What to do if a Nuclear Disaster is Imminent
This guide is for families preparing for imminent terrorist or strategic nuclear attacks with expected severe destruction and widespread radioactive fallout.
IF ONLY A 'Dirty Bomb' Attack was to happen and not the vastly more devastating nuclear weapon blasts I will discuss in a minute.
You can expect localized and downwind contamination from the explosion and dispersed radioactive materials. If you are near enough to see or hear any local bomb blast, assume that it includes radiological or chemical agents.
You should move away from the blast area as quickly as possible.
If the wind is blowing toward you from the direction of the blast, travel in a direction that keeps the wind to your left or right as you move away from the blast area. If possible cover your face with a dust mask or cloth to avoid inhaling potentially radioactive dust.
Upon reaching a safe location, remove your outer clothing outside and shower as soon as possible. Refer to local news sources for additional instructions about sheltering or evacuation. The government is better prepared to direct and assist the public in a 'dirty bomb' incident, unlike an actual nuclear weapon attack.
IN EVENT OF NUCLEAR WEAPON ATTACK!
In a national crisis of imminent nuclear weapon attacks, read all the way through this guide first.
(It will be on my website for all to see)
THEN TAKE EFFECTIVE PROTECTIVE ACTION WITH CONFIDENCE... FAST!
Should you stay or go?
You must decide FIRST if you need to prepare where you are, or attempt evacuation. The nature of the threat, your prior preparations, and your confidence in your sources of information should direct your decision.
If you are considering evacuation, your decision requires a very high confidence that it is worth the risk. You do not want to get stuck between your current location and you’re hoped for destination, as there will probably be no easy getting back.
If you fail to get to your destination, you may be exposed without shelter, in a dangerous situation with little effective law enforcement, perhaps among panicked hordes of refugees.
Whatever supplies you have may be limited then to what you can carry on foot.
IF you are in a big city or near a military target, AND you have relatives or friends in the country that you know are awaiting you, AND the roads between you and them are clear, AND the authorities are not yet restricting traffic, AND you have the means and fuel, evacuation may be a viable option for a limited time. DO NOT attempt evacuation if all of the above is not clearly known, or if the situation is deteriorating too quickly to make the complete trip.
You do not want to get stuck and/or become a refugee being herded along with panicked masses. If evacuation is truly a viable option, do not wait - GO NOW!
Do so with as many of the supplies as possible. Better to be two days too early in arriving than two hours too late and getting snagged mid-way, potentially exposing your family to a worse fate than having stayed where you were. Because of the very real danger of getting caught in an evacuation stampede that stalls, I think almost all families will be better off making the best of it wherever they currently are.
WHAT YOU NEED TO DO FIRST
Because time is of the essence, you need to first delegate and assign to different adult family members specific tasks so they can all be accomplished at the same time. Your first priorities to assure your family survival are Shelter, Water, and Food/Supplies. While some are working on the water storage and shelter at home, others need to be acquiring, as much as possible, the food and supplies.
Because much of the food and supplies required may quickly become unavailable, quantities restricted, and/or the streets and stores may become un-safe soon, you need to assign someone NOW to immediately go to the stores with that list! Get cash from the bank and ATM's first, but try and use credit cards at the stores, if at all possible, to preserve your cash.
With one or more adults now heading to the stores with the list, those remaining need to begin storing water IMMEDIATELY! Lack of clean water will devastate your family much more quickly and more severely than any lack of food.
Without water for both drinking and continued good sanitary practices in food preparation and for bathroom excursions (which will inevitably be much less sanitary than normal), debilitating sickness could rampage through your household with little hope of prompt medical attention.
That is a highly likely but an avoidable, disaster, ONLY IF you have enough water.
Every possible container needs to be filled with water RIGHT NOW! It will be very hard to have stored too much water. When the electricity/pumps go down or everybody in your community is doing the same thing, thus dropping the water pressure, that's it, what you've got is all you might be getting for a very long time.
Empty pop bottles (1-3 litre) are ideal for water storage, also filling up the bathtub and washing machine. (Remember, later you'll have some in your hot water tank.) If you have any kiddie pools or old water beds, pull them out and fill them up, too. Anything and everything that'll hold water needs to be filled up quickly RIGHT NOW!!
One of the shopping items should be rubbish bins and liner bags which you'll also use for storing water. If you can't get any more new bins, you could clean out an existing rubbish bin and scrub it throughout with bleach, then put in a new rubbish bag liner and fill it with water.
Choose well where you fill up your rubbish bins with water because they won't easily be moved once full and many of them together could be too heavy for some upper floor locations. Ideally, they need to be very near where your shelter will be constructed and can actually add to its shielding properties, as you'll see below. BE ASSURED, YOU CANNOT STORE AND HAVE TOO MUCH WATER! Do not hesitate; fill up every possible container, RIGHT NOW!
The principles of radiation protection are simple - with many options and resources families can use to prepare or improvise a very effective shelter. You must throw off the self-defeating myths of nuclear un-survivability that may needlessly seal the fate of less informed families.
Radioactive fallout is the particulate matter (dust) produced by a nuclear explosion and carried high up into the air by the mushroom cloud. It drifts on the wind and most of it settles back to earth downwind of the explosion. The heaviest, most dangerous, and most noticeable fallout, will 'fall out' first close to ground zero. It may begin arriving minutes after an explosion.
While the smaller and lighter dust-like particles will typically be arriving hours later, as they drift much farther downwind, often for hundreds of miles. As it settles, whether you can see it or not, fallout will accumulate and blow around everywhere just like dust or light snow does on the ground and roofs. Wind and rain can concentrate the fallout into localized 'hot spots' of much more intense radiation with no visible indication of its presence.
This radioactive fallout 'dust' is dangerous because it is emitting penetrating radiation energy (similar to x-ray's). This radiation (not the fallout dust) can go right through walls, roofs and protective clothing.
Even if you manage not to inhale or ingest the dust, and keep it off your skin, hair, and clothes, and even if none gets inside your house, the radiation penetrating your home is still extremely dangerous, and can injure or kill you inside.
Radioactive fallout from a nuclear explosion, though very dangerous initially, loses its intensity quickly because it is giving off so much energy. For example, fallout emitting gamma ray radiation at a rate of 500 R/hr (fatal with one hour of exposure) shortly after an explosion, weakens to only 1/10th as strong 7 hours later. Three days later, it's only 1/100th as strong, or as deadly, as it was initially.
That is really very good news, because families can readily survive it IF we get them into a proper shelter to safely wait it out as it becomes less dangerous with every passing hour.
What stops radiation, and thus shields your family, is simply putting mass between them and the radiation source. Like police body armour stopping bullets, mass stops (absorbs) radiation. The thicker the mass, the more radiation it stops. Also, the denser (heavier) the mass used, the more effective it is with every inch more you add to your fallout shelter. The thickness in inches needed to cut the radiation down to only 1/10th of its initial intensity for different common materials is: Steel 3.3", concrete 11", earth 16", water 24", wood 38", etc. The thickness required to stop 99% of the radiation is: 5" of steel, 16" of solid brick or hollow concrete blocks filled with mortar or sand, 2 feet of packed earth or 3 feet if loose, 3 feet of water.
You may not have enough steel available, but anything you do have will have mass and can be used to add to your shielding - it just takes more thickness of lighter wood, for example, than heavier earth, to absorb and stop the same amount of radiation. Increasing the distance between your family and the radiation outside also reduces the radiation intensity.
The goals of your family fallout shelter are:
To maximize the distance away from the fallout 'dusting' outside on the ground and roof
To place sufficient mass between your family and the fallout to absorb the deadly radiation
To make the shelter tolerable to stay in while the radiation subsides with every passing hour.
While a fallout shelter can be built anywhere, you should see what your best options are at home or nearby. Some structures already provide significant shielding or partial shielding that can be enhanced for adequate protection.
If you do not have a basement available, you can still use the following techniques in any above ground structure, but you'll need to use more mass to achieve the same level of shielding. You may consider using other solid structures nearby, especially those with below ground spaces, such as commercial buildings, schools, churches, below ground parking garages, large and long culverts, tunnels, etc..
Some of these may require permissions and/or the acquiring of additional materials to minimize any fallout drifting or blowing into them, if open ended.
Buildings with a half-dozen or more floors, where there is not a concern of blast damage, may provide good radiation protection in the centre of the middle floors. This is because of both the distance and the shielding the multiple floors provide from the fallout on the ground and roof.
Bottom Line: choose a structure nearby with both the greatest mass and distance already in place between the outside, where the fallout would settle, and the shelter inside.
If you have a basement in your home, or at a nearby relatives' or friends' house that you can use, your best option is probably to fortify and use it, unless you have ready access to a better/deeper structure nearby.
For an expedient last-minute basement shelter, push a heavy table that you can get under into the corner that has the soil highest on the outside. The ground level outside ideally needs to be above the top of the inside shelter. If no heavy table is available, you can take internal doors off their hinges and lay them on supports to create your 'table'.
Then pile any available mass on and around it such as books, wood, cordwood, bricks, sandbags, heavy furniture, full file cabinets, full water containers, your food stocks, and boxes and pillow cases full of anything heavy, like earth. Everything you could pile up and around it has mass that will help absorb and stop more radiation from penetrating inside - the heavier the better. However, be sure to reinforce your table and supports so you do not overload it and risk collapse.
Leave a small crawl-through entrance and more mass there that can be easily pulled in after you to seal it up. Have at least two gaps or 4-6" square air spaces, one high at one end and one low at the other.
Use more if crowded and/or hotter climate.
A small piece of cardboard can help fan fresh air in if the natural rising warmer air convection current needs an assist moving the air along. This incoming air won't need to be filtered if the basement has been reasonably sealed up, however any windows or other openings will require some solid mass coverage to assure they stay sealed and to provide additional shielding protection for the basement.
With more time, materials, and carpentry or masonry skills, you could even construct a more formal fallout shelter, such as the lean-to shown to the right, but you should pile up much more mass than what little is shown here.
An effective fallout shelter constructed in a basement may reduce your radiation exposure 100-200 fold. Thus, if the initial radiation intensity outside was 500 R/hr (fatal in one hour), the basement shelter occupants might only experience 5 R/hr or even less, which is survivable, as the radiation intensity will be decreasing with every passing hour.
Next time I will look at further home shelters and suggested supply lists.
Britons Must Dig for Survival
Farming Minister David Heath has urged families to grow their own to cope with food shortage crisis
The Government is promoting the famous WWII slogan 'dig for victory'
Our fruit prices up almost 11% since March 2012, vegetables 7% higher
And farmers warn Britain is running out of wheat after year of bad weather
Families have been told they will have to grow more of their own fruit and vegetables to cope with food shortages.
Mr Heath warned Britain could not rely on cheap imports to meet its food needs.
Disruption to the food chain triggered by disease, conflict or bad weather hitting harvests would drive prices even higher.
Britain is on the verge of running out of wheat after a year of terrible wet weather, with more than 2million tonnes lost in last summer's deluge.
Farmers have also struggled to sow crops for the 2013 harvest, which is already predicted to be 25 per cent down on potential production.
Households will have to consider becoming more self-sufficient to limit the impact of high costs and bare shelves, Mr Heath warned.
He said: ‘with an increasing population, increasing demand not just in this country but across the
World, we are going to have to increase food production. We made a huge mistake a few years ago when the idea got around that we didn't need to produce in the agricultural sector any more, that we would be able to buy our way through whatever was necessary to feed the country.
Once we used to “dig for victory”. There may come a time soon when we need to “dig for survival”.’
New inflation figures published today show how food prices have impacted on the cost of living.
While the headline Consumer Prices Index figure remained unchanged on 2.8 per cent, a detailed breakdown showed how food costs have leapt in the last year.
Bread and cereals have risen by 3.6 per cent, meat 2.4 per cent and items like sugar, jam and chocolate were 4.1 per cent year-on-year.
Mr Heath told the Daily Telegraph that that the idea of the public ‘digging for survival’ was ‘not overstating it by a lot’.
He added: ‘We need to be able to produce enough to deal with the requirements in this country. Food security is going to be an issue of increasing relevance.
‘There is nothing that provides more classical insecurity across the world than not being able to feed populations adequately so we need to be aware of that and we need to respond to it.’
He suggested that the use of genetically modified crops could be significant in securing food supplies in the future.
Well Mr Heath there you are wrong as nobody wants scientifically designed and mucked about food. But we have and we will provide for our families not because you say so, but because it is the right thing to do.Remaining Daylight on Your Fingers
Is it time to stop and scrounge for shelter or is it better to keep trekking? Use this simple trick to measure the remaining daylight. Remember to allow yourself at least two hours to set up camp before the sun goes down.
Count the finger widths between the sun and the horizon. Each finger is equivalent to fifteen minutes, with each hand totalling an hour.
When the sun dips low enough that only two hands fit It's time to search for a suitable campsite and assemble a shelter:
(A caveat: if you're near the poles, the sun will hover over the horizon for a longer period of time, giving you an inaccurate reading.
NBC Questions, Answers and Information
1) I would like to know how long is the duration of a NBC Filter (Standard 40mm NATO Thread) before the filter begins to lose effectiveness after being exposed to Nuclear, Biological and Chemical contaminants?
Answer ...Change every 48 hours minimum....24 is best
2) I would like to know if the Concentration of all Industrial and Warfare compounds is low then would this increase the duration of the NBC Filter?
Answer ...Yes but industrial compounds like CHLORINE GAS and AMMONIA or even Carbon
Monoxide are not filtered by ANY NBC type gas mask available today. You would have to have a bottled air source pack to work in these environments such as what the firemen used or even a scuba type setup. Biological and Chemical agents are spread by mist dispersion, Tiny droplets...Not a gas at all! That's why the "GAS MASK" works
3) I would like to know how could I find out the right time to change and replace the used NBC Filter with a new NBC Filter.
Answer... Right before you expect to see problems like a chemical attack....When the SHTF you will have a little time....hear of stuff happening....of course if they drop a bomb on you then you don’t have a problem!
After the SHTF... a Chemical attack is usually short lived and over a small area before weather and winds disseminate the chemical agent. It would be fairly easy to go a mile INTO the prevailing winds to escape the area safely if you needed to change filters
4) I would like to know the proper decontamination procedure if the gas mask and NBC suit was exposed to Nuclear, Biological and Chemical contaminants.
Answer ...The gas mask can be washed in warm soapy water after removing the filter and valves and air dried....The suit has to be replaced as laundering may remove the agents but will also remove the charcoal liner material that protects you as well.
During the cold war I did a few studies and after a lot of figuring I came up with the idea to wear a rain suit over our NBC suits ...Rain suits were disposable and cheap if you got an agent on them.....then we could just air out the NBC suits. This is not a good alternative if the weather is very warm and you won’t be moving out of the contaminated area for hours! You will get heatstroke!
Note...Most Biological contaminants only last a few hours exposed to air at the most. Anthrax is one of the "WILD" biological agents and you could just leave the area...it will die out over a few days. BTW ANTHRAX is found in many forms in the wild on a lot of tree's and can cause minor rashes to people that work in the lumber industry regularly (Lumberjacks / Tree workers)
Best advice is to LEARN....
Now the LEARNING LINKS!
The NATO HANDBOOK online
Survival and Stress
We've all commented at one point or another about having a stressful day. But most of us don't have a clue as to how debilitating stress can be especially in survival situations.
To reduce its impact and to increase the chance of survival in the wilderness, it's important to not only understand stress but to also overcome it. The environment, your physical and mental condition, and the availability of materials all affect the amount of stress you will have to manage.
There are three environmental factors that will directly impact you in a survival situation. They are the climate (temperature, moisture, and wind), terrain (mountainous, desert, jungle, arctic), and life forms (plants and animals).
At first glance these obstacles may seem insurmountable and history has provided plenty of examples of people perishing as a result of unfavourable environmental conditions.
Still, there are other stories of survivors that successfully adapted to the given conditions or travelled to another location that was better equipped to meet their needs so we know it can be done.
Understanding how the environment might affect you is the first and necessary step to overcoming the unpredictable hardships of nature.
Physical and Psychological Stress
Both the physical and psychological stresses of survival will directly affect your outlook of your situation. If you're not careful, you may lose all hope virtually guaranteeing your death. These stresses may also end up dictating the order in which you meet your needs which is not the ideal way to prioritize.
Instead, it is important to make decisions based on logic and not emotion.
Physical stresses are brought about by the physical hardships of survival. Overcoming them requires proper preparation. The six Ps provide a good rule for all wilderness travellers: prior proper preparation prevents poor performance.
So what does preparing mean? It involves the following: ensuring that your immunizations are up-to-date, staying well hydrated both before and during any outback adventure, and being physically fit prior to traveling into the wilderness.
The amount of time a survivor goes without rescue will have a significant impact upon his will or drive to survive. As time passes, the survivor's hopes of being found ultimately begin to diminish.
With decreased hope comes increased psychological stress. This sort of stress is much more insidious than other forms and you need to be on the lookout for it.
The basic stresses that will affect you, the survivor, psychologically are as follows: pain, hunger and thirst, heat or cold, fatigue, loneliness, and fear.
Overcoming Survival Stress
The most important key to surviving is the survivor's will. The will or drive to survive is not something that can be bought.
However, your will is directly affected by the amount of stress associated with a survival situation.
Prior preparation, keeping a clear head and thinking logically, prioritizing your needs, and improvising all will help alleviate some of this stress.
When a problem arises, remember the acronym STOP:
S: Stop - Clear your thoughts and focus on the problem.
T: Think - Identify practical solutions. Consider each in detail.
O: Organize - After looking at your options, pick one. Develop a step-by-step plan from beginning to end.
P: Proceed With Your Plan - Be flexible and make adjustments as necessary.
Methods of Fire Lighting
Primitive igniters are those attributed to our early ancestors.
Flint and Steel
The direct spark method is the easiest of the primitive methods to use. The flint and steel method is the most reliable of the direct spark methods. Strike a flint or other hard, sharp-edged rock edge with a piece of carbon steel (stainless steel will not produce a good spark).
This method requires a loose-jointed wrist and practice. When a spark has caught in the tinder, blow on it. The spark will spread and burst into flames.
The fire-plough is a friction method of ignition. You rub a hardwood shaft against a softer wood base. To use this method, cut a straight groove in the base and plough the blunt tip of the shaft up and down the groove. The ploughing action of the shaft pushes out small particles of wood fibres. Then, as you apply more pressure on each stroke, the friction ignites the wood particles.
Bow and Drill
The technique of starting a fire with a bow and drill is simple, but you must exert much effort and be persistent to produce a fire.
You need the following items to use this method:
Socket.The socket is an easily grasped stone or piece of hardwood or bone with a slight depression in one side. Use it to hold the drill in place and to apply downward pressure.
Drill. The drill should be a straight, seasoned hardwood stick about 2 centimetres in diameter and 25 centimetres long. The top end is round and the low end blunt (to produce more friction).
Fire board. Its size is up to you. A seasoned softwood board about 2.5 centimetres thick and 10 centimetres wide is preferable. Cut a depression about 2 centimetres from the edge on one side of the board. On the underside, make a V-shaped cut from the edge of the board to the depression.
Bow. The bow is a resilient, green stick about 2.5 centimetres in diameter and a string. The type of wood is not important. The bowstring can be any type of cordage. You tie the bowstring from one end of the bow to the other, without any slack.
To use the bow and drill, first prepare the fire lay. Then place a bundle of tinder under the V-shaped cut in the fire board. Place one foot on the fire board. Loop the bowstring over the drill and place the drill in the pre-cut depression on the fire board.
Place the socket, held in one hand, on the top of the drill to hold it in position. Press down on the drill and saw the bow back and forth to twirl the drill. Once you have established a smooth motion, apply more downward pressure and work the bow faster. This action will grind hot black powder into the tinder, causing a spark to catch. Blow on the tinder until it ignites.
Note: Primitive fire-building methods are exhaustive and require practice to ensure success.
Look here is the truth, if you cannot build a fire plough or a bow drill or if you cannot get a fire going in your back garden how will you manage in the wilderness?
I say use these method for fun, enjoy using them, but when SHTF, when you need a fire straight away, use a lighter, a magnesium Ferrocerium rod, or a fire piston, but use something that works first time because that is all the time you might have.
Your life may depend on your ability to light a fire in the rain or in the wind or both so practice in your back garden until it works every time.
Nuclear warfare is not necessary to cause a breakdown of our society. You take a large city like London, Birmingham, Manchester or Leeds— their water supply comes from hundreds of miles away and any interruption of that, or food, or power for any period of time you're going to have riots in the streets.
Our society is so fragile, so dependent on the interworking of things to provide us with the goods and services that you don't need nuclear warfare to fragment us anymore than the Romans needed it to cause their eventual downfall.
While some may consider such a discussion a waste of time, more and more people are coming to the conclusion that preparations of some sort are warranted in our current troubled environment — on many fronts.
Surviving Economic Collapse is about how much preparation individuals are willing to do and is usually in direct correlation to their belief that something catastrophic could happen, making life as we know it a much more difficult task.
It is a proven fact throughout history that when disruptions of any kind occur, those who made even the smallest preparations typically fare much better than those who gave no thought at all in this regard.
I want to share with you a list I have compiled of the things that could potentially happen — and that threaten our way of life in a small or large degree.
There is no way to predict these things, but anyone with common sense can see that the possibility is likely we could experience one or more of these events at some point in the future...
Any single event or combination of events could cause terrible and debilitating circumstances for a short or long period of time:
Natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods, tornados, volcanic eruptions, solar flares, earthquakes, and other geophysical events happen across our world daily.
There is the every present possibility of wars, nuclear wars, nuclear reactor meltdowns, and radiation fallout.
Then we have the coming financial meltdown (derivative, debt crisis, economic collapse and/or bond implosion) causing currencies to implode and governments to topple
There are problems with the exploration, delivery, or production of oil, the lifeblood of modern economies
We are seeing a spread of disease such as the Black Plague or a bird flu pandemic more and more often
We have frequent Power cuts
And you could even say that political anarchy or revolution is a possibility too.
Racial strife or civil war is on the cards that is for sure
Electromagnetic pulse events are in the news even more now.
With any of these scenarios listed above (and there is a host of others I have probably not even thought about), you could have localized, national, or global unrest and even war for an indefinite period of time depending on the scope and duration of the event(s).
An item that is not on the list — but could be equally devastating to individual families — is the loss of a job.
Losing a job can be a catastrophic event if one is not properly prepared. Most families find themselves living paycheck to paycheck with little in the way of savings and almost nothing in the way of preparations.
For years, I had brought up the issue of preparedness to a close friend of mine.
When I first started talking about it, my friend and his wife basically blew me off... but I kept bringing the topic up.
Eventually they thought it prudent to at least get some sort of food storage together. Their family was accustomed to an upper middle class income and living comfortably in suburbia with their three children...
About a year after making their food preparations, the breadwinner of the family lost his job and ended up working a series of almost minimum wage jobs trying to make ends meet.
He kept applying for better-paying jobs in his field of expertise — but no matter how qualified he was nobody was interested in hiring someone at his previous salary level or his age (late fifties).
The family's lifestyle was devastated and they eventually lost their home...
In a recent conversation with this friend, he told me that without their food storage, things would have been immeasurably more difficult. He thanked me for being a good friend and pushing the issue when he and his wife weren’t listening.
The family is now living a greatly reduced lifestyle, but keeping their heads above water and continuing with their preparations.
I share this story because on an individual basis, there is a host of things that can happen in which being prepared could make a huge difference.
We often, as a people in general, terms take things for granted and think 'this' or 'that' will never happen to us. In addition to a major job loss due to a myriad of reasons, you could lose your health or the ability to do your job.
Unfortunately, things of this nature are happening to more and more people every day. In fact, I'm certain all of us have been affected to some degree by similar stories of friends and relatives.
Our Current State of Affairs
The world in general seems afflicted on so many different fronts.
When you look at the list above, any rational person could easily see one or more of these scenarios occur within their lifetime.
Aside from the geophysical things that seem to be going haywire, and could be explained simply as the planet’s cycles, there are plenty of man-made catastrophes that loom on the horizon...
Never has the planet had as many people as it does now. With increased population numbers, there is increased pressure for resources.
More countries seek nuclear devices than ever before and recent advancements in technology make this much easier than any time before in history.
Biological and chemical weapons are also much easier to manufacture — and are being stored by an increasing number of very scary countries.
Oil markets are tighter than ever as demand from countries like China and India increases, but new supply cannot keep up with the increasing demand.
The financial debacle of the world economies needs no introduction to my listeners. In short, bad times — really bad times — for any number of reasons could and probably will be coming to a location near you.
Unless you and your family take this possibility quite seriously, if and when something does happen, you could very well find yourself in some extremely difficult circumstances...
Just look at the latest news coming out of Greece, as reported by Reuters.
This is happening right now — and it’s only going to spread.
When the political and economic systems of entire nations collapse the consequences are devastating.
Earlier this year pharmacies and hospitals in Greece were unable to provide lifesaving medicines due to a shortages caused by a freeze in the flow of credit from manufacturers to distributors to patients.
A collapse in the country’s economy has forced many Greeks to turn to black market barter economies and has left millions financially devastated, with no hope of finding an income stream for the foreseeable future.
The credit system of the entire country is in shambles. So much so that reports are emerging about food shortages and hunger within the Greek prison system, suggesting that serious problems in the food delivery chain have begun to materialize.
As Nigel Farage warned recently, we are beginning to see the rise of extreme political parties as a consequence of the total and utter desperation of the populace.
Today the news gets even worse. Greece’s Regulatory Authority for Energy (RAE) announced an emergency meeting to deal with what can only be construed as a tell-tale sign that this crisis is very rapidly reaching critical mass and may spiral out of control in the very near future:
Greece’s power regulator RAE told Reuters on Friday it was calling an emergency meeting next week to avert a collapse of the debt-stricken country’s electricity and natural gas system.
You may have thought the financial collapse of 2008 was bad.
That was just a warm-up.
The main event is staring us in the face, and the whole of Europe has front-row seats.
What is happening in Europe is just a precursor for what will eventually be happening to the United States..
The following are Items to Consider that I feel are prudent as you make your own preparations based on the problems that could potentially threaten our way of life.
Each of the items below could fill a book... but my intent is to at least get you thinking about the most important things related to being prepared.
Should I stay or should I go?
Many have already decided where they will go if and when any such disaster occurs. I hope they get there but…
Personally, I know many who have already left the United Kingdom — and they have never looked back. I have been invited to their retreats in Spain, Australian, New Zealand, and the Greek Islands, and they seem very happy with their decision to leave.
This is a huge decision. My hope is that the following
discussion may be of some help when thinking about this topic.
Because I have travelled internationally so much in my previous life I often compare notes on my trips with other folks (Drivers, tourists etc.) about their travels...
One of the realizations you see first-hand as you travel extensively worldwide is the extreme wealth, extreme poverty, and extreme corruption that exists in all of its world flavours.
If you think the United Kingdom is corrupt, you should try going to Peru, or Bolivia, or Panama. And if you think those countries are corrupt, you haven’t see anything compared to Russia, Haiti, India, or some places in Africa...
The fact is corruption and the growing global police state is EVERYWHERE!
So while we certainly see much to complain about in the United Kingdom, which is definitely going the wrong way fast, from what I have seen in most other places on the planet, the U.K. is still less corrupt than most.
There are bad apples everywhere throughout politics, local police, special agents, and most certainly the court system — but for every bad apple, there are probably three times as many honourable people who are truly just trying to do their jobs.
Leaving the country is a decision you must make before the event takes place due to the sheer amount of time and effort it takes to accomplish such a task.
You must also think about being away from family and friends who don’t share your enthusiasm to leave the country and what affect that could have on everyone over time.
For most, I think it’s probably best to just hunker down in your own country and prepare as much as you can. If you can afford a retreat cabin somewhere far away from the big cities, that would probably be best — but again, you still need to get there once the event occurs.
Studies have clearly shown that once a SHTF event occurs, you have two to three days to get to where you ultimately want to hunker down. After that, travel becomes extremely dangerous and it is unlikely you will reach your final destination.
Highways will become kill zones targeted by the bad guys. To a gang of armed looters who forgot to prepare or plan ahead before the event, there is not a better target than an RV loaded down with stored food, ammo, and gold.
Don’t be foolish and attempt travel once things have gone south: If you need to get somewhere, plan to leave the moment the event happens and arrive where you want to be within 72 hours.
This may require several false starts (meaning the situation looked bad at first, but didn’t materialize, and you need to return home) on your part as events start to unfold. But it's better to be safe than sorry if you are planning to get somewhere when an event happens.
Military strategists know from historical accounts of what happens when governments fail or when SHTF events affect a country: The rule of thumb is that roads are to be avoided at all costs.
If you cannot afford a retreat cabin of some sort, there are things you can do to hunker down in your own home...
First, you need to stock up and find a way to defend it.
Like-minded friends and neighbours can be a huge support network — as long as they have prepared as well.
There is a great book (it's not well-edited, but has solid content) on how to live in your home and defend it called
Holding Your Ground: Preparing for Defense if it All Falls Apart by Joe Nobody, which in itself is a lesson in laying low.
This book isn’t about turning your home into a concrete bunker armed to the teeth; it's more about using cosmetic deception to fool would-be marauders into thinking your place has already been hit. It includes plenty of clever techniques that go far beyond "shooting back."
Ultimately, everyone must decide for themselves based on finances, family concerns, and individual preferences what he can or cannot do in his preparations.
Hopefully, this discussion will help you make the best choices for what is in your best interest.
Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.
This is a good motto to live by, despite how you think about things.
Individuals can still hope for the best (that things can and will eventually work out), but what good is your prosperity going to do if you don’t have anything to eat or a safe place to hang out for an extended period of time?
Why not prepare while you still can — when things are readily available and can still be purchased at cheap prices? The coming hyper-inflation will make any such purchases beforehand look very intelligent...
To prepare for the worst, you need a plan. Why are most people so against doing basic preparations that could be the difference on how they survive — or whether they survive?
History shows time and again that those who prepare always fare better than those who did not. Having a plan and being determined to act on that plan will always be the best way to handle any contingencies, should they occur.
After disaster strikes, your mind is going to be racing around like a car on a race track. Pre-planning and having a written set of measures to take will make someone’s life go much smoother when the SHTF.
Your own personal plan is ONLY what best fits what you are going to do during and after a disaster.
People should also have back-up plans — Plans B and C, at least — because nothing ever seems to go as planned.
Haphazard approaches to the aftermaths of catastrophes are kind of like a chicken running around without its head.
Cold Water Survival
What is it? It is difficult even for an expert to define. It is estimated to be around and under the temperature of 70 degrees.
However, this will vary in each case due to the specific circumstances and physical condition of the person involved.
What Happens In Cold Water?
Many of the fatal boating accidents occur in the "out-of-season" months when the water is cold. What happens to the body when suddenly plunged into cold water?
The first hazards to contend with are panic and shock. The initial shock can place severe strain on the body, producing instant cardiac arrest.
Survivors of cold water accidents have reported the breath driven from them on first impact with the water. Should your face be in the water during that first involuntary gasp for breath, it may well be water rather than air.
Total disorientation may occur after cold water immersion. Persons have reported "thrashing helplessly in the water" for thirty seconds or more until they were able to get their bearings.
Immersion in cold water can quickly numb the extremities to the point of uselessness. Cold hands cannot fasten the straps of a lifejacket, grasp a thrown rescue line, or hold onto an over-turned boat.
Within minutes, severe pain clouds rational thought. And, finally, hypothermia (exposure) sets in, and without rescue and proper first aid treatment, unconsciousness and death.
We all recall the incident in which the airliner went down in the dead of winter in the water in Washington, D.C. several years ago. The vivid video of the rescue attempts and those that died due to hypothermia is not easily forgotten.
Normal body temperature of course, is 98.6. Shivering and the sensation of cold can begin when the body temperature lowers to approximately 96.5. Amnesia can begin to set in at approximately 94, unconsciousness at 86 and death at approximately 79 degrees.
What To Do In The Water
Cold water robs the body's heat 32 times faster than cold air. If you should fall into the water, all efforts should be given to getting out of the water by the fastest means possible.
Persons boating in the cold water months should be thoroughly skilled in rescue and self-rescue techniques. Most accidents involve small boats which with practice can be righted and re-entered.
Most boats, even filled with water, will support the weight of its occupants. If the boat has capsized and cannot be made upright, climb on top of it.
Physical exercise such as swimming causes the body to lose heat at a much faster rate than remaining still in the water.
Blood is pumped to the extremities and quickly cooled. Few people can swim a mile in fifty degree water. Should you find yourself in cold water and are not able to get out, you will be faced with a critical choice - to adopt a defensive posture in the water to conserve heat and wait for rescue, or attempt to swim to safety.
Should you find yourself in the water, avoid panic. Air trapped in clothing can provide buoyancy as long as you remain still in the water. Swimming or treading water will greatly increase heat loss and can shorten survival time by more than 50%.
The major body heat loss areas are the head, neck, armpits, chest and groin. If you are not alone, huddle together or in a group facing each other to maintain body heat.
Proper preparation is essential when boating on cold water. Make sure your boat and equipment are in first class condition.
Check the weather forecast before leaving for your event. Always tell someone where you are going and when you expect to return.
Dress in several layers of light clothing. Next to a diver's wet suit, wool clothing offers the best protection. Always wear a personal flotation device (PFD) when boating.
First Aid Considerations For Cold Water Victims
Treatment for hypothermia depends on the condition of the person. Mild hypothermia victims who show only symptoms of shivering and are capable of rational conversation may only require removal of wet clothes and replacement with dry clothes or blankets.
In more severe cases where the victim is semi-conscious, immediate steps must be taken to begin the rewarming process.
Get the person out of the water and into a warm environment. Remove the clothing only if it can be done with a minimum of movement of the victim's body. Do not massage the extremities.
Lay the semi-conscious person face up, with the head slightly lowered, unless vomiting occurs. The head down position allows more blood to flow to the brain.
If advanced rescue equipment is available it can be administered by those trained in its use. Warm humidified oxygen should be administered by face mask.
Immediately attempt to rewarm the victim’s body core.
If available, place the person in a bath of hot water at a temperature of 105 to 110 degrees.
It is important that the victim's arms and legs be kept out of the water to prevent "after-drop". After-drop occurs when the cold blood from the limbs is forced back into the body resulting in further lowering of the core temperature.
After-drop can be fatal.
If a tub is not available, apply hot, wet towels or blankets to the victim's head, neck, chest, groin, and abdomen. Do not warm the arms or legs.
If nothing else is available, a rescuer may use their own body heat to warm a hypothermia victim.
Never give alcohol to a hypothermia victim.
Some Important Facts To Remember
Most persons recovered in cold water "near" drowning cases show the typical symptoms of death:
Cyanotic (blue) skin coloration
No detectable breathing
No apparent pulse or heartbeat
Pupils fully dilated (opened)
These symptoms, it was discovered, did not always mean the victim was dead. They were, on the other hand, the body's way of increasing its chances of survival through what scientists call the mammalian diving reflex.
This reflex is most evident in marine mammals such as whales, seals or porpoises. In the diving reflex, blood is diverted away from the arms and legs to circulate (at the rate of only 6-8 beats per minute, in some cases) between the heart, brain and lungs.
Marine mammals have developed this ability to the point where they can remain under water for extended periods of time (over 30 minutes in some species) without brain or body damage.
Humans experience the diving reflex, but it is not as pronounced as in other mammals. The factors which enhance the diving reflex in humans are:
Water temperature - less than 70 degrees or colder, the more profound the response and perhaps the more protective to the brain
Age - the younger the victim, the more active the reflex
Facial immersion - the pathways necessary for stimulating this series of responses seem to emanate from facial cold water stimulation.
The diving reflex is a protective mechanism for humans in cold water immersions, but it may confuse the rescuer into thinking the victim is dead. Resuscitative efforts for these victims should be started immediately utilizing CPR in accordance with your training.
Remember, numerous children have been brought up from freezing water after 30 minutes and been successfully resuscitated.
Trapping or snaring is a simple process. Your goal is to hold, contain, or kill the intended target species.
Without real traps or snares, you have to use your head. The better your understanding of wildlife, the better trapper you will be.
I have a friend who just started trapping and she told me she used to think you just put traps anywhere in the woods and the animals would be caught!
This is a very important statement if you are a beginner. To understand trapping, you have to understand what estate agents say all the time - "Location, location, location."
To become an expert trapper, you must study every piece of written material on the target animals. I am not just talking about trapping books and videos, but wildlife studies.
Have you seen the movie with Alec Baldwin and Anthony Hopkins called "The Edge"? I think that is what it was called, anyway.
This is the movie where they are stranded up in Alaska. They make that little cage trap out of sticks and twine to catch the squirrel. Then they catch a squirrel. The funny part was the squirrel the movie shows getting caught in the trap doesn't even live in Alaska!
I have seen animals in traps, and I laughed my head off when I saw that part! A trapped squirrel would have jumped and pushed at the cage.
That cage, having no weight on it would have fallen open, and the squirrel would have escaped. Don't rely on Hollywood to teach you any survival skills!
Pine Sap and Birch Bark Trap. I will now discuss some different emergency trapping techniques. One of my favourites is a century old way of trapping birds. For centuries, the Indians knew that trapping fed them better than hunting, and they developed this trap.
You use a smooth, easy-to-form type of bark, like Birch or any pliable, soft, inner bark.
Form a cone like an ice cream cone, and tie strips of inner bark around the cone to keep it together. Score a pine tree by cutting off a 4 x 4 inch square in the bark, until you can see the inner bark. The sticky sap will flow out.
Take a stick and get a good glob of sap, then smear it onto the inside of your cone. Using whatever the birds - like grouse or pheasants - are feeding on (berries, corn, etc…), make a small trail leading into the cone, and fill the inner cone with the bait.
The bird will eat the bait and follow the trail right into the cone! Once they stick their head in, the pinesap will stick to their feathers.
The bird is now blind. But, just like a bird in a cage that you place a cover over, these trapped birds will lay down, thinking it is night time, and go to sleep.
It is very important to make sure no light can be seen inside the cone.
Approach the trapped bird slowly and quietly. Once you grab the bird, hold on tight, because it is going to freak out! Quickly grab it and wring it's neck.
Stovepipe Bird Trap.
The stovepipe game bird trap is so simple, it makes me laugh every time I think about it. The principle behind it is that birds can't back up. Have you ever seen a bird walk backwards? Neither have I!
A friend told me about it when I was in school. There was a farm inside the village limits loaded with pheasants! He used to train his dogs there. The pheasants were just too tempting for me, so I had to try it.
So, I made a trap, baited it with corn, and the next day, sure enough, there were fresh pheasant tracks going right into the pipe!
Man! This is great, I thought! I lifted the pipe, expecting the weight of a bird, only to be disappointed upon finding it empty.
Mice must have stolen the bait, I thought. After two more days of tracks going into the pipe and no pheasants, I figured it out. I was using an 8-inch pipe, and the birds could turn around.
I went back to the junkyard, found some 6-inch pipe, and the next day, the pheasant was waiting!
Of course, I had to try it on the grouse, and found that a 4-inch pipe works for them. My guess for quail would be the 2- or 3-inch pipe. Just don't do what a friend of mind did.
He made one out of a real short pipe, about 10 inches long, and the big rooster pheasants tail was sticking out the end! He was in some park, and as he was walking out to his car, the police saw the pheasant tail, and he got busted.
Some people have no sense of humour! The bad thing was, now the cops knew what the trap was, so the rest of us had to quit for a while.
6-inch diameter, 24-inch long stove pipe
A piece of chicken wire, about 12-inches square and some duct tape
That's it. You take the chicken wire, form it around one end of the pipe, and duct tape the overlay nice and tight around the pipe. Place a trail of corn going into the pipe, and a pile or cob in the back.
This has to be the easiest trap to make, and man does it work! Be careful when you pull the pheasants out. They are a feisty bird, and you had better have a good hold on them. Otherwise, they will fly off.
A friend of mine did this in the garage, lost the bird, got the dog, and he said that after 15 minutes of him trying to knock the bird down so the dog could grab it, the garage was a wreck!
The dog ripped the bird up, and his wife was a little mad.
A Pit Trap. This is a neat trap. A friend who enjoys (poaching) told this me about this one, on catching pheasants.
You take a coke bottle, or a small shovel, and dig a hole 6 inches in diameter, 10- to 12 inches deep. Make a trail of corn leading to the hole, and cover the bottom with corn.
The pheasant, or grouse, will come up and reach down to get the corn. Then, they fall into the hole. Their wings are stuck at their sides, and their feet are hanging up in the air! You just pull them up by the feet, and wring the neck.
One of the oldest methods of catching fish is used in small rivers and streams. You find a shallow spot next to a deep hole. At night, the fish come out to feed, and will swim in the shallows.
To take advantage of this, you can narrow down the opening into a "V". Behind the "V" is a solid wall of rocks. The fish will swim in and get caught or confused, and lay in the trap until daylight.
When you go to check the trap, approach quietly from the front. Place a large rock, or rocks, blocking the hole in the "V". This is to keep any from escaping.
Netting is the best way to catch the fish in the containment area. If you don't have a net, make a spear. Clubbing fish is a waste of time in the water.
All that happens is you get very wet, and the fish could get so scared they will jump over the back wall to escape. Yes, I found that one out first-hand.
If you are serious about trapping, get real equipment, and real snares. Real traps and snares will always catch more than these homemade traps.
Trapping is a skill that takes practice. You have to learn to walk into the woods and recognize what type of animal lives there.
Then you need to learn where they travel for food, water, and shelter and set your traps and snares accordingly.
Surviving in the Woods
Ever been on a hike admiring the wild flowers, gazing up at the tips of the trees--and suddenly found yourself completely alone and lost?
No of course you have not, but what if? what would happen to you if you couldn't find your way back to safety? While being lost in the woods can be a frightening experience, surviving alone in the wild is generally a matter of common sense, patience, and wisely using the gifts that nature provides.
To survive in the woods, you must use these guidelines and tips.
Plan ahead. Don't just trek off into the wilderness; do some research first. There are a lot of resources regarding survival, both online and in libraries, but warning: many of the techniques used in these manuals are sometimes wrong or incomplete.
One of the most accurate books about this subject is "Bushcraft - Outdoor Skills and Wilderness Survival" by Mors Kochanski. Educate yourself about the flora and fauna of the area you are exploring.
Knowledge of the local plants and animals can save your life! If you need any medication or injections, bring them along – even if you don’t plan to be gone for long enough to need them.
Every time you go into the wilderness, make sure someone knows where you are going and how long you intend to be gone. That way someone will realize that you are missing, quickly alert rescuers, and be able to tell them where to start looking for you (much like a “flight plan,” which pilots always file before leaving).
Similarly, don't forget to call the person(s) you notified to tell them when you are back. Like the boy who cried wolf, a false alarm wastes rescue resources and may be.
Bring survival gear. Basic survival tools such as a knife, a fire steel (metal match), some matches (in a waterproof canister), some cord (550 paracord is best), a Whistle, a space blanket, a signaling mirror, water purifying tablets, a compass, etc. this can mean the difference between life and death.
However if you decide to bring something like a knife make sure you have permission and don't give people the wrong impression. Even if you are only out on a day hike, be sure to bring the essentials.
Having all this equipment is nothing if you cannot use it properly. Make sure to practice many times in a safe environment before venturing into the wilderness, somewhere like your back garden Also, know how to catch and cook fish if the need arises.
Forget about catching game; this is a painstakingly slow, energy-consuming process that will divert your attention from your real goal, trying to get home.
Learn how to use a compass. If you have a map and can spot a few prominent landscapes, you can actually use the compass to triangulate your position and, from there, figure out where you need to go.
When choosing a space blanket (a light, thin sheet of extremely reflective Mylar), spend a little extra to buy a larger, more durable model.
A space blanket can be used to block wind and water, wrapped around the body prevent and counteract hypothermia, or even placed behind you to reflect a fire’s heat onto your back, but none of this is useful if the blanket is too small or tears the moment you unwrap it.
Bring a means of communication. A mobile phone with spare battery or a portable CB radio can be your best, quickest means of rescue if you are truly lost or injured.
A mobile signal may only be obtainable from a hill or tree (be safe if contemplating a climb) but is better than nothing.
Serious survivalists may even consider investing in a personal locator beacon such as the SPOT Messenger for extended, precarious, or very remote, treks.
A SPOT Messenger is a satellite communication devices that allows you to contact emergency services, reach your own personal contacts for help during non-emergencies, or even simply check in with your friends and family as you trek so that they know you’re alright. A service subscription is required and is not cheap.
Don't panic if you’re lost. Panic is more dangerous than almost anything else, because it interferes with the operation of your single best, most useful and versatile survival tool: your mind.
The moment you realize that you are lost, before you do anything else, stop. Take a deep breath and stay calm. Even if you're hanging from a rope halfway down a mountainside with a broken leg, remind yourself that people have survived exactly this situation.
Stand still and look around carefully! Wherever you are will become your "point zero." Find a way to mark it using a spare piece of clothing, a pile of rocks, a sheet of paper, or anything else easily visible from a distance.
Stay in one place. This not only increases your chances of being found, but also reduces the energy your body expends and the amount of water and food you will need. Hunker down and stay put.
Chances are that someone will be looking for you, especially if you let someone know your plans
Build a good-sized fire with sufficient coals to stay hot for many hours, and make sure that you have plenty of extra dry wood.
Start the fire before you think you need it, even if the weather is warm; fires are easier to make under stressless conditions than in a panic as the sun sets – to say nothing of the fact that having a fire nearby will give you a sense of comfort and safety as you get your bearings.
A good rule of thumb is to gather wood until you think you have enough to last the night, then gather three more piles of the same size, after which you might have enough to get through the night.
In the wilderness, you should have access to dry wood in the understory of the forest. You can also use bark or dried dung.
If you build a fire that is hot enough, you can also burn green wood, brush, or tree boughs to make a signalling fire (one that makes a lot of smoke).
The best wood for maintaining a fire is dead wood that you pull off a standing tree. Regardless of what type of woods you are in, there will certainly be some dry wood available.
Remember that a small fire is easier to keep burning than a big fire, though, because it requires less fuel. Once you have sufficient embers, keep the fire to a manageable size so you don't spend too much time looking for fuel.
Don't build a fire in an area where it is unsafe to do so. Your fire should be well away from flammable trees and brush, preferably in a clearing. Be careful with your fire. While you want to feed it, you shouldn't overdo it.
Consider the weather and other factors and remember, a forest fire is a lot harder to survive than just being lost!
Signal your location to maximize the odds that someone finds you. Make noise by whistling, shouting, singing, or banging rocks together. If you can, mark your location in such a way that it's visible from the air.
If you're in a mountain meadow, make three piles of dark leaves or branches in a triangle. In sandy areas, make a large triangle in the sand. In a forest, you might want to prepare three small fires ready to ignite at a moment's notice, with heaps of wet leaves nearby in order to make smoke.
Three of anything in the wilderness is a standard distress signal. The space blanket can also be used as a signalling device.
Start scouting your area, carefully keeping track of your location. In your immediate area, make sure you look around carefully for anything useful. You could find things someone left there before, be it a tin can or small lighter, it can be helpful significantly.
Be sure you can always find your way back to your "point zero" as you search for water, shelter, or your way home.
Find a good source of water. In a survival situation, you can last up to three days without water, but by the end of the second day you're not going to be in very good shape; find water before then.
The best source of water is a spring, but the chances of finding one are slim.
A running stream is your next best bet; the movement of the water reduces sediment. Be advised that drinking water from streams can lead to some sicknesses, but when you're in a life-or-death situation, the risk of illness is a secondary consideration and anything you may get can be treated when you return.
Purify your water. A crude method of water purification is to take your handy pot and heat the water. For this to effectively kill bacteria, it must be at a rolling boil for at least a minute.
You can also put (clear) water in a clear plastic bottle and set it in the sun for six hours to kill most of the organisms.
However, if the water is so full of sediment that the sun can’t penetrate it, this method will not work. If you have any, add a pinch of salt to the water to try to bring the sediment to the bottom.
Find or create shelter. Without adequate shelter, you will be fully exposed to the elements and will risk hypothermia or heatstroke, depending on the weather.
If you are not properly dressed for the conditions, finding shelter is all the more important. Luckily, the woods are filled with tools and resources to make both shelters and fires (for warmth, safety, and signalling purposes).
Here are some things you can use:
Look for a fallen or leaning tree. You can build an A-frame shelter by by stacking branches along both side a fallen tree, then over the branches with brush, palm fronds, leaves, or other plants.
Use brush or green branches (boughs) from trees to repel water, block wind, keep out snow, or create shade.
Close in your shelter on as many sides as possible.