Emergency Survival Tips

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Surviving a sniper attack is very different than surviving other types of mass shootings and terror events. While luck plays a factor, these tips can help.

By Daisy Luther – The Organic Prepper

Of a tragic necessity, we’ve all read articles and watched videos about surviving an active shooter terror situation. But an entirely different set of rules apply when it comes to surviving a sniper attack.

The thing with an event like the one in Las Vegas is that a great deal of your survival depends on nothing but luck. If you happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, skills won’t necessarily save you.

The Las Vegas shooting was different than many previous mass shootings because the culprit was not right down there in the thick of things, as in the Pulse nightclub shooting. He was a sniper, 400 yards away from his target of 22,000 people attending a concert.

This situation was different from other mass shootings due to the distance. The standard advice of run, hide, or fight was completely useless. People had no idea where the shots were coming from, which meant they didn’t know where to run. Hiding is not easy in a wide open space that is similar to a giant parking lot without the cars. And finally, you can’t fight an enemy that far away – even if you were a concealed carry holder, your carry firearm won’t shoot far enough, and identifying the threat from that distance while everyone is panicking would be all but impossible.

As well, because of this distance, none of the evasion techniques like running in a zig-zag pattern or getting down were likely to make a huge difference to a person so far away whose apparent goal was only to hurt or kill as many people as possible. He was not aiming at specific people from that distance. He was firing at a general area. Here is a photo of the shooter’s view, from the window of his room to the concert area.

As you can see, the target was a general area, not specific individuals.

Firsthand Stories

This is a report from the Washington Post that quotes people who were there. You’ll see how this information is applicable when you read the tips below.

The typical advice for reacting to an active shooter — ‘run, hide or fight’ — was rendered moot, as many in the packed crowd could not easily run or hide, nor were they able to fight back at someone firing from so far away.”

  • In video footage, concertgoers can be seen screaming and running for cover — though they did not immediately know from what. “We thought it was fireworks at first or trouble with the speakers,” said Kayla Ritchie, 21. “[Then] everything went dark.”
  • It wasn’t until [singer Jason] Aldean fled the stage and the lights came on that 21-year-old Taylor Benge said he realized that “about five feet to the left of me, there was a man with a bullet wound to his chin.” “He was just lifeless on the ground,” Benge said.

— “Outside, The Strip, always a blizzard of dazzling lights and honking horns, almost instantly turned into a frenzied hive of pulsing police lights and sirens,” Michael Lyle, Heather Long and Marc Fisher report. “People fled every which way, many taking cellphone video of their run to safety. [Former minor league baseball player Todd Blyleven, who traveled from Dallas for the concert with his wife and friends], helped carry out the lifeless body of a young woman. He saw a police officer who looked like he had taken a bullet in the neck. ‘Young girls and guys, older folks, just people walking out of a country concert with bullet holes,’ Blyleven said.”

— “Aldean was barely five measures into ‘When She Says Baby,’ when the shots started,” Avi Selk and Amy B Wang report. “’Is that gunfire?’ [Singer Jason] Owen remembered thinking[.] The gunfire continued, steady against the beat of the song … Shot after shot, faster and faster. Aldean sprinted off the stage. Owen ran, too. So did other singers, workers and all the thousands of spectators — fleeing and screaming, falling and dying.”

— A fire alarm triggered by gun smoke let first responders zero in on the shooter’s location. SWAT team members then used explosives to get inside, where they found [Paddock] dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. “We believe the individual killed himself prior to our entry,” the sheriff said. (Cleve R. Wootson Jr.)

— “I realized people were dying”: Photographer David Becker spoke to The Post’s photo editor MaryAnne Golon about witnessing the attack and capturing some of the most haunting images from the night: “ It had been so dark outside I couldn’t see the details. I just saw a lot of people laying on the ground thinking they were playing possum, but now I could see people covered in blood and I thought, this is real. When I saw the image of the woman lying on the ground covered in blood, that was when the impact of what I was experiencing hit — when I realized people were dying.”

How do you survive a sniper attack?

A sniper attack is very different from any other kind of mass shooting, so the rules for surviving those attacks don’t apply here. This is what I learned when researching a horror scenario like the Las Vegas massacre.

Know what gunfire sounds like.

A lot of people who were interviewed said that when they first heard the shots, they didn’t realize what it was. They thought it was fireworks. There were precious seconds when people were frozen targets while they tried to wrap their brains around what was actually happening. During an event like this, a pause of a few seconds could mean the difference between life and death. The faster you take action the more likely you are to survive.

Always have a plan.

We can’t foresee all eventualities, like this one, for example, but it helps to always have a survival mindset. It has long been a game with my kids (yeah, we’re a strange family) to identify exits and potential weapons if we sit down to eat at a restaurant or go to the movies. Knowing where to go without having to look for it in the heat of the moment will save time that could be spent acting.  After this incident, I’m adding to that the search for places we could take cover in an emergency.

Understand the difference between cover vs. concealment.

Every NRA course I’ve ever taken discusses the difference between cover and concealment, because in many cases when you are forced to use your own firearm, there’s another person who is ready and willing to shoot back. Concealment is enough to hide you but not enough to protect you from bullets. Cover is something sturdy enough to stop a bullet – a concrete structure like a road divider, the engine block of a car, a refrigerator, a steel door, a brick wall.

When watching the video playback of the Las Vegas shooting, many people were seeking concealment behind flimsy barriers, and that is not enough to protect yourself in a situation with a high-powered gun and a shooter spraying an area.

Separate from the crowd.

In a situation like this one, the shooter was trying to take down as many people as possible, so it was most likely he was aiming at the crowd instead of picking off people who moved away from the bulk of the group. One possible strategy would be, then, to get away from the crowd. You and the person/people you are with would be less alluring than a group of a hundred panicked people all huddled together where maximum harm could be achieved.

Don’t get down or play dead.

Lots of people crouched down and got as low as they could. In many situations, this would be the best bet, but not this one. The person was shooting from up high, aiming downward. Being still and crouching down wouldn’t do much to protect you from a person firing from this angle, nor would playing dead. Action is nearly always a better choice than inaction. As well, getting down would make it more likely that you’d be trampled by a panicked crowd of people trying to get away. Clark County Fire Chief Greg Cassell said that some of a “wide range” of injuries included people who were trampled by the panicked crowds.

Listen for reload.

In a situation like this, there will be pauses in the shooting when the person stops to either reload or change firearms. That is your opportunity to make a dash for the exits. Don’t wait too long to make your move, because it only takes an experienced gunman a few seconds to reload a familiar gun and then your chance is gone.

Do you have other suggestions?

I’m not an expert. I don’t have law enforcement experience or military experience. So, I spoke to someone far more experienced in this type of thing than I am. Scott Kelley is a former Counterintelligence Special Agent, US Army Chief Warrant Officer, and combat veteran, as well as the author of Graywolf Survival,  and was kind enough to answer all my questions while I was researching this article. I incorporated many of his suggestions, but any mistakes are purely my own.

What about you? Do you have experience to add that might help people survive a sniper attack? Please comment with your suggestions and if you don’t mind, let us know a little bit about yourself.

This article first appeared at The Organic PrepperHow to Survive a Sniper Attack

About the author:

Daisy is a coffee-swigging, gun-toting, homeschooling blogger who writes about current events, preparedness, frugality, and the pursuit of liberty on her websites, The Organic Prepper and DaisyLuther.com She is the author of 4 booksand the co-founder of Preppers University, where she teaches intensive preparedness courses in a live online classroom setting. You can follow her on FacebookPinterest, and Twitter,.

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By Fred Tyrel – SurvivoPedia

In today’s world, armed robberies and other situations involving guns have become the new normal. Armed criminals have taken over neighborhoods and rule by terror.

While legislative action aimed at gun control will not stop this, and will more than likely make it worse, there are things you can do when someone points a gun at you.

As dangerous as this situation is, you can turn it in your favor. Read the following article to find out how!

What the Criminal Wants Is…

If an individual is bent on killing you they will probably point the gun at you, then he will pull the trigger immediately, or feed off the fear that you’re generating, and then kill you.

Continue reading at SurvivoPedia: Things To Do When A Gun Is Pointed At You

By Jeremiah Johnson – Ready Nutrition

Consider this a “coaching” segment and some advice on how to follow a Thomas Hardy “Far from the Madding Crowd” mindset.  Look at the world situation right now.  North Korea is rattling the saber as the U.S. naval armada sails toward the area.  We just gave Syria a foretaste of what is to come with the Tomahawk strike.  Relations with Russia just hit a low point, and the President is not backing down on Syria and North Korea.  Chances are good that we’ll be involved in a war very shortly.  The possibility also exists that it could become a world war.

What does that mean to you, the Reader?  It means that you’re going to have to assess yourself and correctly determine whether you’re prepared for the times to come.

Are You Appropriately Planning Your Preparations?

Part of that is to think outside of the box, to think differently in terms of planning and preparation.  Most everyone has the same type of mindset: “I’m going to acquire all kinds of supplies, practice hard, and when the time comes, I’ll be as ready as I can be.”

Did you ever stop and consider that everyone else has the same idea, to one degree or another?  Most people want to be “spoon-fed” everything, and the preparation is of the mindset that everything will be in place when disaster hits.  Most do not “war game” the situation realistically.  Everyone will have a rallying point of the closest park to hide.  The problem: everyone is thinking of that.  Everyone will take to the roads (Katrina was proof of that) if there’s advance warning.

The Art of Doing the Opposite of the Majority

In preparedness, you must “take the road less traveled by,” to paraphrase Frost.  When the IHM (Incredible Human Mob) is running in one direction, the odds are good that you should not be in their midst.  The art of doing the opposite of the majority is one of the things that will keep you alive and intact.  The mob all runs to an area where there are limited supplies, such as food and water.  What do you think will happen next?  A singing of Lee Greenwood’s “Proud to Be and American” with Bic lighters aflame?  No, they’ll rip one another to shreds for the last bottles of water.

So, how do we compress thinking and acting differently from the majority into one short article?  In reality, we can’t.  What we can do here, however, are consider some possibilities.  Perhaps you and/or your family can sit down and brainstorm some other options for yourselves.  Let’s take it from a SHTF-scenario, shall we?

  1. Safe House: Occupied or Unoccupied – This will involve a retreat where you either can meet up with someone you trust (occupied) or go there with your family (unoccupied) and set up camp.  English Property Law does not necessarily apply.  Do you know of an abandoned barn or shed in a remote location?  Do you know of an abandoned cabin or a partially-ruined building somewhere?  If so, it might be good to preposition some supplies or even a cache there.  If you have someone who you can meet up with…well, you can assure a place for yourself to flee to, and promise that person more…and a share in what you bring.  That will be for you to gauge as to whether or not to trust someone this much, as anyone can go bad in an instant.
  2. Move when they are stationary; Be stationary when they’re on the move: this will be a shock to your circadian rhythm. This step is necessary, however, to cut down on the “new friends” you may not want to “meet” along the way.  You and your family need to sleep in a covered and/or concealed location and post a guard…in shifts.  When it’s night, that’s the time to move and forage for food or supplies.
  3. Attractive to you? Attractive to them, too: Do you see a nice lake with a stream feeding into it in front of you?  Maybe a nice waterfall dropping into it?  A nice cleared area with a bunch of rocks and dead timber strewed about?  If it’s pleasing to your eye, it’ll be pleasing to another person’s eyes as well.  “Attractive” and “High Traffic” areas are almost synonymous.  Avoid what looks perfect, or you’ll bed down and have “guests” when (and if) you wake up.
  4. What you need, they need: This is the reason for a change in time of activity. Did you find food?  Others will need it, and others will come.  You must bank on that.  Just because you’re “paranoid” does not mean that the world is not out to get you…or your supplies.  If you find a food supply and a water supply, you’ll have to either hide it in some way, share it, or defend it.  If you pick “option 2,” that doesn’t mean your altruistic qualities are held by those you share with.
  5. Path of Least Resistance: A happy trail right into the woods.  The part of the mountain without the boulders and stickers all over it to climb.  The open field to cross, as opposed to the woods filled with stickers and thorns.  Don’t you take that path, as others will take it also.

Most will not be thinking outside of the box.  Most will see you and yours in a grid down/SHTF situation as their opportunity.  They will see your belongings as theirs.  For the greatest example of this, see the movie “The Time of the Wolf.”  The first five minutes of the movie tells it all…what happens to the family that packed it all up in a disaster (unspecified) and went to their retreat…that scenario is the “real deal.”  The movie is in French with English subtitles…adding to the horror of the situation.

The bottom line: you can’t expect to survive the disaster…and the mob that makes it through the “first gate” after the initial pandemonium…unless you think and do things differently from them.  Make no mistake about it: the time to prep is far from over.  You cannot trust your future and the welfare of your family in the hands of those who can enmesh us into a world war, and then…on your taxpayer dime…be whisked away to a mountain fortress replete with food, supplies, and an army to defend them.  You only have your wits and the guts to use them.  Stay in that good fight by thinking outside of the box.  JJ out!

About the author:

Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.

Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.

Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.

 

Image: Decided to survive? Make sure to avoid these common prepping mistakes and pitfalls – Part II

By  – Natural News

(Natural News) Deciding to become a prepper is not an easy decision. There is much involved, and not everyone gives ample consideration to the potential pitfalls and problems you can encounter once you’ve made the decision to become better prepared to face – whatever. A lot of times people just jump in with both feet thinking they know what they’re doing, only to discover some months later that all of their time and effort really hasn’t contributed much to their overall preparedness.

In Part I, we discussed a number of steps beginning and even seasoned preppers should take in order to avoid wasting time and money on a process that really is so important it could actually save your life in an emergency. We talked about not allowing the over-exaggerated 24-hour news cycle to force you into making bad prepping purchases and decisions; guarding against “fake news” that over-excites but does little to actually inform; looking out for scams; overspending on items you don’t really need and prepping for real-life scenarios that you could actually encounter. (RELATED: In plain sight: How to stay hidden during a crisis)

In Part II, we’ll examine additional things to watch for as you evolve in preparations to survive any number of circumstances, including natural- and manmade disasters, economic collapse and political turmoil (H/T Survival Prepper):

Continue reading at Natural News: Decided to survive? Make sure to avoid these common prepping mistakes and pitfalls – Part II

Image: Ready to survive? Make sure to avoid these common prepping mistakes and pitfalls – Part I

By  – Natural News

(Natural News) Making the decision to become a prepper is not an easy one and, frankly, should not be made in haste. While most people have a natural instinct and will to survive – whether it be a natural disaster, global war or a societal collapse – not everyone is motivated to make the preparations necessary to survive.

It’s easy to see why. Millions live in denial that such events could take place in their lifetimes. Prepping requires a sizeable investment of time and money. Preppers must often alter their lifestyles in order to begin living more simply. Prepping tools must be mastered, medical skills honed, and making the decision to protect yourself and your family with a weapon must be carefully considered and accepted.

But once a person does decide to take on the responsibility, there are a number of common mistakes and pitfalls that await. Everything from paying too much for supplies to purchasing the wrong gear to falling for prepping gimmicks can throw you off your prepping schedule and set you back weeks, months or even years. (RELATED: World’s Ultra-Rich Buying Bug-Out Retreats In Anticipation Of Mass Social Uprising)

With that in mind, let’s go through some of the more common pitfalls of prepping, per the Survivalist Prepper:

Continue reading at Natural News: Ready to survive? Make sure to avoid these common prepping mistakes and pitfalls – Part I

 

By Pat Henry – The Prepper Journal

If you find yourself in a survival situation and realize it’s time to get your family on the road to safety, most of us are going to hope we can rely on our vehicle. All things being equal, a properly maintained vehicle of just about any configuration and size is going to be better than humping out-of-town under the power of your two feet. You can carry more stuff, further, faster and a vehicle affords you a little more protection.

However, one of the very real risks we face when we are trying to make our escape is that the way will be blocked with too many other cars. In evacuation situations, such as hurricanes, we see news reports of traffic backed up for miles and hear stories of people sleeping in their cars, running out of gas and getting into fights. This is certainly a possibility, but if you are prepared to bug out and act quickly ahead of the crowd, you could largely avoid this fate. In a dangerous survival situation, you want to be on the road, hopefully to your destination safely before anyone else even knows what is happening.

But there are no guarantees in life and so as preppers, we have backup plans. We have our bags ready to go, caches planned along our multiple routes and with some luck we will make it to our bug out retreats even if we must walk there. Vehicles can break down or become stuck and if this happens and we are not prepared, you could find yourself leaving the family bug out mobile parked, when you could have kept going with some simple supplies.

Those alternate routes could lead you through areas that aren’t paved over obstacles that could put a halt to your forward progress, but with this off road checklist, you could be able to unstuck yourself and keep going.

Continue reading at The Prepper Journal: Off Road Checklist: Don’t Get Stuck Bugging Out

 

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By The Survival Place Blog

After some digging around the political archives, we have discovered that almost all governments have some form of strategy for surviving a zombie apocalypse. Now they clearly know something we don’t, what with all of their intelligence agencies and secret sources, and that means we have to seriously consider how we would survive a sudden – and unprecedented – rise of the dead.

But don’t worry, we’re not going to be selfish with this one because, should the day come where a zombie plague spreads like wildfire – we’re going to need to civilization to stand tall. As such, we have come up with a list of equipment you’ll need if you’re planning on being around to see the new world.

 

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Food & Water

Sustenance is going to be your best friend here. When a zombie apocalypse happens, you’re going to need to get used to life on the road for a while. That is where food and water come in. As long as you are able to look after your body, you will be able to outrun a herd of zombies. As such, make sure you know where fresh water supplies are before heading anywhere, make sure you know how to store it properly and make sure you have plenty of non-perishable foods with you. Zombies don’t die unless killed, so stock up as good as possible because the waiting game is not an option.

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First Aid

Unfortunately, your current first aid kit will need to be seriously ramped up in order to meet the demands of a zombie outbreak. The reason for this is, the injuries are likely to be more severe. As such, it is important you have certain things like bandages, possibly a casting kit, a defibrillator, oxygen masks and morphine, as well as the more regular things like plasters and insect repellent.

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Get Yourself A Vehicle

Of course, the more multi-purpose your vehicle is because, well, roads won’t always be an option. As is often the case, roads tend to fall prey to blockades, or even a hoard of zombies. As such, you will need a vehicle that is capable of going off-road, and capable of carrying multiple people and things. That is where an RV will come in handy. It will give you somewhere to sleep, as well as somewhere to store bigger pieces of equipment, such as an inflatable fishing boat, which would not only serve as a secondary getaway vehicle but grant you a source of protein. A place to call home that will allow you to keep moving, and keep scavenging, will help as much with your sanity as it will with your survival.

Image Source: Pixabay.com

Load Up and Load Out

You’re going to need a gun, and the more guns you have the better. It is as simple as that. As a standard piece of equipment, we suggest you have a handgun and holster. It may not be your first choice in a weapon, but it doesn’t hurt to have an easy to access a good backup option. After that, we suggest you get your hands on a shotgun, simply because ammunition is easy to come by. But, as a rule, don’t turn your nose up at anything, especially not a sniper rifle.

Originally published at The Survival Place Blog: The Government Knows Something We Don’t