When the apocalypse comes (or any other disaster) you need to be prepared. Proper planning will mean a much greater chance of survival for you and your family/friends.
Step one – Prepare for a lack of food and water
Be sure to include:
Water – on average a adult uses 3.5 litres per day (at survival level)
You need to consider how many people you are trying to provide for and how you are going to do this. An initial stockpile of bottled water will work but then how will you continue to get water if the incoming water source is no longer reliable?
Water purification tablets are a good idea so you can make water drinkable although the best method is always going to be boiling and filtering/sieving
Then you need to look at ways to collect your own water. If the water supplies dry up through the mains then you need to be able to collect water in some manner. A solar still is the simplest method and can work even when it has not rained for days by gathering the moisture out of the air.
Food – foods that are easy to make and won’t spoil are key
Shelf stable dry pasta, rice (brown is best), dried beans, unsalted/unshelled nuts, dehydrated fruit and vegetables, trail mix (a fruit and nut mix), chocolate bars, energy bars, dried meats like beef jerky/salami, super greens, sea vegetables and powdered milk
Canned fruit, soup, rice, meat, fish (especially salmon/tuna), jam and peanut butter.
You may also like to remember coffee and tea! (these are dehydrating though so use sparingly)
Manual can opener (there’s nothing worse than not being able to open your food!)
You will need a way to prepare and cook your food – your current cooking provision is likely to be out of action so have camping stoves/bbq or other ways to cook available and plenty of fuel.
The big question is how much to store??? It really depends on your space allowance. The more you have the longer you can survive… the minimum you should be looking at is 3 months
Step Two – Health and Hygiene Supplies
If you are on long term medication you need to consider how you will cope if the supply stops. Is it something you can live without or will you need to have some on hand? Medication has expiry dates to just like food so do not stockpile too far in advance and be sure to check dates.
Keep a good supply of extra batteries for devices like hearing aids, a spare walking stick and spare glasses.
A well supplied first aid kit is a necessity. A good disaster kit should be a shoulder bag including:
- trauma dressings
- 4×4 gauze pads
- triangular dressings
- rolls of gauze
- leg splints
- arm splints
- bottle burn gel
- cold packs
- sterile water packs
- rolls of first aid tape
- roll of duct tape
- emergency thermal blankets
- paramedic scissors
- box of 100 vinyl gloves
- Plenty of antiseptic wipes
- Plenty of antimicrobial wipes
- Plenty of band-aids
- A first aid guide
This should cover most eventualities. It is a good idea to attend a first aid course so you have an understanding of how to deal with at least basic first aid situations as medical help will not be easy to come by.
The ability to keep clean is important is being healthy and although water is likely to be more limited this should not stop basic personal hygiene. Making sure you have the everyday necessities will stop the spread of disease and infection. Health has been linked to mouth hygiene so make sure you keep your teeth brushed.
- Toothbrushes and toothpaste
- Baby wipes
- Anti bacterial gel
- Anti bacterial wipes
- Toilet roll (lots)
Step Three Ancillaries
Assuming the disaster did not include an EMP (electromagnetic pulse) you will still be able to use electronic devices. This makes the situation easier! It may not guarantee that you still have access to the grid for power though so you may have to look at alternative power options.
Things you will want to have on hand:
- Torches and spare batteries
- Radio (battery-powered, solar, or hand-crank) for updates on the situation
- mobile phone with chargers
- Solar lighting around your property
- Extra batteries for everything!
It will still be important to be able to prove who you are and having hard copies of everything rather than electronic ones is a good idea as if the infrastructure goes down you may have no access to the internet.
- Copies of important documents such as passports and ID
- Paperwork about any serious or on-going medical condition
Don’t forget to print your family emergency plan with contact information on for family and friends – if your phone stops working can you remember everyone’s contact details?
Include a map of the local and extended area as well as a UK road map in case you need to leave as your sat nav may no longer be an option.
Spare car keys and house keys – in an emergency they always go missing
Cash. Card machines are not likely to be working and no one carries cash these days!
Consider what other commodities could become trade-able – alcohol is likely to be a highly sought after commodity as it is highly shelf stable, useful for pleasure and medication.
Step Four What is unique to your family?
Do you have very young children?
If so you will need to prepare specific food stuffs – formula, feeding bottles & equipment, nappies, clothing.
Do they need specific entertainment? Put a few toys in the kit as they will not understand the situation and will need comforting, pack a spare blanket.
Do you have pets?
If you intend to keep them with you supplied will need to be packed for them too.
Specific food, extra water, cleaning supplies (litter box, paper towels, plastic trash bags, grooming items, and household bleach), do they have their own medecines? It is a good idea to think aout a pets first aid book relevant to your pet and a specific kit.
If you have to move you will have to think about how the animal is to be transported. Does it need a carrier, you will need to take the animals bed and toys to reduce stress.
Make sure you have copies of the pets paperwork and recent photographs/descriptions in case you become separated from them. Consider also writing a full detailed description of day to day feeding, medical, behaviour in case you have to put them in kennels/leave with friends at short notice.
Step Five Looking after your Hoard
Make sure it’s still ok to eat/use!
No one wants to eat rotten food or get stuck with a flat battery…
Regularly check on your food, make sure you choose foods with long shelf lives and store correctly to make sure they last as long as possible. If stored in the right manner some foods can last for decades. The same goes for your batteries and other supplies. Rotate them so you know what is the oldest and if the end of the world has not arrived yet, use them and replace them with new in storage.
Make sure it’s ready for when you need it
You need to be able to access it quickly when the apocalypse hits
Once you have gathered your supplies, pack them in the correct containers. Think about what is there for long term storage and what is your ‘get the hell of out of dodge’ kit should you need to evacuate.
Make sure you label everything – no one wants to open rice pudding and find stewed beef!
Prepare for every type of apocalypse – It’s not all deserts so make sure you use airtight and water tight containers – especially for paperwork and medication.
Involve the whole family
Get the children involved with planning foods, meals and storage
Get them to help check the supplies and rotate them
The children can help make the family plan and (of course) practice it
Know your property inside out
Find out where your gas, electric, and water shut-off locations are, and how to turn them off.
Always be prepared
Don’t forget to have your ‘get out of dodge’ kits in the car, at work or anywhere else you might be when the apocalypse hits…
What to do Next…….
Make a Family Emergency Plan