There are plenty of disasters that people conjure up in their minds as having the potential to happen. Some individuals may have had previous experiences that set the tone for future preparation while others just ease on the side of caution. Regardless of which end you are on, most people are reactive during SHTF (Shit Hits The Fan) disaster scenarios. They tend to wait until something happens, then make decisions on what they should do. Sometimes it is best to plan for the worst in addition to planning for the most-likely. Those who prepare for these scenarios can even fall into the same reactive category. They may buy plenty of necessities, research all they can, and even take on additional training, yet typically fail to realize that they missed key assets and gear to adequately deal with the SHTF disaster they are faced with.
While your action may be reactive once it is go-time, if you are proactive enough in the forefront, you’ll be able to easily deal with any emergency situation you encounter. Instead of focusing on how to plan for a catastrophic incident, let’s examine the first ten things you should do once you have recognized that there has been a disastrous shift in the functioning of the region’s population, whether it be due to an economic collapse or natural disaster.
1. Analyze the Situation
This is the beginning phase of any undesirable scenario you may be in. You will want to get in touch with important people such as family, friends, and neighbors in order to determine what may potentially be happening. This step requires the use of both common sense and logic. Check for things that work and others that may be out of commission such as the power, water, electronics, and other essentials. Attempt to analyze the extent of the situation and how widespread it is.
2. Gather Equipment and Personnel
This is typically the time when individuals begin to panic. The best thing to do is stay calm, gather your gear which is hopefully pre-packed in a bug out bag, and ensure that everyone is present at the planned meeting location. Bags should contain required essentials such as water, food, toiletries, clothes, communication devices, and any other equipment you deem necessary. Keep in mind that bags shouldn’t weigh more than you are able to carry over extended periods of time. Gather everyone who you will be traveling with as well as their gear.
3. Implement Your Communication Plan
Often, main lines of communication will be down including cell phone towers, telephone lines, and television cable. Devise different ways to communicate that incorporate the use of both electronic and more primal lines. Don’t get stuck trying to randomly find each member of your team. Pre-plan potential meeting locations as well as varied equipment that can be used such as radios.
4. Relocate to the Designated Rally Point
Typically the primary rally point is someone’s home, but other options should be communicated in case it is not a safe location to bunker down. Expand of various potential scenarios and what the meeting location may be in each. Multiple routes should also be considered as roadways may be blocked or destroyed. Have a backup plan if you must move to a new location that wasn’t planned.
5. Set Up Security Defenses
If you are faced with circumstances where people may potentially wish to cause harm to you, security defenses are a necessity. This could include having individuals on watch throughout the perimeter. If the entire neighborhood is condensed, a neighborhood watch can be established, given it is small enough where riots will not break out.
6. Collect Intelligence
Once you have settled and set up defenses, you should take inventory of your gear and skills, figure out what your immediate needs consist of, and what surrounding areas are safe. An easy way to gather intelligence on what is happening is through monitoring radio frequencies. Listening may be a better option than interacting at first, as you may not fully comprehend the situation.
7. Transmit to Missing Personnel
You may face the possibility that not everyone is at the prime meeting location. If a radio transmission plan was established, it may be easier to locate missing personnel. If lines are down or there is no way to communicate with others, leaving clues and messages could be a way to help individuals find your location. Planning is the best way to ensure that your team members find each other.
8. Assemble the Rest of the Team
If communication has been securely established and team members are in varied locations, either you will need to inform them of where you are or go to them. The primary requirement is that everyone is together. The entire group should not venture out unless you deem it unlikely that you will return to the rally point.
9. Plan for Next Steps
Once all team members are together, the next steps must be planned. This includes what to do in the instance of a threat, preparing for long journeys, and setting up a base camp in a secure area. This involves continuous intelligence collection, assessment, and planning.
10. Re-evaluate Your Plan for SHTF Survival
As you continue on your journey after a potential disaster, you will often need to re-evaluate depending on your circumstances. Never let your guard down or become too comfortable in your surroundings as threats may be lurking in every corner. Discuss further plan options with your team members and follow the same sequential steps set forth above. With adequate communication and scenario planning, you should be well-equipped to face any situation that may arise.
The First 10 Things to do During a SHTF Disaster