Survival Medicine Hour: Ticks, Volcanoes, Special Guests

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Survival Medicine Hour: Ticks, Volcanoes, Special Guests


Old Faithful is a sign of a mass of superheated water and rock below Yellowstone National Park

Old Faithful is a sign of a mass of superheated water and rock below Yellowstone National Park

Can you prepare for a day at the beach? Can you prepare for an asteroid strike? Well, preparing for volcanic eruptions is in the middle, actually closer to an asteroid strike that anyone would like. Joe Alton MD and Amy Alton ARNP discuss what can and can’t be done to prepare for a volcano, and whether volcano preparedness is an oxymoron!

Also, school’s almost out and families will out hiking and camping. Ticks will also be out, and ready to make a meal out of the blood of your loved ones. The Altons discuss how to avoid being a blood donor to a tick this summer, and avoid diseases they transmit like Lyme disease.

All this and more in this episode of the Survival Medicine Hour with Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy!

To listen in, click below:

Follow us on Twitter @preppershow; on Facebook at the Doom and Bloom(tm) page; on YouTube at the DrBones NurseAmy channel

Also, check out Nurse Amy’s entire line of medical kits and supplies at!

Joe and Amy Alton

Video: Volcano Preparedness?

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Video: Volcano Preparedness?


Being prepared certainly increases your chances of surviving and staying healthy in a lot of disaster settings, but can you prepare for a volcanic eruption like we’re seeing at Mount Kilauea in Hawaii? A volcano can form a river of lava, molten rock at 750-1250 degrees, plus shoot out rocks the size of boulders onto the landscape. Over time, falling ash can cause roofs to collapse. Sure, most of the country isn’t at risk for a volcanic eruption, or is it? Yellowstone National Park is home to a huge “caldera” where superheated gases cause geysers like Old Faithful. It exploded 640,000 years ago, and we’re due, some geologists say, for another event (in the next 40,000 years or so).

While you can’t protect your home from a wall of lava, there might be some actions that could give you a fighting chance to survive the event. In this video, Joe Alton, MD explores your options and offers some thoughts on what might make a difference and what might not for a volcanic eruption.

To watch, click below:

Wishing you the best of health in good times or bad,

Joe Alton MD

Learn more about natural disasters and medical issues you might confront in one in the award-winning Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way.  Also, check out some of Nurse Amy’s medical kits for off-grid scenarios at

Can You Prepare For A Volcano?

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Can You Prepare For A Volcano?

Can You Prepare For A Volcano?

Uh oh...

Uh oh…

There are a number of disasters, natural or man-made, where a great deal of preparation greatly increases your chances of survival. Then there are others, like volcanic eruptions or asteroid strikes, where your option are, to say the least, more limited. You might not consider a volcano as the most likely event to ruin your day, and you’d be right. Still, it makes sense to know about them and what you might be able to do to prevent being a victim of one.

A volcano is a rupture in the crust of the earth which allows lava (molten rock at 750-1250 degrees Fahrenheit), ash, and gases to escape from deep below the surface. The violence of volcanic eruptions is so great that boulders can come raining down from the sky to flatten houses and, perhaps, you.

Most have the impression that a volcano is a conical mountain with smoke and fire spewing from the top, such as you see today in Hawaii. In actuality, however, most volcanos can be active without displaying physical signs for thousands of years.

Volcanoes can also take a number of forms: In Yellowstone National Park, a huge dormant super-volcano looks more like flat land than a cone. Indeed, it takes some observation to know you’re walking on top of it. Geysers like ‘Old Faithful” exist as evidence that there’s still a great deal of pressure and molten rock below the surface.

Old Faithful Geyser


One doomsday scenario includes the eruption of this huge land feature, which is called a “caldera” (meaning “cauldron” or “cooking pot”). This disaster last happened 640,000 years ago, but it’s thought to be an event that is likely to occur again “soon”. In geologic time, “soon” means in the next 40,000 years or so.

If you live in a volcanically active area, there are a few things that you can do to decrease the chance of becoming a victim. Monitor volcanic activity reports via NOAA radios and evacuate the area if authorities believe an eruption is imminent. Have a plan in place to get the family together via texting, email, social media, etc.

Know several routes out of the area; roads may be blocked by fire, thick ash, or lava flows. Visibility and breathing might become difficult, so respirator masks and goggles should be worn by every member of the group.

That's not snow, it's volcanic ash!

That’s not snow, it’s volcanic ash!

Ash can also damage engine parts and stall escape vehicles, so be prepared to go on foot if necessary. Any equipment with moving parts that must remain outside as your evacuate should be covered with tarps.

The most intelligent decision is to hit the road, Jack, and take a good amount of supplies with you. There are circumstances, however, where you might be unable to leave your home. While you can’t expect even the most solid house to be much protection from a wall of lava, you might still be able to achieve protection from volcanic ash:

·       Close all windows and doors

·       Block chimneys

·       Stay under the sturdiest part of the roof (ash can be very heavy)

·       Have food and water stored in quantity

It imperative to have at least several days supplies packed and ready to go at a moment’s notice. I call this a “G.O.O.D.” bag (Get Out Of Dodge!).

It’s also important to have a good kit to deal with medical issues. You’ll need materials that that treat burns and orthopedic injuries as well as masks, goggles, and flashlights for every member of the family. You might not consider these items to be medical in nature, but they’ll help you breathe and see even if the ash is falling thickly, and you’ll be in better physical shape and more likely to survive.



No masks and no shelter? Place a damp cloth over your nose and mouth and cover your skin as much as possible. Of course, protection in the form of work gloves, sturdy high-top boots, and head coverings (a hard hat even seems prudent here) will decrease your chance of injury as you escape the area. Avoid low-lying areas that might be a natural conduit for lava. Stay clear of areas downwind of the volcano; ash and flying debris will be thickest there.

Don't let this happen!

Don’t forget the pets

Don’t forget your pets: Have a “G.O.O.D.” bag for them as well. Here’s the Red Cross’s recommendations for emergency pet kits and a plan of action that will increase your animals’ safety in times of trouble:

You might not always have a lot of options in a disaster, but you can always improve your chances of surviving even in the worst situations.

Joe Alton MD

Dr. Alton

Dr. Alton

Find out more about disaster preparedness and 150 medical topics you might face off the grid in the award-winning Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way. Plus, fill those holes in your medical supplies at!

Third Edition

Third Edition

ASIDE: Can you stop a lava flow? Here’s some ways they’ve tried:

This Survival Capsule Could Insulate You Against Any Disaster: “More Control Than Safe Houses”

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By Mac Slavo –

Depending on your outlook, this could be the ultimate in survival gear.

In the wake of an extreme threat – such as a tsunami or earthquake – this capsule could be the best place to withstand the impact, no matter what.

It is water-tight. It is extremely durable. It floats, and it can withstand against the impact of super-strong winds, crashes, heat and many other factors.

For the right price, it could hold between two and ten people, protecting them from literally just about anything that could come your way.

As the London Guardian reports:

The Survival Capsule – a personal safety system in the form of a giant ball – has been designed to combat this issue.

This capsule, which features two small porthole windows so the occupants can see what is going on around them, was created to give individual groups and families more control of their survival in emergency situation than traditional ‘safe houses.’

It is designed to float so it will never be inundated by water levels rising too high, as they do in tsunami situations.


The sphere is designed to withstand the initial impact of a natural disaster, as well as sharp object penetration, heat exposure, blunt object impact, and rapid deceleration.

Occupants are strapped in to the seats with crash-test proof seat belts and can expect to survive in spite of rampant destruction and perhaps unsurvivable conditions.

It appears that the unfortunate loss of life and vast property destruction that took place during some of the most recent tsunamis inspired the ball’s inventors to hedge against all possibilities.

Since earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, hurricanes and other extreme weather events seem to be increasing right now, particularly surrounding the Ring of Fire, that could be a good thing.

Watch the video:

The test model is bright red and would be easily spotted by rescue crews once they arrive for clean-up after the event, though it could be camouflaged for those who also want to stay off the radar after a SHTF situation in which the political situation may be part of the threat.

This article first appeared at This Survival Capsule Could Insulate You Against Any Disaster: “More Control Than Safe Houses”

Filed under: Emergency Survival Tips, Prepping

Global Catastrophe Imminent: “Asteroids, Robots and Engineered Viruses Will Kill Millions”

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Survival World News

Nuclear war

By Mac Slavo –

There is yet more confirmation that near-certain doom is headed for planet earth, and could kill or disrupt the lives of everyone on the planet.

And there’s reason to think it could be in our lifetimes.

A study commissioned by Oxford University identified possibly-imminent catastrophe from asteroids, AI, volcanoes, nukes/EMP or manufactured/weaponized disease sweeping the planet.

And yet we’re the conspiracy theorists…

According to the Daily Mail/Press Association:

In the next five years asteroids, super volcanic eruptions and unknown risks are ranked as the biggest threat to humanity.[…]

It may sound like the stuff of sci-fi films, but experts said these apocalyptic threats are more likely than many realise…


In the longer term, the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) has been listed alongside catastrophic climate change, nuclear war and pandemics as a threat to humanity.

The biggest long term threat to civilization…

View original post 243 more words

Filed under: News/ Current Events, Prepping, Space Weather, Volcanic Activity

What’s Better Than Voting? Episode 101

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Whats Better than Voting

Whats Better than Voting


What’s Better Than Voting?

Today we tackle what’s better than voting. In our opinion pretty much everything. We so firmly believe that voting is such a waste of time that most any activity is a better use of your time. We randomly name things that would be a better impact on your life and the planet.

We take on our very first listener call as well. Matt calls in asking about unusual items to put in a Bug Out Bag. Mike and I go over a few that we both use. For me my #1 unusual item are paper clips. I find them to be very useful.

Mike and I talk about doing squats. Mike for the first time ever. Hilarity ensues.



Survival Myths That Will Get You Killed

Mt. St. Helens Earthquakes Detected


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The post What’s Better Than Voting? Episode 101 appeared first on Survival Punk.

Earthquake Survival

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ring of fire

The “Ring Of Fire”

Some significant seismic activity has been reported this week, especially in the zone bordering the rim of the Pacific Ocean (sometimes called the “Ring of Fire”). It’s important to have a plan for earthquake survival so that your family will remain safe in what can be a major disaster.



Recent Earthquake Events



First, the news: 2 major earthquakes have hit Southern Japan, with hundreds of aftershocks and perhaps more on the way. Soon after, an even stronger quake struck Ecuador on the West Coast of South America.



Troops have been called in to dig out almost 100 people buried in rubble after a magnitude 6.2 quake devastated the densely populated island of Kyushu.  9 people were killed and 1000 injured in the earthquake. Just over a day later, a second, more powerful 7.0 quake hit that killed 30 people and injured hundreds more. Some large buildings toppled and a large landslide buried others.



At the same time, Japanese media reported that Mount Aso, the largest active volcano in the country and another part of the “Ring of Fire”. No damage reported, as of yet, from that event.



Japan is no stranger to seismic events. In 2011, we reported extensively on the Fukushima earthquake and tidal wave, which killed 20,000 and caused nuclear meltdowns that have rendered nearby areas uninhabitable to this day.



Meanwhile, on the other side of the “Ring of Fire”: In Ecuador, The strongest earthquake in many years destroyed buildings and rendered roads unpassable along its Pacific coast. Officials report at least 77 killed and hundreds injured. Damage could be observed for hundreds of miles in various major cities as dozens of aftershocks followed.



The earthquake, measured at a magnitude of 7.8, was centered in less-populated areas than the Japanese quakes, but the infrastructure is not as strong. Numerous landslides are causing difficulties for rescue personnel trying to reach the affected communities.



Earthquakes And The United States


The United States, especially but not exclusively the West Coast, is also susceptible to natural disasters like earthquakes. Hurricanes are, of course, more likely threats to residents of the Gulf or East Coasts of the United States, but the West Coast and even some areas of the Midwest are located over what we call “fault lines”.  A fault is a fracture in a volume of base rock. This is an area where earth movement releases energy that can cause major surface disruptions. This movement is sometimes called a “seismic wave”.



The strength of an earthquake has been historically measured using the Richter scale.  This measurement (from 0-10 or more) identifies the magnitude of tremors at a certain location.  Quakes less than 2.0 on the Richter scale may occur every day, but are unlikely to be noticed by the average person. Each increase of 1.0 magnitude increases the strength by a factor of 10. The highest registered earthquake was The Great Chilean Earthquake of 1960 (9.5 on the Richter scale).



Although most people are aware of the Richter Scale, a newer measurement, the Moment Magnitude scale, is thought to be perhaps more accurate. The Moment Magnitude scale calculates each point of magnitude as releasing more than 30 times the energy of the previous one. For higher level quakes, it’s more commonly used.



If the fault lines shift offshore, a “tsunami” or tidal wave may be generated.  In Fukushima, the earthquake (8.9 magnitude) spawned a major tsunami which caused major damage, loss of life, and meltdowns in local nuclear reactors. Tsunami warning were issued for both the Japanese and Ecuadorian earthquakes reported this week.






A major earthquake is especially dangerous due to its unpredictability. Although researchers are working to find ways to determine when a quake will hit, there is usually little notice. This fact makes having a plan before an earthquake occurs a major factor in your chances of survival.



This plan of action has to be shared with each family member, even the children. Unless the earthquake happens in the dead of night, it’s unlikely you will all be in the house together. You might be at work and the kids might be at school, so making everyone aware of what to do will give you the best chance of gathering your family and surviving the earthquake together.



To be prepared, you’ll need, at the very least, the following supplies:



  • Food and water
  • Power sources
  • Alternative shelters
  • Medical supplies
  • Clothing appropriate to the weather
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Means of communication
  • Money (don’t count on credit or debit cards if the power’s down)
  • An adjustable wrench to turn off gas or water


In areas at risk for earthquakes, the school system and municipal authorities have probably formulated a disaster plan. They may have designated a quake-proof shelter; if so, this may be the best place to go. Make certain to inquire about your town’s earthquake measures.



Besides the general supplies listed above, it would be wise to put together a separate “get-home” bag to keep at work or in the car.  Some food, liquids, and a pair of sturdy, comfortable shoes are useful items to have in this kit.



Home Earthquake Safety


In the home, it’s important to know is where your gas, electric, and water main shutoffs are.  Make sure that everyone of age knows how to turn them off if there is a leak or electrical short.  Know where the nearest medical facility is, but be aware that you may be on your own; medical responders are going to be overwhelmed and may not get to you quickly.



Look around your house for fixtures like chandeliers and bookcases that might not be stable enough to withstand an earthquake. Placing heavier object on bottom shelves and make shelves more stable.



Flat screen TVs, especially large ones, could easily topple.  Be sure to check out kitchen and pantry shelves, and the stability of anything hanging over the headboard of your bed.



When The Earthquake Hits

earthquake drop cover hold on

What should you do when the tremors start?  If you’re indoors, get under a table, desk, or something else solid and hold on. This strategy is called “Drop, Cover, Hold”. If cover isn’t available, stand against an inside wall.  Don’t try to use elevators. You should stay clear of windows, shelves, and kitchen areas.



While the building is shaking, don’t try to run out; you could easily fall down stairs or get hit by falling debris.  We had always thought you should stand in the doorway because of the frame’s sturdiness, but it turns out that, in modern homes, doorways aren’t any more solid than any other part of the structure.



Once the initial tremors are over, go outside.  Once there, stay as far out in the open as possible, away from power lines, chimneys, and anything else that could fall on top of you.



You could, possibly, be in your automobile when the earthquake hits.  Get out of traffic as quickly as possible; other drivers are likely to be less level-headed than you are. Don’t stop your car under bridges, trees, overpasses, power lines, or light posts.  Stay in your vehicle while the tremors are active.



After The Earthquake



Even after the tremors stop, there are still dangers. One issue to be concerned about is gas leaks; make sure you don’t use your camp stoves, lighters, or even matches until you’re certain all is clear.  Even a match could ignite a spark that could lead to an explosion.  If you turned the gas off, you might consider letting the utility company turn it back on.



Buildings that have structural damage may be unstable or have loose concrete which could rain down on the unsuspecting. Falling stone from damaged buildings killed rescuers in the Oklahoma City bombing and the Twin Trade Towers collapse.



Don’t count on telephone service after a natural disaster.  Telephone companies only have enough lines to deal with 20% of total call volume at any one time.  It’s likely all lines will be occupied.  Interestingly, this doesn’t seem to apply to texts; you’ll have a better to chance to communicate by texting than by voice due to the wavelength used.



Joe Alton, MD












Violent Shaking Along The Ring Of Fire Continues A Progression Of Disasters That Began In September

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The Ring Of Fire - Photo from Wikipedia

By Michael Snyder – The Economic Collapse Blog

Have you noticed that seismic activity along the Ring of Fire appears to be dramatically increasing?  According to Volcano Discovery, 39 volcanoes around the world have recently erupted, and 32 of them are associated with the Ring of Fire.  This includes Mt. Popocatepetl which sits only about 50 miles away from Mexico City’s 18 million inhabitants.  If you are not familiar with the Ring of Fire, it is an area roughly shaped like a horseshoe that runs along the outer perimeter of the Pacific Ocean.  Approximately 90 percent of all earthquakes and approximately 75 percent of all volcanic eruptions occur along the Ring of Fire.  Just within the last 24 hours, we have witnessed a 4.4, a 5.4 and a 5.7 earthquake in Alaska, a 6.8 earthquake in Chile and 20 earthquakes in Indonesia of at least magnitude 4.3.  And as you will see below, this violent shaking along the Ring of Fire seems to continue a progression of major disasters that began back during the month of September.

For whatever reason, our planet suddenly seems to be waking up.  Unfortunately, the west coast of the United States is one of the areas where this is being felt the most.  The little city of San Ramon, California is about 45 miles east of San Francisco, and over the past several weeks it has experienced a record-breaking 583 earthquakes

A total of 583 small earthquakes have shaken San Ramon, California, in the last three weeks or so – more than five times the record set 12 years ago, according to the latest US Geological Survey updates.

“It’s the swarm with the largest number of total earthquakes in San Ramon,” said USGS scientist David Schwartz, who is more concerned about the size of quakes than he is the total number of them. Still, the number tops the previous record set in 2003, when 120 earthquakes hit over 31 days, with the largest clocking in at a magnitude of 4.2.

Could this be a prelude to a major seismic event in California?

We shall see what happens.

Meanwhile, records are being shattered in the middle part of the country as well.

For instance, the state of Oklahoma has already set a brand new yearly record for earthquakes

Continue reading at The Economic Collapse Blog: Violent Shaking Along The Ring Of Fire Continues A Progression Of Disasters That Began In September

About the author:

Michael T. Snyder is a graduate of the University of Florida law school and he worked as an attorney in the heart of Washington D.C. for a number of years.

Today, Michael is best known for his work as the publisher of The Economic Collapse Blog and The American Dream

Read his new book The Beginning of the End

Filed under: Earthquakes, News/ Current Events, Volcanic Activity