In my opinion, these are the best of the best of survival and preparedness articles gleaned from the 'net.

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

7 Steps For Post Apocalypse Survival

By Gerald Thomson

When we hear about the apocalypse we think of things such as judgment day, and the 4 horsemen of the apocalypse. We also think of 2012, of mysterious planets colliding with our world, or some paranoid crackpot spewing on about government conspiracies involving aliens and what not.
The reality is that our civilization will come to an end, we simply cannot keep up with the amount of usage of resources while the globs population explodes. I don't know when the end will come, perhaps it's already started I don't know. What I do know is that each and every one of us needs to be prepared to survival the aftermath of a collapse in civilization.
So what can you the average hard working person do with a limited budget and bills to pay do to prepare for this event. Here are 5 steps you can take to get yourself post apocalypse ready. For more useful information please visit my website The Razors Edge or my blog Beyond The Wire for more information of tips, advice and videos of survival tips.

1. Stay in shape or get in shape
You don't have to have a perfect body, but the better shape your in the faster wounds will heal, your immune system will function better, your confidence will improve, and your ability to think clearly under stress will greatly improve. You should concentrate on strength building and endurance building exercises, such as running, hiking, swimming. Practice hiking with a backpack or " Bug Out Bag " to get your body used to carrying a heavier load. Make sure to eat right, this doesn't mean you can't have beer and hot-dogs, just don't go overboard.

2. Take courses
Knowledge is power especially in the post apocalypse world, learn as much as you can. Some examples of what you should learn are basic mechanics, first aid, basic electrical courses, carpentry or some form of handy man type training, self defense, and firearms training. Most of these courses can be learned in the evenings or weekends so they won't greatly affect your schedule and personnel time. For firearms and self defense training it's important to always keep this skills up to date with regular practice. For self defense one should attend classes at least twice a week, for firearms training after your initial course, one should go to shooting ranges at least once a month.

3. Know the ground
In the event of a collapse or apocalypse you need to understand what resources you have available. You need to know how you can get out of your neighborhood or city as fast as possible. Plan escape routes, be sure to have alternate routes and plans to stay ahead of things you can't predict. This can be as simply as keeping a map of your city or town in your home office or anywhere where it's easily accessible. On this map plat possible routes you and your family can use to escape your location. Have a rendezvous location that everyone knows how to get to in the event someone gets separated from the group.

4. Have a plan
Keep the plan simple, complex plans have a tendency to get messed up very fast. For example when escaping your location you should pick a general direction where you feel you have the best chance of survival, rather then a specific town. Chances are good that town may be hostile, or not exist anymore. Like the above statement have alternate plans, again keep the back up plans simple to understand, follow and direct to others in your group.

5. Keep your cool
Will a collapse be extremely stressful, yes. Will you be tired from lack of sleep, be dehydrated, and afraid, very much so. However you need to keep your wits about you. If you are in charge of a group or family and you start to panic or crack what message does that send to the others, especially if those others are children. It will cause them to panic, once you and your group panic then stupid decisions are made, and those stupid decisions will most likely get somebody killed. Even if your ready to fall apart inside its vital to stay calm to keep your group calm who may be looking up to to protect and lead them.

6. Have a bug out bag
A bug out bag is a military term for a soldiers kit that is always packed and ready to go on a moments notice. Having a bag full of essential items you need to survive such as water purification tablets, fire starter kit, radio, rations, and a first aid kit will keep you and your group alive. If in a group you can also have multiple bug out bags to maximize the amount of gear, food, and water you can store which will increase your survival chances many times over. To learn how to build your own bug out bag, or get supplies for one please visit my website The Razors Edge (The Link is at the bottom of this article)

7. Research
Find out if there are any government shelters, or locations where the government will try to rebuild or gather survivors to protect them in the event of a collapse. Check forums and search the Internet to find like minded individuals to learn advice, and help develop a plan of action and possible contact list of other survivors who can help you.
These are just a few ideas you can use to prepare for the post apocalypse before it happens. for more information on survival tips please feel free to visit my website The Razors Edge a post apocalypse survival guide to find other useful information. You can also contact me via my comments page, and if you need supplies visit my online supply store located on my website to find items you can use to prepare.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Gerald_Thomson


http://EzineArticles.com/?7-Steps-For-Post-Apocalypse-Survival&id=3983891

EMP Attacks…Our Power Grid and Communications


[Men working on telephone lines, probably near...
This is the second installment to help you understand a little better just exactly what an EPM attack is and what may happen to our families and society as we know it should one occur. This week, how the power grid and communications could be affected.  Once we understand the best and worst case scenarios we will look at what we can do to mitigate the effects and to prevent  and protect ourselves before an attack.
“The North American economy and the functioning of the society as a whole are critically dependent on the availability of electricity, as needed, where and when needed. The electric power system in the US and interconnected areas of Canada and Mexico is outstanding in terms of its ability to meet load demands with high quality and reliable electricity at reasonable cost. However, over the last decade or two, there has been relatively little large-capacity electric transmission constructed and the generation additions that have been made, while barely adequate, have been increasingly located considerable distances from load for environmental, political, and economic reasons. As a result, the existing National electrical system not infrequently operates at or very near local limits on its physical capacity to move power from generation to load. Therefore, the slightest insult or upset to the system can cause functional collapse affecting significant numbers of people, businesses, and manufacturing. It is not surprising that a single EMP attack may well encompass and degrade at least 70% of the Nation’s electrical service, all in one instant. ” (2004 EMP Commission Report)
An EMP attack on the electrical grid is different from a normal power failure in the following ways:
1. The EMP impact is instantaneous and occurs simultaneously over a very large geographic area. There are no warning signs such as flicking lights, and consequently no time for a response to prevent damage.
2. EMPs release pulses so all the damage is not done at first. Lines and components are damaged and when the second pulse arrives it can then disable a component which was previously damaged but not destroyed, this time destroying it.
3. The power grid requires other services to remain properly functioning. For example they require a continuous supply of fuel. They require communications networks and transportation. When these systems are destroyed also it makes restoration of the grid impossible.
According to the EMP commission report restoration of the power grid could takes weeks or months. The grid is divided into islands so as one is taken down the next can be protected. After an EMP attack some of these islands may have been protected and have power. In this case restoration can be accomplished using the working grids and would take only weeks. If however, the neighboring grids had also been destroyed the restoration could take months.
Because there are so many different components with numerous manufacturers, and various levels of protection built into some of the components it is too expensive and virtually impossible to create a protection that will work for all.
Telecommunications systems would be disrupted and/or disabled. During and in the weeks following the attack on the World Trade Centers on 9/11 communications were disrupted. Remember they shut down the stock exchange because of this. Just think about the effects of an EMP which wiped out miles and miles of electric grid and not just a few blocks.
“The telecommunication system consists of four basic and primary physical systems: wireline, wireless, satellite, and radio. In general, the national telecommunications infrastructure may be farther advanced then others in its ability to address the particular consequences of EMP. This is due in large measure to the recognized alternative threats to this system, as well as broad recognition of its importance to society. The three primary and separate systems (excluding radio) that make up the broad telecommunications infrastructure each provide specialized services; they also overlap heavily. Thus the loss or degradation of any one of these somewhat redundant subsystems subjects the remaining functional subsystems to heavier service loads.
Each of these four primary systems is unique in their capability to suffer insult from EMP. The wireline system is robust but will be degraded within the area exposed to the EMP electromagnetic fields. The wireless system is technologically fragile in relation to EMP, certainly in comparison to the wireline one. In general, it may be so seriously degraded in the EMP region as to be unavailable. Low Earth Orbit (LEO) communications satellites may also suffer radiation damage as a result of one or more high-altitude nuclear bursts that produce EMP.
The radio communication sub-system of the national telecommunications infrastructure is not widespread, but where it is connected to antennas, power lines, telephone lines, or other extended conductors, it is also subject to substantial EMP damage. However, radio communication devices not so connected or not connected to such conductors at the time of the EMP attack are likely to be operable in the post-attack interval.” (2004 EMP Commission Report)
Destruction of this system would mean we may not be able to get information from media sources. We may not be able to contact family or friends to check on them or to get help. The police and fire departments, as well as hospital and private ambulances, may not be capable of contact. And, these agencies may have no way to communicate with each other to maintain civil controls. The government may have no way to communicate with other government agencies. Power companies and other infrastructure agencies such as water and sanitation may not be able to call for the help they need to reestablish services.
We could be returned to life as the pioneers knew it in 1850.

Organize your Preps so you don't have to look around for them.

When it comes to be organized it can be hit or miss. Some do quite well while other lack either the means of being organized or the knowhow as they have never learned it.


The best way for most people to organize is to use labels. When it comes to prepping this could be a lifesaver as you may have a “Hectic” moment and forget what is where. The first step is using plastic bins with labels. This is very simple actually and doesn’t take much time at all if you have a communal effort with your family.

Figure out how you would like to “Bin” items. It can be whatever your heart desires in these bins. My method is pretty simple and makes like easy. I have a bin(s) for summer camping cloths, winter clothing, 3 for fishing (one fresh water, one salt water and one is gear but I think I may need to make a 4th bin for clothing), two for hunting (clothes in one and the other has all my hunting stuff), 2 for trapping (one small one for my lines and such the other is for my small traps), and I could go on and on. I do this with quite a bit of the items I own so I can grab and go and also so I know it is always in a good place that is dry and will last.

Then you have a food prepping bin. This can be more complicated. I have multiple bins for food stuff. A 5 gallon for flour only (don’t forget to put bay leaves in the flour), a 5 gallon for rice, a 5 gallon for spices and so on and I buy new buckets for this stuff and I have found reusing 5 gallon buckets can at time contaminate the food you put in it. When it comes to food, cans are heavy so I usually do not put them in a bin and besides rotating the canned food is always a good idea. But I do use the bins for dried good. I have a bin for pasta items. I have a bin for dehydrated food stuffs. I have a bin for fun food (brownies, mac and cheese). But I also have a bin for the wet storage food stuff like canola oil, olive oil, syrup etc. The reason I put those in a bin is if I ever have an earthquake I do not have to worry about it spilling and contaminating the rest of my food.

So while I put everything in the bins, I grab a notebook and write what I put into each bin. Some people do lists (which I think is awesome) on their computer. But the notebook paper does fine for me as I take things out and put new stuff in it, so it is easier to just scribble out what was taken out and replaced. Besides, there are times where a pen and paper is cheaper than a new ink cartridge. It is also a good idea (if you are inclined) to put the expiration date on most food stuffs to rotate them out. It makes life easy for you in the long run.

I also have a cheap label maker with a few extra label heads. The labels should be simple and easy. Such as… Food: Pasta. You know you have a list in your bin and just by glancing at the label you know what bin it is.

You can also make or buy (your choice this is your project) shelves that will fit your bins so you know where everything is at one given time. I put dehydrated on top as it is the lightest in most cases. And then work down. My canned food is separate from my binned food.

Lists for your bins should be simple. What is the item, how much do you have (4 bx *boxes* or 3 ea *each*) and do not forget expiration dates. In most cases prepped food can last well past the expiration dates. But I found out that if you buy those awesome prepped food stuff with a fruit (like raspberry bars) that they do go bad.

You should also make lists for your B.O.B.’ and if you have a Vehicles and what you have in them, especially if you are like me and have more than one. It will make life easier in the long run.

Here are some easy organizational links to look at. Some are fun organizational website, some are more informative on how best to help your prep.

http://www.organize.com/
http://www.myorganizedlife.com/
http://ineedmoretime.com/tips.htm

Natural Alternatives for Child Emotional Wellness


Many of today’s children, for one reason or another, suffer from emotional wellness issues.  They are typically prescribed medicines that alter their personality.  Anyone who has a child on these prescribed medicines know that it takes up to 8 weeks to get the body acclimated to the medication.  And, once the child stops taking these medication,  in some cases their bodies go through a withdrawal effect.  And in some cases, the withdrawal effects are so bad, the child has to get on withdrawal medicines, such as clonidine.  If a long term disaster were to occur, there could be a possibility that there would be no access to these medicines.  Are there any alternatives to these medicines that children could use?

Wholesome Diet

Quality, fresh foods can have a profound effect on the mind.  A change in diet can make all the difference.  Studies have shown that foods high in fatty acids (Omega 3 and 6) and foods high in protein can have a deep impact on the mood and attention span.  Eating the right founds can literally change the chemical makeup of how a child reacts to his world.  Removing sugar, artificial flavorings and red dyes from diets can make a big difference.

Natural Herbs

  • Making a tea out of certain herbs such as chamomile (Matricaria Recutita) and catnip (Nepeta Cataria) have calming agents that help keep the child calm.  These are also excellent teas for children how have problems sleeping at night. 
  • Skull cap (skullcap lateriflora)  is another herb that has been  shown to assist in mental disorders as well as a wide range of nervous disorders.  Specifically, the sedative properties this herb has helps calm a person and alleviate anxiety and settles nerves.  This herb is also used as a sleeping aide for some.  1 tsp. of dried leaves to 1 cup of boiling water.  Steep for 1-2 minutes.  This tea will create soothing and stimulating feelings.
  • St. John’s Wort (Hypericum Perforatum) assists in healthy neurotransmitter balance.  These neurotransmitters, such as dopamine and serotonin assist in cognitive focus and cell to cell communication. 
  • Passion Flower (Passiflora Incarnata) relaxes the nervous system and relieves tension, anxiety and irritability that arises from everyday stress.

Supplements

There are natural supplements on the market designed specifically for children that have combined herbs and special vitamins to curb the symptoms of anxiety and panic, assist in mental clarity and help suppress irritability.  For example, Clarocet Jr. is a natural supplement that includes herbs like St. John’s Wort, Lemon Balm, Passion Flower, German Chamomile Flower, Bacopa, 5-HTP and a combination of essential vitamins such as vitamin C, Magnesium and Zinc.  These supplements can be purchased without a prescription and could be used during a long term disaster.  The great benefit of having these supplements on hand is that they will last for at least 2-3 years, if properly stored.  Discussing these supplements with the child’s doctor would be beneficial to the child’s well being.  Supplements are relatively inexpensive and are a great natural alternative to the medications that are currently being prescribed.
Depending on the diagnosis of the child, there are natural alternatives available that can help alleviate some of the symptoms the child experiences.  With proper research, a parent could find proper alternatives to have as a back up in the case that an unforeseen disaster were to occur.   If a parent is concerned about the possibility of a long term disaster, they should speak with their child’s doctor to discuss any alternatives the child can use in lieu of their existing prescription.

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