The Anatomy of a Breakdown

by | Nov 13, 2012 | Emergency Preparedness | 159 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    This article has been generously contributed by Tess Pennington of Ready NutritionAfter joining the Dallas chapter of the American Red Cross in 1999 Tess worked as an  Armed Forces Emergency Services Center  specialist and is well versed in emergency and disaster management & response. You can follow her regular updates on PreparednessHomesteading, and a host of other topics at

    If we can all agree on one thing, it’s that the government and disaster organizations alike grossly underestimate how dependent the majority of the population is on them during and after a disastrous event takes place. We need not look any further than the last major disasters that have occurred to find our answers: the Haitian earthquake that occurred in 2010, Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the 2011 super tornado of Joplin, MO, and even as recently as Hurricane Sandy.

    As preppers are well aware, when the needs of the population cannot be met in an allotted time frame, a phenomena occurs and the mindset shifts in people. They begin to act without thinking and respond to changes in their environment in an emotionally-based manner, thus leading to chaos, instability and a breakdown in our social paradigm.

    When you take the time to understand how a breakdown behaves and how it progresses, only then can you truly prepare for it.

    The Anatomy of a Breakdown

    This glimpse into a systemic breakdown is based on an isolated, limited disaster or event where emergency responders have been deployed. I must emphasize that all bets are off if the event is wide spread, affecting multiple tens of millions of people simultaneously.

    Phase 1: The Warning

    Although disasters such as earthquakes and tornadoes can come on so quickly that timely warnings are not always given, for the most part, governments typically provide adequate time to get a population ready in advance. Local governments even go as far as to err on the side of caution and sternly warn the citizens to evacuate.

    For one reason or another, there will be a select group that stays behind. Some of these citizens are prepared and ready for what may come and may feel the need to stay to defend what is rightfully theirs but the majority of the population will not be ready for what they are about to endure. Those that are in this unprepared majority who choose to ride out the disaster do so because they are either unaware of how to fully prepared for disasters, have become complacent or numb to the heeds of warning from the local government and news media, or are overly confident.

    This is the point in this cycle where herds of people go to the grocery stores frantically grabbing supplies. Most grocery stores will not be able to meet the demand of the people’s need for supplies, and many could go home empty handed.

    Bracing for the disaster, the prepared and unprepared will be hoping for the best outcome. What many do not realize is the hardest part of this event is soon to be upon them. Within days, the descent into the breakdown will begin.

    Phase 2: Shock and Awe (1-2 Days)

    After the initial shock wears off  of the disaster, many will have difficulty in coping and adapting to what has just occurred. As they are  trying to wrap their thoughts around the severity of the disaster, their losses and what their future holds, local government leaders are scrambling for answers and trying to assess the situation.

    At this point, the unprepared survivors will be expecting organizations and local government to step in to meet their immediate needs at any moment. The reality of the situation becomes more bleak when they realize that due to downed power lines or debris blocking roadways and access points, emergency organizations, emergency response and distribution trucks supplying food, water, fuel and other pertinent resources will be unable to get to the area. Once the realization hits that resources are scarce and the government leaders are incapable of helping them in a timely fashion, desperate citizens will take action into their own hands.

    The breakdown has begun.

    Phase 3: The Breakdown (3-7 Days)

    Have you ever heard the saying, “We’re three days away from anarchy?” In the wake of a disaster, that’s all you have is three days to turn the crazy train around before crime, looting and chaos ensue. In reports during the aftermath of hurricane Sandy, residents from Staten Island were pleading for help from elected officials, begging for gasoline, food and clothing.

    “We’re going to die! We’re going to freeze! We got 90-year-old people!” Donna Solli told visiting officials. “You don’t understand. You gotta get your trucks down here on the corner now. It’s been three days!”

    Similar stories of looting occurred during the tornado in Joplin, MO of 2011. This time, the looting occurred from national guard soldiers patrolling the area.

    “The night of the tornado, as emergency responders rushed from one shattered home to the next, Steve Dixon sat outside his father’s destroyed house with a baseball bat. They wouldn’t see me sitting here in my chair, I was in the dark,” he told NPR. “I’d turn my bright spotlight on them and tell them they needed to move on. Then when the police came by, I’d tell them which way they went.”

    Multiple factors contribute to societal breakdowns including failure of adequate government response, population density, citizens taking advantage of the grid being down and overwhelmed emergency response teams.

    For whatever reason, 3-5 days following a disaster is the bewitching hour. During this short amount of time, the population slowly becomes a powder keg full of angry, desperate citizens. A good example is the chaos that ensued in New Orleans following the absence of action from the local government or a timely effective federal response in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In such troubled times, people were forced to fend for themselves and their families, by any means necessary. This timeline of Hurricane Katrina effectively illustrates “the breakdown,” and within three days, the citizens of New Orleans descended into anarchy, looting and murder (Source).

    If this scenario isn’t bad enough, at the end of this time frame, there will be an increase in illnesses due to cramped living quarters from emergency shelters, sanitation-related illness, compromised water sources and exposure to natural elements. In the aftermath of the Haitian earthquake, sanitation- related epidemics became a large concern for the disaster victims. In fact, the outbreak erupted into the world’s largest cholera epidemic despite a huge international mobilization still dealing with the effects of the Jan. 12, 2010, earthquake (Source).

    Victims from Hurricane Sandy are also beginning to see their share of illnesses. Due to the horrible weather plaguing the area, many of the evacuation shelters in Brooklyn were closed last week for sterilizing due to a vicious viral outbreak that struck.

    Phase 4: Recovery (8-30+ Days)
    Despite what we want to believe, most recoveries are slow and difficult in progression and require long-term planning. On average it takes a city around 1-2 weeks after the event took place to start this phase of the cycle. Every disaster is different and the length of recovery efforts vary greatly on the nature of the incident.

    7 years after Hurricane Katrina leveled parts of Louisiana, the state is still in the recovery phase.. “We are in a process of long-term rebuilding,” said Christina Stephens, Spokeswoman for the Louisiana Recovery Authority. “There is at least another 10 years of recovery.” (Source)

    Within this recovery phase, essential goods and resources could will still be hard to come by, thus forcing local officials to implement the rationing of resources to ensure there is enough for the population. We are seeing this right now with the gasoline rationing in New York.

    It could be months before the destruction caused by Hurricane Sandy is cleaned up. Damaged communities are coming to terms with the devastation that delivered an unprecedented punch to the region’s economy, causing more than an estimated $50 billion in losses and forcing hundreds of thousands to rebuild their lives. (Source)

    Don’t Be Another Statistic

    Now that you understand what we’re dealing with, there are ways you can use this information to prepare for the next event so that you will be a part of the population that is ready for what may come.

    Trust yourself. Learn to be self-sufficient and rely on yourself. When it is all said and done, you are the only one who can care for yourself and your family the best. You will be the one who has your family’s best intentions at heart. Having a stock of your family’s favorite canned or dry goods, a supply of water and a simple medical kit can maintain your basic needs for a short-lived disaster. This simple preparedness supply could set you apart from the unprepared.

    If you live in a highly populated area, understand that resources will diminish quickly, so preparing beforehand can circumvent this. You can always start out with the basic 10 preparedness items you will need to skirt through a disaster:

    1. Food and alternative ways to cook food
    2. Water
    3. Fuel for generators, cooking stoves and mantels, charcoal for outdoor grills
    4. Batteries
    5. Generator
    6. Emergency lighting
    7. Ice
    8. Medical supply
    9. Baby formula
    10. Sanitation supplies

    Or, if you want a more comprehensive supply, take a look at the 52-Weeks to Preparedness series.

    Educate yourself. Learn from the disasters, folks! Each time there is a disaster, the same pattern occurs: the warning, shock and awe, the breakdown and recovery. Study the effects of disasters that effect your area and what items you will need to get through the event. Further, find the weak points in your preparedness supply and correct them. Supply inventories twice a year can do wonders in this area.

    Get into the mindset. Learning what to do in the face of a disaster or how to care for your family during extended grid-down emergencies can put you well ahead of the race. The more prepared you are, the faster you are at adapting to the situation. You can learn anything as long as you research, gather and apply the information. For example, while many on the East coast were still in shock from Hurricane Sandy and were sitting in their homes panicking and watching their perishable food items go bad, those that had learned how to survive in off-grid, cold environments were well prepared for this type of disaster, and had already begun packing their perishable items in the snow to preserve them. It’s that simple!

    Practice makes perfect. Practice using your skills, your preps and prepare emergency menus based around your stored foods. The more you practice surviving an off-grid disaster, the more efficient you will be when and if that event occurs. Moreover, these skills will keep you alive! For a list of pertinent skills to know during times of disaster, click here.
    Further, to make your family or group more cohesive, cross-train members so they can compensate for the other during a disaster.

    In summation, only until we see the cycle for what it is and the effects it has on society will we be able to learn from it. There is always a breakdown in some form or fashion after a disaster. If you can prepare for this, you will be able to adapt more quickly to what is going on around you.

    The cycle is there and we can’t look past it. Prepare accordingly and do not overlook ensuring you have your basic preps accounted for.

    This article has been contributed by Tess Pennington of Ready Nutrition. Subscribe to Tess’ Get Prepped Weekly Newsletter for more emergency preparedness tips, homesteading ideas, and insights. As a subscriber to her free newsletter you’ll receive the latest updates from her 52 Weeks to Preparedness Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Planning Series. It’s well worth your time, and oh, did we mention it’s totally free?

    Ready Nutrition and take your privacy very seriously and will not distribute or share your email address with other parties.

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      1. We faced this same situation the “Year of the Hurricanes” in Florida when 4 hurricanes hit within ONE year. Quite a learning experience for us. I tell everyone I come unto contact with how important it is to be prepared….most don’t listen and won’t care until they are faced with the same circumstances.

        • Great Article!

          With all of the pending layoffs, Obamacare soon to be fully implemented and increasing regulations … a major breakdown is coming.

          Companies plan massive layoffs as Obamacare becomes reality


          Updated – Massive list of Layoffs


          Also, announced Friday…

          Obama Administration Shuts Down Oil Drilling Out West…

          “The Interior Department on Friday issued a final plan to close 1.6 million acres of federal land in the West originally slated for oil shale development.”


          6,125 Proposed Regulations and Notifications Posted in Last 90 Days–Average 68 per Day

          This makes it even harder for small and large businesses.


          • KYM- I agree 100%.  NY was a breakdown ?  Katrina was a breakdown ?  Yes..  but we ain’t seen nuttin yet.   Like the line from the movie “next of kin”…  ” No SIr, you ain’t seen bad yet… but it’s comin”.  Sadly prophetic I fear.

            • I am reminded of the story about the two guys in the woods running from a bear.  One looked at the other and said “Do you think we can outrun this bear?”.  The other looked over and said “I don’t have to out run the bear, all I gotta do is out run you.”

              In a nationwide disaster such as a hyperinflation, if you can feed your self for 30 days, you are looking good as millions will die off.  If you can last 60 days, there will be a lot of abandoned property for the taking by those who can protect it.  That includes housing, land, and even cars.

              You don’t have to be the greatest prepper of all time.  You just need to be able to last long enough for things to settle down and the unprepared to die off of natural causes.

              Of course, then the corp will respond by attacking the survivors.  Only then are you likely to see any competence from the government.


              • @ Gods Creation.

                One experience woodsman was taking a tenderfoot into the wild and he

                instructed  him to make sure to look over the log before he sat down because there were many poisonous snakes.  Long into the hike the tenderfoot sat down to rest, without looking over  the log and was bitten in the butt.

                The woodsman called for help on his cell phone and  the Doctor instructed him to make an  incision  across both wounds and suck the poison out. The tenderfoot  asked what the doctor said. The woodsman replied, You’re gonna die.

                • lmao!

              • GC. PERFECTLY SAID!

              • Estimated 100 million dead in America in 6 months following a nationwide disaster like EMP or CME.  While it would be a terrible thing to live through, I’m better prepared than average Joe for a sudden event.

                I would like to hear opinions on a slower collapse where the preps are drained over a longer period of time.  That seems more difficult to get through since it gives the unprepared more time to find out who has what.  So which is better, quick or slow collapse?

                • @SouthPaw.

                  Are you prepared to kill?  To see love one’s die? Willing to accept respondsibility for your actions? To go against your inner grain? Will you lead, follow or fade away? Can you make snap decisions?  Face frustration and Guilt? I ask these questions because putting supplies and ammo and everything else is only half of the game. I vote for collapse as I have cleared my conscience. Have given every chance to right this ship we sail on with many warnings. Fallen on deaf ears and received much ridicule. We are talking years.  I’m not afraid anymore.

                • I am not a LEO or military.  No one can know what they would do in a situation until they are in it.  Morally, I have no problem protecting my family whether it is against a common thug or blue helmets trying to enslave me.  Spiritually, I know where I am going when I die.  The only potential fear I have is to witness suffering by my children.  Even if it’s the worst case scenario, God wins and I’m on His side.

                • Slingshot said it right. Read that post TEN times. He hit it on the head. The mental half is what must be developed. You can but all the best gear with one trip into town… Food, gear, med supplies, fun show….
                  But the skill to USE THEM IS THE OTHER HALF. And just like skill, the mental half must be intentionally created, unless you are lucky enough to be military or LEO. TRAIN!
                  Remember the saying ‘a green beret with a single shot .22 is more dangerous than the untrained with a full auto .308
                  This is true. Train and test your mental grit. Try harder, figure out how. This is you alone. Not easy, search your heart, make this a matter of prayer as well.

              • Yes (up) or No (down) – Is it permissible to shoot looters, in the back and without warning if necessary, if they are trying to steal your ‘abandoned’ property after the great dieoff?

                • its still belongs to you you loot we shoot

                • Due to the rising cost of ammunition, I will no longer be able to provide a warning shot.

              • HighN’Dry

              • Yes (up) or No (down):   Is it permissible to shoot looters, in the back and without warning if necessary, if they are trying to steal your ‘abandoned’ property after the great dieoff?

            • We live in Ohio, and while we’re not on food stamps nor are our adult children, our Village has many who are. Know they weren’t expecting this from Obama, and hope they regret voting for him. Ohio is usually a good state for agriculture, with the exception of our nasty clay, but we are one of the very few who garden or show any interest in doing so. We did get a notice from our church asking us to up our monthly food donation, or funding in lieu of food, and we probably will. The recession hit Ohio hard which explains some of the food stamp use, but even a village as small as ours has some third generation users. No one seems especially worried here which I find amazing. Santa Obama has  made some real inroads in what used to be a highly conservative area.

            • OQ – You are, as usual, quite correct. This will become VERY interesting as the tattered fabric of this society begins to unravel at breathtaking speed.

              I have always maintained that when the lights go out, civility as we know it will reverse a few thousand years.  Now it would appear that just removing the quick monetary access of EBT cards, only in to direct food, will send a few moochers over the edge.

              What scares me the most is when the EBT cards have no reload. The collapse has thus fully occurred. The tsunami of inflation will erode that spending power until collapse.  I see no way out….does anyone?

              With one tour of duty in Viet-Nam, this pending breakdown will be worse than the Viet-Cong coming through the perimeter. Nothing but our own ability to survive will take us as far as we can travel.

              You take care Sir. Your logic and thinking could well be put to use in the cerebral-deprived Congress. Umm, sorry. Actually that would be an insult as I think about that position further.

              May the USA survive the most formidable weapon yet,   weapon of “mass stupidity”.


              • I was the one who thumb downed this post. Sorry, it was a fat finger job. Intended to thumb up.

            • Oh that is going to go over like a lead balloon, espically in the cities

          • Ive heard where even some doctors will shut down thier own practice depending on what comes of Obama care, they dont want to deal with that program dictating what they can make or how to run thier practice..or something along those lines, I just caught a conversation about it, so dont have all the full story., but i can see well off doctors pulling out of the states to go elsewhere or to flat out retire and screw the health care buiz

          • It’s a good thing Obama created 5 million jobs or we’d be in real trouble.

            Seriously, how much you want to bet as they ‘adjust’ the numbers for Sept. and Oct, the unemployment rate will be up around 8.3 (reported, wink, wink) or higher by years end.

            Remember January 2008?  We’ll look back and think that was a picnic.

          • Nice info KY Mom.  Thanks.  Nice to see someone informed.  I personally think we need to go over the fiscal cliff and into the depression now.  If Washington postpones it for a few more years with pandering, there will be a whole lot fewer people able to support themselves and it will make the fall that much farther and faster.  I’m ready for it now, may not be able to physically deal with it as well in 4 more years.

        • In the time of crisis or natural disaster it is not the smartest or the strongest who survive, but those who are able to adapt.

      2. ABlows My MIND that people are so stupid they are not smart enough to prepare at ALL!!?  WTF; OVER?  We have a 100yr flood, Ice storms Toranados, the list goes on and other than a few unfortunate folks, we deal with it ourselves asa commuity.  We did get some relief from FEMA for the flood for a few people in low lying areas.   I jsut cant fathum not having some food,water and tools and supplies.

      3. ” This ain’t no party. This ain’t no disco. This ain’t no fooling around.

        Talking Heads.

        Wha’s up with this verification code?

      4. Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

      5. What are people going to do with the manmade disaster coming;  the US gov’t?

        Talked with a DPS agent and a vet yesterday. The DPS guy said the cops have already said, if they’re told to take our weapons, they won’t. Yet neither were aware of the guns being taken from home owners right after Katrina.

        Enjoyed having a few more people locally asking about starting prepping and a few others (just found out) started prepping a few months back. Thank God that their eyes have been opened.


        • The answer is easy enough – keep a close eye on it, hide what needs hidden, and quietly make plans. Otherwise, look and appear to live just like Joe Ordinary.


          Put the plans in place as needed.


          Pretty simple, but a lot more complex once you get into the details… 🙂

        • 1st RULE: You do not talk about FIGHT CLUB.

          • 2nd RULE: You DO NOT talk about FIGHT CLUB.

            • What “Fight Club?”

      6. Getting closer all the time…

      7. After reading story after story about out of state utility workers being assaulted and set upon by violently angry New Yorkers because their precious electricity is not restored, I have no more sympathy for these miscreants. They are a blight on the face of civilized humanity IMO. They cannot handle the effect of a single passing storm without becoming violent? What are they going to do when (not if) a really devastating catastrophe occurs along the magnitude of the 2004 Sumatra Tsunami that claimed over 230,000 victims.

        New Yorkers do not deserve the sacrifice and generosity of the volunteer workers and should be left to their own devices; win, loose, or draw. The out of state volunteer utility workers should leave New York City in the interest of their own safety.

        • Why  can’t they see their time would be better spent clearing anything out if the utility workers way so they could work faster.

          Like Yelling at fast food worker, and not expecting them to spit in your food.

          In northern Michigan we’ve had a week or two  with out power. (without much warning) No one here is anything but appreciative.

          Maybe when you are raised in  a big city you just are’nt raised with any geace for others. ” i want it now, so give it me” Sometimes you have to wait and sometimes physics work against you. You can’t  fix everyone at the same time. by difination someone will be last. “today skippy it’s you” they should be told

          • largetarget,


            I was raised in Brooklyn, New York, and I left when I turned 18. I thank God for giving me the ability to leave so I could learn to live normally among my fellow Americans. It has been an education.

            I currently reside in rural Florida where we have bad power outages several times a year, not withstanding hurricanes. No problem. Folks around here just turn off the main circuit breaker, pull their generators from their garages and restore their own power until utility power is fixed. No one complains about the noise and if someone needs a gallon or two of gas for the genny, we share.

            Instead of attacking the utility workers New Yorkers need to lift a finger to help them wherever possible.

            • Side note sorry about the yankees and jaugars this year lol

          • Put enough animals in a cage and they’re gonna fight.

      8. Location is everything.  Here ten days without power is an inconvenience not an emergency.  The difference between those here in West Virginia who still do not have power and the ones in Long Island picketing is attitude. No one owes us electricity so we do not rely on it for survival.  Life is certainly easier with modern conveniences, but we only rely on ourselves and our relationships.

        • Prepared Pastor,

          Well said. Great post!

        • Probably had some convesation with your kids to. When the power is on it’s more quick talks.

          Without power people slow down and relate with each other. It’s nice.

          Ha it just hit me maybe that’s it. Without power they have to relate thuse folks around them The ones they ignore most of the time.

          It’s reality time,this is your big city community how do you like it.

      9. And because a large percent of the population do not prepare, they become the agressors when the shtf.

        People who were your neighbors and friends, become desperate and demanding of your preps. 

        Do you share and deprive your own family?  Do you deprive neighbors and friends of your preps and maybe cause violence to break out ?  A violence that may require you to use deadly force.

        Do you prep more then you think you need so that there will be some to share?  Do you gather neighbors and friends and family and go over the reasons for prepping AGAIN?

        That decissions is yours to make, after all it’s your money and your preps.

        God bless and keep on prepping.

        • Mona,

          Good questions. Unless we suddendly develop ESP, there is no way of knowing which of our relatives or neighbor harbor latent violent tendancies. There may be tell-tale signs we can instinctively make inferences from.

          One thing is certain, someone will crack and go berzerk under extreme mental stress.

          This is the worst case scenario I prepare for. I hope and pray for the best, but I prepare for the worst. I store extra preps for folks who are at the end of their rope, but the thought is always present that force may be needed for self preservation at some point in time after the SHTF. Cheers.

        • “And because a large percent of the population do not prepare, they become the agressors when the shtf.

          People who were your neighbors and friends, become desperate and demanding of your preps. ”

          Yes, but if you’ve stored up some BBQ sauce; those big fatties are good eating after you put a bullet thru their brain when they come and try and take your food.

          Of course, the previous statement is not serious; but if you’re in big cities; I do imagine there will be a time when part of those cities break down so that a bullet may be the only way to keep your food.


          • leeholsen,

            If things get bad enough, and it would have to be hellishly bad, cannibalism is always a threat that one may have to defend against.

            We don’t talk about it much because of its disturbing nature, but it has happened before and will happen again. Cannibalism reminds us that only a very thin line of civilization separates modern man from our barbarously savage Jurassic predecessors. Not something we like to be reminded of.

            Heck, people commit acts of cannibalism just from taking illicit drugs. What’s to stop them from eating other people when they begin to starve?

          •   It’s a good idea to try to live far enough from Wal-Mart to be well out of range of the power chairs.

            • Bob, Bob, Bob,


                  That statement was reprehensible, politically incorrect and downright hysterical!!!! ROFLMAO!!!!!

        • This is rather reminiscent of the Twilight Zone episode where one family had a bomb shelter in their house, and all the neighbors demanded they be given refuge in this shelter. There was only enough food for the one family, and the neighbors forced their way into the shelter.

          I may build up some extra food just in case there are some needy ones around me, perhaps for the children in the street too, but I will not be telling them all up front what is in my house.

      10. i have a sister that seems to think that nothing is going to happen in the pac.nw or that the government will be here to help out, she wont listen at all she just wants to argue her views and opinion.. so that tells me she sticks her head in the sand so it wont happen, her husband on the other hand is starting to listen a little but only tom yhe point of concidering what i am telling him…  it just boggles my mind that with all that has happened in the mid-west and east coast these lat few years that we on the west coast have been unscaved to this point in time… i do know that this will not continue to be the case for much longer, it cant be.. i fear for those of us who will have to go thru what ever it is when it happens, because im in the mind set that whatever it will be is going to make up for the calm time that has been here in the pacific NW… even when st helens blew in 1980 it didnt affect as many people as hurricane sandy has, no cities were destroyed, within a week assesment was made and everything was starting to get back to normal, so on the scheme of things it wasnt a super big deal.. and yet people here just dont want to take their heads out of the sand, or disrupt the perfect little life they have so they have a chance to survive not if but when that 9.4 earthquake hits this place…..  i make a statement with saying 9.4… not a prediction or anything else, just a statement,

        i do expect that when we get hit here it will be much like katrina, sandy , joplin all wrapped in one, because it will hit the whole west coast, and many people will die… and for those who read this and live on the west coast that are just playing with the idea of prepping you better start and take it seriously

        • Roger that, Sandy Oregon out.

      11. The bigger the government, the bigger the failure. And we keep witnessing larger and larger segments of the American society becoming more dependent upon the government. The government isn’t the parent and should never become a role model — it’s another disaster waiting to happen.Big storms like Sandy aren’t just disasters from flooding and rain, it’s a multi-disaster caused by a dependent urban society.

        Disaster risk management is a science that is quantified. The analysis that determines disaster risk comes from identified disaster prone regions, population groups, and vulnerable sectors. Given all of this information, the disaster management agencies SHOULD function well.  But they don’t.

        The problem with government and emergency management agencies that deal with disasters is due to gross mismanagement. (Or maybe the term is non-management.) Even with the information available, emergency management agencies fail over and over again because of procedural errors, institutional/government rigidity, and poorly planned strategies.

        Never depend upon any government agency when it comes to your own survival. Preparedness begins with the individual. Plan accordingly!

        • Zoltanne,

          I couldn’t agree more. Did you see the article yesterday about the $40,000 portrait for the EPA Administrator? These shameless government people know how to spend taxpayer money, on themselves!

          If they are spending taxpayer money on themselves, no price is too high, no fee is too big, and they will spare no expense until it meets their satisfaction. They are not held accountable for doing things right the first time.

          What they don’t understand is that during a catastrophe, you only get one chance to do it right the first time or people die. These folks are inept and clueless.

          • YH, Thank you for sharing the link.

            I’m sure the families struggling to keep warm in NYC/NJ after the Super Storm Sandy will “greatly” appreciate how the government spent $180,000 on five portraits of cabinet members.

            What a joke!

            • VanMom, anytime.

              It is so pathetic to see what our government considers important. I’ve become very numb to the whole corrupt process. I think the government is well overdue for some tough love by way of fiscal intervention.

              When Lauryn Hill and Wesley Snipes were accused of tax evasion, main stream media called them greedy. Personally, I think they both had the right idea, especially Hill.

          •   They are not inept. They just don’t give a shit about you.

            • And THAT is the truth, Bob!


      12. Why people do not prepare.

        Why are there not more people prepping even as the view the aftermath? Is it because everything we see, is first sanitized by the news media. We don’t see the dead people or animals, twisted in the debris. Every corpse is covered. We have a disconnect from the danger/death. A continued false premise that will be safe in out home from anything. It can’t happen to me. Where am I going to go for safety. I have to stay to protect my STUFF from looters. The average person can not tell you the difference between a CAT 1 and a CAT5  hurricane  or a FO to a F5 tornado. They do not want to know because they would have to get thier lazy arse off the couch when things start going south. All these years of warnings, we should be experts on what to do. But we are not. They return all the lanterns and generators they needed for the storm and go through the same shit again buying the same gear for the next storm.

        There again you do not see commentary like this in the main stream news. That would frighten the hell out of people and they are so sensative you know. Might put a lasting impression on thier brains that will scar them for life.

        Give me a damn break!

      13. IMHO the first rule is take care of yourself . I am no good to my family if I am incapacitated for whatever reason. The lesson here is exercise caution with all you undertake.  Second is one’s family. Get them out before the event. Heed all warnings and alerts. The lesson here is situational awareness. PAY ATTENTION!.  Third would be , if there is no way to get out, PREPARE , PREPARE and Prepare some more. That would be food, water, bandaids, and bullets. Steel yourself to defend it against all enemies, neighbor or not.

           I watched with morbid fascination the social breakdown of this storms aftermath and thought , Better thee than me . When these people kicked out electrical workers sent to Help Them becuase they weren’t in some stupid union all bets were off. How fucking idiotic can one get I ask.  the concerts and bleeding heart crap are over now, quit snivelling and clean up. You chose to stay after multiple warnings and evac orders. TOUGH shit on you. 

         In some cases its better to let Darwin sort it out.

        • I don’t need bloomturd to tell me whether I should leave, and am inclined to disrefgard his “orders”. That said, one must have sense enough to pour piss out of a boot before putting it on.

      14. This comment is an edited re-post from a comment I made at alt-market, and it may not gain much traction here, but take a look at this.

        Occupy members feeding FEMA. LMAO. Some of you who have seen my posts know that I have been involved with the Occupy movement from its inception.  You all would be astonished to know how many Occupiers are also preppers. You would also be astonished to know how many Occupiers know EXACTLY what FEMA is about, what the NDAA and the Emergency Preparedness EO are about, and how community can be formed and promoted despite governmental and social violence and opposition.

        While many in the Liberty movement have not taken the time to learn what Occupy is truly about, the overlaps are substantial.  Many have decried Occupy as violent, but when you actually view what was happening with the protests, it was the police state that turned violent, and the Occupy folks stood in the face of their pepper spray and batons and punches and detentions and still shoved their hypocrisy in their faces.

        But during that time, when Occupy was fighting to hold its assembly areas (some of you would call them tent cities or camps), they learned about how to mobilize large numbers of people who had never before met to meet needs in clothing, food, water, medical treatment and social supports.  Yeah, we dealt with violence and crime from some who appeared in the assemblies.  You didn’t see Occupy crying about it — they dealt with it.  It was their critics who pointed their fingers in their attempts to discredit what we were doing.  Occupy, in contrast, worked from a model of accountability and self-sufficiency.

        So now, with Sandy having wreaked havoc on the northeastern seaboard, who had the skills to mobilize, to gather and distribute food and clothing, to construct/repair shelters, to provide medical care?  Guess what:  It wasn’t FEMA, who shut their offices due to weather.  It wasn’t the national guard, nor even the Red Cross operating in cut-off Rockaway and Long Island.  That’s right, it was Occupy Sandy.  Those other agencies wound up operating in a support role to Occupy.

        Want to see how people can roll without reliance upon governmental and utility services?  Look it up.  Just Google “Occupy Sandy.”  There are many Occupy-based activities just like that going on around the country.

        • @ Nehweh Gahnin.

          Hate to burst your bubble. Your assets are limited and your welcome is only as good as your last handout.

          • I’m not sure how you could have missed the point more.  Of course “assets” are limited, although your second statement is wrong.  If you have ever worked with a community in this way, you would know that the process itself broadens and deepens your contacts with others who have the ability and motivation to share those resources and talents and skills.  Yeah, sometimes people take what they get and walk away.  But a lot of times, they see what you are doing and put their shoulder to the wheel.

            I’m betting you never even came close to making the inquiry I urged you to do.  Because, well, we all know you already know everything.  Good luck in your bunker.

            • @ NH

              I looked at your link and I never said I knew everything. I do have training to get the job done and the experience to back it.  I know what FUBAR is and when in certain cases , your hands are tied. My statements that I make are deliberate to find out how much you know and how you react. This gives me incite as to if I would join you cause. And I do understand how  bad times bring out the best in people.  Just don’t cut me short as I am willing to  share information as lots of my past posts will show.

              • I didn’t have much to go on with your earlier comment.  Just want to say that I wasn’t trying to get anyone to “join my cause.”  My point comes back to the power of communities to act rapidly and effectively — obviously subject to limitations of resources and personnel, etc. — in the face of shared peril.  And the more prepared those communities are, the more effective they can be.  Far more effective in many cases than civil authority.

                I won’t cut you short.  Not sure I’m going to grace the other replies (from others) with a response, though.  They don’t appear to share your deliberation and desire for insight.

        • I really don’t care about Occupy’s crime, drug use,  destruction of private property, etc.  What I just cannot support is their far, far, FAR left political views and support for communism over economic freedom.  If they really wanted to change anything, they should occupy DC, that is were the real problems are.  But to most of the protesters, Big Brother is your friend, the companies that employ their parents are evil.

          • Some at Occupy have far left political views but not everybody.

            Many at Occupy were crying out for a complete destruction of the Federal Government.

            Describing Occupy as you have only serves to perpetuate your delusions about the group.


          • Here in our small town their out with thier signs all about something different. Strolling across traffic so you have to read their leftist crap. Because you’ll bet a ticket for running them down. They go out every saturday.

            Oh My bad, Every nice saturday. Evidently True leftist veiws are not important on rainy days.

        • “Occupy Sandy” is a Public Relations stunt.   My contacts in Hoboken say they have never seen them, and that their friends on Staten Island haven’t either.      The groups that ARE providing a lot of help and are getting no press at all are churches.

          • My neighbor just left for NJ with NC Baptist Men.  The crew will be serving around 14,000 meals per day.  His crew is replacing the previous crew.  The NC Baptist Men also provide trucks with laundry centers and showers.  There are work crews to cut trees and repair houses.  I have not been able to find any of this covered in the news.

            • you won’t see ANYTHING that makes the government look like the idiots that they are, in the MSM.

      15. One of the most important things is stored water in your house. You can buy one gallon jugs of water for about 69 cents each where I live. For long term storage you need new, food quality 55 gallon barrels. They’re not cheap but you should have enough water for 1 gallon of water per person per day. We have 1500 gallons stored in our basement.

        • I have 3,000 gallons in two tanks on the hill above the house constantly refilled by a spring, gravity fed into the house, and the excess flows in another line to the cows, chickens and two fish ponds.

          • Must be nice. I would love that!

      16. When the toilet paper runs out, I’ll go insane. Probably scoot on the carpeting like a dog with worms.

        • lol  ive been learnin from the dogs myself

        • I’ve put a bunch of Northern in one of my bedrooms. When that runs out, time to use pages from a phone book.

          • Buy paper napkins cheap and can store more because smaller size package

          • “””I’ve put a bunch of Northern in one of my bedrooms. When that runs out, time to use pages from a phone book.”””

            Or you could go down and get a stack of government forms and propaganda pamphlets.

            • I’m thinking I would dearly love to wipe my dirty fanny on IRS Form 1040 A through EZ!!!

              Trouble is, they’d make your crap stink worse that it already does.

        • Bidet?

          • Most of the world uses water.  These “preppers” ain’t gonna make it….

          •  A pool toy that is basically a cylinder with a plunger could be adapted to do the job. You don’t have to wash your butt with potable water. We are all used to flushing toilets with drinking water.

        • Use cut up cloth diapers to wipe with, put them in a diaper pail after use, and then wash them.  A space the size of one case of toilet paper would hold enough diapers to last for years.

        • Maudy,

          Thanks for the great laugh. This cold has put me down but I have to say that mental pic sure made me bust a gut..


      17. As a Joplin tornado survivor, I can tell you it’s not always a matter of head-in-the sand reliance. Many of our prepper friends–including those living outside of town–lost all their preparations. Unlike Sandy or Katrina, there was no warning or opportunity to bug out. There was no way to access caches of preps stored in the basement of a house that no longer existed. The looting reported in the media was NOT widespread; my police officer friends tell me it was out-of-town opportunists who didn’t realize how many concealed carry permits are floating around our community. We were all very thankful to the local churches who responded to (and continue to meet) the most immediate needs of the hardest-hit individuals, just as we were grateful to the Red Cross, Samaritan’s Purse, and even government agencies who aided us. Lots of like-minded individuals in the heartland. If anyone has suggestions for hiding anything from an EF-5, I’m all ears.

        • How about those tornado shelters they put in the ground? Those that rebuild, do they even consider this option?

          • Who builds a storm shelter when you have a basement?  Yes, most of those rebuilding are doing below-ground storm shelters–in fact, it’s difficult to sell a house within a 50-mile radius of Joplin these days without a basement or storm shelter.  But when your house collapses on top of the preps in the basement–or worse, sucks them out the top of your house–what then?  A mile wide and six miles long is a pretty big path.  Very few places to hide your “Plan B”.  Not making excuses, just trying to pick your brains for other ideas.

            • I will not underplay an F5 that scours the asphault right off the road and is a mile wide. They come in the night. Basements are a trap and I would either have a vault large enough for my family to get in or just a waterproof vault buried in  the yard with supplies and flee the storm. Return later for supplies. I know seconds count as hell comes down from the heavens. When warnings are given I would clothe myself with long pants and shirts. Heavy boots. Bike helmets or some type of head protection. You should have flashlights and a whistle tied to you. Leather gloves and maybe swim goggles for eye protection. Heavy jacket for flying objects. Chem lights are cheap and can give off light. Place items. under bed. Yes you may look stupid in 80 degree weather.

              • If you’re building new, secure your subfloor to the foundation with something stronger than nails. If you hide in a basement, don’t forget tools to hack your way out if necessary, and a way to reach the subfloor.

        • In an underground storm shelter, well stocked–with just enough room to stand while you ride out the storm. Then “camp out” in the yard.

        • IMHO tornadoes are different.  As you said they get no warning and more importantly the attitude of those affected is better.  An underground storm shelter may not be practical for those living in an apartment.

          It isn’t that I’m unwilling to help those in need, but that I have little sympathy for those who refuse to take responsibility for themselves while at the same time demanding that others meet their needs.

          I have a basement and also an off-grid retreat with caches buried every twenty miles along the walking route.  We could walk out of here with just the clothes on our backs and tomorrow we would have food and water, dry socks, first aid, protection, and other basic necessities.  Our caches cost very little because the mostly contain stuff we had lying around the house anyway.


        • Real good point, not everyone can afford concrete bunkers,

        • Kris,

          A local company here has several models that can and have stood up to the monsters ef5s. I know this because we have added them to some of the log cabins that I have built. Some of these homes had a standard basement but like you said it does no good when the has falls in. The company has a web site and the funny thing is its called  EF-5 storm shelters. The prices are very good and with the right grant you can get fema to pay for 1/2 of the price..



      18. Even a squirrel has sense enough to store food for hard times….I would be ashamed of myself knowing  a varmint had more sense than me. I bet the squirrels there aren’t hungry or cold. They prep up constantly. Build shelters for themselves. They find water to drink. Maybe some of those idiots on the east coast should find a squirrel and follow it around to see how they spend their day.

        • Hey!  Hey now!  I’m a Jersey girl and was well prepared for the storm.  Them squirrels make a fine pot pie too!

          Many of  us here decided that common sense just does not exist anymore.  It has been bred out of people.

          • Busy, that last part is so true, mainly because everyone has been taught to rely on utilities coming to their house. Those utilitiesa re nice, but there is nothing saying they will last forever. We all need to try and invision life without those utilities.

            • Many parents have been raising a generation that knows nothing but video games.  Unpluggd, they become unglued.

              Lucky for us, hubby and I have a fascination with old timey ways of doing things and equipment.  We have managed to pass that along to our 2 sons as well.  Not so much the grandkids though.  Their moms find it easier to park them in front of the video games.  Grrrrr!  


              • OOooohhh, so true!    I have family in NJ.   They were out of power for almost ten days.   The biggest issue for the teenagers was that they had no way to charge their iPads !



        • Squirrels spend their days eating our avocado trees and taking our fruit before it’s even ripe. THEY are looters. Screw them and their cuteness. I hate em.

      19. @ SLINGSHOT: The code is if you want to subcribe to Tess Pennington’s newsletter “Get Prepped Weekly”. Not for this site.

      20. All of you who wish more people were preped; be careful what you wish  for.  I have lived in a large Eastern city.  I for one have no wish for a bunch of stupid preppers.  Better they buy a case of beer and hope for the best.  Most of them will be of no use afterwards

        • @paranoid

          i gotta disagree with you on people being useless afterwards…. everybody has value, everyone can contribute, wether they do or not after they run out of suppies is another matter…  i myself value life, my family first then others… but first things first… you dont have to let the STUPID PREPPERS in to ur group or colony… that choice is yours, but everyone has the right to survive.. i would rather have a stupid prepper as you put it then someone who has stuck their head in the sand with me, because the stupid prepper had enough insight to do something and took  steps to be self reliant…. i guess for me it comes down to my view and value for human life….

          one more thing… there is 2 words that get mixed up in our volcabulary

          dumb and stupid, we use them as if they are the same and that is not the case.

          dumb means you dont know any better, and stupid means you know better and do it anyway

          dont rant and rave about stupid preppers if your not willing to help them be smarter and prep with wisdom

        • Paranoid,

          If I prep intelligently, no one will know I prep at all. So you don’t have to worry about which of your neighbors are prepping. Worry about yourself and how you will cope.

          Either you want to be a helpless victim digging through supermarket garbage dumpsters for scraps, and live in the Super Dome; or you don’t.

        • Paranoid     –  Sorry they hide comments that are ignorant. Even the ill inform should be heard ithelps show how relavent other sugestions are.

          That being said the more people that prep even just for 1 extra week, or 1 extra day. Are folks that will stay away one extra wek or day from your door.

          Sooner or later the beer runs out and they’ll need munchies

      21. For public health reasons, there is a city in the US that has proposed “Meatless Monday(s)”. It’s not mandatory, just a campaign to bring awareness to healthier eating habits.

        I think I’ll make it a point to take one friend and their family each month that doesn’t prep and declare SHTF Saturday’s.

        A full day of, no cars, no fast food, no utilities, no news, and no phone. As we progress through the day ask that they first find their family. If they are separated at the time the SHTF and they don’t have a designated place and time to meet, how will you find them if they have been forced to flee their home.

        As the designated provider ask what and how they will feed them? Keep them warm? How will you keep them safe? If they have suffered any type of injury while fleeing the home ask that they treat them, while knowing full well that they don’t even have the most basic of first aid supplies.

        At days end they will have to find or build a shelter that will not only keep the family warm and dry, but offer some degree of safety from roaming marauders.

        I can’t help but to think that if that doesn’t drive the point home they are already lost to the world of sheeples.

        It might even help fill unforeseen holes in my own plan; at their expense!

        ; )

        • Primative camping comes to mind.

          • primitive camping means waking up with a back ache and no running water , is that close enough?

            • @ deano.

              Do a week without a bath and you find out who your friends are. ;0)

            • Try sleeping in the fork of a tree, with your BOB secured to the next branch over…

      22. Speaking of a breakdown does anyone else care to try to breakdown this one for me.  Some of it is a bit much for me to wrap my head around the legal terms with all the court docs.  Some reality here or crock of sh!t?

      23. Sandy shows how limited we are with Elect. power.  take down the grid,  we are in hard times.  Now every one who ever thought about doing damage to America was told how to by the media.   Transformers are hard to get and are on backorder….

        Preppers  will last a little while if the grid is down, but at what cost.  Lots of folks are just to stupid to understand about prepping.


        • That was no secret. And you forgot about wind and sun. Got gold tuesday?

      24. @ All,


        As of 14:01 (Central) the NOAA Electron flux plot has strongly inflected downward, the NOAA GOES 13/14 SatMag has also deflected significantly. The same pattern was apparent some 6 hours prior to the Solar Flaring last evening. Additionally, the NOAA GOES 14 X-Flux plot shows a return to a slowly increasing level of 1.0-8.0 Angstrom emissions.

        • off topic (sort of) for JOG, BI, copperhead…mid-atlantic had 4.9 and 4.8 at (29 and42).  BI had said watch (18 and 58) for a “beeline” to New Madrid.  is this close enough???

          • Hi Kimintn,


            Dunno, BTW, it helps if you specify the time/occurance…makes it a ‘little’ easier to judge cause/effect 🙂 Presuming that these are occurances in the ‘here/now’ then quite possibly…we’re seeing some notable deglections in the terrestrial magnetometers at present. Have been watching the extra-terrestrial effects like a HAWK since last night’s M-flaring…I can tell you that the GOES 13/14 SatMag sensors have just went vertically downward….we’re waiting to see if this is a repeat of last night or if this is signalling a terrestrial souce/origin. As always, “Watch, watch, watch…..Think, think, think!” 🙂  Good job, we need all the ‘eyes’ we can get!

            • sorry about that – was today 2012-11-13 @ 0621 UTC and 0648 UTC.  had to go to archieve to find it; apparently noooo one felt it …’cept for some fish.

        • @ All,


          Addenda; The Kiruna/Lycksele magnetometers are showing large deflections at this time, as are the magnetometers at Gakona (Lesser effect).

        • @ All,


          Am M-2.8 flare is in-progress at this time, having peaked at 20:54 UTC.

      25. I don,t believe it. Part of the 3 7 30 plan that my group has followed since our first op plan was ever agreed on.

        Add 3 day dont move.      7 days only if preemptive defence is needed. (Offence)
        30 Days  Building one floor a day.    Gated area 500 ft.       Farm/boonies 1/3 daylight travel.

      26. Everyone should remember the Lehman Bros fiasco happened over one weekend. It can indeed happen very quickly and one must be prepared as SS Cindy showed, FEMA isn’t. But thats just plain terrorist talk according to DHS, now I am really confused. Am I a terrorist because I want to live? I am trying to envision the person DHS wants us to be and keep visualizing cattle in the feedlot next to the abbatoir.

      27. I was driving a truck down through in Louisiana right after Katrina. It was one of the most awesome things that I ever saw. You’d have to be there to believe the wreckage. It was like a scene from hell. I’m actually surprised that Hollywood hasn’t made a movie of what happened and how devastating it was, not just the actual storm, but the ensuing actions of the people. Those that were doing brave things to help others and those doing the opposite benefiting from the disaster and taking advantage of the situation. I personally believe that Katrina was much worse than what Sandy did. People are still feeling the effects of that storm and what it did. The company I worked for was based out of New Orleans. That company is no more. We lost are jobs about two weeks after that. I don’t even live in that state. A lot of people are going to be feeling pain from Sandy for a long time. The consequences have not even played out yet.

      28. I’ve been in NYC and the biggest alarming thing for me was the gas rationing.  There was still food everywhere and if you couldn’t find it, then, well, culling the herd is where it is at.  I lived in two places where there were complete collapse, in Russia during the fall in 1991 (but didn’t get awful until 1993) and people were selling ANYTHING in the streets to get food.  Complete cluster with no food on shelves, go outside of the main cities of Moscow, St. Petersburg and you had even more of nothing but was grown at the dachas.  The other place that people forget is Haiti after the earthquake a year or so back.  Now that was an utter collapse.  There was absolutely nothing.  You could get nothing, find nothing, and NOTHING was going to show up but the Red Cross and Sean Penn.  I’ve never seen anything like it in my life.  Towns were completely wiped out and it being an island it took MONTHS for things to show up.  Even if it was a poor country and people knew how to survive with nothing, there was still so much death and devastation that it was mind numbing.

        Now you have an earthquake of that magnitude in a populated area in the US where people freak out over gas rationing or the fact they have no heat (which is a luxury in most of the world) and you would have an absolute breakdown of society.   I’ve seen in, and in my opinion, the more ‘gentrified’ where people can buy basically whatever they want, when there isn’t anything to buy anymore because it was stolen or the trucks stopped rollin’ heaven help those people

      29. I’d like to send a copy of this excellent article by Tess to my E-Mail, so I can re-read it greater detail later.  Try as I might, I can’t do that.  Would there be someone out there who would be so kind as to use their computer skills to send this article & its comments to me?  A thousand thanks. (Donald) E-Mail = [email protected]

        • Right-click on your web browser, select “Save Web Page As…” (or similar)


          That should peel off a copy for you.

          • 🙂 thanks OQ… a most excellent solution ..I wasn’t even thinking along that line.

        • @Dpnald – I’m not sure how to email the article, but an alternative is to highlight the text you want >left click and hold while dragging over the data> while highlighted use a copy command > Ctrl +C or right click and choose copy.   Then paste > Ctrl +P (right click, paste) in word document or start an email and paste in the body.

          TIP: Sometimes it’s pernickety if you don’t have Word or the email open, the clipboard gets lost in transition or some gremlin or something a real tech could tell you about.

          I am not trying to be trite if you already know this, just a technique in case you don’t.  I use it a lot, especially  notes from the kind folk here that keep me ‘informed’.  Hat tip to those who know who they are 😉

          p.s. I’ve been following Tess for a very long time.  She is definitely a ‘go-to’ resource.

          Wee ~..~



        • Dpnald Wagner,

          Also don’t forget to go to her website and make a print out of 52 weeks to preparedness. It is also stacked full of great tips but I suggest getting a ton of paper and a good 3 ring binder (Lots of Info).


      30. I would rather face 1000 natural disasters(hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes), 1000 disease epedemics, or even 1000 financial cliffs(I can deal with these things)rather than 100 nuclear reactors having complete meltdowns!  That’s right people!  History shows radiation is not healthy for people,…Kysktym, Russia 1957, 3 mile Island, USA 1979, Chernobyl, Russia 1986, Fukushima, Japan name a few.  The only prep a person could do in this event is;…prepare spiritually, make peace with God.  God knows everyone in the world, and the lessons each of us needs to learn to move forward in a relationship with him.

        Having said that, the U.S. has over 100 nuclear reactors, and anyone, anyone with a brain cell left knows when these facilites go down either by an act of nature and or terrorists…it simply won’t matter.  The whole northern hemisphere will be left uninhabitable…so in short, I am prepared for diseases, disasters, devils, death, divorce, debt, and deception.  A.B.C. All Bases Covered.

      31. many will just not listen.

        it’s too much for them to wrap their minds around the thought that life as we know it will change in an instant.  it’s almost like it overloads their thought capability and instead of changing how they live…pull the veil back over their eyes and keep on living asleep.  that is why, as preppers, we must do our best to not only prepare in materials..but with our minds and thoughts as well.  it will do no good to have that stockpile when you can’t seem to move yourself from hiding in the closet.

        i drop seeds of info and realization in to anyone who gives me an opening. all the while staying pretty tight lipped about what i’ve got myself.

        ive stored extra in my preps for family in the event that things completely fall apart and we do have to gather at our bugout.  do your best to feel people out without showing your hand..unless you trust them enough to do so.  i’ve spent quite a lot of time talking with my neighbor directly across the street and feel relieved and blessed that they’ve started stocking and storing food/water/ammo of their own.  no matter how prepared you are…you can’t take on all the baddies on your own.  you’ll have to have some sort of back-up. it will be imperative to establish a community that you can trust and depend on others, and they can depend on you. but do your best to weed out the moochers…i’ve told my neighbor straight up, anyone is welcome if they’ve been prepping for themselves..but if someone comes to my house expecting for me to welcome them in, while pulling the food from my children’s mouths to theirs…they’ve come to the wrong door.

        do your best to take care of you and yours.  i really feel 2013 is going to be interesting…..

      32. @ D Wagner ….  you don’t need anyone to email this article & comments.  Just access this site whenever you want, however many x’s you want.

      33. YH, what you said in #842576 is spot on.   If those people don’t know how to appreciate what the out-of-state people are trying to do for them, the volunteers ought to leave for their own safety and just let those idiots suffer.   Deano, i have to agree with what you say in #842755.    Althiough it is proper to look out for yourself first,   We would be surprised to discover the skills other people have and the information we could share with one another in order to give us a better chance at survival.    This article reminds me of an article submitted by Be Informed back in the summer titled “How Horrific It Would Be For The Nonprepper”.   I think it’s safe to say that everyone who visits this site come from many if not all walks of life.   Just like everyone else here,  I come here to learn and share info with other like-minded people.   Any newcomers to the site i welcome them and tell them don’t be afraid to ask questions. I and certainly some others will be glad to help them any way possible.   For those who do wake up and seriously want to learn about prepping, we should give them all the info we have and even direct them to other sites devoted to survival.   it means fewer enemies to worry about later.   Look,  I dread what is coming as much as everyone else here and I’m scared as hell at what I may have to do in order to stay alive.   It’s going to be the same for all of us in any post-SHTF scenario.   I fear we will all have to do things we would never have considered in the past just to survive.   My biggest fear is being confronted by anyone coming to my place for my supplies and what I may have to do to stop them, but if it comes to that, then so be it.    Braveheart

        • braveheart,

          Well said! No sane person who knows the score and knows what’s approaching is resting 100% easy. The “Post-Sandy” conditions in the northeast was just a quick glimpse through the looking glass on how people will react after the golden 72 hour window passes and basic utilities are not restored.

          Sometimes we get to pick our fights, but not this time. At least this time we have a little fore-warning. Cheers.

      34. Haiti still has yet to enter that 8-30 day recovery period.  I enjoy these articles a lot, but there is that word RECOVERY, that comes up way too often with any article.  Most of the masses feel that if they just last long enough, that someone will come to rescue everybody.  This notion is a huge reason why most people don’t store up weeks or months worth of food, they are on that days storage theme at best.  The mass media talks about having a 3 day supply of what you need, well how about a THREE MONTH minimum stockpile.

        I can think of a dozen scenarioes right off the top of my head in which there won’t be a recovery period for at least weeks, months, years, or NEVER.  Oh, I might as well mark them down:

        1. San Andreas breaks, 50% of more of it.

        2. Cascadia fault breaks, 8.8 or larger.

        3. New Madrid fault breaks similar to 1812.

        4.The Caribbean fault breaks at a 8.5 and sends tsunami at Atlantic and Gulf Coat residents.

        5. Yellowstone erupts at least VEI 7.

        6. Long Valley caldera in Sierra Nevada mountains erupts, at least VEI 7.

        7. EMP from the sun or terrorist with large enough nuclear weapon.

        8. Bio attack on nationwide scale or natural virus gets loose with high fatality rate.

        9. Jericho TV series type of attack on the country.

        10. Hurricane Category 5 destroys Houston, including all petrochecmical plants.

        11. Middle East war that bottles up the world’s oil, not just for the U.S. but all other non oil producing countries.

        12. Widespread sudden climate change, super storms reacting to rapid temperature raise or drop, possibly due to solar problems.

        This is just 12 of very possible or inevitable events to come.  There are different levels of SHTF, the mega SHTF means that no help is coming and those that have not prepared and those that cannot adapt and make do with what is left are going to be statisitcs in some future World Alamnac.

        No one should just be satisified with a days long preparation plan, everyone should do their best to aim for the sky and take advantage of any and all opportunities to add to their stockpile when they can.  Old survival motto, you never really have enough of everything you will need.

        • hi BI – saw a 4.8 and 4.9 from this am at (29 and 42) along mid-atlantic.  time for us along the new madrid to get our water wings out yet?

          • @ kimintn.  Those two earthquake on the Mid Atlantic Ridge were actually a result of energy and the North American plate redirected back from the central portion of the San Andreas fault and the very southern most portion of the New Madrid.

      35. Quote from article above: “For whatever reason, 3-5 days following a disaster is the bewitching hour. During this short amount of time, the population slowly becomes a powder keg full of angry, desperate citizens. A good example is the chaos that ensued in New Orleans following the absence of action from the local government or a timely effective federal response in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.”

        I like that “for whatever reason.” So evasive.

        Katrina did not come ashore in New Orleans. The worst affected areas were in northern Louisiana and southern Mississippi. When FEMA finally began to move, its trucks passed right through these areas on their way to Nawlins. Whereas there was, indeed, rioting and looting and sundry forms of human behavioral nastiness in the city, there was little or none in the areas which Katrina hit hardest.

        Why do you suppose that is?

        If you must have another flood to compare the one in New Orleans to, then I refer you to the flooding of the Red River near Fargo, North Dakota, several years ago. Similar conditions with those in flooded New Orleans, but without the violence or the looting. Again: why do you think it turned out that way?

        Well, there really is no real mystery here. New Orleans was inhabited, at the time of the flood, mostly by blacks who had remained in the city to enjoy the chance to loot department stores, jewelry stores, and gun stores in the chaos following the hurricane. On the other hand, northern Louisiana, southern Mississippi, and Fargo, North Dakota, are primarily inhabited by white people.

        • Congratulations Hispanics!   Welcome to the good ol’ U.S os A.
          You had a choice, and you chose us…. The Democrat Party!  New lapdogs to lay on the floor, on the left side of your NEW MASTER’S rocking chair. Right side has been taken since the early 60’s.   Dem’s get 95% of the black vote. Are you so stupid to think the Dem’s do more than give them “lip service”? The Black  vote is automatic. And you fools fall right in line. To have your families corrupted. Have your work ethic destroyed. Have your religious beliefs mocked. Have your children end up in jail. Have your vote taken for granted. Fools, all.

          Ask yourself. What good would the black population be to the Democrats, if they grew to be self-sufficient? If they didn’t depend on Big-Bro Government for their food and shelter? They are like my 2 dogs. Love to see me come home, all noisy and jumping around. Because I give out the treats that sit safely out of their reach on the counter. They each get … I DECIDE THAT! and they still go apeshit when I come home every day. Just like our “well trained” black population.

          You know who I pity? ( and I pity few). Hard working, responsible folks who’s skin happens to be black. Lumped in with the other poor lapdog souls by default.  And I don’t fault the blacks. I fault the peices of shit who have made careers out of keeping a whole segment of society like zoo animals.

          Congratulations Hispanics. The “NEW BLACKS”. Soon to be dependant, ruined, beholden and taken for granted by the Democrats. Fools.


          • not to discredit your post ..not one bit, im with you on this


            .. but there are quite a few white trash bitches and jackasses that fall right in there with what your saying


            just sayin’

      36. When people run over one another or assault one another over a new product that comes out because they HAVE TO HAVE IT NOW, how can you expect people to be civil to others when they have to live without everyday conveniences, and have to go without anything? Prepare? They are too busy buying the latest whatever to think about putting anything away for a rainy day. It”s sad to say but much of the human race has become nothing more than SELFISH, savage beasts.

        • ladyliberty,

          You are 100% correct.

        • Wait till they try to look up info on the solar flares some guy was talking about. On;y to find their ipad and phone doesn’t work. lol

      37. This article started out with a lame comment: “If we can all agree on one thing, it’s that the government and disaster organizations alike grossly underestimate how dependent the majority of the population is on them during and after a disastrous event takes place.”

         The government(especially) and most disaster organizations “do” know that most of the population is “highly” dependent upon them.  The difference being that the gov.  (state and Fed ) doesn’t really give a rats ass unless it puts $$ or votes into someone’s pocket.  The relief organizations on a private or local level can only do so much.  Thank God for them.

         I trust the Red Cross about as far as I can fling them.  In an organization this big it comes with corruption, but most people want to ignore that fact.  Remember 9-11?  There was billions raised.  A year or so later, when people were interviewed, the truth started coming out.  People that needed help from the Red Cross was either turned down or ignored.  Some single moms who lost their husbands were left unable to keep their homes.  The stories went on and on.  The Red Cross was later questioned about the “excess” funds that were diverted (probably into private hands) and their response was that they had taken care of everyone that came foreward asking for help.  What a fuc*n’ scam.

         The Am Cancer Society,Am Heart, RedCross, Unitedway, etc.,etc., are all a bunch of scammers.

         This article does make some very good points for newbies, but that’s about it.


      38. Just watched a bit of doomsday preppers.
        Someone was prepping for the eruption of Yellowstone.
        The ‘experts’ stated that there is a 0.004% chance
        of this ever happening. What the ‘hey?’
        Maybe I am overcompansating or something…..

        • Any actuaries or insurance folks out there?  What is the “official” percentage (chance) that my house will burn down?  Can’t be all that high. But insurance is a little more than a good idea.

          (has I type, Hannity is about to report on Texas Secession story!)



          • Not sure what the actuaries are , but coming from a guy that had his house burn down 6 months after he bought it,, that 400$ policy was the best 400 bucks I ever spent

            a year later all new shit, and a new home..oh and BTW the insurance co did try to rack me over the coals on the next home I kicked em to the curb and went with the next company that stayed in line..and dont ever let them tell you how its it yourself

        • @ Emily.  Again, skew averages to not frighten the sheep that like to watch the preppers like some exhibition at a circus.  Yellowstone erupting is far higher than this because it has been 640,000 years since the last eruption.  During the first thousand years the odds are very low, when time goes by the chances go up each year.  You can play the odds in Vegas and see this firsthand.  With nat. geo. ridiculous asinine odds like this the house would ALWAYS win every bet.  The actual odds of an eruption rapidly approach 50% upon reaching the average time duration of eurption. The actual odds right now are between 20% to near 50% depending on that average time between eruptions that no one can be sure of.  Each year even that low ball number of 20% goes up about .004% each year.  See how they use showsmanship in TV, they don’t tell the exact truth so they can make the viewing audience come back at laugh at the preppers.  It is all about sick rating.

          The people at nat.geo. cannot be possibly that stupid to be that math ignorant to believe for one nanosecond that those odds are accurate.  .004% would be the odds of another eruption during the first year after it erupted 640,000 years ago.  Each year those odds will get higher and higher.   Anyone that took statistics in college knows this, any gambling knows this.  There is a high time for maximum years between eruptions and a low time.  National Geographic to coddle to the audience that doesn’t want to be scared like rabbits, will not be clear.  Upon the year before the maximum time between eruptions they will still give this sh^& for brains odds, when in reality it it closer to 100%.  No one allow this pure horsecrap odds fool you, they are purposely slanted to protect their viewing audience.  This is the way true chance works as the predictions of earthquakes has shown.

          Now, I personally feel that the southern hemisphere is where you have to worry about the next supervolcano going off.

      39. Antibiotics…   I promised someone I would report on my recent order from Dr. V. ( advertised on this site ) Package arrived when promised, contents appear to be in factory sealed, properly labeled commercial containers, all having expiration dates reasonably far into the future.  Doc V was helpful in answering questions, replying very promptly.  Won’t know about contents until I try them, which hopefully, will be never.   I am happy with my purchase, price, packaging  and all responses from  NW Medical Prep.

        • Thanks for the review, I’ve been thinking about going that route myself.

      40. A Hungarian Joke: During the June 1967 war, a Hungarian meets his friend. “Why do you look so happy?” he asks. “I heard that the Israelis shot down six Soviet-made MiGs today,” his friend replies.

        The next day, the friend looks even more jubilant. “The Israelis downed another eight MiGs,” he announces.

        On the third day, the friend is crestfallen. “What happened? Didn’t the Israelis down any MiGs today?” the man asks. “They did,” the friend answers, “But today someone told me that the Israelis are Zionist Jews!”

      41. Thank you Be Informed for shedding light on the
        ridiculous % that the nat. geo. puts out on the doomsday
        prepper show. I think it is good to get this information
        out there. Yes, I did take college statistics.
        I have a bachelor degree. I will watch the Caribbean
        plate as you mentioned. I wish I could ignore the signs
        around me, but I have awakened now.

      42. I’m sure somebody can tell me, I’ve got a sealed package of 300cc oxygen absorbers.with the little eye in it saying they are still useable. When I open the package to use some, what do I do with the rest of them to keep them good? Can I pack them into a small glass jar and put the lid on tight until I need some more?

        • Put them into a Food Saver bag and vacuum out the air.  Food Saver units can be bought at Wal-mart for about $100 +/-.  An essential prepping item, IMO..

          • I agree. This is what my family does to prolong the shelf life of oxygen absorbers too.

            • thanks guys

      43. Is anyone aware of a site that discusses prepping?  Some posts at this site are great and helpful. Others (most) mentally masturbate about politics. I can’t think of a single politician who aid sincere about doing the right thing.  Why waste time blaming, bitching, whining, etc?  I want to do something useful.  The politic posts have gotten out of hand on number and stupid comments.  We were where we are. Quit sitting around talking about crap. Get busy.

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