With all the news either via the mass media propaganda machine, as well as other ‘alternative’ (or as I prefer to think of them as real reports sharing real news) you don’t have to dig very far to find some news on the situation that is currently playing out in the Russia or the Middle East. Learning more about what is going on across the world always gets me thinking about what if. What if this problem escalated? I have no doubt that someday a nuclear weapon will land on U.S. Soil
What will that mean for not only my own family, but the billions of others? I know there isn’t a lot we can do to help others who for whatever reason refuse to see what is happening, and continue to go about their daily routine. They play on the internet, and find out what their friends are doing on Facebook, all the while digging their heads deeper in the sand and pretending that if they don’t see it, it doesn’t exist.
And even if they do see it, but if they are told by their “leaders” that it doesn’t exist, then it doesn’t.
So while I can’t help the masses of zombies that surround me every day, there are steps I can take now to help my family, and plan for the worst. Now I may be going out on a limb here, but when I think about Russia and The United States getting into a fist fight, conservative methods of fighting (war) are thrown out. After all, I am more of a ‘what-if’ type when it comes to preparing my family. If the conservative methods of warfare are thrown out, then nuclear or biological war could be a possibility.
The biggest threats that come to mind right now are nuclear weapons and biological weapons. And yes, I may be thinking a little too much conspiracy theory, but I would rather be a little more educated in the subject and have nothing happen rather than rely on the chance that nothing will ever happen.
Eventualy Nuclear Weapons Will Fall on U.S Soil
Like many others, the first thing that comes to my mind is what if both countries get an itchy trigger finger and decide to launch a whole stockpile of nuclear weapons at each other? With all of the targets that each country has, this would be a horrible thing to experience. Let’s say you survive the initial firing of the weapons, then what? What do you do? And not only nuclear weapons, but also with nuclear accidents, like Fukushima, or more close to us, the recent nuclear reactor accident in New Mexico.
There is a LOT of very good information on the internet that you can find easily, you can even see what a nuclear bomb would do if it landed in your area.
I am not going to go into the massive amount of details here. (This article covers that) But I have found some useful items I will be including in my EDC bag as well as in my home:
1. Potassium Iodide tablets
These are good to have in case of radioactive fallout. They are readily available (right now anyways) and will help to protect your thyroid gland, which is where components of radiation can be stored in your body. If you do not have access to these tablets, you can also ‘paint’ iodine on your body to protect yourself. Keep in mind though, if you have an allergy to iodine (or shellfish, because if you are allergic to shellfish, there is a good chance you are allergic to iodine) don’t do this! You could have an allergic reaction, and that could be bad as well.
2. N95 Mask
These are specialized gas masks that will help to give you some protection in case of nuclear fallout. These aren’t cheap, but they will be well worth having in case of a nuclear accident or disaster. They block out 95% of particles, and probably won’t protect you against gamma rays, but they will protect you against radio-active dust, which is what nuclear fallout is. For the best possible fit, you should be fit-tested to make sure you have the appropriate size mask for your face.
3. Rain Poncho, gloves and a stocking hat
This doesn’t have to be anything fancy, just something to cover all of your exposed skin. Put it on over your clothing, and pull the hood up, this will protect your skin from coming into contact with the radioactive dust, which can burn you. Cover as much of your skin as possible, and when you get home, take the poncho off outside, so you don’t being contaminants into your home. You just want to have as many layers as you can between your skin and the fallout.
4. Baby wipes, gallons of water, baby shampoo, and clean towels.
This may sound silly, but if you were away from home, and had to travel any distance in fallout, you want to get the crap off of you before you enter your home. For us, that means keeping these extra items close to the entrance of your home. We have a deck that has a covered area, and a horse trailer parked close that we can keep these items in a large garbage bag so if the time comes, we could easily take a quick shower outside before getting into the house.
Again, you don’t want to bring contaminants into your home if you can help it. It isn’t going to get 100% of the nuclear fallout off, but even if you were able to get of 90% of the dust, you would be keeping your inside a little less radioactive.
Use the baby wipes and baby shampoo like soap and shampoo all in one. The baby wipes are easily disposed of in the trash bag that you were storing everything. Take another trash bag for your dirty clothes, and get them to the wash as soon as you can. It will be a cold shower with water that has been sitting outside, but hopefully you will only have to take it once, and then be in your home.
5. Heavy sheeting plastic, high filtered furnace filters and duct tape
This plastic is relatively cheap at your home improvement store. We actually had gotten some as a moisture barrier when putting a shower in. The plastic is thick, and black. I believe it was around $26.00 for a huge amount of it. You can use this to keep as much dust out as possible.
Cover all of your windows, and any doors that you will not be using. In a really bad situation, you can seal off each room while you are getting yourself to the lowest part of your home, hopefully a basement, which will offer you the most protection, unless you are lucky enough to have a storm cellar or fallout shelter where you live. This will not block the gamma rays from getting through, but if you are far enough away from the blast or accident, everything you can do to seal your home, the better.
It’s also important to note, don’t plan on running your air conditioner, or anything that allows outside air in, which is probably your furnace as well. If you have no choice, have the most powerful furnace filters you can buy, and also have extra filters that you can cut apart and build mini-filters for all of the air ducts where the air is pushed into your home.
6. Bottled Water and water filter system
In a nuclear event, you need to consider all sources of water above ground as contaminated. This includes water from municipalities. In many areas, the water that is pumped into our homes is stored in reservoirs and above ground. Have enough water to sustain your family, and pets for at least two weeks, hopefully longer, and remember, you can never have enough water.
If you have to use your tap water, make sure you have a heavy duty filtration system in place before you use the water for drinking, cooking and even bathing. But consider your pets as well, you need to make sure you have enough water for them. If your family includes large animals, make sure you have a plan for how they will drink as well.
7. Bringing outside pets in
This is an area I have really thought about a lot. Although they aren’t food animals, or work animals, my horses are a part of my family, and I need to plan on their safety and well-being too. So for our family, that means turning our garage into a temporary barn if something catastrophic happens. We have to make sure the garage is sealed as well as possible, and have a safe place for our chickens, horses, and outside dogs.
I’m sorry, but the mice can fend for themselves. (As they usually do!) My husband may not be crazy about the idea of opening the garage and seeing two horses, and a bunch of chickens, but they are our family too, and we need to plan accordingly for them as well.
This also means having enough hay, grain, and feed stored appropriately in case we have to use it for an extended period of time. Grain in galvanized cans, and hay inside protected, as well as covered by a tarp. Again, it won’t keep out the gamma radiation, but it will protect the feed from radioactive dust.
8. Spiderwort Plants
This may seem like an odd addition, but these plants are actually Mother Nature’s radiation detectors. I have read that these pretty little plants with purple flowers are hardy, and if exposed to heavy amounts of radiation, the purple flowers will turn pink. They may not be a Geiger counter, but they will add some prettiness to the yard, a pollen producer for the bees, and possibly a detector of radiation. And, with a price of $2.00 for 50 seeds, it beats the price of a Geiger counter for me and my family.
They can tolerate zones 4-9 for growing outside, and who knows, if you have a really good green thumb, you may be able to get them to grow year round inside as well.
9. Diverse Food Pantry
This is the same for no matter what you are preparing for. But in a nuclear fallout situation, it may be a long time before you are able to run out to the store and pick up something for dinner. The more diverse and larger your food storage is, the happier your family will be, and not get bored with the same meals over and over, but more importantly, you will have the calories your body needs to do more manual labor.
Let’s face it, most of us don’t work 8 to 10 hours a day doing hard labor intensive jobs, like farming. Some people do, like farmers, or construction workers, but most Americans are not used to doing things for themselves. And in a bad situation, you will have to do a lot of the work for yourself. And it will be easier to do if your body has the calories to do it.
The more food you have stored, the better off you and your family will be. So start small, and build on it. You will be utterly amazed at the amount of food you will be able to acquire in a relatively short amount of time. So stop planning, and just do it. Every time you go to the store, get extra. Keep doing it, and soon you will have to be planning a larger pantry. Just remember to rotate your stock, and eat what you store. I know every single preparedness website touches on this topic, and for good reason, food storage is very important!
10. Home Security
Just as in every SHTF scenario, the security of your home is very important. After all, you have worked very hard to get prepared, and ready to face the coming challenges. Don’t let your home security fall short. Make sure you have taken all necessary precautions to keep your family and your preps safe.
Think outside of the box when it comes to security. Don’t advertise what you have, and don’t keep all your preps in one place. In the case of a nuclear incident, having caches stored underground will keep them safe, and keep them out of sight of your neighbors, or those who may be looking for supplies.
Keep things hidden in plain sight. This is usually the safest way to store your preps. Make false compartments in your walls, or even in your couches. What about the unused space of an attic or crawlspace? You will surprise yourself with the hiding places you will be able to find if you just spend a little time thinking about it. A fun way to think about hiding your preps is to think as if you are playing hide and seek. Remember, some of the best hiding places are right in front of those who are looking for it.
Good Enough is Never Good Enough
When it comes time to think about planning for a nuclear type disaster, I don’t think you can ever be too prepared. To me, these are just a few things that stood out, so I wanted to share them with you. But again, these things work well for me, they may not work as well for you.
This is the challenge of prepping, it is subjective, and for each person, it will be different. And that’s ok, the important thing to remember is to just do it! Take a few minutes out of your day, every day and dedicate a small bit of time to becoming more prepared.
It’s never too late to start preparing. So don’t get overwhelmed, just do it. Your family will be grateful that you dedicated the time, and you will give yourself a little peace of mind for every new skill you learn, and as your preps increase, so will your mind, and level of satisfaction that you can do this!