preppers

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By Daisy Luther – The Organic Prepper

There are a lot of people stranded in the areas that are likely to be the hardest hit by Hurricane Irma. While it’s easy to say, “Oh, they should have left earlier” and run through the gamut of blame, the fact remains that there are all sorts of reasons that leaving didn’t work out.

Gas stations have run dry, which means that people can’t drive their cars to leave. Roads are at a standstill as people all try to leave at once in the biggest mass exodus in American history. Amtrak tickets are sold out. Plane tickets are outrageously expensive, in some cases more than three thousand dollars apiece. (However, American Airlines and JetBlue have capped their tickets out of Florida at $99, a service to keep in mind in the future if you plan to fly somewhere.)

The point is, for many, it’s too late. There is no further option for escape from what will most likely be a category 4 or 5 hurricane. (Good news – Friday morning, Irma was downgraded to a Category 4 Hurricane, with “only” 145 mph winds. Please don’t be deluded into thinking this lessens the danger dramatically, however. Hurricane Harvey was a Category 3 and we all saw what happened to Texas.

Here’s an explanation of the categories.

I can’t urge you more strongly: evacuate if you can at all. (Here’s an evacuation checklist.) This is a life-threatening hurricane, potentially the strongest to ever hit the country in recorded history.

(For more articles like this, please subscribe to my daily newsletter.)

What to do if you can’t evacuate

The hurricane is definitely headed toward Florida. That turn we were all hoping would send Irma out to sea didn’t happen – she’s headed west, straight for Miami. Not to scare the daylights out of you, but this is what it looked like on a webcam in St. Maarten. You’re going to want to do what you can to be ready.

If you’re in Florida, it’s too late to order online. There is practically no chance that the items will reach you. You aren’t going to be able to buy standard hurricane supplies at the store at this point, either, so you’ll have to make due with what you have or can still acquire.

Let me be absolutely clear, lest someone accuse me of recommending that people remain in their homes: remaining at home is not a wise course of action. If you haven’t been able to evacuate, here is a list of numbers that you can call to get help and get to a safe shelter before the storm hits. Do not wait until the storm hits to ask for help. Be proactive and do so now.

If you have absolutely no other option, below, you can find the best advice I can offer.

Water

Water is sold out across the state. But, your taps are running just fine, right?

Fill every container you can get your hands on with tap water so that you have something to drink. It’s likely that you can still buy containers that will hold water. Get Mason jars, pitchers, canisters…whatever you can find to hold water. Then fill ALL of them, immediately. Use empty soda bottles or water jugs, too.

Fill one-gallon Ziploc bags with water and freeze them, allowing room for expansion. Not only will this provide drinking water, but the ice will help keep your food safe for longer.

When the storm is about to hit, fill sinks and bathtubs with water. This can be used for sanitation.

Medications

Fill prescriptions for any essential medications immediately. Plan for at least 2 weeks of medication to be on hand in the event that pharmacies are closed after the storm

Food

If there’s anything available, buy food that doesn’t require any cooking. At this point, you can’t afford to be picky. Get enough for at least a week, preferably two.

Money

Keep some cash on hand, preferably in small bills. If there is a regional power outage, you won’t be able to use a debit card or credit card during the aftermath. I suggest keeping several hundred dollars if you can.

Shelter

There are shelters set up all across Florida for those who could not evacuate. You can find a list here. Florida governor Rick Scott said that if you need help you should ask now, because, “we can’t save you once the storm hits.” Particularly if you are in a manufactured or mobile home, there is practically zero chance it will be able to withstand winds of 180 mph or greater.

If you must stay in your home…

  • Secure anything outside that could become a projectile. (Barbecues, bicycles, outdoor furniture.) If you can’t secure the items, bring them inside.
  • Clear your rain gutters and downspouts. This will help reduce the risk of flooding in some cases.
  • Trim trees. If you have branches hanging over your home, remove them if you can. If you can’t, do not use the room beneath the branches for shelter during the storm.
  • Turn off propane and outdoor utilities. If recommended by officials, turn off the utilities to the house. If the power goes out, turn off your breakers to avoid potential surges.
  • Unplug appliances except for the refrigerator and freezer. Set those at the coldest setting to keep your food safe for as long as possible in the event of a power outage.
  • Board up your windows to reduce the risk of injury from flying glass. Keep curtains closed for added protection. Do NOT tape them – see the video below.
  • Secure exterior doors. While it may not be sufficient, you can use a bar or place a large piece of furniture in front of them.
  • Close all interior doors.
  • Find the innermost, sturdy part of your home in which to take shelter during the worst part of the storm. Stay away from windows and skylights. A downstairs closet, hallway, or bathroom may be the best option. If you have a basement, this could provide the most safety. Shelter under a sturdy piece of furniture.
  • In a high-rise, floors 3-10 are considered to be the safest. Above and below those floors, people should evacuate or take shelter between those floors.
  • Watch for storm surges. If you’re near the coast, 10-20 foot storm surges are expected. Not only can these cause tremendous structural damage, but if you are caught in one, you could drown or suffer serious injuries by being slammed around by the water.
  • Don’t be fooled by the eye of the storm. There is a lull during the eye of the storm that can deceive people into believing that the worst is over. Unfortunately, high winds are likely to pick back up again shortly, so don’t be caught off guard. This lull can last anywhere from 5 minutes to 45 minutes.

The following video has some useful tips.

And here are more expert tips from Hurricane Joaquin, a Category 4 hurricane that hit the East Coast in 2015:

The aftermath is dangerous, too.

Once you’ve survived the hurricane, you must take care to survive the aftermath. As we saw during Hurricane Harvey, a disaster of this level is the gift that keeps on giving. You must watch for:

Just to name a few.

Florida isn’t the only place at risk.

Further up the coast, it is expected that Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina may be hit by Hurricane Irma as well. There are already mandatory evacuations in coastal regions of Georgia and South Carolina. Many stores are sold out of essential goods and some gas stations are empty of fuel.

Irma is not expected to hit Georgia and South Carolina until Monday and Tuesday, respectively. This means there is still a possibility of ordering some items online. (See this hurricane guide if you have more time to prepare.)

Any tips from those who have weathered a hurricane at home?

Please share your advice in the comments section below. Your suggestions could save someone’s life. Due to the extreme nature of this situation, I urge you to be civil. In other words, if you’re a jerk, I’m deleting your comments.

Very best wishes to those in the path of danger. Please keep us posted when you can.

This article first appeared at The Organic Prepper: What To Do If You CAN’T Evacuate Before a Hurricane

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 Jeremiah Johnson – Ready Nutrition

ReadyNutrition Readers, we are becoming “long in the tooth,” so to speak, regarding the current world events.  Some of this article will mention points previously covered, but only in relation to the “big picture” of E&E…that’s the acronym for “Escape & Evasion.”  In the end, no matter how secure your fortress, be it Castle Greyskull or Mount Olympus II, you may have to leave it for one reason or another: fire, radiation, severe flood/hurricane, or the IHM (Incredible Human Mob).

The first thing you need to do is establish your immediate location and route to where you intend to flee if you must.  There are several different types of maps that you should consult, if not own outright, and they are as follows:

  1. Local atlas/road type of map with streets and metropolitan areas readily identified
  2. Topographic map: preferably military (DMA, or Defense Mapping Agency is your source) of the immediate area
  3. Maps from the State/Federal Forestry services for your area

Once you have these resources, then you can accurately identify your route out of there, and your new location to hide/hunker down.  There are some avenues you should specifically consider on your E&E.  Let’s go over them:

  1. Railroad tracks: most of the time, railroads must make their tracks accessible for repair/refitting trucks and equipment.  This usually involves a “built up” area that holds the track, sloped off and then followed by a large “bare” stretch that can hold a vehicle, almost akin to an unpaved “secondary” road.  THE KEY TO THIS IS A SUCCESSFUL RECONNAISSANCE!  You don’t want to drive along such a route and parallel the tracks when the time comes for the first time…only to find you must stop at a railroad bridge that is about a quarter of a mile long…so you don’t do the “Nestea Plunge” into a two-hundred-foot gorge.  That’s a bad thing.  You need to know the whole route…all the way to your final destination.
  2. Rivers: What direction do they flow, in relation to your destination? East-West, or North-South…it makes a big difference and will be specific to your location.  Also, are there any large bodies of water such as a lake or a bay or such in your immediate area?
  3. All the Roads to your Destination: You need all of them…the highway, the road, the firebreak, the dirt trails…every possible conceivable route by vehicle.  Then you need to prioritize them…in numerical order of preference…as to the route you want.  You also must find points where these connect.  For example, you may have as your #1 route an “Interstate Highway 66,” but the bridge is out on part of it.  Where is a jump-off point to #2, #3, or #4 that you can use?  All this needs to be meticulously planned and written down.

Because you may die or be taken out of the picture, and your family will have to appoint a new or temporary “leader” and follow your directions out of there.

  1. Airports: It may just be that you’ll need to fly out of there, either by your own hand or with someone else as a pilot. It may behoove you to know where the nearest aircraft and the nearest pilot (friendly to you and your cause) can be found.
  2. Major Harbor points with access to open ocean: self-explanatory, but once you go there, do you know what you’re looking for? Types of vessels that can hold you and your family, and your entire vehicle?

When you conduct the E&E, will you be taking your entire family with you at once, or will you rendezvous at a location to continue onward?  This second option would mean that each family member traveling separately will need a plan of their own, and then to link up with you to continue the overall plan.  We are now going to pose a series of questions to help you assess where you are at this point in time.

There are some skills that will need to be assessed and then brought into play.  Do you know how to pilot a boat?  Do you have such a boat available for your use, if the time comes?  If not, the moral dilemma: will you commandeer one?  How about seamanship, regarding the open ocean?  Do you have any experience, and do you know how to navigate using only a sextant and compass, without electronic aids?  Do you know how to fly, either VTOL (as in helicopters) or fixed wing aircraft?

Regarding a driven route, do you have at least 3 good viable routes planned for use, with connecting points and checkpoints to enable you to switch from one route to another easily and fluidly?  What are you driving, and how much gear/supplies/equipment will you be taking?  More than one vehicle?  How about fuel?

One thing I’ll tell you about that will be a tremendous help if you can swing it.  A mini bike, all the way up to say a 200-cc dirt bike.  You can throw that bad boy in the back of a pickup and then use it to scout and perform reconnaissance on an area ahead of the “main element” of your family.  Although great on gas, motorcycles are not the most efficient way to get out of dodge as a family, unless you’re one of the Hell’s Angels or a family of Evel Knievel-type daredevils without a lot of gear.

Plan refueling points, rest areas and hide spots (to hunker down) along the way on your routes.  All this planning needed to be done a while ago.  If you’ve planned it out, then good job.  If you haven’t, then this article may be something to stimulate you to act.  That is the whole point: preparation promotes a good follow through.  The key to success is being able to act decisively when the time arrives.  You’ll have to go with your observations and go with your gut on it, according to the situation, making changes and adaptations as you go.  Keep in that good fight, and plan your route to get out of Tombstone before the gunfight at the OK Corral begins.  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 Source: Pixabay.com

By Rachel Stinson – Guest Writer

For many people, the word “Prepper” brings a vision of camouflage, a scary and frightening survivalist who is waiting for the end of the world. However, most Preppers are very ordinary people who do not stand out in a crowd. They are doctors and plumber, attorneys, carpenters, and teachers with a Wi-Fi hidden camera. Most of them have no camouflage!

So who is a “Prepper”?

Although there may be as many definitions as there are people involved in each movement, the basic definition is that a Prepper is the one that stores the equipment, supplies, and food in case of an emergency. That emergency could be a massive natural disaster such as hurricane or tornado, forest fires, or gas leaks that require evacuation of the neighborhood or anything up to a major collapse of the country’s power grid. Preppers also take seriously the threat of knowing how a terrorist can affect the power grid or nationwide supply network that keeps our grocery store’s shelves stocked.

Preppers will usually have several weeks to a year’s supply of food provided, as well with flashlights, blankets, Wi-Fi nanny cams, water filtering systems, and a portable backup generator. These are people who are not profoundly affected by a multi-day power outage or a large source of broken water that causes a run on bottled water at the grocery store.

Who is a ‘’survivalist’’?

Usually, a survivalist is a hard core Prepper who, in addition to being prepared for a natural disaster, is very concerned about a breakdown in law and order. In addition to Prepper’s concern about ‘’SHTF’’ (Shit Hits the Fan) scenes, Survivalists are interested in “TEOTWAWKI” (the end of the world as we know it) and “WROL” (without the rule of law) situations. Survivalist considers the social order as being very fragile: it depends on an increasingly efficient state welfare system, which has to accommodate more than 44 million Americans on food stamps. They understand that if America’s extraordinary debt is not continually recycled by foreign countries willing to purchase out T-bills and bonds, we could be hyper-inflated like Zimbabwe and Weimar Germany that could cause massive civil unrest. Dangerous times and great risks require precautions, and Survivalist considers their personal safety and that of their loved ones important. A Survivalist will have firearms and usually a concrete plan of “hunkering down” or “bugging out” if law and another breakdown.

What can we learn from Preppers and Survivalists?

It would be difficult to find a Survivalist who is not a Prepper, and likewise, most Preppers have thought about survivalist and protecting themselves. Everyone would greatly benefit from thinking about these two groups of people and what can be learned from them.

If there was a power outage for more than two or three days, what would you do? If the governments (city, state, and federal) could not care for the Hurricane Katrina victims, what does this tell you about being prepared? Did you think that if you don’t have a plan, a natural gas leakage, train derailment, power outage, or terrorist attack could turn your family into a refugee? You may be surprised at how little preparation it takes to give yourself lots of peace of mind as you are positioned to meet disaster head on.

 

This article published by The Survival Place BlogSURVIVALISTS VS PREPPERS: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW

About the author:

Rachel Stinson has always had a knack for writing, food, fashion, and places. Blogging has combined all four for her with an added bonus of enthusiastic audiences. She expertly analyzes real estates, restaurants and electronics stores with respect to pricing and people involved and can express her opinions in an unhesitant, engaging manner for all matters.

By Tess Pennington – Ready Nutrition

The devastation of the Texas coast has been sobering, to say the least, and has brought about a new found focus in the preparedness community to get more families prepared for disasters. While Hurricane Harvey was an extreme case, what we can take away from this ordeal is that you cannot always foresee every given turn of a disaster and by being fully insulated from disasters you will find yourself in the best case scenario.

We all live in an area that sees some type of disaster: flood, wildfire, earthquakes, droughts and other extreme weather scenarios. As well, not enough can be said about preparing for personal disasters like job loss, which do not always give warning.

In response to this ever-growing need to prepare, Ready Nutrition is gearing up for a month of preparedness. Each week, we are going to bring you preparedness materials you can use to get prepped for all types of disasters. We’ve done this before in our 52-weeks to preparedness series, but this will cover more information in a shorter amount of time.

As an added incentive, we will be giving away preparedness products and books to Ready Nutrition readers. All you have to do is sign up for our newsletter and leave a comment in one of our weekly National Preparedness articles about what you feel the most important aspect of being prepared is in the bottom of the article. It could be commenting on the most important preparedness items, some lessons you learned personally from a disaster, situations you witnessed during a disaster or preparedness ideas people may not always think of when preparing.

As a community, I hope you will spread the word to folks who might need an added push to start getting ready or who do not know where to start. Having a more prepared community will reduce the initial shock of a disaster.

Here’s what we’ll cover in the Crash Course in Preparedness

Week 1: The Survival Basics – This will cover how you should make a plan and getting your beginning preparedness supplies in order, tips, as well as valuable skills you should learn.

During this first week, we will be giving away a preparedness manual and a 72-hour kit at the end of the week to a lucky winner! All you have to do is sign up for our newsletter and leave a comment.

Week 2: Medicine, Sanitation, and Disaster Disease Prevention – Following a disaster, sanitation, hygiene and medical care are often at the forefront of needs. We will dive into more details on immediate threats that occur in the wake of disasters, what you can do to be ready and how to avoid these aftermath scenarios when they occur. As an incentive, we will give away a sanitation kit and another preparedness manual.

Week 3: Reinforcing Your Survival Plans Using Long-Term Strategies – During this week, we will focus on how you can reinforce your preparedness plans and add additional preps so they extend into longer-term scenarios. Some of those far-reaching events are biological and chemical disasters, mass casualty health, longer-term food needs and more. As well, we will delve into long-term security measures you can use to protect your home and belongings.

To better prepare for these type of events, one winner will get a gas mask as the giveaway prize of the week to add to your preps and The Prepper’s Blueprint!

Week 4: Getting Your Community Prepped – We’ve heard the term, “It takes a village.” Well, when a disaster strikes, it really does take the binding of a community to get through. Disasters are an undeniable part of life, but a prepared community is more resilient and can withstand longer-term scenarios. Having a large group of prepared individuals will help the general public thrive for longer amounts of time because each home has the supplies and skills it needs to keep going. Moreover, communities should provide skills training to help the general public learn critical survival skills for long-term survival. And that is just what we will be discussing in week 4.

A few months ago, I co-hosted a webinar with the folks at SunOven on how to cook with the sun and was amazed at how many uses the SunOven had in an off-grid environment. You can read my review of them here. Our gift on our final week of National Preparedness Month is one of these dynamic SunOvens complete with a homesteading package. Remember all you need to do is sign up for the Ready Nutrition newsletter and leave a helpful comment in the article.

Let’s Do This!

Whether you’re preparing for a short-term disaster or a long-term disaster, you have the same basic goal. That goal is to be self-sufficient and have the ability to care for yourself and your family independently during an unforeseen event.

As an added incentive, if your local church is interested in starting a preparedness course for its congregation, I would like to send a free copy of The Prepper’s Blueprint to them to help get that endeavor going. 1 manual will be sent to each church. I have 20 books that I would like to send so please contact me through my Facebook page with a church address. The first 20 churches get the books!

This information has been made available by Ready NutritionNational Preparedness Month: A Month of Getting Prepped and Giveaways

The Prepper's Blueprint

Tess Pennington is the author of The Prepper’s Blueprint, a comprehensive guide that uses real-life scenarios to help you prepare for any disaster. Because a crisis rarely stops with a triggering event the aftermath can spiral, having the capacity to cripple our normal ways of life. The well-rounded, multi-layered approach outlined in the Blueprint helps you make sense of a wide array of preparedness concepts through easily digestible action items and supply lists.

Tess is also the author of the highly rated Prepper’s Cookbook, which helps you to create a plan for stocking, organizing and maintaining a proper emergency food supply and includes over 300 recipes for nutritious, delicious, life-saving meals. 

Visit her web site at ReadyNutrition.com for an extensive compilation of free information on preparedness, homesteading, and healthy living.

 

By SurvivoPedia

Most people wrongly believe that it is difficult, if not impossible to hide in plain sight. If you want to avoid detection even when surrounded by other people that may be looking for you, you have to change your way of thinking and learn how to blend into your surroundings.

Once you have mastered how to do this, you can hide in plain sight without family, close friends, or co-workers noticing you.

9 Ways to Make Yourself Invisible With What You Have on Hand

Sometimes individuals have distinctive features that make them stand out in a crowd. It could be a scar, tattoo, or the color of their eyes. The following items can help to make you invisible.

Hats

Use a hat to cover hair styles or colors that are not common where you are. If no one is wearing a hat and you are, take it off or wear a scarf instead rather than take a chance of your hair standing out in the crowd.

Glasses

If you have distinctive colored eyes, wear different colored contacts, sun glasses, or regular clear reading glasses that have fake lens. Once again, the style and design of the glasses should match what is popular in the area so that you do not stand out.

Continue reading at SurvivoPediaSurvival Defense: How To Hide In Plain Sight

Image: Why you can no longer put off prepping for hacks and takedowns of ALL U.S. infrastructure

By Natural News

(Natural News) Unbeknownst to most Americans, there is a conference that takes place in Las Vegas every single year that draws the most competent, capable hackers in the world. For four days they meet to discuss and demonstrate the latest techniques they’ve discovered (and likely used) to essentially disrupt as much of modern society as possible.

In the digital, wired, Internet-connected age, in a single room, at a single convention, lies the fate of modern societies everywhere.

The event is called “Black Hat,” and it just concluded last week. This year’s event drew about 16,000 hackers and information security experts from all over the world, as lawmakers, policymakers, defense experts, financial institutions, power companies and other infrastructure managers lie awake at night trying to figure out how to defend modern IT systems from these folks.

As noted by McClatchy Papers:

Hackers routinely come to the Black Hat convention to demonstrate how to break into electronic systems embedded in medical devices, ATMs, cars, routers and mobile phones. This year, at the 20th annual gathering, one security researcher walked attendees through a hack of a wind farm.

“Wind farm control networks are extremely susceptible to attack,” said the researcher, Jason Staggs, who works on behalf of the University of Tulsa.

He says hackers only need to find access to a single wind turbine in order to implant a virus or malware that would then spread throughout the wind farm. He said he’d been able to hack into multiple wind farms, after first obtaining permission from the operators.

“We can turn the turbine on or the turbine off or put it in an idle state,” he told the gathered attendees, as he then demonstrated his technique.

Continue reading at Natural News: Why You Can No Longer Put Off Prepping for Hacks and Takedowns of ALL U.S. Infrastructure

When we sit down with the goal to be prepared and self-sufficient, we have to balance a lot. We already walk tightropes between work and home life in many cases. Adding a pursuit that could really be its own full-time job only makes things harder. The self-sufficiency arm alone could occupy a full work week, and for some, the future looms as a period when we may have to increase our physical vigilance on top of producing our own food, medicine, and supplies.
There are methods we can use to make gardens maintenance friendly, and plant selections can ease it further. In some cases, there are plants that grow with few inputs and are specific to our regions. In other cases, we can also decrease our labors in a work-heavy and typically strength-sapping hot season by making selections that ease the other side of growing and harvesting.

Processing & Storage

Whether it’s annuals, an annual veggie garden, or perennials, whatever methods for production we choose takes time away from our daily lives. Then our produce needs to be processed, one way or another.

Even now when most lives are relatively easy due to power tools, refrigeration, and transportation, we tend to be pretty busy. I think most of us expect that even without the tug of paying jobs and some of the extracurricular activities that suck up our time, a life “after” will be just as busy and in some or many cases, even more labor intensive.

Continue reading at The Prepper Journal: Storage-Friendly Survival Gardening