All posts for the month January, 2014



Most of you who follow the news have by now heard of the plight of so many people in Atlanta that were stranded in their cars, forced to sleep in the floors of local stores and a city that looked virtually unprepared for any event like this. Its times like this that I wonder how things would have been different if everyone involved had taken the time to prepare a simple winter car survival kit. I think that there are certainly factors that would have made this little amount of snow something to contend with anyway, but the lives of a lot of people could have been much better with a little planning and preparedness. This type of road incident isn’t unheard of and it simply makes good sense to have supplies in your car that you can count on if you are stranded.

Before I get everyone from the South upset, I will say that most places in Georgia aren’t used to snow. In the south, snow really is an oddity. The cities in the south do not have the equipment to take care of the snow as well as cities in the north because they so rarely get anything at all it is hard to justify the expense. The threat of any snow sends people to the stores in a panic and forces school closings for days after most of the snow has melted. A snow like this in a city like Atlanta is rare and it is perfectly normal to expect some level of chaos for southern drivers when faced with weather they aren’t prepared for.

There are some things though that I would say are still your responsibility. The weather forced a lot of people to wait in traffic for hours due to accidents or road clearing operations. Having simple preparations ahead of time (even more so with the threat of inclement weather) would have made these delays more tolerable and could have ensured that more people could have made it home to their families instead of spending the night on the floor at CVS.

What do you need for a winter car survival kit?

Before I get into the actual content list of items to store in a winter car survival kit, I should bring up fuel. It can’t be said enough that you should have no less than a half a tank of gas at all times. Why? Because if for some reason, you aren’t able to fill up, a half a tank will last longer and get you more places that sitting on empty. For those people who had to sit in their cars for hours, a half a tank of gas could have kept them warm and more importantly moving.

So on to the list. The items below should be in everyone’s car if you go anywhere in the winter. Some of the winter car survival kit items are just as important in the summer and can be considered as core. We’ll list off the items that are specific to Winter, but it will be obvious.

Core- Car Survival Kit items.

Winter Car Survival Kit additions

  • Wool Blankets – 2
  • Survival Bivvy – 2
  • Boots or hiking shoes with good gription (yes that is a word)
  • Small Camping shovel – necessary in some locations more than others
  • Windshield scraper
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Wool or Fleece hat/gloves
  • Spare fleece pullover

What could you sub in there for Summer? Certainly more water and perhaps sunscreen or shading devices. I am sure we will write on this topic for the summer also. Stay safe by making sure you have these basics with you. They do take up a little room, but you can fit all of this in a decent sized plastic bin and forget about them. You will be happy they are in the back when you need them.

Is this list the end all be all of survival necessities? Nope, but it is the basics and you have to start somewhere.

If you want to print this list out, just click on the Print button at the top of the page.

This information has been made available by The Prepper Journal: Simple Winter Car Survival Kit


surviving power grid down

By Sean Shado Off The Grid News

Being able to provide immediate security is the cornerstone of surviving a grid-crippling event. Before you are able to provide security, it is important you realize that human behavior will be somewhat predictable after a major catastrophic event.

Regardless of the event being a natural disaster or a widespread state of civil unrest, the patterns of human behavior largely follow the same model as evidenced throughout history. Knowing these patterns will help you properly plan your security strategy.

Let’s look at what the first week will be like.

Immediately after the grid goes down, the public will initially bond together over the trauma. As you go to your local super markets, you will realize that the shelves have been fleeced. Local populations who rely on these grocers must cross their fingers in hopes of the grocer’s supply chains being able to flow. Relatively speaking, your immediate security is not in danger at this point. Many of your neighbors will be operating in a compassionate mindset.

After a catastrophic event, the general public will stage a search-and-rescue effort. Once this effort is underway, your immediate threat level begins to rise slowly. As hours turn into days, people begin to realize how desperate the situation really is. This is the point in time when you will begin to see crime levels slowly start to creep up. Only days after Hurricane Sandy, New Yorkers were seen eating out of dumpers in order to survive the natural catastrophe.

Once the public becomes aware of the severity of the situation, what do you think people will be willing to do in order to survive? Some will feel that they are above dumpster diving and as a result, you could find yourself in a situation where you have to protect your supplies. Once desperation sets in for the public, it’s fight or flight. What steps are you willing to take in order to protect your survival cache?

The Nuances of Protecting Yourself

Navigating the nuances of security can be challenging due to all of the different lethal and non-lethal methods at your disposal. It is important to stay within your local legal guidelines. If you do not like your current local legal guidelines, the best advice is to move. If you live in a place where strict gun laws are present, you will have a difficult time protecting yourself against criminals. They have already acquired their guns using the black market. This means that you will often be at a huge disadvantage if you had to go barrel to barrel. Statistics show that cities that enact strict gun laws often have higher rates of crime. It is often best to just avoid large urban areas altogether.

How To Defend Yourself And Your Family Against The New Breed Of Lowlife Criminal Scum

Gun ownership is an effective method for immediately securing yourself. Anyone who can aim accurately and pull a trigger can enforce immediate security in this fashion. Gun ownership isn’t for everyone, though. Are you an able bodied person? If so, the next best method of immediately securing your belongings is to simply implement an exercise routine. Let’s face it, if you are outgunned and outnumbered, you must do whatever it takes to survive. If you are out of shape, you are at a disadvantage. If you already exercise daily, you are on the correct path. It is recommended that you slowly build up to a cardio routine that incorporates self-defense maneuvers. Practicing a useful self-defense martial art will give you the skillset to fight multiple attackers if needed. Being in good shape also allows you to run for long distances in case you need to immediately evacuate an area.

When you go to purchase a firearm, talk to the dealer and tell them your specific concerns and ask for recommendations on where to practice firing, how to procure training and how to become an expert at handling firearms. Gun shop owners and employees are often thrilled to explain firearms and firearm safety to prospective firearm purchasers. It’s somewhat of a responsibility for them to give gun ownership a good name by putting firearms in the hands of properly trained individuals.

Proactive Immediate Security

Fortunately, the 21st century has blessed us with all kinds of security mechanisms that can help divert a face-to-face encounter altogether. You should game plan your certain situation if you plan on surviving with a cohabitant or small group of people. For example, it would be a great idea to designate one person as a lookout that uses either low-tech methods such as a perch and binoculars or high-tech methods such as cameras and motion sensors. Preparing for an attack is the best solution for someone wanting to avoid an attack. If someone begins casing you as a target, they may get intimidated and try to move on to an easier target if they notice you are prepared.

Incorporating K9s into your proactive immediate security scheme is also an effective means of deterring criminals from targeting you. Statistics show that criminals are much less willing to break and enter into a home with a K9 present. If you have a large piece of open property that you need to protect, implementing K9s will scare off potential criminals and alert you to those brave enough to bypass the dog’s warning barks. You can contact a local animal shelter in order to adopt a K9 or you can typically raise puppies from birth from those who have had litters and need to give them to a good home. Information is available online that shows you how to train your dog as a watch dog. Popular watch dog breeds are Bull Mastiffs, Rottweilers and German Shepherds.

Knowing the fundamentals of immediate security will help you find a pathway out of danger. If turmoil showed up in your neighborhood, the consequences of being unprepared could be fatal. It is important to evaluate your specific conditions in order to determine the tools and the skillsets you must acquire in order to survive.

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This article first appeared at Off The Grid News: Staying Secure The First 7 Days After The Power Grid Goes Down


 By Ken Jorgustin

Rain gear (mostly items to be worn on the body) is an important part of one’s survival preps within the category of clothing. Staying dry during inclement rainy weather will reduce the likelihood of hypothermia, and will allow you to work more comfortably outside, will lengthen the time that you can survive outside.

The following is a list of rain gear items that you may wish to consider procuring if you have not already done so…

Raincoat. Raincoats are typically not insulated or padded, although often contain not only an outer layer but also unique materials and layers which enable ‘breathing’ – an important attribute for body moisture to escape. In cold weather, simply wear a jacket or layers of clothing underneath the raincoat. Many raincoats include hoods to cover the head, but separate rain hats are an alternative.

Rain hat. Sou’Wester hat. Some rain hats are better than others at protecting your head and back of the neck from wind-swept rain. They are made from various materials and shapes, each with their own attributes and style.

Poncho. A rain poncho is made of waterproof material with openings for the head and the arms. It drapes over the body. Some advantages of wearing a rain poncho include it’s size variability and it can be more easily worn over a warm jacket or coat. With the poncho you can “hunch down” under some trees or bushes and have a sort of personal “tent”. A poncho AND rain paints are a very good combination for staying dry in the rain.

Parka. A parka is a type of coat with a hood, often lined with an insulating material. Parkas are hooded jackets that offer warmth as well as rain protection (depending on outer material). Some parkas have a removable fleece lining.

Rain pants. A raincoat will keep your upper body dry, but don’t forget about your legs…

Mens rain boots. Womens rain boots. Usually made of rubber and-or synthetics. While waterproof or water-resistant hiking or work boots are often appropriate, purpose-built rain boots may be a better choice in some environments. Thick socks may be needed to keep feet warm and comfortable.

Gaiters. These will eliminate any water “creep” up your legs and keep rain water from draining into your shoes or boots, especially if you are performing a lot of exerting tasks outdoors in the rain. Great for the snow too.

Umbrella. Although not worn on the body, they will provide more coverage and rain protection over your body. Good for short-term use. It’s a good idea to keep one in your vehicle for each person. Available in many sizes and designs.

Tarp. They come in many sizes, colors, materials, strengths, and thickness, usually with grommets around the perimeter for easy attachment of lines. As you know, tarps have a multitude of uses, including protection from the rain. It’s a good idea to keep a variety on hand.

Trench shovel. Use for digging water runoff trenches around and away from objects like tents, shelters, or other things.

Goggles. If it’s pouring and wind-swept rain, wearing goggles will greatly help your vision. Without them, your instinct is to look away or down from the rain.

Plastic stretch wrap. Non-adhesive plastic wrap will not only secures boxes and items during storage or transit, but will also protect these items from rain. I’ve seen it wrapped around the open frame of a tractor cab to protect the driver from the elements, wrapped around pallets of boxes, and other sorts of use-case scenario wraps.

Regarding clothing for the rain, look for Gortex garments. Gortex makes for a great ‘breathable’ outer shell, while allowing water to run off it’s surface. It’s worth the extra money. Be sure to keep Gortex out of blazing hot cars on sunny, hot summer days. Wash it on gentle cycle using a very mild detergent in small quantities and let it drip dry. Goretex and other breathable membrane garments will leak water when they are dirty.

More at Modern Survival Blog: Rain Gear Items For Your Preps


By Mac Slavo

It’s happening.

The avian flu virus, which up until last year infected poultry exclusively, has now mutated and crossed over to humans.

What’s even scarier is the fact that the Chinese have been unable to contain the novel H7N9 strain of the virus and health officials the world over are getting ready for the worst. It’s spreading and we now have confirmation that the virus has begun appearing in other countries.

On Thursday, billions of Chinese will be on the move to celebrate the Lunar New Year, creating ripe conditions for the spread of the influenza virus from those already infected. And many of those celebrations will include chickens, the primary carriers of H7N9. In addition, with the Winter Olympics, one of the world’s largest sporting events, just two weeks away, the virus could find the ideal conditions for breaking out.

And that means the next plane could bring a pandemic to the U.S. or anywhere else around the world. “The bottom line is the health security of the U.S. is only as strong as the health security of every country around the world,” says Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

“We are all connected by the food we eat, the water the drink and the air we breathe.”

But that’s not the worst of it. Last year the World Health Organization warned that H7N9 is one of the most lethal influenza strains ever identified.

Of the nearly 250 officially confirmed reports of human infection since last year, a quarter of those infected have died.

Those are the official numbers, but it is likely that the number of active infections could be a hundred-fold (or more) higher.

Moreover, like any flu virus, H7N9 continues to mutate and scientists recently suggested that all it would take for this particular strain to become a deadly global pandemic is an increase in its transmission rate.

It was initially thought that the virus only spread through human contact with poultry, but that theory was quickly turned on its head when a team of researchers at the University of Hong Kong confirmed that the virus had gone airborne.

If H7N9 mutates to transmission rates of other flu viruses, which is certainly a possibility, then we could well be looking at a mass global pandemic – and according to WHO the H7N9 is mutating eight (8) times faster than a typical flu virus.

To put this in perspective, the 1918 Spanish Flu infected as many as half a billion people (about a quarter of the world’s population). The mortality rate was somewhere in the area of 5% to 10%, with a final death toll of around 50 million people.

At a 25% mortality rate the H7N9 avlian flu, combined with modern transportation systems and metropolitan areas housing tens of millions of people, there is serious potential for a globally significant catastrophe.

Should this virus increase its transmission rate we could be looking at a scenario where a billion or more people contract the virus around the world.

The math is straight forward. One in four will perish.

While we’ve had pandemic scares in the recent past, this one really has researchers and global health officials spooked:

The fast mutation makes the virus’ evolutionary development very hard to predict. “We don’t know whether it will evolve into something harmless or dangerous,” He said. “Our samples are too limited. But the authorities should definitely be alarmed and get prepared for the worst-case scenario.”

As of yet, there is no available vaccine, and one novel mechanism of action for H7N9 is that as soon as it infects its host it develops rapid antiviral resistance, so traditional medicines like Tamiflu don’t work.

One infected student at a local school, or a restaurant worker, or a passenger on an airplane could take this to the next level.

And once it takes hold, there will be no stopping it.

Most don’t believe it is possible with our advanced sciences and research facilities.

History proves otherwise.

  • Plague of Justinian (541 – 542) – At it’s peak over 5,000 people per day died in the city of Constantinople
  • Black Death (1348 – 1350) – Over 75 Million Dead. Nearly 60% of Europe.
  • Smallpox (16th Century) – Wiped out entire civilizations like the Aztecs.
  • The Third Pandemic (1855 – circa 1990) – A Bubonic Plague that killed over 10 million in China and India
  • The Spanish Flu (1918 – 1919) – Over 50 million dead

The only steps one can take is to be ready in advance with a Pandemic Preparedness Plan, as recommended by Tess Pennington:

When an outbreak occurs, many will remain in a state of denial about any approaching epidemics. Simply put, most people believe themselves to be invincible to negative situations and do not like the idea change of any kind.

They will remain in this state until they realize they are unable to deny it to themselves any longer. Being prepared before the masses come out of their daze will ensure that you are better prepared before the hoards run to the store to stock up.

In addition to remaining isolated from the general population, you must have (in advance) access to food, water, medicine, and self defense armaments.

If such a virus were to spread, infecting millions and killing off 25% of those who contract it, you can be assured of widespread panic as the unprepared search and fight for resources. –

Atlanta Snowpocalypse - Photo Posted On Twitter by Ryan Duckworth

By Michael Snyder

This week, three inches of snow “paralyzed” the ninth-largest city in the United States, and the highways of Atlanta “resembled a scene in a post-apocalyptic world” according to national news reports.  Hundreds of cars were abandoned on the side of the road, people were spending the night in churches and grocery stores, and many walked for hours in a desperate attempt to get home or find needed provisions.  So if three inches of snow can cause this much chaos in one of our major cities, what will a full-blown economic collapse look like?  Most Americans have no idea how fragile our way of life is.  In the event of a major natural disaster, a massive EMP blast or a complete economic meltdown, our lives would change very rapidly, and most people are totally unprepared for that.

In Atlanta, a relatively minor snowfall has resulted in the deaths of 5 people, more than 100 injuries, and some commuters reported being stuck in traffic for up to 18 hours.  According to USA Today, highways around Atlanta resembled “a post-apocalyptic world” at the height of the storm…

The usually bustling roadways in the Atlanta metropolitan area resembled a scene in a post-apocalyptic world during and after Tuesday’s snow and ice storm.

Cars abandoned at odd angles on side streets, thoroughfares and major interstates. People in this car-dependent city walked for miles, hunched over and huddled from the cold. Many had no coats, hats or gloves.

“It was a like a scene from The Walking Dead,” said Maura Neill, 38, referring to the television series about a post-apocalyptic world overtaken by zombies.

Once our normal routines are disrupted, it is amazing how rapidly people start thinking about supplies of food and water.  Just check out this report from CNN

“I’m eight months’ pregnant and have my 3-year-old with me,” Atlanta-area resident Katie Norman Horne said on SnowedOutAtlanta, a Facebook page set up to help stranded motorists.

“We’ve been in the car for over 12 hours. We are fine on gas but is anyone near on the road and might happen to have any food or some water?”

In Atlanta, 940 accidents were confirmed, with more than 100 of them involving injuries, the Georgia public safety commissioner said.

In Alabama, at least five people died Tuesday in weather-related traffic accidents. The governor deployed 350 National Guard troops to help motorists.

And because thousands upon thousands of commuters simply could not get home, many of them started seeking shelter wherever they could find it

Students camped out with teachers in school gyms or on buses and commuters abandoned cars along the highway to seek shelter in churches, fire stations — even grocery stores — after a rare snowstorm left thousands of unaccustomed Southerners frozen in their tracks.

You can see some incredible pictures from the “snowpocalypse” in Atlanta right here.

Remember, this was just a temporary “emergency” caused by just three inches of snow that everyone knew would soon pass.

So how will people respond when a real crisis strikes that is not temporary?

We live at a time when we tend to think that we are invulnerable because of our technology.

But that simply is not true.

For example, just because this winter was a bit colder than expected, it has created a shortage of propane heating fuel in more than 30 states

The governor of Iowa, Terry Branstad, has called on President Barack Obama to act as bitter winter weather caused a shortage of propane heating fuel and a massive spike in prices in some of the coldest regions of the US.

Propane is used by more than 12m households across the country, according industry statistics, and its shortage has led to a state of emergency being declared in more than 30 states. Prices are up more than 17% from a year ago, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

Ahead of the president’s State of the Union speech, Branstad has written to Obama expressing his concern about a crisis now sweeping the midwest: “Prices in some midwest locations have now exceeded $5 per gallon. Such prices are unsustainable for families, farmers and businesses,” he wrote.

So what would happen if a real crisis happened?

For instance, what would happen if something caused the trucks in America to stop running?

What would life look like?

Well, according to a report put out by the American Trucker Associations entitled “When Trucks Stop, America Stops“, life would get “apocalyptic” quite rapidly…

A Timeline Showing the Deterioration of Major Industries Following a Truck Stoppage

The first 24 hours

• Delivery of medical supplies to the affected area will cease. • Hospitals will run out of basic supplies such as syringes and catheters within hours. Radiopharmaceuticals will deteriorate and become unusable. • Service stations will begin to run out of fuel. • Manufacturers using just-in-time manufacturing will develop component shortages. • U.S. mail and other package delivery will cease.

Within one day

• Food shortages will begin to develop. • Automobile fuel availability and delivery will dwindle, leading to skyrocketing prices and long lines at the gas pumps. • Without manufacturing components and trucks for product delivery, assembly lines will shut down, putting thousands out of work.

Within two to three days

• Food shortages will escalate, especially in the face of hoarding and consumer panic. • Supplies of essentials—such as bottled water, powdered milk, and canned meat—at major retailers will disappear. • ATMs will run out of cash and banks will be unable to process transactions. • Service stations will completely run out of fuel for autos and trucks. • Garbage will start piling up in urban and suburban areas. • Container ships will sit idle in ports and rail transport will be disrupted, eventually coming to a standstill.

Within a week

• Automobile travel will cease due to the lack of fuel. Without autos and busses, many people will not be able to get to work, shop for groceries, or access medical care. • Hospitals will begin to exhaust oxygen supplies.

Within two weeks

• The nation’s clean water supply will begin to run dry.

Within four weeks

• The nation will exhaust its clean water supply and water will be safe for drinking only after boiling. As a result gastrointestinal illnesses will increase, further taxing an already weakened health care system.

This timeline presents only the primary effects of a freeze on truck travel. Secondary effects must be considered as well, such as inability to maintain telecommunications service, reduced law enforcement, increased crime, increased illness and injury, higher death rates, and likely, civil unrest.

Sadly, most Americans have made absolutely no preparations for a major crisis of that magnitude.

They just have complete and total faith that the system will always be able to take care of them.

Someday when we do experience a great national crisis, those people will be totally blindsided by it.

This article first appeared at The American Dream: If 3 Inches Of Snow Can Cause This Much Chaos In Atlanta, What Will Economic Collapse Look Like?


By Jillian MacMath

Though Phil has a few more days to prognosticate the next six weeks, the long-range forecasting team already predicts that the nation will be split in half: cold and snow will linger in the Northern states, while spring will get an earlier start in the southern half.

Where Will Cold Linger?

Wintry weather is forecast to hold longest across the the Great Lakes, Northeast and mid-Atlantic.

Cold air masses and a few snowstorms will continue to impact the regions as late as March before the winter season comes to an end.

A steady stream of warmth may not arrive for cities from Detroit to Boston and New York City until mid- to late spring.

“For the next six weeks in the Northeast, we’re going to be dealing with some pretty good cold coming down out of northern Canada,” Lead Long-Range Forecaster Paul Pastelok said.

“I still think there’s going to be a few systems of significance before the winter season is over with.”

Similarly, snow and shots of cold air will persist across the northern Plains and Upper Midwest.

RELATED: Severe Weather Center
Forecast Temperature Maps
Current AccuWeather Snow Map

Where Will Spring Get an Early Start?

The best chances for an early spring will be found in the Southwest. Below-normal snowpack and dry conditions will contribute to a mild end of winter.

California, Nevada, Utah and Arizona, where severe drought conditions persist, will warm early. Areas farther east, into Colorado, New Mexico, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas, will begin feeling spring’s warmth in March.

A slower transition to spring will sweep the nation’s midsection, however, from Washington across the central Plains and down to the interior Southeast.

Florida will mark the exception, where a quick warmup is in store.

Spring Flooding Versus Drought Concerns

There is a slight chance for spring flooding for the Tennessee Valley and lower Ohio Valley. Above-normal snowfall has fallen across the Ohio Valley this winter so far, and potentially more wet systems in the forecast could result in a moderate rise in rivers and streams.

On the other side of the spectrum, little improvement is coming for the dire drought situation in the West.

Pastelok believes March could usher in some rain for California, but the impact will be minimal and the situation will remain serious moving forward, with no significant relief in sight.

As of Jan. 21, more than 60 percent of the West was experiencing moderate to exceptional drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. Earlier this month, the San Francisco National Weather Service office called the situation a phase of drought “largely unseen by many alive today.”

Dryness will also prevail in Florida through the springtime, though the situation will be far less severe than in the West. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, portions of the state are abnormally dry for late January. Since Oct. 1, Orlando, Fla., has received less than 30 percent of the city’s normal rainfall for the period.

“I do feel they’ll get a little bit of rain going forward in the next few weeks; however, I think they could back in a dry pattern before they actually get into their wet season in June,” Pastelok said.

Severe Weather Threats

After a below-normal severe weather season in 2013, this year is forecast to follow suit.

“Last year’s severe weather season was a quiet season,” Pastelok said. “A lot of it had to do with a lot of cold, stable air in place and I see that same situation setting up for this year.”

While the season is anticipated to be below normal, it will be more eventful than 2013.

A few episodes of severe weather are possible in the Gulf Coast, where some severe tornado outbreaks occurred in 2013, Pastelok warns.

“I think you have to be concerned there again this year,” he said.

Have questions, comments, or a story to share? Email Jillian MacMath at, follow her on Twitter @Accu_Jillian or Google+. Follow us @breakingweather, or on Facebook and Google+. More at AccuWeather: Spring Outlook: Six More Weeks of Winter to Grip Half of US

By Suspicious0bservers

Published on Jan 31, 2014


Blog: http://www.suspicious0bserverscollect…

Major Warnings/Alerts:

Today’s Featured Links:
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NDBC Buoys:
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