Sunday, January 8, 2012

Are you ACTUALLY ready?

I know lots of people with bug out bags, ammunition, stock piled food and water, hardened homes, barriers to create additional perimeter security, stock piled first aid supplies, and so on and so on.

Do you know how many people that I know with a WRITTEN survival plan other than myself?


Not a single person that I know personally has a written survival plan.  Not a single one of those people with kids have talked with them ... let alone practiced what to do in the event of some kind of disaster or civil uprising.

So let me be clear about something.

As ready as you might think you are, if you don't have a written survival plan in place, then you aren't actually ready for much.

If you haven't practiced that plan, especially with any children, then you aren't ready for much.

Now, if you have children and they're younger than 8 or 10, and something happens while they are in school, then your plan for them might be something as simple as two or three places where they are to wait for you to get them.

However, if something happens and they are with you, then practicing what their role is, and what they are supposed to do in any of several different types of crises is important.  It can mitigate some of the obvious stress when they know what they are supposed to do and how to do it.

Besides, practicing some of these things can actually be kind of fun.  A bug out isn't much more than a weekend out camping.

However, every person needs to have a job (over the age of about 3) in a disaster.  Every person needs to know they are helping and that they are contributing.  That they are doing what they can, what they are supposed to, and that the other people in your group are doing the same.

Like I said, it'll keep stress levels down and your chances of making it through some sort of calamity much higher.

If you live in an older neighborhood with older homes, your local fire system probably can't handle a major fire that could go through your neighborhood like a book of matches.

What about a flood if you live somewhere that's possible, or earthquake, or hurricane, or even a massive (worst in recorded history) blizzard that shuts your city down for two weeks.

No matter where you live, some type of natural disaster is possible, and in every instance it is HIGHLY likely for that disaster to completely overwhelm the ability of local response to deal with it quickly, or the federal government to deal with it at all (e.g. Katrina).

More to the point, you probably know what kinds of natural disasters are possible where you live.

So, you should have a written plan of what to do, who is going to do what, and what the "chain of command" (e.g. who is in charge) should be.

This should be written, agreed upon by all involved, AND IT SHOULD BE PRACTICED.

Your plan should include contingencies for you being able to stay at your home, at an alternate "bug out location" fairly close to your home, AND the possibility that the disaster will be far ranging enough that you will need to bug out to a completely different geological region (if you live on the coast, moving to the interior, or if you live below sea level, moving well away and above it)

Your plan should further include how to handle civil unrest.  Again, the plan should include what to do if you're going to stay put, move to a close by bug out location, or move to a much more distant location.

Your two bug out locations should be defined, and AT LEAST 4 different routes of getting to each of them well known and memorized by ALL members of your group older than about 5.

Yes, I said older than 5.  Disasters can cause crazy and unexplained things to happen.  Civil unrest can cause crazier and more unexplained things to happen.  If your child is old enough to run, then they are old enough to run away from you at the WORST possible time (fear can quickly overwhelm reason in a young child).  Should something happen, and they get separated from you, then it's a very good idea for them to know where they should go and how they should get there.

Like I said, having a written plan is a MUST if you have children and having that plan practiced is just as important.

So, do you have a plan?

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