Sudden catastrophe and movement

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land2341's picture
land2341
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Posts: 402
Sudden catastrophe and movement

I was driving along the highway the other day with my two young children in the car when the radio kicked off.  Probably a blip at the station or a mountain I was passing,  who knows,  it came right back on.  But, it got me to thinking.  I searched around here and did not find exactly what I was thinking about which is - what if yu are far away from home or separated from family when a catastrophe happens?

EMP pulse is my fear,  but it could be anything,  really big terrorist attack,  major earthquake,  whatever.  Whatever it is has to be sudden,  with no warning.  We all talked about our "we think it is coming immediately" plan.

But, what if it happened right now? 

On the average day I am one hour (by car with decent traffic) north of my home.

DH is half an hour south of our home.

The kids are about 3 miles from home.

That is some pretty serious distances if cars become unusable suddenly.  How would we even communicate to each other where we were if phones did not work?  If I had to abandon my car some 40 miles from home I would have one heck of a hike and only my short term snow emergency supplies.  And the battery on the phone would die pretty fast even if they did work.

I have basic supplies in my trunk especially during the winter.  I can hunker down in my car for a day or two.  But that is about it.  What should I have?  Would I be going overboard if I carried supplies for this type of scenario??

We've talked to our kids about where to go if something goes wrong and they cannot find us and we aren't home.  But, the idea of being vary far from them and not able to protect them is very scary indeed.

aggrivated's picture
aggrivated
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Posts: 527
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

This is a scenario many of us dread.  May it never come to pass.  The Survival Podcast.com has done a number of shows on this subject and is helpful in thinking through the organization beforehand that helps relieve anxiety and makes for happy endings.  Here is the link to one of the shows.  Many others there may be helpful also.  http://www.thesurvivalpodcast.com/documention-of-survival-and-evacuation...

Best

A. M.'s picture
A. M.
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Posts: 2367
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

This is my kind of discussion. 

I'm preparing a "What Should I do?" Topic on this, starting today. That said, I'll give some terse answers and hopefully others will chime in with their thoughts as well - this is a great "mental exercise" and can go a long way in shaping your planning.

But, what if it happened right now?

if it happened right now, you need a few things, which can be broken down further:
1. A plan
a. GOTWA (discussed in the WSID - Shelter edition)
b. Your family's GOTWA plan - someone has to get the kids, but the kids have to know where to be. 
c.  Knowledge of realistic foot travel, distances, hold up areas, and how to travel without attracting too much attention. 

2. Mindset, Skillset and Tactics - and the paint on this three legged stool (To use a mentor and friends metaphor) is "proper equipment".
a. Some basic equipment - EDC gear, which will be discussed in the WSID primer regarding emergencies
b. Knowledge of how to get home - PACE routes (Primary, Alternate, Contingency, Emergency)
c. A realistic assessment of the emergency.

3. An priorities list for when you do arrive at home, so you can be a step ahead of the secondary and tertiary problems.
a. Water and Food rationing - kick it into effect immediately. Overreaction is better than starvation. 
b.  Security and Defensive plans - Significantly more realistic if you've got a cohesive neighborhood.
c. Season appropriate postures - Planting, Harvesting, Canning etc, preparing wood for fires, and so forth.

How would we even communicate to each other where we were if phones did not work?

More likely than not, you won't. You'll have to use the PACE concept to make plans, and hope they can be carried out.
That said, certain things, such as HAM radios, and even to some degree FRS/GMRS radios can help put you in touch with your family once you're within a few miles of the house. This obviously needs to be carefully scrutinized, as these are public channels, and are likely monitered, and cluttered with noise.  

What should I have?  Would I be going overboard if I carried supplies for this type of scenario??

If you'd be going overboard, I'd be going with you. Your car should have supplies for any sort of disaster - not just the likely ones. 
That said, keep it realistic and portable. 

To give a brief overview of some of the material I'm going to present in the WSID article;
Three lines of equipment:
1. First Line - "Everyday carry" - Equipment for Short Duration, High Intensity Emergencies
2. Second Line - A bag or rig holding equipment for Medium Duration, moderate intensity Emergencies, and;
3. Third Line - A pack consisting of the type of Equipment you can use to make indefinite camps, procure resources and travel overland for Low Intensity, Long Duration Emergencies. 

Cheers,

Aaron

Jager06's picture
Jager06
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Dec 2 2009
Posts: 395
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

Land-

The best thing you can have is a coherent plan to start with. You have identified your problem, a potential away from home emergency that prevents you from accessing normal modes of transportation.

Now, what are you going to do about it?

Here are some hints/ tips:

1. Plan on walking. Know the roads and alternate routes to avoid potential problems on those routes. Be prepared to use terrain to mask you from plain view if the situation warrants. By this I mean use the road as a "handrail" that you can easily pop over a mountain or ridgeline to view to keep your bearings.

2. Plan on being in the worst possible situation. Be prepared to feed/ hydrate yourself while moving, and be prepared for inclement weather.

3. Teach your children/ family to bug out. (What????) This is not as crazy as it sounds. If something happens while you are seperated from your family and away from home, they should have a known rally point where they can expect you to meet them. This point should be close to their most likely place during the supposed emergency. This place should be immediately recognizable and not present a target, nor be too unique. My kids know (based on my studies of the Beslan incident) that they are to run into the woodline or similar concealed area, move to the nearest church and wait for further instructions via GMRS or for me to personally link up with them.This goes for all of their travel, and we have practiced it.

4. Be prepared. Having a plan gives you the framework to have the necessary equipment on hand to deal with the emergency. Kids should have a GMRS radio and have the functions and frequencies memorized. You should have the radio stored in their school book bags and check it weekly to ensure it has good batteries and is functioning.

5. Talk it out. Once you have the framework for dealing with the emergency laid out, you need to communicate the responses to your family. Refine the plan based on their inputs, and your specific situation (geography, population density, distances involved, age etc.)

6. Sand table. Get a map of the areas you are most likely to be in and get familiar with it. Give the kids a doll or plastic army guy and take one for yourself. Walk your avatar through the situation and the movements. Talk about what the map represents and what it would look like if you were actually there doing it. Teach map reading and terrain association to the children if you can.

7. Walk through. Pick a time to actually stop on the side of the road and look around, use google street view to get a look at areas you may be planning to travel in. Have the kids do a school "run away" to the hide site you have chosen (remember I mentioned using a church). Talk to them about how it felt and what they might do differently or what was done correctly. Use the feedback loop to improve your plan accordingly.

Rinse and repeat.

Best Wishes,

Jager06

land2341's picture
land2341
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 20 2009
Posts: 402
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

One of my fears is bridges.  Two days a week I am across a major river from home.  Even if all other things are prepared for,  I haven't a clue how to prepare a plan for crossing that river is those bridges are impassable (damaged, missing or taken over by brigands whatever)

Sadly,  but realistically our family plan is focused on the survival and reconnection of my kids and their father.  A.) he is closer and not over water.  b.) he has more survivalist training.  c.) he is healthier.

I have a number of health issues.  I can carry meds for several days and other items needed to keep me healthy for a while,  but I cannot cover it all on the road.  Under decent circumstances it would take days,  weeks(?) to walk the 60+ miles I am looking at.  And it would be through some of the highest density urban areas.  I am small and female.  I will give myself the best possible head start and plan,  but it doesn't look good for me.  That is part of why I was freaked about the idea of this happening if I was far from home WITH the kids.  

I will be looking forward to the rest of your ideas,  and am already repacking the trunk!

Jager06's picture
Jager06
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Joined: Dec 2 2009
Posts: 395
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

Ignoring the health issues, being a small female gives you substantial benefits when moving through an urban area. With one caveat...you must be armed and prepared for anything.

1. Your small size and being a woman makes you percieved as less of a threat, making you more approachable and more likely to recieve aid from others. Think damsel in distress.

2. You can plan on disguising yourself as a child, making you less threatening, and less likely to be seen as having valuables worth targeting.

3. You are more likely to recieve assistance when asking for it, even if it means going door to door looking for someone to help you.

On the other hand you must be more prepared to defend yourself, as your size and vulnerability makes recovering from a first strike attack less likely.

1. Have fighting skills, (rape prevention classes, knife use, close quarters gun use) and be prepared to use them preemptively at the first sign of trouble.

2. Not much of a second chance if you fail to adequately foresee a deteriorating situation.

As for the river crossing, you can do it. Research secondary bridges from your normal travel route and plan on having to use them, or improvise by swimming, utilizing natural crossing points(game trails) etc.

Do some research, for example watch "Man, Woman, Wild" which I believe is on the Discovery Channel, and episodes may found on You Tube.

Your brain is the best problem solving item you posses. Give yourself the tools to deal with various situations by studying the techniques used by others in similar situations as you may find yourself in. Broad spectrum creativity is a great solution when combined with a few useful capabilities.

If you wish to PM me you may do so for more site specific and issue specific ideas.

Best Wishes,

Jager06

 

Romans12.2's picture
Romans12.2
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Joined: Jul 14 2009
Posts: 227
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

This is a great thread, worst fears come to my mind. 

How do I get my kids and get home. 

We have no plan, and I have nothing in my trunk....our home is prepped top to bottom, what's wrong with me?? 

I guess I always imagine the slow unravel, and just being home glued to the tv, we are pretty lame now that I think about it.

EndGamePlayer's picture
EndGamePlayer
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 2 2008
Posts: 546
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

Wow, good thoughts to ponder!

We started keeping a bike in the back of the van (mainly because it breaks down so often) but now that I think of it - it would get us point A to point B faster than feet.

We haven't done much in pre-planning as to how to meet/WHERE to meet and WHEN to meet if a major catastrophe but it is now on the "ToDo" priority list.

I think I'll add a bug-out bag and talk to the rest of family about Jager06's plans.

Thanks for bringing up the subject as I think we are seeing a major tectonic shift (birds dying near plate edges, poles moving and Heat cracks in Michigan)

EGP

Romans12.2's picture
Romans12.2
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
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Posts: 227
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

Yikes! I'm in Michigan.  I got enough on my plate without heat cracks too.

What's a heat crack?

Jager06's picture
Jager06
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
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Posts: 395
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

Looks like a new or reawakened fault line to my untrained California eye.

This should scare the crap out of you....

I am already chuckling at the forthcoming responses...

 

Best wishes,

Jager06

A. M.'s picture
A. M.
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 22 2008
Posts: 2367
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

There's a plan for this Jager.
I plan on running in circles, while waiving my hands in the air, hollaring 'oh my god!' until I expire.
Sucks for America.

=)

Aaron 

Jager06's picture
Jager06
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Dec 2 2009
Posts: 395
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

ROTFLMAO!!

That guy scares the crap out of me, and I am glad to see we are on the same page in prepping for that scenario!

Actually I was thinking about a really big kevlar beach ball...with air conditioning and a skate board inside. To ride it out in style.....

A. M.'s picture
A. M.
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 22 2008
Posts: 2367
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

On a serious note - this is akin to a "high intensity, long duration" event - the worst of the worst.

Not a whole lot you can do. Like an Asteroid strike, you either live through it, or you don't.
If you do, you'll wish you hadn't for a long time - long enough that you'll probably die in the aftermath.
If you make it through that, you might be fortunate enough to pass your genetic lineage on to the next miserable generation - as you say, rinse and repeat for a few generations.

Ultimately, it would be very difficult to extinguish the human race.

Cheers,

Aaron 

Jager06's picture
Jager06
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
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Posts: 395
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

Good point and an excellent lead in to your upcoming article. I am looking forward to it.

Jager06

Tycer's picture
Tycer
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Joined: Apr 26 2009
Posts: 601
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

Nancy travels a bunch and carries what she can including light hiking boots that are already broken in but not broken and a Berkey sport bottle which go to the office with her. I'm a Freemason and each new area she travels to we map the routes home with Masonic Lodges and the names of the secretary and master of each one with personal contact and address.

Perhaps you can come up with a series of 'safe houses' to get you from A to B or A to D to F to B.

Jager06's picture
Jager06
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Dec 2 2009
Posts: 395
Re: Sudden catastrophe and movement

Excellent point and plan. With the local community threads we here at CM should be able to do some local safe house planning amongst ourselves as well.

For the less conspiratorial types, I would urge you to look into Freemasonry as another way to branch out and provide quiet community support and charitable outreach. Obviously this has additional benefits as outlined above.

Great work Tycer.

 

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