you can attack your adversary.
Once on the ground, do not expect to get up immediately, and do not expect your attacker to simply stand around and wait for you to get back up. It may be necessary to kick, or roll out of the way to get into a better position or avoid other blows.
When you watch a skilled martial artist or other fighter, everything they do seems effortless. On the other side of the equation, each move they make is based on careful analysis that happens very quickly because they have the strength, muscle memory, and experience to carry out these moves as efficiently as possible.
Learning about different moves that can protect vital parts of your body will definitely help you face an attacker, but you must also take the next step and find a qualified trainer and a safe place to practice.
Survival defense is one of the skills that you just can’t miss if you want to keep yourself and your family alive. Click the banner for more!
This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.
First, the disaster will come. It will come like they always do. It may start slow and steady but eventually, it will reach a fever pitch. The destruction brought on by man or mother nature will ravage all that dares step in its path. The audible effects of the disaster will give way to visual […]
The post 6 Things That Could Attract Dangerous People After SHTF appeared first on Urban Survival Site.
Do I have third degree burns? Growing up as a curious child, I found myself a victim to the nasty side of heat on a few occasions, something I am sure most reading this will be able to relate to. Whenever dealing with these heat-related accidents, the term “third degree burn” always stuck in my […]
This is just the start of the post First, Second, or Third Degree Burns? The 3 Degrees Of Ouch. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
First, Second, or Third Degree Burns? The 3 Degrees Of Ouch, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
In case you don’t know, the “5 C’s of Survivability” is a term coined by survival expert Dave Canterbury from Dual Survival. It’s an easy way to remember the things you need to survive in the wilderness. His list includes a cutting tool, combustion, covering, container, cordage. Since they are the most difficult things to […]
Finding water in the wilderness is actually pretty straightforward. Walk downhill, look for animal tracks that are all heading in the same direction, watch for areas with lots of insects such as mosquitoes, and listen carefully. There are many other ways to gather water in the wilderness, but those are the basics. Gathering water in […]
The post 8 Hidden Fresh Water Sources To Tap for Urban Survival appeared first on Urban Survival Site.
Self-defense weapons have become a necessity in today’s society where your personal and household self-defense is frequently threatened. If your prime concern is the safety of your loved ones and yourself, do not have second thoughts about being prepared. Just remember -– it is important to have the right self-defense weapon for your particular situation.
Yourself defense does matter. There are many ways you can prepare for the possibility of attack. Sometimes, preparation consists of nothing more than prevention. Knowing how to act, which situations to avoid, and moving with confidence can all help. But—-sooner or later—-you may be facing an assailant.
With the right self-defense weapons, you’ll have TIME to protect yourself and may even be able to bring your attacker down! Your attacker won’t know what hit him. Some weapons can even help you mark him, which will make him easy to apprehend.
Know that the safety and security of your family, home, office and property is assured because you’ve taken steps to protect yourself.
Have more peace of mind, sleep better at night, and walk the streets in confidence and control, because you have taken the time to learn about which self-defense weapons will best meet your needs. Your personal protection is at stake!
Here are a few weapons you might consider as you start to explore what’s available:
Although bolt-action hunting rifles may be perfect for taking large game, they make a wrong choice for home-defense. These guns load slowly, fire slowly, and the high-power cartridges they shoot produce excessive muzzle flash, noise, and recoil and are very likely to over penetrate the target. If you want a rifle for home defense, then consider a tactical semi-auto or pistol-caliber carbine. Always try to keep a rifle scope for perfect shooting.
Telescopic Steel Baton
This is the self-defense weapon that most law enforcement and police agencies use today. Many of these organizations are replacing the old “Billy Club” style baton with the more technologically advanced telescopic baton.
What could be better for keeping the attacker in place once he is subdued than handcuffs? You can also use leg cuffs or thumb cuffs to immobilize him.
There are many different types and styles of knives that you could use. You can read all about the many varieties of knives that are available, including butterfly knives, pen knives, and folding knives.
For security and law enforcement personnel, a hand held metal detector is an essential self-defense weapon. These small scanners can pick up almost any metal weapon, including pistols and knives.
And here are a few weapons that are not used as much for self-defense as for sporting and fun…
A crossbow gives its user far more power and accuracy than a traditional bow. If you’ve never shot a crossbow, you can’t believe how powerful it is. This is more commonly used as a sporting weapon, but you never know when it might come in handy for self-defense too.
Over 40,000 years ago, the first blowguns began to appear in many different parts of the world. In today’s world, blowguns, paintballs, and stun darts offer a wide variety of sporting activities.
High-Velocity sling shots fold down to a compact size and have over a 100-yard range. They’re perfect for slinging insects, rocks or even bad guys Brings back memories of the good old days.
This weapon is styled after some of the world’s most famous firearms. The air pistol maintenance free design and affordability make them an excellent entry level weapon for the hobby and recreational enthusiast.
This Guest article was written by Douglas Brooks. He is the founder of ProReviewly.com. He was enthusiastic about hunting from the first shot. He is also Rifle optic guru.
This is going to be a different kind of article. No gear or techniques to aid in survival, but nonetheless – it’s a topic I want to discuss because it relates to something that is often brought up, though rarely do we discuss its consequences. I have been musing about this topic for a while […]
This is just the start of the post The Act of Killing: Not So Easy; Is It Something You Can Live With?. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
The Act of Killing: Not So Easy; Is It Something You Can Live With?, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
Want to avoid the premium store prices and horrible, toxic food chemicals that can make you sick?
Start by reading a homesteader handbook that will help you become food independent. My choice would be a book called “Forgotten Lessons of Yesterday“, written by Theresa Crouse. I was surprised at the wide array of topics that she covered.
I’ve collaborated with Theresa Crouse via Survivopedia for several years now and, though we’ve emailed back and forth hundreds of times, we’d never met in person.
I finally met her and found out her story from zero to hero. Now I’m sharing her story it with you!
The interesting thing about Theresa is that she’s not your typical prepper. She lives a lifestyle that’s a motley collection of modern homesteading, common sense, and resiliency – exactly what her writing reflects.
She regularly covers topics ranging from growing medicinal plants to tanning hides. She is, indeed, resilient and independent, and the topics that she covered in the book reflected her diverse collection of skills.
We both agreed that, since I was going to be in the her state for a business conference, it would be a great time to finally meet in person.
Instead of meeting somewhere for lunch, Theresa invited me to meet her at her home so that I could meet her husband and see in person the gardening and homesteading techniques that she proudly shares with her readers.
Because her favorite articles tend to revolve around farming, I expected her to live on a farm, or at least a couple of acres. I was surprised to find that she currently resides in a suburb of Orlando, or, more correctly, a suburb of a suburb of Orlando.
When I pulled up, it looked like any other house on any other residential street, though I do have to say that the neighborhood had more trees than average and her yard had an abundance of tastefully arranged ornamental plants. When we went around to her enclosed backyard, however, it was as if we’d stepped right into the country. Well, as much as you can when you can still see rooftops.
She had several citrus trees and vertical gardens were arranged around nearly her entire fence line. Even the ornamental plants on the patio turned out to be edibles – chili peppers, squash, kale, and strawberries. There were four 10×10 raised beds with a path that wandered through them to a barbeque area, complete with a brick oven, that husband had built. As I expected, she and her husband were both relaxed and welcoming.
I didn’t go there for an interview, but after a great lunch on her patio – including a salad made with lettuce and vegetables from her garden and a fresh salsa that she’d just made that morning, it seemed that it would be a great time to ask her some questions about her book and her way of life in general to share with you.
Me: Looking at your book, “Forgotten Lessons of Yesterday“, it seems like you’re encouraging people to turn back to the days when people were healthier, by making our own food or living close to nature. In recent times, and in your writings, it’s like the pioneers are coming back to life and calling themselves homesteaders. Do you consider yourself a modern pioneer?
Theresa: I don’t know if I believe that “modern pioneer” is exactly what I’d call myself. I think I’m just a person who likes to live simply and be as independent as I can be. I guess, since most people have gotten away from living that way, you could call me a modern pioneer for encouraging it. I believe that, as our ancestors proved, the land will give us everything that we need, but we need to start taking care of it.
Me: Learning the old lessons of homesteading may seem pretty hard for somebody coming from an urban civilization. How hard is it to get the knowledge? How is that to you?
Theresa (laughing): It’s not hard, but there will be some bumps and lots of learning experiences. It’s funny you should mention that because we recently tried growing sweet potatoes – a crop we’d never grown before. Suffice it to say that there’s more to it than just sticking it in the ground. But now we know, and it was fun. I even wrote an article about it afterwards!
Seriously, though, the main thing is that you’re willing to learn. Just like anything else that you’re new at, there will be some mistakes, but you’ll learn from them. Trial and error. And you’ll always mistakes, just like you do in everything else.
For instance, see all of those tomato and pepper plants over there? I made the mistake of assuming that because I bought seeds from the Dollar Store – 50 cents each – that I’d be lucky if a quarter of them grew, so I planted them ALL.
Now we have 70 tomato plants and 40 pepper plants! I’ll never plant unknown seeds without sample germinating again! But, the upside is that we’re selling most of them, which will cover our gardening and canning costs for the entire year. Not all of my mistakes have been so cheap, though!
Me: Would it be possible for a person like you to change how he or she lives – to go back to being a consumerist? And could you?
Theresa: You know, I actually did for several years, though it never felt right to me. It was convenient to just buy everything from the store, but it didn’t take us long to realize that that just wasn’t the life for us.
As you know, I was raised on a farm, so I was used to eating everything – meat, veggies, milk, butter – fresh, without any chemicals. Once I started buying everything from the store, I noticed that the food just didn’t taste as good. The most noticeable things for me were tomatoes and milk. The tomatoes always seem to be mealy and flavorless, and the milk tastes like chemicals. Plus, there’s just nothing like fresh cream in your coffee. But still, it was convenient, so I pushed on.
Then John and I both started feeling just … yuck. We both gained weight (me more than him, of course!) and we had some other problems. I had brain fog and my skin was rough and splotchy. I was sick to my stomach a lot. Even though John was in the military and has always been pretty fit, his cholesterol shot up.
I started paying attention to what we were actually putting in our bodies, and knew that we had to get away from all of that garbage and start eating chemical free, taste-good food again. And once we did, we never looked back.
It was like slipping on a favorite pair of slippers – I was just comfortable again. And our health problems went away. I guess you can take the girl off the farm, but you can’t take the farm out of the girl. It’s a core part of who I am and I can’t just NOT think and live that way.
Me: Reading your book feels very much like a journey that the reader takes along with you, in a very personal area of knowledge. Why is this book so personal?
Theresa: The easiest answer is that it’s personal because I’m sharing a core part of myself. In my heart, this is who I am. It’s not just how I was raised.
The more complicated reason that it probably feels more personal is that writing it brought back a lot of memories. I mean, I know how to do all of the things in my book, and so I just do them without investing much thought into it. When I actually sat down and explained how to do it, it made me think back to canning with my mom, or hunting with my grandfather. I realized that I’m not just teaching methods, I’m sharing my heritage.
Me: What would you tell to somebody who would like to turn to self-sufficiency but he or she doesn’t have the courage or doesn’t know where to start?
Theresa: I’d tell them that you start at the same spot that you start any new task – at the beginning. Start small. Don’t plan to be completely self-sufficient by next fall! Pick something that you’d like to do – for me, a big part of being self-reliant is growing my own food. If that’s the case, then maybe start out with some herbs, or if you’ve already grown herbs, start some vegetable seeds.
Buy books for beginners – for instance, mine breaks every task into small steps because I was writing on the assumption that the reader has never done it before. Find books like that. Do searches on the internet. Go through websites – Survivopedia is great, and that’s not just because I’m biased. There are several other sites out there, too. Just suck up the knowledge. There’s nothing like hands-on experience, but if you read about it, you’re already a step ahead because you’re not going in blind.
Me: I know we’ve been talking for a while now, and I need to get back, but for my last question, let’s address those folks who don’t live on a farm, or even in a single-family house. I’m looking around your yard and see that you’ve been really creative with a relatively small amount of space. What would you say to other people who want to be self-sufficient but don’t have much space?
Theresa: I’d say what my grandmother used to say – can’t never could. In other words, don’t find reasons why you can’t become self-sufficient; find ways that you can. Everybody has room on a counter for some herbs. That will save you quite a few bucks right there. You don’t need a ton of space to become at least partially resilient. You just have to find them.
There are other ways to go about it than just growing food, too. I didn’t write about this in the book, but it’s something that mirrors how I was raised – yard sales. They’re a great way to find good deals, get away from the big stores, learn how to barter, and how to upcycle/reuse just about anything. I watch Flea Market Flip and was hooked from the first episode. I’ve been trying my hand at that, in addition to finding cool clothes and stuff that I need. It’s fun!
Being self-sufficient shouldn’t be painful – don’t t make it something that you do because you have to. There’s a real sense of pride that accompanies eating food that you’ve grown or setting your glass on a coffee table that you’ve made or repurposed with your own hands.
Find the joy in being able to take care of yourself, even if it’s in small ways. Because, trust me, once you start, you won’t want to stop!
This interview has been taken by Alec Deacon for Survivopedia.
No matter whether you are the driver or passenger in a vehicle, a car accident can be a very traumatic experience.
Even if the accident is minor, you may have hidden injuries, or you may become trapped in the vehicle. Or things could go worse and you might need to get out of the vehicle as quickly as possible.
While every accident is a little bit different, here are just a few basic things you should keep in mind about how to get free from the car and survive the crush.
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Driving Safe is not Enough: How to Reduce the Damage
Knowing what to do prior to an imminent crash can save your life and also mean the difference between minor injuries and ones that leave you in pain or disabled for the rest of your life.
While you may not have much time to act, these simple things can give you the best chance of survival.
Wear Your Seat Belt Properly
Over the years, more than a few people have railed against using seat belts because they feel the government should not tell them how to live their lives. While I am not a big fan of “nanny state” thinking, there is a time when common sense must prevail. As a matter of simplicity, the laws of physics aren’t going to stop working just because you don’t like government interference.
In this case, “a body in motion tends to stay in motion”. If you aren’t wearing a seat belt at the time of a crash, your body will continue to be propelled in the direction of motion even though the vehicle has stopped.
Use the Steering Wheel to Minimize Damage
You can still use the steering wheel and the crumple zones of the vehicle to minimize damage from the crash as much as possible. Depending on the situation, you may start out with as much as 4 seconds. Count on at least ¾ second before you actually see the vehicle move in the direction you turned the wheel.
Keep Both Hands on the Wheel
Insofar as protecting yourself from damage in the crash, there are some techniques you can use. First, always drive with your hands, wrists, and forearms in alignment. A bent or limp wrist can easily be shoved against the steering wheel and broken. In addition, a limp wrist also gives you less support and control in those seconds when you need it most.
Be Careful when Using the Horn
Consider what you do when you are sleeping soundly and someone throws a bucket of water in your face. This is how a distracted driver’s mind works. Their primary focus and main involvement revolves around talking on the phone or sending a text.
At best, if you hit the horn, it will take them time to respond as they shift gears away from the phone and back to driving. At worst, a distracted driver may freeze up or do something else unpredictable.
Safety Tips for the Passengers
As a front passenger, properly belted into your seat, the best thing you can do is push your body into the seat and make as much contact as possible. The larger the surface area, the more room there is for the impact force to diffuse.
If seating in the back, try to choose the middle seat. Excluding the increased safety associated with air bags and seat belts in the front of the vehicle, the middle back seat is the safest in the vehicle.
One Second After: Status Check
If you have ever been in an accident, there is no mistaking how those first seconds of awareness will feel. No matter whether you lose consciousness, are slightly dazed, or are simply startled by the “bump” or “tap” that got your attention, the reality that you were in an accident can take time to settle in.
You have to realize that what you thought was a slight tap could have turned your vehicle upside down, or sent it crashing into a guardrail or worse. In these first few seconds to minutes, it is very important to stay as still as possible.
Before you move, try to take note of the following:
- The actual position of your body. Are you crumpled up, arms at odd angles, or is your head drooped over onto your chest?
- What do you see? Are you looking out the windshield, a side window, or is everything dark inside the vehicle?
- What do you smell? Is there a smell of gas in the air, dust, or something burning?
- What do you hear? Are there sounds of sirens, voices, or other sounds that might indicate someone is trying to get you out of the vehicle?
During those first few seconds, it is entirely possible you will not feel any pain. Do not be fooled by this. As your senses return and you become aware of the situation, you may feel a great deal of pain, along with coughing, dizziness, nausea, too hot, too cold, or even shaky. It can take seconds to minutes for this to subside.
If you move around too much or start thrashing around trying to escape, you can make wounds worse, or cause broken bones to scrape against each other. The key to this time is to stay still and make each movement count.
While you may be tempted to see if you can open the vehicle door, or try some other escape maneuver, the first thing you must do is make sure you are calm and composed. Take some deep breaths if you are able, and give yourself a chance to adjust to the shock of your situation.
Even if you smell gasoline or something burning, you must not panic. Get control of yourself and you will escape faster and with less effort than if you are in a panic.
Getting Out of the Crushed Car
There is no such thing as a car accident that won’t cause you to feel upset and distressed. In some cases, it will be absolutely necessary to try and escape from the vehicle if you want to remain alive. Having the proper tools on hand is every bit as important as knowing what to do.
But most of all, what you need to survive is trigger words and the right mindset. When you have only minutes to escape, it is best to know how to achieve calm in a matter of seconds. A few sessions of self hypnosis and the choice of an activating keyword or image can give you this calm in any situation. Gain this tool and practice it often so that you have confidence in your ability to control yourself and think clearly.
After you have secured relatively dust free air, regained composure, called for help, and assessed your situation, and medical condition, it is time to see about getting out of the vehicle. Here are the basic steps to follow:
- If you have cuts or gashes, try to bind them up with plastic ties and cloth. Even a plastic bag will do if you have nothing else to stop the bleeding and prevent the wounds from picking up dust and dirt as you move.
- Cut yourself free of the seat belt if you cannot reach the release button or it does not work. Don’t forget to brace yourself if you are upside down or in a position where you are going to fall once the belt is no longer holding you in place.
- See if you can open the vehicle door nearest to you. If you cannot and there is a risk of fire or sinking, then break the window nearest you in order to get out of the vehicle. In situations where there is less immediate risk, you can see if another door will open. When breaking a car window, it will produce very sharp glass shards. It is best to avoid having to break the window and try to crawl through all those bits of glass unless you have no other choice.
More than a few sources recommend gathering up your personal belongings before trying to exit the vehicle. While this may be somewhat appropriate advice if the crash is minor, I feel it can cost your life if there is a high risk of the vehicle catching fire or sinking.
If danger is that imminent, you will be best served by focusing on getting out of the seat belt and then out of the vehicle window if necessary. Remember, nothing is as important as your life, and that objects can all be replaced later on. Unless there is another person in the vehicle that also needs to escape, focus on your own well being.
This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.
If aliens exist and by happenstance were to glance down on our tiny planet, I think they would be shocked by the order of things. We humans are the dominant species on this little blue planet. Not lions, tigers, or bears, but us. Relatively small with inferior muscle mass compared to other predators and generally […]
This is just the start of the post Fear Matters to Security: Control & Use It to Your Advantage. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
Fear Matters to Security: Control & Use It to Your Advantage, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
This article is a follow up of a post I made just a couple weeks ago asking you guys to recommend the prepper gear you use and love. The question came about because I’d made an article listing the best prepper gear I could think of without price point being much of a factor. I tried to […]
This is just the start of the post Reader Recommendations: Preppers List Their Favourite Gear. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
Reader Recommendations: Preppers List Their Favourite Gear, written by Elise Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
When you are in a life or death situation with just a few seconds to a minute remaining, some strategies will work better than others. Ultimately, you’ll be locked into your decision to stay and fight it out until you win or you die, or to try and escape.
Playing dead is one of these strategies: a double edged sword that you should handle carefully. It can help you, or it can also cost your life instead of saving it. In the end, it all depends on the mindset and will of those you encounter, humans and animals equally.
Let’s have a look at some different scenarios and what is likely to happen if you try to play dead. It will help you build the mindset you need to survive!
Scenario 1: Active Shooter Scenarios
Police say most active shooters can take months to years to plan out and gather everything they need to carry out their final scene.
On the other hand, you might not be prepared to face this challenge and have to think fast to find a way to survive. So, are you going to play dead to stay alive? Before deciding, consider that:
- An active shooter most likely has a real, imagined, or socially induced grudge or grievance.
- The shooter has already decided that violence is the only answer.
- This person has more than likely listened to music, played video games, or read materials that encourage the expression violence.
- The shooter has also decided that killing others is an acceptable outcome even if they are not directly associated with the grievance or similar to those that are directly associated.
- The shooter may have communicated his/her intent to others, thus making a commitment to follow through.
- Has already developed a plan, rehearsed it, and acquired weapons.
- Ultimately, has a sense of hopelessness, desperation, and despair.
An active shooter is locked into a drama inside his/her head, and they may or may not be paying attention to how many people they have actually killed. Rather, as long as people go down, and there is plenty of blood around, they may assume you are dead if you look dead.
During the Charleston church shooting, it was Dylann Roof’s belief that he was there to start a race war. He chose the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston South Carolina because it is one of the United States’ oldest continuous running Black churches.
Each victim was shot multiple times to ensure that they were dead. One survivor of the killing spree, did, in fact, escape detection by laying in her own son’s blood and playing dead. The survivor was very lucky this strategy worked, however not every shooter would or will just pass a still body, especially if they have a good sense of where their bullets have struck.
That being said, following the Paris terrorist attacks the United Kingdom’s Terrorism Security Office issued new guidelines that amount to:
- Run – Clear the active shooting areas as fast as possible without getting shot.
- Hide – Find a safe place to hide. Wait for the police or other proper authorities to come and get you.
- Tell – Tell the authorities everything you saw, did, and noticed during the active shooting event.
The US Department of Homeland Security’s guide for an active shooting situation following the San Bernardino California incident also say that people should run and hide. Instead of “tell”, they recommend, as a last resort, making an improvised weapon and fighting to protect yourself and others.
But in an active shooting scenario, no professional or professional organization that I know of, recommends playing dead. I don’t recommend it because, in a split second, it is very hard to tell exactly what kind of person you are dealing with or what is going on in their sick little mind.
There have been volumes written on the difference between a crazy person acting out a drama for personal benefit and a terrorist that is more interested in killing as a social statement instead of an emotional one. In fact, some even say there is no difference at all, or that a person can change as the situation progresses.
Scenario 2: Terror Attacks
If you are in a terrorist attack, run, try to escape, and take as many others with you as possible. If you do play dead in a terrorist attack, it is likely the terrorist will not see an end of a life. Instead, they may see a body that can be used to “send a message” to anyone who is watching.
It is nothing for a terrorist to mutilate a dead body while video taping their escapades. Later on, it will become a training video and inspiration for others, as well as the means to terrorize their sworn opponents. In the end, if you can’t escape, you must fight to the death.
Scenario 3: Armed Robberies
For many people living in the cities or suburbs armed robberies are an every day event. If you cooperate with the robber most of the time they will not hurt you because they just want valuables. If you try to fight back, the robber could very easily shoot you or stab you.
On the other hand, if you fake being sick (such as having a seizure or heart attack), or pretend to fall over dead while playing sick, the robber may leave the scene abruptly.
Robbers do not want undue attention drawn to the area during the robbery. A lot depends on how the robber responds to stress and what is in their mind. Where some will run, others may kick you, stamp on you, or shoot you.
Playing dead is very dangerous in any type of armed robbery. They may even put a bullet in you just to make sure you can’t act as a witness later on.
Scenario 4: Domestic Violence
The frequency and severity of domestic violence can vary dramatically. However, the one constant component of domestic violence is one of the partner’s constant efforts to maintain power and control over the other.
Domestic violence also usually intensifies over time. It can begin with simple name calling and end up with great bodily harm and psychological damage. In all too many cases domestic violence ends in death.
Domestic violence does not always end when the victim escapes the abuser, tries to terminate the relationship, or seeks help. The abuser will continue to stalk, threatened, and try to control the victim after the victim has escaped. As a result, the victim is usually in the most danger following an attempt to exit the relationship. 20% of victims of domestic violence with restraining orders are usually found murdered within 2 days after obtaining the court order.
Quite frankly, playing dead in this situation is not a viable answer. It will not stop the beatings or the violence. If the person has decided to kill, or is in an uncontrollable rage, your stillness may be an invitation to carry out more violence until you are actually dead.
As with other violent situations, you must move to escape and ask for help, or you must fight for your life.
Scenario 5: Street Fights
If you run into an experience street fighter it means that he is strong, aggressive, and can throw extremely hard punches with good knock down power. It also means that this fighter will be willing to bite you, choke you, claw at your eyes, or use what are considered dirty tactics.
There are many methods that you can practice to take your street fighting skills to a successful level, however playing dead isn’t one of them.
Consider that it is very common for a street fighter to try to choke you. Pretending you are dead will more than likely result in your neck being twisted and broken until you are actually dead.
You can use feints or false relaxing to gain an edge, however those are advanced skills that must be carried out in a split second. You must learn and practice often to know when and how to use them. They bear no resemblance to playing dead for several moments.
Scenario 6: Animal Attacks
The best way to avoid wildlife problems is to use common sense. Be aware of what’s around you, what kind of animals you are likely to encounter, and the danger they pose. The most dangerous animals that you’ll run into in North America are cougars, bears, moose, deer, elk, buffalo, wolves, and coyotes.
When interacting with dangerous large animals of North America you may have to fight these animals in order to survive. Sometimes playing dead may be your only option to survive these vicious attacks.
Unlike dealing with humans, animals are more predictable within their species. Wild animals may maul and seriously injure a human, but they will stop short of killing and simply walk away. Man, on the other hand, kills for fun and sport; and will carry through to ending a life.
Here are some observations about wild animals you may encounter, and whether or not it is a good strategy to play dead around them.
Bears are extremely dangerous regardless of the species. They are most inclined to attack when you surprise them, they think you are competing for food, you corner them, or get between a mother and her cubs.
Even the less dangerous bear species will attack when they are hungry. Only play dead when you cannot escape and all else fails.
You might get bit, or even clawed. Unless the bear is hungry, it should leave after that. If you panic while you are playing dead, do not get up, and start to run away. The odds are the bear will run you down and kill you.
Cougar attacks are no time to play dead or make yourself look small or weak. Under no circumstances do you crouch down or play dead. These large cats are active predators that will stalk, kill, and eat their prey either animal or human.
Moose attacks can be staved off by playing dead. Curl up in a ball to protect yourself against the kicks and the stomps. Do not move until the moose goes away or it will renew its’ attack against you.
Deer and elk attacks can also be staved off by playing dead. As with moose, curl up in a ball or fetal position to protect your head, neck, and vital organs. The animals will kick at you, but they will eventually leave you alone.
Buffalo are always risky to deal with, however playing dead works. These huge animals can head-butt, gore, or stomp, in a matter of seconds. If you are knocked down stay down and play dead. Normally after a buffalo has charged it will wander off and resume grazing.
Wolf and Coyote
Wolf and coyote attacks are becoming more common. These are very cunning and highly intelligent animals that stalk their prey by sneaking in from behind to nip and ripped leg muscles to disable their victim. Once you are down the whole pack will swarm in on you for the kill.
Under no circumstances should you play dead. Your best defense is to kill or injure as many as possible until you can escape. Focusing on the first attacker or dominant animal in the pack may or may not work.
How to Play Dead
It is my personal opinion that playing dead to survive a criminal encounter is extremely dangerous and could lead to your death.
If you do play dead it is a last-ditch attempt to surviving a criminal encounter where the odds are you would be shot or murdered anyway.
- If you are going to play dead, don’t just fall to the ground. Make it look like the attack was so bad, you actually died.
- Once you have stopped moving, try to hold your breath. When you must breathe, take shadow slow breaths.
- If you want to watch what’s going on around you, keep your eyelids almost closed and look through the tiny slits. Do not make any fast eye movements.
- When playing dead, be ready for the other person to strike you or take other steps to see if you are actually dead. No matter what the test is, chances are it is going to hurt. Unless you are trained to use this split second to attack, chances are your involuntary responses will get you killed.
Skills to Practice
Even though playing dead is not a good idea if you encounter a violent human, it does work for some animals. In the latter situation, you may have to play dead for several moments.
Here are some things to practice:
- Breath control – know how to control breathing so that no motion is seen or felt. Use meditation to help avoid panic, and also to breathe as lightly and slowly as possible.
- Be completely still for long periods of time.
- Learn how to look around a room without being noticed.
- Under no circumstances do you cough, burp, sneeze, pass gas, or make other noises or odors.
Playing dead may or may not work if your life is in serious danger. When encountering humans, use this method only as a last resort. You can use playing dead more effectively when encountering wild animals depending on the species.
Playing dead can be an effective and life saving strategy, however you must know how to use it properly.
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This article has been written by Fred Tyrell for Survivopedia.
Home security is serious business. Every day we see new articles circulated, tips, tricks, and the latest security hardware that can give you an edge against would-be home invaders. Seldom, however, do I see the mindset – ways you should be thinking about home invasion and how you should behave if it happens to you – […]
This is just the start of the post 5 Things You Should Never Do During a Home Invasion. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
5 Things You Should Never Do During a Home Invasion, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
In any dangerous situation, the last thing you want to do is stand out from the crowd. Attackers, thieves, and other people who would do you harm need little reason to target a person, and often the only reason behind who they target is that the person stood out to them. Instead of being the […]
5 Steps to Developing a Better Urban Survival Process James Walton “I Am Liberty” Audio in player below! We all know about grey man and the idea that we should merely bugout of any major metro area in the event of a disaster. These are good pieces of advice but I think it’s time we … Continue reading 5 Steps to Developing a Better Urban Survival Process
The post 5 Steps to Developing a Better Urban Survival Process appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.
The survival market is changing. It has come a long way since the days that it could barely support a couple of magazines and the occasional book.
Now it seems like TV series every time I turn around, which is remarkable to many of us who have been survivalists for twenty, thirty, forty years or more, because aspects of survival are being accepted as mainstream for the first time in our lives.
This is what the last PrepperCon show was about, it was an opportunity to show off solutions for a changing market.
For a couple of days, survival experts and gear providers gathered in Utah, for one of the main preparedness and survival expos in US. I’ve been there, and now I’m sharing with you the highlights.
Preparedness is Going Mainstream
This year, I was interviewed by a major media outlet from NYC and the NY Times is writing an article about PrepperFash, the fashion portion of the expo.
I certainly never thought I would see the day either of those events would happen, but the survival market seem to attract more moderates concerned with the inevitability of climate change. You don’t have to be conservative or liberal to understand that as our world grows more complicated, it also grows more fragile or to understand that being prepared for emergencies is a responsible precaution.
This level of growth in the survival has made it possible for many more of us to make a living in the field we are passionate about, brought about survival expositions like PrepperCon and has made possible much more specific, detailed and well thought out survival solutions than existed in years past.
Here are a few highlights to help your prepping.
The owner of the company is a supply chain logistics genius who supplies hospitals with medical supplies. This enables Survival Medical to sell hospital quality supplies packaged for long-term storage cheaper than you can buy the individual components.
- Long Term Storage: Survival Medical engineered special layers for their Mylar packaging so cotton won’t yellow and turn brittle, adhesives won’t stop sticking and ointments won’t dry out. This is huge for survivalists storing or caching medical supplies. They have kits packaged in 5 gallon buckets with Gamma Seals lids that store neatly with food storage. 5 gallon buckets are tremendously useful tools in a long-term survival situation or infrastructure breakdown. They are extremely useful for hygiene and water treatment, lots of them. Survival uses for both forms of packaging are only limited by the imagination.
- Price: Prepping is expensive and time consuming and saving both enables you to reach your preparedness goals sooner. Being able to buy long-term packed kits for less than you could buy the components saves time and money.
- Survival-Specific Solutions: They have created a vast array of mission and threat-specific solutions for survivalists. If you are a boater, they have a kit for you. Whether that boat is a kayak or a blue water sailboat, they have a kit for you. Going to store it at a fixed site or transport it in a vehicle? Need a kit for a pack? Ride a horse? Having a baby? It just goes on and on.
- Modular: I pioneered the Modular Survival Kit so it is exciting for me to see someone else applying modularity to survival kits and specifically to the first aid aspect of them. You can use a module without cracking the seal another and then just replace what you used. This is a huge deal.
FithOps 209 Shotgun Primer Perimeter Trip Alarm
You may have noticed a perimeter trip alarm in my article about booby traps that you can slide the base of any number of 12-gauge shotgun shells into. That type of contraption is not without its uses, but it is heavy and shells or even just shell bases are bulky.
The upside is the ability to fire flares, blanks or less-lethal munitions such as OC (Pepper Gas) cartridges and FithOps has a model of that type of perimeter trip alarm coming soon.
What the owner of FithOps has done is that he has dramatically reduced size and weight of the device by creating a trip alarm that fires only the 209 shotgun primer as opposed to an entire shotgun shell base. That’s all I use most of the time, so I was glad to find this product.
What this means is that the device takes up very little space and weight in your pack, enabling you to do the same job with a lot less equipment or carry more of them and deploy a lot more alarms. The body is only about .5″ diameter and just under 3″ in length making it a little fatter than a .410 shotgun shell and since it is machined from aluminum, it is very light and the 209 shotgun shell primers it fires are tiny but are plenty loud.
You could create a perimeter with just two of the devices, but I recommend J-hooking your trails in and out of camp and setting up a couple more or maybe even mix in model or two that uses shotgun shell bases to add flexibility, but that would depend on what you are trying to accomplish.
At just $25 each, they are a great value and I know from personal experience that this type of alarm is very effective. I have set up many a trip trap for students and buddies over the years and have yet to ever have anybody find one before tripping it. Just make sure they don’t have a heart condition, because they can really get the old ticker thumping on excitable types. And yes, the owner claims they work on bears and tweakers alike.
Anyone who has been into emergency preparedness for a long time knows that you need pretty much the same stuff to survive a great variety of threats. A simple solution for many of our basic needs is vehicle-portable camping gear.
Deluxe Camping has taken functionality and efficiency of many basic needs of camping to the next level. The owner was a primitive skills student of Larry Dean Olsen so he understands the fundamentals of camping at a level which most folks do not and this enabled him to innovate some
Rocket Stoven Combo
- Very efficient multi-tier rocket stove/oven that can cook an entire meal at once with very little wood.
- Burns wood completely creating very little smoke.
Deluxe Tent Shower
- Pressurized hot shower that can be used inside or outside a tent.
- Captures water and drains it outside.
Deluxe Filtration Camp Sink
- Hands Free: Foot pump means you can wash your hands and pump water at the same time.
- Self-contained: Captures gray water so no puddle on the ground.
Deluxe Off-grid Laundry
- Large 28-gallon capacity the same as a home washing machine.
- Rust Free
- Smooth circular motion. No repetitive up and down or back and forth motion.
- Can re-capture and reuse water
- Ringer attachment for complete off-grid laundry solution
Education on Laws Governing the Use of Public Land and Natural Resources
The Celebrity Panel gave attendees the incredible opportunity to ask questions to Dave Wescott, David Holladay, Dr. Nicole Apelian and Alan Kay regarding the relevance of primitive survival skills in our modern world.
One of the topics that came up was the laws governing use of our public lands and resources and how we can practice primitive without running afoul of the law. For instance, Alan Kay pointed out that in many states it is illegal to harvest road kill.
The answers boiled down to the fact that life is an act of consumption.
Dave Wescott shared:
You can’t preserve it, you can conserve it. Leave no trace is a physical impossibility, we need to consume to be alive.
Everything comes from somewhere, but unfortunately “leave no trace” is the guiding ethic determining how most of our public lands are used.
The primitive skills veteran advocated “technique over tech” and that “camping badly in any mode is bad.”
David Holladay said that he loves the story of Robin Hood where the king owned all the deer but the people fed themselves anyway.
There is going to be a day when it is illegal to eat or be a human being.
He and explained how one of our neighbors to the South sprayed defoliants on people’s gardens because they were worried that they might contain an insect that could damage the monocultured crops of giant corporate farms and how Mexico passed a law declaring it illegal to be Yaqui.
Members of the Native American tribe were forced to abandon their religion and their culture or move to Arizona. He said: “Live long enough to apologize to the judge, in a survival situation.”
Dr. Nicole Apelian noted that in some states it even is illegal to catch rainwater or highly regulated.
The sick irony is that it is often illegal to feed yourself or to shelter yourself without using products made from fossil fuels that came from some land somewhere and will end as trash somewhere else.
The food in backpacking meals and bags they are packed in come from somewhere and so do the bags many areas require you to use to haul out your urine and feces.
Do they really think food comes from the grocery store? Is it OK to leave a carbon footprint as long as it is in someone else’s country? Because that is exactly what we are doing. We are essentially trying to preserve our own lands in glass showcases while we exhaust resources of other nations or land we call farmland.
Everyone would probably agree that we need rules for high traffic areas, but our current laws serve to separate man from nature. This is an unnatural practice. Humans have been part of most land-based ecosystems a lot longer than we have had laws. Rights and property predated law. Law was created to protect them but is now used to legally plunder the very rights and property it was created to protect.
Our forefathers followed this path and survived for centuries. Learn from their knowledge to find your own way to survive!
This article was written by Cache Valley Prepper for Survivopedia.
If a major disaster strikes your town, the disaster itself won’t be the only threat to your safety. You’ll also have to beware of two types of people: those without food or supplies who are desperate enough to rob anybody, and criminals who are taking advantage of the lack of law enforcement. That’s why situational […]
Last month I wrote about my own experiences with home invasion and how the whole deal played out (spoiler alert: Good Guy 1 – Bad Guy 0), but I wanted to write some more on the topic with a focus on home security and the reality of intruder deterrents. There’s no one-stop solution to protecting your home. From… Read More
This is just the start of the post Home Security 101: Last Ditch Plans Are Not Enough – What to Do Instead. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
Home Security 101: Last Ditch Plans Are Not Enough – What to Do Instead, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
How to Survive When the Cities Burn I think the most important thing to study right now is urban survival and civil unrest. We are seeing unprecedented violence in our nation. Violence in locations that we have never seen it before. There are legitimate movements to hurt people for political beliefs right now. This article …
There are always going to be difficult points in your life. No matter how well prepared you are, how hard you try to make sure you’ve covered every base, learned as much as you could, saved every dollar that you could to hedge against hard times you expect to happen – no matter how prepared you’ve… Read More
This is just the start of the post Times Got Tough? Get Tougher: Using Bad Situations to Fuel Change. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
Times Got Tough? Get Tougher: Using Bad Situations to Fuel Change, written by Elise Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
“We are from the government and we are here to help you!” – these words inspire distrust in many Americans. I know because I have seen peoples’ reactions as I have uttered them trying to help them in emergencies.
Don’t want FEMA to kick your door in? Want to be a good citizen and do your part in an emergency? Download this article as a .pdf, print it and put it in a sheet protector and store it with supplies to tag and flag your home. It will help you a lot.
If you have seen pictures of the aftermath of a major disaster, you probably noticed cryptic markings on homes and buildings. Some are from insurance adjusters, some are made by search and rescue personnel and others are graffiti, warnings to looters or pleas for aid.
This article will help you understand search and rescue tagging methods and symbols and teach you how to flag your own home.
Why Flagging Your Home?
There are a number of reasons you may want to learn about tagging and flagging structures:
- Avoid duplication of effort – thereby speeding rescue and recovery efforts.
- Speed rescue effort – thereby saving lives and property.
- Prevent property damage – I’m not saying this is the best way to accomplish this goal under all circumstances, but if you are able to effectively communicate that there are no victims trapped in your home and it poses no danger to surrounding property, then there is less reason for honest responders to break into your home.
- OPSEC (Operational Security) – prevent others from seeing what resources you have and possibly decide to commandeer them or return with armed officers to do so. You might think, “How selfish!” But there is a difference between voluntarily sharing and being compelled to share, especially if it creates undue hardship or endangers loved ones. Many people consider it a reasonable precaution not put all their cards on the the table.
- Situational awareness – understanding the markings helps you understand.
In the US, FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency) partners with a number of both professional and volunteer emergency management organizations under a program known as the Citizen Corps. These organizations offer training and service opportunities to citizens to better prepare their communities for emergencies too large for their first response infrastructure to handle.
Hurricane Katrina exposed many obstacles to communication and joint operations between agencies and departments. All first responders at all levels of government now follow a single SOP (Standard Operations or Operating Procedure) framework called the ICS (Incident Command System) to improve communication and standardize training.
In cities that already have a CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) or block captain program, groups of homes (typically 8-10) are organized into blocks with a block captain and assistant or co-captains checking on each block and reporting number of reds and greens to the EOC (Emergency Operations Center) which passes them up the chain to the municipality.
If your municipality does not have CERT yet, it will, but the pace at which the program is adopted varies with public perception of municipal risk and exposure to catastrophe. The residents of each home (or the block captains if residents do not flag their own home) flag the home Green (no assistance needed) or Red (assistance needed.) This is accomplished by placing a green or red marker (typically green or red construction paper inside a sheet protector or several feet of green or red flagging tape) to the side of the front door, as long as it is visible from the street.
If the front door is not visible from the street, the flag is placed in a conspicuous place that is visible from the street. Flagging or tagging a door right on the doors should be avoided because the marking will not be visible when the door is open.
If homes are not flagged, block captains will attempt to size up the situation without entering the home and flag it, but if they suspect (or even imagine) that someone may need help, emergency workers will likely gain entry into your home when they are available to do so.
Tools to Flag Your Home
- Public Alert Certified All Hazard Radio – without it, you may sleep right through the all-important first hours of many types of emergencies.
- Headlamp – the power may be out.
- Turnout bag – a bag containing everything you need to dress quickly and don PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) in an emergency.
- Sheets of red & green construction paper – stored in a plastic sheet protector with a copy of this article. If you do not have this on hand, a piece of cloth or several feet of flagging tape or anything conspicuously so colored will do.
- Duct tape – to affix flag.
- Non-sparking gas wrench – large non-sparking crescent wrench or other tool to shut off gas if necessary. Steel wrenches can spark, resulting in a gas explosion. Aluminum is a more effective material for this application.
- Water shutoff tool or key – to turn off water main if necessary.
- First aid/trauma kit – To administer first aid if necessary.
- Smoke/Gas/Carbon Dioxide alarm
- Fire extinguisher
- Non-contact voltage tick meter – An inexpensive tool to discover live electrical lines without touching them.
How To Flag Your Home
Self-assess and Don PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
Make sure you are not seriously injured. The rescuer is the most important person in an emergency. Not only will you not be able to help anyone else if you become a casualty, but you will further strain emergency response resources that are already likely overtaxed.
If you jump out of bed and onto glass without your boots on, you are not off to a good start.
Establish Situational Awareness
Hopefully you already have a Public Alert Certified All Hazards Radio. It will issue information and instructions that will aid you in making decisions that will save lives. If you do not have one, turn on a NOAA weather radio or tune AM/FM radios to stations issuing emergency information for your area.
These frequencies should be part of your communications plan. Label radios with them. Turn on 2-way radios.
See If Family Members Are Injured or Trapped
Determine whether anyone in the home needs medical attention. If yes, call for help and flag the home red by taping a piece of red construction paper in a sheet protector to the side of your door or someplace visible from the street, and render first aid.
If you are in an apartment, condo or building, tape it on the wall beside your door or entryway where it will be visible to someone walking by. Diagnose and treat the three killers first: breathing/airway, bleeding and shock. Once the patient is stable or you have done all you can do, proceed to the next step.
Rescue personnel will go to flagged homes first if communications are down or if the number of injured exceeds their capacity to treat immediately.
If no one is injured, tag your home green instead of red and proceed to the next step. If injuries are minor, treat them and proceed to the next step. If family is trapped, flag the home red and rescue the most lightly trapped individuals first so they can help extricate more heavily trapped individuals. Use cribbing to safely extricate those within your ability and know when to go get more help.
Walk a complete circle around your home, checking for gas, water, live electrical lines, small fires and structural damage.
- Gas – if you smell gas, turn it off at the meter by turning the valve 1/4 turn in a clockwise direction. The gas company must run a check and turn it back on.
- Electrical – in the event of an electrical fire, short or gas leak, turn off main breaker in fuse box.
- Water – if a water pipe is broken, you will want to turn off water to your home until you can repair it to prevent flooding and water damage.
- Fire – if you hear, see or smell fire, size them up before attempting to fight them. Extinguish small fires within your ability with a buddy if they are smaller than a kitchen trash can and you have the equipment to safely do so. For larger fires, evacuate and call for help.
- Structural Damage – if there are dangerous power lines, gas lines, water lines, fires, sunken ground, impaired access, down trees or damage to the structure of the home, it may not be safe to inhabit. Tape off any hazards to prevent injury if it is safe to make repairs, but understand that emergency workers may deem your home inhabitable and ask (force if necessary) you to relocate.
This is one reason why everyone should have an evacuation or bug out plan, supplies cached off-site, financial reserves and places to stay. How will you “shelter in place” if your home is leveled?
Be able to shelter in place or evacuate as the situation dictate. It’s not the strong who survive, but the adaptable. If you cannot relocate for a time, your contingency plan is less-effective. Make it more effective.
How to Tagg Your Home
Whereas home owners or Block Captains flag their homes red or green to indicate whether or not they are in need of assistance, tagging of structures is typically done by SAR (Search and Rescue) Teams, organizing pertinent information around an “X” symbol. They will typically tag with contrasting colors.
Just as with flagging, tagging is done to side of the door, instead of on it, so the tag will be visible even if the door is closed.
Tools to Tag Your Home
- This article – in a plastic sheet protector, for further reading and knowledge.
- Marking instruments – choose colors that contrast with your home.
- sidewalk chalk
- lumber crayons
- XL paint markers or spray paint
- green and red flagging tape
- yellow caution flagging tape
- Camera or notebook & pencil – optional
- Binoculars – optional.
Finally, let’s see what to do to rag you home properly.
If other structures in your area have already been marked, take note. You may want to sketch what you see or snap a digital photo to help you duplicate the markings. Depending on why you are marking and what you are trying to accomplish, this may be helpful.
But SAR Teams do not always follow SOP. After flooding from a hurricane, the SAR Team flagged all the homes by tying Yellow Caution or Crime Scene Tape to the door knobs. This should never happen because you can’t see the flag when the door is open.
Things don’t always go as planned in emergencies. Maybe some of their gear didn’t arrive and they borrow crime scene tape form local law enforcement, who knows, but that’s why it’s important that you observe they are tagging if possible.
- Marking Instrument(s) – What are they using to mark structures? What colors?
- Time – Are they writing the time or time and date, and in what format?
- Team Initials – Who is doing the marking? Take note of the initials.
Upon entry, the SAR (Search & Rescue) Team makes a diagonal slash to communicate that searchers are inside and a search is in progress. This prevents duplication of effort and alerts others to their location, should they become trapped…
Upon completion of a search and extrication and removal of all victims, the SAR Team makes a second diagonal slash, completing an “X” communicating that the search of the structure is complete and that both the victims and searchers are safely out.
The SAR Team writes the time operations cease in the structure (and possibly the date) in the 12:00 quadrant of the “X”.
The 3:00 quadrant of the “X” is for actions taken that need to be communicated to the homeowner such as: “Gas Off” “Elec Off” “Water Off”
The 9:00 quadrant of the “X” is where the team or unit is identified by its initials.
Even if you flag with the wrong material, SAR workers will understand the markings. What they conclude upon reading it will be dependent on a host of factors. They may decide it was a local team or the residence belongs to a first responder.
Either way, they were going to gain forcible entry to your home before they saw the markings and no one answers when they knock. If they see the markings, they may pass you by, especially if they think it was done by another worker on their team.
Interested in keeping you and your family safe? Click the banner below for more!
This article has been written by Cache Valley Prepper for Survivopedia.
When I was 16 or 17, I was home whilst someone attempted to break in. The experience ended well for me (not so much for the perp), but I figured it would be interesting to discuss, since enough years have passed and I can look back on the situation critically. Before I get into the meat of this… Read More
This is just the start of the post My Home Invasion Story: Break In & Robbery Attempt – While I Was Home. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
My Home Invasion Story: Break In & Robbery Attempt – While I Was Home, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
Your Android phone is one of approximately 1.4 billion worldwide according to a Google Nexus conference in 2015. We’ve come way past the point where all a phone could do was make a phone call and send a text: Now, you can turn your cellphone into a full-on survival kit containing everything from a compass […]
I have discussed how to seal a wound in the past, and whether to use stitches, bandages, or super glue. I’ve even done a comprehensive guide about sealing cuts with super glue, but as of yet, haven’t fully covered the process of preparing your wound prior to actually sealing it. This article may seem a bit… Read More
This is just the start of the post How to Properly Clean a Cut, Scrape, or Wound to Prevent Infection. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
How to Properly Clean a Cut, Scrape, or Wound to Prevent Infection, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
Bit by bit, the ranks of preppers are growing all the time. More and more people are waking up to the fact that the government can’t protect them and doesn’t even do a very good job of providing support in the aftermath of a disaster. Oh, they throw money at it, but money isn’t the answer to everything.
Every new prepper is faced with the same problems and the same questions they have to answer for themselves. It’s not that there’s no information available for new preppers to use, it’s that there’s too much information.
Check online for prepping or survival and you’ll find an enormous amount of information, not all of which agrees with other sources. Wading through all that and finding the information that one needs can be a daunting task.
You might very well be one of those newbies; someone who has just decided to look at prepping for the first time. If so, welcome to one of the most important movements in our country today.
Prepping is an individual journey that each of us take, with no two walking exactly the same path. Yet we are preppers together, part of a fellowship of like-minded people who have decided that it’s time to do something for themselves.
If you’re reading this, you’ve probably already decided that just looking at information isn’t enough. Being a prepper means taking action; preparing yourself and your family for whatever problem or disaster might come your way. Preppers believe in self-sufficiency; trusting in themselves in an emergency, not in the government.
But where does one begin? Of all the things that one can do to become more prepared, which one or ones are the most important? What does one have to do, in order to truly be prepared?
These questions are complicated by the fact that each person’s situation is unique. Oh, we all have things in common, but we also have our own needs, our own family, our own skills, our own resources and our own risks that we face. So cookie cutter prepping doesn’t work. Each person has to determine what their own needs are and how to best meet them.
Even so, there are some things we should all do at the beginning; things to get us on the road to becoming better prepared. The first steps we need to take on this journey may not be what you’re thinking. In fact, I’d be surprised if many preppers thought about these steps, before walking along the path for a ways.
It’s easy to think of prepping as just stockpiling supplies for a rainy day. That’s actually where most of us start off. Whether we just buy a couple of bags of beans and rice or go hog wild buying prepackaged survival food, squirreling food away for a rainy day seems like an almost instinctive act; something we easily gravitate towards, as a starting point for our prepping.
There’s nothing wrong with stockpiling food and in fact you need to do so; but before you start stockpiling, it’s a good idea to know what to stockpile. Not all foods keep well, nor do all of them provide the right nutrition to get you through an emergency. Take some time to research, before running off to the grocery store.
While you’re at it, you need to research much more than just what foods to stockpile. Our modern society doesn’t prepare us well for survival. If anything, it prepares us to die blaming others. But you can’t count on those others to help you survive. They don’t know how to either.
Our ancestors of 200 years ago were much better suited for survival than we are. For them, every year was about survival. They either stockpiled enough preserved food and cut enough firewood to make it through winter or they died. There weren’t too many other options available. Their lives were simpler, their needs and wants more closely associated with surviving and they had the skills they needed to take care of themselves.
There are a wide range of skills that you need to learn, some of which you might actually already know. If you like to go camping and spend time in the outdoors, you’re off to a good start, as the skills associated with those activities are closely related to survival skills.
Remember that a knife is a must have tool for outdoor survival as it helps you hunt, make shelter, start a fire and defend yourself.
Hunting, fishing, and starting a fire are all good survival skills. But you’ll also need to know how to grow food in your garden, purify water and defend your home as well.
For preppers, learning isn’t something that begins or ends, it’s just something that is. We start out learning about survival when we get into prepping, and we keep on learning for the rest of our lives. There’s always some new skill or information to learn; all of which is ultimately useful.
Develop a Survival Mentality
Most people tend to look at survival as a physical activity; but it’s as much mental as it is physical. You have to have the right attitude to survive or no matter what you do, you’ll fail.
What do I mean by the right attitude? I mean the attitude of a survivor. You have to be convinced that you’ll survive. You have to be convinced that you’ll overcome. You need to be convinced that you can do whatever is necessary to keep yourself and your family alive.
Here in America we’re protected from many of the harsher realities of life. Few Americans have had to kill and prepare their own food. Unless you’re a hunter; you probably don’t have the slightest idea of how to kill and clean a chicken for dinner, let alone how to properly field dress and butcher a deer or other large animal. But if it’s not done properly, the meat from that animal can be tainted in the process.
But you know the hardest part of killing and preparing that animal? It’s getting over the idea of having to do it. Most of us are squeamish when it comes to things like that; squeamish to the point that we’d die before killing that chicken.
Yet for millennia our ancestors hunted, killed and ate their own game, without the slightest bit of squeamishness. Men would bring the game home from their hunt, and their wives would clean and cook the animals. They didn’t throw up; they didn’t feel funny about it; they did it, and they enjoyed the meal that they prepared.
For us, here in America, overcoming the imprint of our society and accepting the needs of survival is paramount to being able to survive. Most have to do so at a moment’s notice, when they are faced with their first disaster. But those who develop a survival mentality learn to make the adjustment at their leisure, when it’s easier to do so.
Interestingly enough, attitude is so important to survival, that every military manual on survival starts off with a section on attitude. When you consider the amount of money and effort that goes into the preparation of those manuals, that one single fact is rather telling. Attitude is key to survival.
Analyze Your Family’s Strengths and Weaknesses
Each of us has a different family, with different strengths and weaknesses. Some family members might have skills or abilities which easily translate to a survival setting. Others have special needs that have to be considered when making our survival planning. Typically, we find a bit of each in our families.
Surviving as a lone wolf is much harder than surviving as part of a team. In a team, each individual is able to take part of the load, helping each other. With each one learning the necessary skills and doing part of the necessary tasks, not only does the work become easier; but more importantly, the chances of the team’s survival becomes greater.
Your family is your first survival team. Even if you join with others, in a larger survival team, your family is still the core of your personal team. As such, it’s important that you understand what your family is capable of doing, what it is capable of learning, and even more importantly, what you might need others to do for you, because you are incapable of learning to do it for yourself.
As part of this, you also need to analyze the assets you have at your disposal.
Do you have a vacation home somewhere, that you could use as a survival retreat if you needed to? Do you have a four-wheel-drive vehicle? Do you have enough land to turn your home into a homestead? Do you have camping equipment? How much money do you have available to use for prepping? What tools do you have, which will help you survive? Does your home have a fireplace? All of this, and more, will ultimately affect your ability to survive.
This process of analyzing your family will ultimately tell you what you need to do, in order to get from where you are today, to where you need to be. But don’t just do it once; from time to time you should reanalyze the situation and make any necessary adjustments.
Decide What Risks You Face
Prepping is ultimately about being ready to face a disaster, whether that’s a personal disaster, a regional disaster or a nationwide disaster. The problem is, none of us know the disaster that we are going to face. That makes prepping a little bit difficult.
But not knowing doesn’t mean that we can’t prepare. It just means that we prepare for likelihoods, rather than certainties. In other words, while it’s safe to say with certainty that we’ll all face some sort of disaster, sometime in our lives, what exact disaster we might face is nothing more than a likelihood.
So, the thing you need to do is figure out what the most likely disasters are, that you are going to face. That stats with figuring out what possible disasters you could face, ranging all the way from loss of a job to a zombie apocalypse, with natural disasters and the loss of the electrical grid in between. Don’t leave anything out at this point, as all you’re really doing is brainstorming possibilities.
Once you have your list of possible disasters, you need to give each of them two scores, say on a scale of one to five. The first scale is how likely you feel it is that you’ll actually face that disaster. The second scale is how much of an impact that disaster would have on your life. Some disasters, such as a zombie apocalypse might have an extremely low likelihood, earning it a one on that scale, but an extremely high impact, should it actually happen, earning it a five on that scale.
(Note: The term TEOTWAWKI is commonly used by preppers to stand for “The end of the world as we know it.” This does not mean the literal end of the world, but rather, the end of our modern lifestyle that we are accustomed to.)
Combining the two scores gives you a number from 2 to 10. That number is the one you use to prioritize considering that particular disaster in your planning. The way that usually works out, is that we concentrate on the highest ones and ignore the lower ones.
But in preparing for the highest ones, we are probably going to be prepared for whatever happens with the lower ones.
Now that you’ve got a pretty good idea of what you have to work with and what you’re likely to face, you can start your survival planning. Once again, this is a process that will continue throughout the rest of your life. Everything you learn has the potential to change and improve your plans.
Your plan needs to define what you will do in each of the potential disaster situations you are likely to encounter, especially the high likelihood, high impact ones. You will find that there will be some overlap between different scenarios, but there will also be things that are unique to each one.
From this, you can determine how much you need to stockpile, whether it’s for a month, six months, a year or the rest of your life. You’ll also be able to determine the best place for your family to survive, in a variety of different situations. In many of those scenarios, you’ll be better off sheltering in place, or “bugging in.” But there might also be some which require you to bug out and go to a survival retreat somewhere.
Don’t expect that you’ll get everything right the first time around. You will most likely forget some items, because of being focused on other needs. That’s okay. As you continue to study, you’ll find the places you need to fill in, to make your survival plans and your stockpile more complete.
Prepping is a process, not a destination. You’ll probably never reach that point of perfection, where you sit back and say to yourself: “Self, I’ve arrived. I’m ready for anything.”
But rather, you’ll gain more and more confidence that you can take care of yourself and your family, no matter what comes your way. Each little step will give you and your family more security, and ultimately, that’s what prepping is all about.
A good knife is the most important tool you can have with you. Click the banner below to grab this offer!
This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.
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The “gray man” concept is something all urban preppers should be familiar with. If you’re in a populated area during a crisis of some sort, it’s best to blend into the background rather than draw attention to yourself. This should be a no-brainer, but how exactly does one blend into the background? Graywolf Survival wrote […]
The post 5 Gray Man Secrets I Learned as a Surveillance Operative appeared first on Urban Survival Site.
Urban Survival Forrest & Kyle “The Prepping Academy” Audio in player below! On “The Prepping Academy” for this episode our host Forrest and Kyle are discussing urban survival. You might be thinking to yourself this doesn’t apply to you. Let us assure you it does. Current statistics say that approximately 82% of the United States population … Continue reading Urban Survival with The Prepping Academy
Hypothermia is one of those conditions that is often discussed and yet rarely described as anything more than simply being out in the cold for too long. The reality is quite a bit more complex and the consequences of ignoring the symptoms often lead to extreme end results, sometimes even death. What Is Hypothermia? Hypothermia… Read More
This is just the start of the post Hypothermia: Life Threatening, Yet Simple to Treat – Do You Know How?. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
Hypothermia: Life Threatening, Yet Simple to Treat – Do You Know How?, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
If you haven’t thought about dumb phones in a long while, I can’t blame you, but chances are you’re missing out on a really great emergency tool that’s been right at the back of your memory this entire time. Smart phones are amazing. They’re an enhancement to everyday life. I can’t imagine no longer having… Read More
This is just the start of the post Who Still Buys Dumb Phones Anymore? Preppers Should & Here’s Why. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
Who Still Buys Dumb Phones Anymore? Preppers Should & Here’s Why, written by Elise Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
This post is by Bernie Carr, apartmentprepper.com Water is such a crucial need – you can only go three days without water. A lot of people who prepare plan to fill the bathtub before a hurricane, ice storm or other predicted emergency. However, if a disaster were to happen suddenly, it would not be possible to fill the bathtub ahead of time. To be sure you are prepared for a sudden water emergency, store enough water for drinking as […]
There’s not always a heck of a lot new going on in the survival, outdoor, & camping world when it comes to interesting gadgets, new products, and overall innovation. This makes sense, since when it comes to camping, survival, & the general outdoors, many choose (wisely) to stick to what they’ve already got because, well plainly put,… Read More
This is just the start of the post That Exists? Coolest Survival, Outdoor, & Camp Gear We’ve Seen. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
That Exists? Coolest Survival, Outdoor, & Camp Gear We’ve Seen, written by Elise Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
Most people have become so dependent on technology that they’re not even a little prepared for a true survival situation, let alone attempting to survive it without any traditional survival gear. In a situation such as a natural disaster, terrorist attack, or economic collapse where you are stranded away from your home and without any […]
Army teaches you unique survival skills and habits, useful not only in extreme situations, but also in your everyday life.
The first and the most important thing people in the military are forced to learn is to survive. They learn to think fast, to function under stress, to pay attention to details and to survive in extreme environments. There is no other option. You either adapt or you are out or you… die.
Not serving in the army doesn’t mean you don’t have to learn something from those who do.
From keeping a low profile to self-defense, here are the top military tips and skills to introduce into your survival strategy.
Situational awareness is a simple concept, it’s just being aware of your surroundings and understanding the reality of the threats that you may face in any given situation. It’s just constantly being aware of what’s going on around you.
To some, situational awareness is just a theory, but there is much more than that, and once you learn it you understand why it stands for the basis of survival.
How Do You Recognize a Suspicious Activity or Person
If you know what normal looks like, you should be able to pick out the things that stand out as being abnormal in any situation, and those suspicious things are going to stand out. Don’t be afraid to act by calling the authorities when you see it, better sorry than dead! It might be a false alarm, or your call could lead to the capture, kill, or arrest of a terrorist cell or network.
Detecting Criminal Surveillance
Criminal surveillance is watching something or someone to determine if you’re the target that they’re looking for. Once you are identified as the target, most probably they’re going to hit by robbing you, kidnapping you or your family or even worse.
How to Lose a Tail
First, you have to be aware that you have a tail, then act to lose it.
If you’re on foot, start walking erratically, meaning instead of going straight from point A to point B, take some weird turns. Look for shiny or reflective surfaces (a mirror or a store window) to see if that person is still following you.
How to Keep a Low Profile
Keeping a low profile doesn’t mean to drive the most expensive car in the country and talking too much about what you do and why you do it.
The goal is to stay unnoticed so the danger wouldn’t meet you round the corner. It starts with the way you dress and the way you move when you are in a public place, and has to do with the way you act and react in order to not drawing attention.
How to Cope with Danger
The first thing you want to do is put as much distance between yourself and the threat as possible, then you want to make sure that you alert the authorities to what’s going on in case communication means are available. Give them all the information that you can to make their job as easy as possible.
Now it’s not always the case that you can get away. Sometimes you may find yourself in an active shooter type scenario where escape is not an option. You may have to do things that you are not trained to do and that you have never done before.
Just calm down, stay calm and think before you do. Think about each move that you’re going to make before you make it, and try and protect yourself and others, as Brian M. Morris says in his “Spec Ops Shooting” guide to combat shooting mastery and active shooting defense. This decorated former Green Beret shares a lot of lifesaving advice from his 25 years of service in this book.
Combat Tips to Use for Self-Defense
1. You should be armed. In most states it’s now legal to get a concealed carry permit, which allows you to carry a handgun concealed on your person. Thirty-seven of the states are now “will issue” states, which means that as long as you meet the requirements for a concealed carry permit and do not have a record of criminal activity or mental incompetence, the state is required to give you a permit, upon application.
Okay, so being aware and having a weapon on your person takes away a lot of the assailant’s advantage, but not all of it. They still have two major advantages over you; the first is that they choose the time and place and the second is their willingness to inflict harm on you.
2. When an attack comes, you need to react quickly and violently. Violently doesn’t necessarily mean that you kill them or even that you shoot them, it means that you react in such a way that they are convinced you are going to shoot them. That alone might be enough to get them to break off the attack and run away.
3. As part of that initial reaction, you want to move out of their line of fire. Most criminals are poor shots and not much more skilled with a knife. They’re depending on their ability to intimidate you. That doesn’t mean that they aren’t dangerous or that they can’t shoot you; just that they are likely to miss. Moving, whether dropping to one knee or moving to the side, reduces their chances of hitting you.
4. There’s a saying that anything that’s worth shooting is worth shooting twice. Police departments train their officers this way, teaching them to shoot “double taps”. Those double taps increase the chances that your shots are going to do enough harm to the assailant that you will be able to stop them. If your shots don’t stop them, keep shooting. Your goal isn’t to kill them, just to stop them. As long as they are facing you and holding a weapon, they’re a threat.
5. Once you start moving, keep moving. You should practice shooting while moving, so that you are prepared to do it. It is infinitely harder to shoot accurately while moving, than it is while standing still. Practice, so that you can do it when you need to. Your movement makes you a hard target to hit.
6. Events might transpire in such a way that you can’t draw your gun and return fire immediately. There are times that an assailant might get the upper hand, even if you are aware of your surroundings. Your first indication that anything is wrong might be seeing a gun or knife stuck in your face. If that’s the case and you can’t draw your weapon, play for time.
They’re keyed up to attack at first, but the longer they have to wait, the less ready they are. In such a situation, you want to try and wait until they are either momentarily distracted or let down their guard for a moment. That then becomes your moment to act.
Being able to master army skills is what makes you a warrior and helps you survive and protect other at the same time. It takes practice and time to build this mindset, but once you got it you ease your steps to survival.
This article has been written by John Gilmore for Survivopedia.
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So, it just so happens that you’re on vacation in Italy when SHTF in a small or large way. You were dependent upon your little English-to-Italian dictionary or Google Translate, but somehow it seems inefficient to stop to look up the translation for “help me, I’m choking.”
Are there universal words or gestures that transcend language barriers so that you can survive no matter where you are? Sort of.
We’ve had some questions about learning a “universal language of survival” and we are going to adress them now.
“One thing I have never seen suggested is to learn a few key words or better yet, phrases, in multiple languages. As our communities become ever more diverse, knowing a few phrases in at least two other languages may make the difference between getting help or getting shot! Just knowing the word “Doctor” in another language may save you or a member of your family or team and could mean life or death in a SHTF meltdown. I hope we never need any of these things we prepare for but as my dad always drilled into my head, “Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it!”. I had no idea how important that saying would be until I was face to face with a situation that required prior prepping to have survived it. Thank God I did and I am here to report it works but you need to do it now (prepping), when you find out you should have, it will be too late. Thanks daddy for riding me hard and may you rest in peace, I had it when I needed it!”
First, understand that you need to be very clear when using gestures, and at least educate yourself a bit about local customs and gestures.
For example, the A-OK sign here (pointer and thumb touching, other fingers up), and in most other places, will get you a smile and an acknowledgement that everything is, indeed, OK. However, in France, it means zero or worthless. In Venezuela or Turkey, you’re implying homosexuality, and in Brazil, just go ahead and save yourself some time by flipping them the bird. That one’s universal.
The thumbs-up sign is another that you may want to avoid, especially in the Middle East. Here, we have a similar meaning if you start with the thumbs-up sign by your leg and jerk it up – it means, basically, “up yours.” There, just the thumbs-up is enough to convey the sentiment.
On the other hand, there are some gestures that are universal: shrugging for “I don’t know,” nodding for “yes,” shaking your head for “no” (except from Bulgaria, where they are reversed) and putting both hands to your throat to indicate that you’re choking. And that’s about where the open line of universal communication ends.
Even different militaries can’t get on board with a universal signaling system. There are, however, two realms that DO have international signals: sailing and diving. Very few people outside of those two worlds understand all or even most of the signals.
The same thing goes for Morse code. One thing that everybody should know, though, is Morse code for SOS, or distress. It’s three long (or slow) taps, three short (or quick) taps, and three more long (or slow) taps.
Video first seen on survivexnonprofit.
Come here, or follow me
If you’re trying to get somebody to come to you or follow you, it may be a good idea to use the closed palm, sweeping gesture instead of the one-fingered come-hither gesture that is perfectly acceptable in the states. That one is offensive in several places.
This one is crazy confusing and has even been associated with examples of lethal miscommunications. Stop means stop, but there is no universal sign for it. Some people use a closed fist, which can be associated with a “right on” expression or even a Seig Heil-type sentiment.
An open palm, which is more common with Europeans, can be a sign of welcome or a sign that a person isn’t armed in some cultures. It is, however, the universal diving signal for “stop”.
This one actually is pretty universal. Cup a hand to your ear to tell somebody to listen.
To get somebody to look at something, the gesture of pointing your pointer and middle fingers at your eyes, then toward whatever you want the person to see is fairly universal. Again, this is also the universal diving sign for look.
This one is much more universal, though not in a social scenario. You may have noticed that the distress signal in Morse code had a bunch of threes in it.
Three is a common number for distress signals. If you’re building an emergency signal fire or sign, place three fires or indicators in a triangle pattern. If you’re using a whistle, use three blasts.
This one actually has a universally-recognizable signal. Place both hands at your throat. If only everything was this simple.
Buddy up, or stay together
This one is pretty much universal. Point to the people that you’re referring to, then touch your index fingers together horizontally. You can also pair the middle fingers together with the pointer fingers, which may indicate more than two people.
Cross your arms over your chest and rub your upper arms.
Throughout my research for this article, I was hard-pressed to come up with any words at all that are universal, and very few signs or signals other than those used to indicate distress. I have, however, had some experience with diving and believe personally that their system is a good one. The signals are clear, concise, and universal to the diving community.
There are, of course, some signals that are local due to native dangerous fish, etc. but for the most part, the signs are recognized all across the community.
With a combination of signals and body language, you may be able to get your point across. For example, if you cross your arms over your chest with your fists closed and shake your head vigorously, people may understand that you’re trying to tell them that something is dangerous.
The “X” is sort of a universal code for dangerous or poisonous – think skull and crossbones.
There doesn’t seem to be any single word or phrase that can be used to communicate effectively even in a survival situation. The best thing that you can do is coordinate with the people whom you are traveling with.
It’s also a good idea to learn the native words for stop, danger, food, water, cold, shelter, help, come here, fire, exit, and any other emergency word that you can think of that you may need in a survival situation.
This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.
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Survival Knife Evolution.
With the North Koreans gathering plutonium for nuclear warheads, and their Supreme Leader unhappy with Trump’s ascension to the office of President, nuclear preparedness should be everyone’s concern. How to stay safe while bugging out makes part of this plan, for sure.
Even someone that can navigate by looking at the sun or using other “low tech” means can easily fall prey to radiation poisoning after a nuclear incident. In fact, people interested in bugging out or moving from one area to another might be at higher risk than those who are staying in one area.
So if you are in an area where more nuclear incidents are likely to occur or you need to travel for some other reason, safe navigation is extremely important.
While the basics of using maps, compasses, and other tools will not change, your path from one point to another may be far more different than expected. In particular, you will need to know more than how to skirt around areas where radiation intensities are highest.
You will need to know how to predict where radioactive materials are most likely to disburse as well as how shifting weather and tide patterns will affect where additional materials will build up. This is even more important if you intend to gather water and food along the way and happen across what appear to be low or non-contaminated areas.
Calculating Rate of Radioactive Travel By Land
Calculating how fast nuclear radiation will spread over land is no more difficult than knowing how fast breezes and the wind will move from ground zero to your location.
First, you must know the source of the radiation. You can use the links we posted at the end of the article to test out different areas and nuclear yield in order to get some idea about how large an initial area will be affected. Next, study the predicted wind currents for the area surrounding the contaminated site. Use the national climate archives to figure out the general wind direction for each state during specific months, as well as for major cities within each state.
For example, if you want to know how a nuclear blast in Alameda, California will affect Los Angeles CA, you might start off by visiting the Western Regional Climate Center, and then click on Average Wind Direction by State. You’ll see that the winds in Alameda usually go to the West, and in January they tend to go towards the NNW. Since Los Angeles is roughly Southeast of Alameda, you could go from Alameda towards Los Angeles for most of the year and more than likely escape fallout from the nuclear zone.
Unfortunately, since the wind from Alameda moves to the SE in December, you would not want to try and escape to Los Angeles as the nuclear radiation would follow you or precede you out of Alameda.
If you have a bug out plan that lists this information, you can also use real time estimators of wind current to project how fast the radiation is moving. Use the Beaufort Wind Scale to help you figure out how local winds are moving. If you get contradictory information between the historical tables and your observations, it may be best to get underground as quickly as possible and wait a few days to see what the air currents are doing.
Take the time now to observe wind directions and durations in your local area. If you have projected bug out paths, make sure that you have year round information on wind currents in those areas as well as studies on how wind from other areas moves into the ones you plan to travel through.
Calculating Rate of Radioactive Travel by Water
When it comes to calculating the spread of nuclear contamination over land, it can be said that air and its associated wind currents determine both the speed and distance. In a similar way, water acts as the medium of transport when attempting to calculate the rate of radioactive travel by water. If a detonation spreads water and debris into the air, you would need to calculate both the air mass and the water currents.
To calculate the rate of radioactive travel by water, start off once again by visiting Nuclear Secrecy so that you can get some ideas about how large the initial impact area will be. Then you will need to look at charts of the tides, water currents, and wind directions in the area.
There are two free resources that may be of some help to you. First, Open Nautical Chart offers global charts that also provide information about global wind and precipitation patterns. You can try using this chart for predicting how nuclear contamination will spread over areas of both land and water just by looking at the general trends. For more specific information about the currents and tides around the United States, visit Office Coast Survey.
Once you have the maps, all you need to do is compare the information between where the nuclear fallout is, and the maps will show you where it is most likely to go. For water calculations near the coast, you may also want to take the daily tides into account. For this, visit Salt Water Tides, and then select the region and date of interest to you. You can also use this site to project future tide timings.
Mountains and Other Geographic Mitigating Factors
Even though you may be aware of seasonal changes in precipitation types or storm intensities, you may not realize that wind patterns also have seasonal and predictable fluctuations. Aside from that, mountains, hills, valleys, and other geological features can alter the way both wind and rain will affect any given area.
When it comes to getting away from nuclear fallout, you can think of mountains and hills in two ways. First, you can think of them as shields that you will want to put between you and the source of the radiation.
Typically, both wind and precipitation contaminated by nuclear materials will fall on the side of the mountain closest to the blast. As with everything from hurricanes to snowstorms and other weather systems, the precipitation-bearing clouds will drop in temperature as they try to move over the mountains.
This, in turn, will cause them to a good bit of water before they reach the other side. In some areas where this effect is especially pronounced, you may notice that rainfall data is less than it is on the other side of the mountain. The “drier” side of the mountain will be safer in a nuclear crisis because prevailing rain patterns will not carry fallout over to the other side.
Second, you can think of mountains and hills as places where prevailing weather patterns may offer clues about lower fallout risk regions. Excessive dryness on one side of the mountain may indicate that prevailing winds shift in the opposite direction. In this situation, even if the source of radiation is closer to the drier side of the mountain, it may still be safe because the debris will be carried in the opposite direction.
That being said, an area in this situation is also apt to be desert, or at best, scrub lands. If you are considering using an area like this as a nuclear bug out location,visit the area first and make sure that you know how to live in a desert region and be sure that you can secure water on a regular basis.
Locality Based Mitigating Factors
While you are moving from one place to another, it is important to realize that just about anything can act as a shield to nuclear radiation. If you are always aware of wind direction in relation to your location and ground zero, you will have a better chance of knowing when to take cover. While underground locations will always be best, buildings and even a tree can mitigate the amount of radiation that reaches your body.
Just remember to stand or sit in a place where the object is between you and the direction the contaminated air is coming from.
As you move through different areas, you are also bound to need water. If you cannot locate underground sources, some terrains may offer safer water than others. For example, if you are near a pond with bushes or shrubs growing nearby, take note of where the shrubs are in relation to the prevailing wind. If the shrubs stand between the wind (and the nuclear debris it carries), then the water may have less radiation.
The taller the shrubs or trees, and the denser they are, the more protection they will afford. As long as it hasn’t rained since the nuclear blast occurred, the water may be a bit safer than what you would find in other locations. At the very least, if you have no water purification options available you can try using this:
- Start off by taking water only from the uppermost part of the pond. Dust and heavier contaminants will settle to the bottom.
- Let the water settle for at least 24 hours so that any additional radioactive material will settled towards the bottom of the pitcher.
- To get rid of any bacteria or pathogens, it is best to let UV light from the sun kill them off. It is best not to boil the water in this situation because it will only concentrate any dust particles that remain in the water while the lighter water molecules escape.
If you come across a moving stream or river, be very careful about the direction of the water flow in relation to the fallout zone. Even though moving water will dilute the nuclear material, it is best to seek a water source that is upstream of the blast. As with ponds, the more shields and distance that exist between the water and the nuclear site, the better.
Areas to Stay Away From at All Cost
Did you know that there are unsafe areas right here in the United States because the levels of nuclear radiation are too high?
What you may not realize is that the surrounding areas may also be contaminated to a point where they can endanger your health. To make matters even worse, Fukushima and other nuclear accidents may make an area you thought was safe far too dangers for a bug out location. When it comes to navigating after a nuclear disaster, you will need to factor in these locations plus the locations of any nuclear facilities that may pose a risk to your well being.
Remember, if our nation is under some kind of nuclear attack, it is also entirely possible non-nuclear attacks may happen at the same time. Large hospitals with nuclear diagnostic equipment, medical waste transports, nuclear power plants, and other sites that have nuclear materials will be a target.
As such, personnel that are best trained to control the situation may also be unavailable. If you try to pass through these areas, the chances of you coming into contact with high levels of nuclear radiation is very high even if the direction of contamination from a nuclear ground zero indicate otherwise. Always remember that nuclear radiation exposure is cumulative. It does not matter where the radiation comes from; only that you were exposed to it.
What About Edibles Along the Way?
No discussion on navigating during a nuclear disaster would be complete without a discussion on how to recognize which foods are safe to eat in an area that might have been impacted by nuclear fallout. While it is risky to eat anything in these areas, you can reduce the risk to some extent by taking the following advice:
- Choose foods that were stored underground first.
- If you must consume plants, use the deepest roots you can find first. It would also be best to choose plants that have not been exposed to rain since the nuclear blast occurred. For example plants in the middle of a patch, or covered by other plants may be safer.
- If fruits and vegetables are available, try to use ones that have skins that can be removed. Smooth skinned fruits and vegetables will be safer to wash off and eat than rougher skinned items.
- Canned foods should be ok; but choose ones in an area that is best protected from the blast direction. Consider a situation where the nuclear blast occurred to your west. If you are in a pantry, you would select foods from the east shelves because the radiation would have to pass through all the cans on the western side before reaching the others. As with transportation, always look for foods where the largest and heaviest shields stand between the radiation and the food resource.
- Avoid dried foods such as beans and fruit. You will find it very hard to wash nuclear debris off them or remove skins that might have captured the radiation. Also avoid leafy vegetables or anything else that you cannot peel or wash vigorously.
How do You Know You are Close to Ground Zero
Let’s consider a situation where a nuclear blast occurs and you must evacuate immediately. As you run to get your bug out bag, something distracts you, and somehow all your maps and important information about wind directions and navigation get left behind.
But thing can go worse than that. You have your cell phone, but you never uploaded these important files (so you wouldn’t have to go online or to the cloud to get them) because you were afraid an EMP would knock the phone out and make it useless. Upon turning on the phone, you realize it works perfectly, but you cannot get online. You have a compass, but never took the time to learn how to use it. Tucked deep in the bottom of the bag, you find a pair of binoculars that can be used to reveal wind direction and cloud formations. Since you don’t remember how to assess wind direction, you conclude the binoculars won’t be much good.
Realistically speaking, if you are in this condition after a nuclear blast and somehow managed to find safe shelter for a few days, you are going to have a fairly hard time finding a viable path to safety.
If you remember nothing else about how to navigate during a nuclear crisis, at least remember the signs and signals that you are at or near ground zero. At the very least you can try to skirt through these areas, avoid eating in them, and try to get out of them as quickly as possible.
Animals and Plants in Distress
Animals may have mouth sores.They may also bleed more from the nose and eyes, and may also show signs of fur loss. Large numbers of animals and insects may be dead and just laying around. Large numbers of fish may also be dead and have open sores on them.
Baby animals may have unusual numbers of digits on their paws. They may also be completely misshapen or have organs growing outside the body.
Animal or human feces may be in the form of diarrhea or have blood in it.
Plants will have tumorous knots on the stems, or unusual leaf patterns. For example, a three leaf clover plant may have five, six, or even seven leaves on a single stem.
The Black Rain
You may find signs of black rain: a combination of nuclear debris and soot from all the fires that happen after a nuclear blast. You may see streaks of thick, sticky black liquid on walls, dripping from trees, or anything else that it lands on. If you look carefully at the ground, you may also see signs of this “rain” laying along the ground. Animals and plants may also be covered with it.
If you encounter black rain, it is extremely toxic, and will most often be found in the debris field surrounding ground zero. Once you encounter this kind of debris, your best bet is to go back the way you came, an then try to choose another direction.
f you are closer to ground zero, permanent shadows may exist to reveal where objects once stood. For example, if you see a tree shadow on a sidewalk, but no tree, that means the tree was vaporized by the blast. The angle of this shadow will reveal the direction of the blast in relation to where the object was. To get away from ground zero, just go in the direction where the tree or object “points”. In this case, just walk in the same direction as where you see the “top” of the tree’s shadow pointing.
You can also get some rough ideas about how far away the object was from the blast. The shorter and more perfectly proportioned the shadow is, the closer it was to ground zero. A longer shadow means you are a bit further away.
Signs of Disaster
Any area that was hit by the heat wave will show signs of having fires. You can expect to see buildings, cars, and many other objects that may be charred beyond recognition.
The closer you get to ground zero, the signs of disaster you will see: walls, buildings, and even motor vehicles knocked over. This damage occurs as a result of the air blast created by the explosion. Since the shock wave bands usually extend beyond other types of damage, finding them is a good indicator that you are either heading into ground zero or away from it.
For example, if you passed through areas that showed signs of being on fire, going through a blast zone might be an improvement. If the radiation shadows are getting longer as you go along, this might also be considered a sign that you are heading away from ground zero.
Tools That Can Help You Avoid Contaminated Areas
- Maps listing known nuclear material zones
- Maps of historical wind current
- Maps of water tides and currents
- Long range binoculars
- Small drones or robots that can be used to deliver testing equipment into a suspected area of contamination.
It is often said that if you have a map and compass, or know how to navigate by the sun and stars, you will never get lost. That being said, navigating during and after a nuclear crisis requires far more than simply figuring out how to get from Point A to Point B. Your plans can easily be disrupted by other situations involving nuclear hazards as well as radiation sickness.
Learn how to navigate when you aren’t feeling well along with how to recognize the signs that increased radiation may exist in an area that you plan to travel through. No matter how you look at it, radiation is a hazard no matter where you find it, and avoiding it will still be a primary concern while you are traveling.
This article has been written by Carmela Tyrell for Survivopedia.
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Not too long ago, we received a question from @RayBurton on Twitter about whether or not we’d done an article on emergency home heating in cold climates. Well, we haven’t, even though I’m from Canada and Thomas & I lived there together for 5 years – so the fact that we haven’t is a bit… Read More
This is just the start of the post How to Stay Warm Indoors When the Power’s Out (& It’s Freezing Outside). Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
How to Stay Warm Indoors When the Power’s Out (& It’s Freezing Outside), written by Elise Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
Martial law is a topic that comes up time and time again in even the mainstream media, and yet very few understand what it is from a legal sense and what the implications are for everyday citizens and those of us more serious about preparing for the worst if it is ever enacted again (yes,… Read More
This is just the start of the post Breaking Down Martial Law: What It Is & How It’s Abused. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
Breaking Down Martial Law: What It Is & How It’s Abused, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.
Does you bug out plan include a truck, car or ATV? If so, you may want to take a peek at the Therm-a-rest LuxuryLite Mesh Cot, which is made in the USA. What we liked about this cot vs. other cots on the market is the low profile that keeps you off the ground but will still fit into a normal camping tent. When combined with a sleeping pad and warm sleeping bag, this cot can keep you warm and dry. The downside of this cot is of course weight. The ability to be off the ground is not worth the weight in your pack.
This is strictly a luxury item which is why it is called the LuxuryLite Mesh Cot. When you have an item that weights over 3 lbs, it better be something that feeds you or has to do with water. You would be much better off with just a normal Therm-a-rest sleeping pad for your bug out bag. With that said, we tested it, slept on it and loved it for car camping or if your bug out plan has a car or truck involved. It also is nice to have as back up bed for kids or visiting families if your space is limited. It beats sleeping on the floor.
|Width||24 in / 61 cm||26 in / 66 cm||30 in / 76 cm|
|Weight||3 lbs 9 oz / 1.62 kg||3 lbs 15 oz / 1.81 kg||4 lbs 7 oz / 2.01 kg|
|Length||72 in / 183 cm||77 in / 193 cm||77 in / 196 cm|
|Packed dimension||18 x 6 / 46 x 15||18 x 6 / 46 x 15||18 x 6 / 46 x 15|
|Top fabric type||PVC Mesh||PVC Mesh||PVC Mesh|
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Pioneers no doubt had to make some rough choices about what to take and what to leave behind when they made the voyage west. One thing that they didn’t even consider leaving behind, though, was their Dutch oven.
This marvelous piece of cookware is so versatile that it warranted a spot in the precious little space inside a covered wagon.
When you think about camping, you probably don’t think about making bread, biscuits, or cookies – other than s’mores of course! That’s because you’re not familiar with how a Dutch oven works.
In short, it’s magic.
A Dutch oven actually consists of two pieces: a pot and a lid. The lid seals over the pot when needs must, and serves as a skillet, too. You can use a Dutch oven on a stove or in an oven just like you’d use any other pan or skillet, but it’s so much more useful than that.
First, cast iron cookware in general is just fabulous to cook on. Other cookware, such as those made from aluminum or coated in Teflon, can be toxic to us over time. Teflon starts to flake off into your food after a few months or maybe a year. Then you run the risk of getting cancer. Aluminum has been associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
Cast iron, on the other hand, has been associated with family treasures that are passed down from generation to generation.
Cookware made from cast iron can quite literally last hundreds of years – I have a skillet that’s nearly 150 years old and it’s seriously the best skillet I own. I have a square one that I bought 25 years ago, and I won’t make cornbread in anything else. I use it at home on the stove, in the oven, and on the grill. I take it camping and use it over an open fire.
So, I’m not just preaching it from the handbook, I’m drinking my own Kool-Aid. Cast iron rules.
Now that you know how I feel about the material, I want to get on to the exact piece of cast iron cookware that we’re discussing today: the Dutch oven.
Simply surviving isn’t good enough if you’re to stay happy and healthy in the long run. You need good food, companionship, and hope. A Dutch oven can’t do much about who you eat with, but it can be used to cook luxury foods that keep morale up. Cornbread, biscuits, cake, hot rolls, and desserts such as cobbler are all possible as long as you have the ingredients, a fire, and a Dutch oven.
Video first seen on Cooking With Cast Iron.
You don’t need electricity or gas, nor do you need an actual oven because a Dutch oven IS an oven. If you know the basics of cooking with one and have the ingredients, you can make anything that you want.
So, without further ado, let’s talk about how to cook with a Dutch oven.
Aluminum or Cast Iron Dutch Oven
I know, I’ve just expounded on the benefits of using cast iron, and even knocked aluminum cookware a bit. I personally don’t like to cook in it because studies have shown that the aluminum does leach into food, especially if the food is extremely basic (baking powder), or extremely acidic (tomato juice, vinegar, or fruit juices).
Studies show that anodized aluminum doesn’t pose this risk, so if you opt to go with an aluminum Dutch oven, make sure that it’s anodized. There are some benefits to cooking with an aluminum Dutch oven, primarily the weight. A cast-iron Dutch oven weighs about 7 pounds as opposed to the 18 pounds or so that you’ll be toting if you’re carrying a cast iron one.
Aluminum also doesn’t require seasoning like cast iron does, nor will it rust if you don’t care for it after you wash it. Many even come with a non-stick surface, but cast iron will become non-stick if you season it correctly.
Aluminum heats faster, but that’s not necessarily a good thing because the heat fluctuates in it, and aluminum will melt if it gets hot enough. Still, aluminum may be better for baking bread or making sauces and gravies than cast iron.
Cast iron holds heat evenly and for longer periods of time. It will actually keep cooking your foods for quite a while even if your coals cool down so you don’t need as much fuel to cook with it. The lid is heavy enough that it seals and steams your food so that it doesn’t dry out. This is why I said above that aluminum may be better for baking bread.
So, there are the differences. If you have to carry it, aluminum may be worth the downfalls to you. If you don’t, I’d say that cast iron wins hands down. I’m sure that there are those that disagree.
Types of Dutch Ovens
If you’re standing in the pot aisle at the store trying to figure out what the heck you need, or researching online before you go buy one, it can be confusing.
First, know that a camp oven and an outdoor oven are the same thing. These will usually have feet and a handle that you can use to hang the pot over the fire. The lid will also be flat and have a lip that seals the oven so that coals can’t get into it. You can use the lid as a skillet, too.
Kitchen pots and bean pots are also two names for the same sort of pot. They won’t have feet. Bean pots aren’t just for beans so don’t let the name fool you. It’s actually a cooking method that was common back in colonial days. These pots will have a flat bottom and a domed lid that may have spikes for basting inside of it. The steam rises, then drips off the spikes down onto the food.
Don’t be afraid to buy a used Dutch oven. As a matter of fact, I got mine from a yard sale for $5. Just be aware of what you’re buying.
- First, don’t buy it if it has riveted tabs. You want the oven to be cast together, not riveted.
- Look for inconsistencies in the thickness. That will lead to inconsistent heating and cooking
- Don’t be scared away by a little rust. As long as it’s just surface rust, it will clean right up with steel wool.
- Make sure that the bottom is level. It shouldn’t rock.
- Make sure the lid fits well – not too loose, and not too tight, and it doesn’t rock.
- Check for chips and cracks as well as imperfections in the casting.
- If you’re buying a camp oven, make sure that the wire handle is sturdy.
Seasoning your Dutch Oven
Cast iron takes a bit of time to reach that non-stick state. This is called seasoning. Basically, the iron needs to absorb fat so that it develops a patina that keeps the iron from absorbing your food, causing it to stick. Seasoning also prevents the iron from rusting and makes cleanup much easier.
New ovens (or any cast iron) come with a protective coating from the manufacturer. The same is true with aluminum but all you need to do in that case is wash the aluminum with hot soap and water to remove the coating.
Cast iron takes a bit more work on the front end, but it will be well worth it in the end because you’ll have a piece that will be good for the rest of your life, and your children’s lives for that matter.
Before you season your skillet, wash it well. Some people use soap, others don’t. I use soap when I get a new one, or a used one that isn’t seasoned or has rust. I’m not like most people though, who only use hot water and steel wool.
Once you have your Dutch oven clean, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. You may want to turn off the smoke alarm, just in case.
- Put the Dutch oven and the lid in the oven long enough that it’s so hot that it’s almost too hot to handle, then remove them.
- Dribble a bit of olive oil, solid shortening, or vegetable oil. Don’t use butter, margarine, or cooking spray.
- Use a paper towel to smear the oil over the entire surface of the pot and lid, inside and out.
- Put the pot and lid back in the oven bake them for an hour. You should probably put a cookie sheet on the rack under them in case they drip. No need to burn the house down while you’re doing this.
- Turn off the oven and let the pot and lid cool completely, then repeat the process.
- Wipe down, and you’re done!
Video first seen on JRKFamilyOutdoors.
Of course, the more you use your oven, the more seasoned it will become. Every time you use it, you need to clean it, then heat it to get the water out of it and wipe it down with a thin layer of oil again; just a tiny amount on a paper towel while the pan is cooling.
Avoid cooking super acidic or high-sugar foods the first few times you use your oven because these will break down your seasoning before it has time to harden.
Using a Dutch Oven in Coals
You may not know it, but the ashes under the fire are actually usually hotter than the fire itself. The ashes are compact and hold in heat. This makes for an excellent cooking environment. If you think about it, that’s exactly what happens in your oven at home, right?
Maybe you’ve cooked ears of corn or potatoes wrapped in foil in the coals of your fire, but it’s pretty tough to bake a piece of apple pie like that? Well that’s where your Dutch oven comes in. Different foods cook better depending upon how the Dutch oven is situated in the coals, and you can cook entire meals in it, too. Casseroles, desserts, stews: they’re all within your reach.
First, you need to decide if you’re cooking IN the Dutch oven, or WITH it. You can either cook your food directly in the oven or you can put the food in another container, such as a pie plate, and cook in on a trivet or rack inside of the oven. This is usually done to keep the food from burning, or to make cleaning your oven easier.
If you’re cooking a dessert and your oven is still relatively new, you may want to use this method so that the sugar and acids in the fruit don’t eat away your seasoning.
If you’re using your oven for frying, or boiling, all of the heat should come from the bottom. In other words, place the oven on top of the coals or a grill rack (or hang it over the fire).
If you’re stewing or simmering, the majority of the heat should come from the bottom. Place the pot in the ashes with most of it buried, but put some of the coals on top, about 4:1 bottom to top.
If you’re roasting food, heat should come from the top and bottom equally. Place coals under and on top.
If you’re baking, most of the heat should come from the top. The ratio should be 1 part on bottom and 3 parts on top.
If you’re wondering about specific foods, typically soups and stews should be cooked with most of the heat on the bottom (2/3 or so on the bottom, and 1/3 of the coals on top. Meats, veggies, and cobblers should have equal heat distribution, and cakes, biscuits, bread and cookies should have 2/3 of the coals on top and 1/3 on the bottom.
Bread and biscuits help you get a lot more mileage out of a meal and are comfort foods. They’re also the trail version of fast foods. You can cook extra and if you get hungry along the trail, you can pull out a roll or a biscuit and eat it on the run. Neither of these would be possible in large quantity without a Dutch oven.
You can make biscuits inside of the oven, or right on the lid – just butter or oil both sides so that they brown equally.
Bread or rolls are best if you let the final proof take place inside the oven, then bake them immediately. Some old recipes call for coating the inside of the oven with flour before you put your bread in to rise/cook. The flour will burn but your bread will be fine.
If you’d rather not use the flour, just oil the inside of the oven and the top of the lid, then let your bread proof. Put your oven in the coals, with 2/3 of them on top. When there are 5 or 6 minutes left for the bread to cook, take of the lid and butter the top of the bread. Put the lid back on and let it finish cooking. Bread is done when you peck on the top and it sounds hollow.
There are different ways to cook with your Dutch oven, but these are the basics. You can pick up a good Dutch oven for as little as $35 or so, and that’s for a Lodge, which is American-made and arguably the best brand of cast iron skillets out there.
There are, of course, gourmet chefs coming out with their own lines of cast iron cookware too, and some of them are even pre-seasoned, but you’re likely going to pay quite a bit more for them. It’s up to you, though. There are definite advantages to buying a pre-seasoned piece, but I’m old-school and take a certain pleasure in doing things for myself.
Learn how to make your own food based on survival ancient recipes from our forefathers. Click the banner below and uncover more survival secrets, and stay close for a great offer that will boost your survival cooking!
This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.
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Will you survive a disaster in a city without having resources such as water, food, and safe shelter at your immediate disposal? You’re going to be facing hard times and the adversity from your fellow urbanites who aren’t survival-savvy.
Whether it’s a financial collapse or a natural disaster, you need to know how to survive. You can prepare building a food and water stockpile. But the most important thing to stockpile is knowledge.
That’s going to be the difference between you and 99% of your neighbors. Knowing what to do to survive is three quarters of the battle.
You still have time to learn and develop your skills by grabbing the amazing offer we have for you. Read the whole article to find it!
First and foremost, you need to know how to adapt. To do this, you’re going to have to be flexible and think outside of the box. It may reach a point where paper money has no value; instead, commodities like food, hygiene products, and useful skills will become the new dollar. This is where stockpiling, prior skill acquisition, and living simply will come in handy.
2. Find Water Reserves and Sources
Do you know where the city water pipes are? What about the main source of drinkable water? Do you know where dairy and produce farms are in the immediate areas surrounding your city?
Clean water and access to purification methods will be critical to survival, not only for drinking and cooking, but also for personal hygiene and disease prevention.
Gleaning, dumpster diving, freecycling, or upcycling: regardless of what you call it, scavenging is a great way to find perfectly useful products and edible food. Though we live in a society that places a huge stigma on going through somebody else’s trash, we’ve also taken wasting to all new levels.
Probably half of what goes into a landfill isn’t actually garbage: it’s just something that somebody didn’t want any more or didn’t bother to fix. We encourage such behavior by making new items so affordable and accessible that it’s easier, and often cheaper, just to throw something away.
Scavenging now can save you a ton of money and decrease the amount of waste, if even by a bit. Imagine if everybody did it!
In an urban survival situation, scavenging may just save your life. After all, there may not be any stores open to buy parts to fix your generator, replace lost clothing, or buy fresh produce; these are all items that will be readily available in the dumpsters nearest you if you’re just willing to look.
This is all part of living simply and switching to a more frugal, less wasteful frame of mind.
The art of getting a good deal for what you buy and trade is a valuable skill now but will be absolutely critical to surviving an urban collapse. Know what your possessions are worth, and have a stockpile of items that you know will be valuable in that situation.
Hygiene items, food and useful skills are going to be at the top of the list when it comes to barter. Weapons and ammo may be up there, too, but that may be something that you want to keep for yourself depending upon your situation.
The take-away here is that you need to know how to barter in such a manner that both you and the person you’re bartering with feel like a good trade was made.
5. Escape from Debris
If an event such as earthquake or engineering failure, you may very well find yourself trapped in a sea of debris. Knowing how to escape without causing further cave-ins or getting lost will be a valuable skill.
It will be similar to escaping a thick jungle full of hazards that can kill you if you’re not extremely careful. For that matter, it may kill you, or trap you, through no fault of your own.
You’re going to deal with not only keeping yourself safe and treating your own injuries, but also helping others out.
Learning how to escape debris requires adaptability, medical skills, a bit of structural and physics knowledge, tracking and woodcraft skills to prevent going in circles, and psychological skills. Being physically fit will also work to your advantage.
6. Living Small
This is a skill that you should learn now, and it goes along with many of the other skills that we’ve discussed: bartering, scavenging, adapting. Living small simply means decluttering your life and learning to make do with what you need, not want you want right at any given moment.
Your goal is to eliminate everything that isn’t directly integral to your survival or happiness.
Fixing things instead of throwing them away, being willing to upcycle products instead of always buying new, growing as much of your own food as possible, and leaving a small carbon footprint in general are all parts of living simply.
The less you depend upon other resources for your survival, the harder it will be for you to adapt to a survival situation.
7. Cooking on a Car Engine
Did you know that you can cook an entire meal on a car engine? All you need is some aluminum foil. First, warm up your car and feel for the hottest parts, and parts that get too hot to touch, but not so hot that they’ll catch things on fire. Most of these spots will be directly around the engine.
Many of those spots have nooks and crannies where you can tuck your food to cook while you travel. You don’t necessarily have to go anywhere – you can cook as long as the car is running – but it’s a waste of fuel.
Remember that potatoes and corn will cook much faster than a roast, so make sure that you put those on after you put the roast on to cook. You may also want to cook meat for the first half-hour or so in the hottest spots, then move them to places that aren’t quite so hot so that they cook all the way through.
Video first seen on Howcast.
8. Stopping Bleeding
The first goal of urban survival is surviving! You can’t do that if you or the people that you care about bleed to death before you escape the building that’s fallen on you or whatever other disaster you find yourself in.
There are several different herbs that can help stop bleeding. You also need to know how to apply a tourniquet and how to pack a wound. Also, none of these skills will do you any good if you can’t keep your cool and adapt to the situation as you need to.
9. Start a Fire from Scrap
You likely won’t have access to trees and forest debris to start fires, but you will have access to broken doors, window sills, clothing, cotton swabs, and other extremely flammable items. Just about anything will burn, but it’s important that you learn what materials are toxic and which ones are safe to burn. Also, you want to burn items that don’t produce much smoke.
Again, just being able to adapt and think outside of the box will serve you well.
10. Cooking Under the Radar
Without a doubt, there are going to be a ton of starving people if things get bad enough. After all, we know that we, as preppers, are the small minority of society. If you want to survive, it’s going to be important to learn how to cook and eat without being noticed.
If you live in an apartment, developing a joint apartment communications team can help avoid this problem. They watch out for you and you watch out for them. This is something that you need to do before SHTF, and it’s still a good idea to play your hand close to the vest and not reveal exactly how much or what you have stockpiled.
Help avoid problems by hiding your stockpile, and don’t tell anybody that you’re even building one now. Even the nicest, most honest people will turn on you when they’re hungry and desperate.
Finding ways to cook without people smelling it will be one of your biggest problems.
The Urban Survival Playing Cards offer tips and hacks that will help you survive an urban crisis, and the best part is that you can carry them with you so that you can flip through them in an emergency.
11. Building Small Traps for Defense
Booby traps are quite easy to make but you need to be careful about how you set them. You don’t want your kids or old Mrs. Cunningham in 204 to get caught in them. Booby traps should blend into the environment. Cover holes in the stairs with old carpet, for example.
If you have an area that’s particularly difficult to defend, it may be best to seta a trap that causes a local, yet heavy, cave-in. You want it to be so dense that they can’t get through, but you don’t want to run the risk of weakening the structure of the rest of the building.
The idea is to make it difficult enough to get through that they leave in search of easier pickings.
12. Underground Navigation
Knowing how to get from one point to another unobtrusively is a valuable skill to have. Most cities sit atop a network of sewers, maintenance tunnels, and subways that make for excellent discreet navigational avenues.
Even if there is somebody else there, it’s easy to slip into the shadows and wait for them to pass. Most of these blueprints are available at city hall if you just know where to go.
This is part of gathering info and knowing what your resources are.
You can actually escape the city if you understand the underground tunnel system well enough to navigate them, even if part of them become blocked by cave-ins or are being observed by opposing forces.
13. Losing a Tail
If anybody so much as suspects that you have a supply stash, there’s a good chance that somebody will try to follow you home. This may also be the case if you’ve been out surveilling and the enemy catches on. In both these cases, you need to know how to lose a tail.
How you do this will, of course, depend upon your situation. If you can get lost in a crowd, losing a tail will be easier. Remember to walk at the pace, and in the direction of, the crowd.
Change your appearance as you go. Take off a hat or jacket because that’s what your tail will look for first – identifying clothing. Sneak in the front of a place and out the back.
14. Building a Shelter from Scrap
You’re going to need a place to stay if your apartment or house is breached or rendered uninhabitable. You can build shelter from debris such as cardboard, old doors, washer and dryer lids, garbage bags, and other items that you scavenge.
Knowing where to build a shelter is critical, too. Knowing the tunnel systems and the source of fresh, clean water will both play roles in helping you find a safe place to stay.
15. Staying Unnoticed by Keeping a Low Profile
If you’re prepared, you don’t want people to know it. You want to blend in. This means eating away from everybody, acting as if you’re in the same situation as everybody else, and behaving in as nondescript a fashion as possible. In essence, you want to be invisible by being just like everybody else around you.
However, you don’t want to change so much that you make other people suspicious of you, either. If you’re normally helpful and friendly, keep those traits even if you have to tone them down a bit. That probably won’t be hard because it’s who you are at your core.
The truly hard part is going to be resisting the urge to offer too much help. While it’s true that there is safety in numbers, the bottom line may be that you have limited resources that you can’t afford to share if you want your own family to eat. Decisions may be difficult.
One More Tip for Your Survival
Without a doubt, surviving a collapsed city will present more, or at least different, challenges than surviving an emergency on a well-stocked homestead that’s already partially off the grid. Still, it’s going to be the reality for many of us, and it’s a situation that you can survive if you’re adaptable, knowledgeable, and prepared.
Need a way of “trying the waters” with extended family and friends? Give them a pack of these playing cards or break them out the next time you get together to play poker. You’ll be able to tell by their reaction, whether they are interested. Who knows, you might even plant a seed in their minds, converting them to your point of view.
This is a great idea, especially as a way of introducing survival to people who are not yet preppers. It can be used as a tool for teaching children and adults alike. Either way, it could turn into a great Christmas gift.
This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia.
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