This Weeks Show 20th January 2018

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SHOW NOTES

Starting with the Nuclear Survival Course then the Blizzard Survival 20% discount offer, the Water-to-Go 15% discount offer, then the Wilderness121 10% discount offer, I move on to the Wilderness Gathering, Aussie FLU, UK Air Rifle Hunting, Cold Weather Camping, How to Know When Ice is Safe, Leaving Dodge.

Nuclear Survival Course

The Nuclear Survival Course will be run over a weekend, Fri 18th, Sat 19th and Sunday 20th May 2018. The venue is The Hawkhills http://www.thehawkhills.com/ (see it’s History). Accommodation will be tarps, hammock etc. n the woods near by. (LEAVE NO TRACE) must be observed.
Cost of the two day Nuclear Survival course and arrival details.
Arrival is Friday the 18th or Early Saturday 19th.
Friday arrivals to set up in the woods.
Course begins Saturday 10.00 in the classroom, t…here will be a mid/day break finishing, 1700 to 1800
Saturday night in the woods Bar-B-Q and then individual sleep systems.
Sunday the course continues and begins at 0930 in the classroom, there will be a mid/day break finishing 1600 to 1700
All times are flexible and allow for late comers and early leavers.
Tea/Coffee will be available upon arrival and in the afternoon from the coffee lounge
All attendees will receive a certificate and a paper back copy of my Complete Nuclear Survival Guide.
The cost is £65 p.p. for the weekend.

Details HERE https://www.facebook.com/nuclearsurvivalcourse/

Blizzard Survival 20% Discount Offer

Blizzard Survival .com have a fantastic offer for you the listener they are offering a 20% discount on all goods bought from them at www.blizzardsurvival.com

The Ultimate in Lightweight Thermal Protection.

The Blizzard Survival Brand incorporating Reflexcell™ material has become the new standard wherever thermal performance in a lightweight compact package is essential – for military use, casualty care, emergency preparedness, disaster relief, personal survival, outdoor activities…and more.

Reflexcell™ products are totally unique: weight-for-weight far warmer than goose down, yet 100% weatherproof, tough, ultra-portable and re-usable.

Life-saving technology has never been so affordable. All you must do to get a 20% discount is enter the code “PREPPER” at the checkout, it is that simple. Thank you Blizzard Survival.coml 20% Discount Offer www.blizzardsurvival.com

Water-to-Go Filter Bottle 15% Discount Offer

This is another fantastic offer for you dear listener. I am proud to announce that I have teamed up with the guys at Water-to-Go to bring you this special deal.

Now you can drink safely from any water source with the water-to-go filter bottle. It removes fluoride, chlorine and heavy metals from tap water.

It removes Viruses, Bacteria, Protozoa, Cysts, bad taste and odour from dirty water sources.

In fact if you drink water then get yourself a Water-to-Go filter bottle as it’s cheaper than drinking bottled water and it’s cleaner too. Get 15% discount at the checkout, code word premprep https://www.watertogo.eu/ukpreppersradionetwork

The Wilderness121 10% Discount Offer

Wilderness 1-2-1 was founded in January 2000 by Rob and Mel – to promote the outdoors through learning by providing courses in Field Archery, Bushcraft, Survival, Nature Awareness, Outoor / Expedition Medicine and Tracking, as well as supplying quality outdoor products.

Over the years Wilderness 1-2-1 has continued to grow and develop, but has not lost it’s core values.

After nearly 10 years, we took the decision to completely re-publish our online shop – and here are the results.

They are offering 10% discount simply by using the code UKPREP10

For more information about Wilderness 1-2-1, please visit www.wilderness121.co.uk.

And to shop at their online shop

https://www.wilderness121store.uk/en/

The Wilderness Gathering

If you’ve never been to the Gathering before and you love nature and the outdoors, then this is the family show for you – Wilderness Gathering, a unique Bushcraft event, is the longest running and still the original festival of bushcraft, survival and primitive living skills.

The Gathering has become a social event and brings together families and friends, all those interested in Bushcraft and Wilderness living skills to enjoy a weekend of knowledge sharing in a relaxed and family friendly atmosphere

Live Music

Not only is the Gathering the place you to come to – to learn new skills, brush up on your old ones and meet some of the best bushcraft experts in the country but it has also become, over the past fifteen years, the place you come to – to gather and socialise round the campfire with friends, old and new.

Children’s Bushcraft

The Coyote Clubs were introduced in 2005 and host a comprehensive range of events and activities specifically tailored for children from 5 to 15-year-old.

The Masterclass

The Masterclasses were introduced in 2005 and are your opportunity to study your favourite Bushcraft subject in depth with a leading Bushcraft instructors.

Where is it?

Located on a South Wiltshire farm with lakes and 30 acres of old oak woodlands. You get access to woodlands and fields to erect whatever shelter you want.

Add to this, great food, local cider, mead, evening entertainment. great people and it’s now over 5 days it has to time to get booked http://www.wildernessgathering.co.uk/tickets.htm.

Aussie FLU

A flu jab which has already been handed out to thousands of people may be targeting the wrong strain of the virus.

Public Health England has announced that the trivalent vaccine is not effective against influenza B, a common strain of the flu which is currently circulating.

After analysis of 25 cases of influenza B, it was found that 21 of them were caused by the B/Yamagata type, which isn’t covered by the cheaper jab.

Although an average of 8,000 people die every year because of flu in England and Wales, experts warned last autumn that this number could be a lot higher if the Aussie flu struck.

Some 4.5million people claimed to have been affected over the past week.

Dartford was one of the last areas to have cases reported, with Essex, Teesside and Devon appearing to be among the worst-hit regions.

In the last 24 hours the Brecon Beacons and Telford, which yesterday had no reported cases, were revealed to have at least one each.

Figures from the NHS show that over 1,500 people across the country have been struck down with the illness.

Hospitals have already been forced to cancel 55,000 operations due to the pressure and the lack of available beds. Ambulances are also suffering, with patients having to wait in emergency vehicles until A&E staff are free to transport them. According to latest figures, there has been 915 cases of influenza B and 684 of influenza A in the past week.

What are the symptoms of ‘Aussie flu’?

Symptoms of Aussie flu are similar to those caused by normal flu but they are more severe. Here are some signs to look out for:

Sore throat and cough

Headache

Fever

Muscle ache

Fatigue

Runny nose and sneezing

People should recover from normal flu within a week so, although the cough and fatigue may last longer.

So if you’re still really ill after seven days, it’s a good indication of something more serious.

Aussie flu can lead to pneumonia and other potentially fatal complications.

Those most at risk are the over 65s, pregnant women, young kids and those with chronic conditions – like diabetes, lung and heart disease.

According to studies, it is believed the H3N2 has mutated to evade detection.

So it’s a cheap version of the flu vaccine, you know, (they one that will do) type. The advice by the way to prevent catching this Aussie flu is stop Hand-Shaking. That’s it.

UK Air Rifle Hunting

Wood pigeon are cautious but they are delicious, that is why hunting wood pigeon with your best air rifle is the probably the most rewarding small game. Wood pigeon are smaller than city pigeons and they can be found in dense woodland or near rural farm barns and sheds. It is a good idea to hunt wood pigeons in a farm since it is convenient and much more relaxing than entering the thick woodland. Be sure to ask for the farm owner’s permission first before go hunting.

Camo Netting For Your Hiding Area

Beside the air rifle, it is also important to have other hunting accessories as well. You will need decoys to lure the pigeons in. These dummy pigeons are mostly made of plastic, which imitate real pigeons. As the real pigeons see the decoys, they will tend to land into this area. The decoys are very cheap, so buying about 6 dummy pigeons will be quite enough.

Camouflage and netting are necessary. Like other birds, wood pigeons have very good eyesight. They can detect human face from faraway; therefore it is a good sense to hide yourself in camouflage hunting clothes and camo net. These setting will help you blend in the environment and will not scare the preys away. Of course, you have to choose suitable colour for every environment. The camo woodland colour seems to be a generic one and suits well with many areas.

Pigeon Shooting Tips And Tricks

There are some pigeon shooting decoying tips and tricks which you can apply.

No need for complicated moves, just set up your hiding place and patiently wait there. You should find a crop field bordered by woodland.

You can hide in the woodland for better cover and of course it is more comfortable under the trees’ shadow than being in a sunny field.

Set up your hiding place up with the wind behind you, since it will be helpful as the wood pigeons land into the wind near the decoys.

Decoys are one of the most important tools after you’re air rifle.

Set them out in a V shape.

This V pattern will encourage the pigeons to land, and remember that wood pigeons are very cautious, even the glare from the sun on glass or metal will scare them off.

So keep calm, no sun glass, no perfume and no exposed body parts. Get your air rifle ready to fire.

Although the pigeons head is small, it is the best place to kill he prey instantly and the body is not damaged, hence the meat is tastier.

Every time you have shot a pigeon, retrieve it and quickly get back to your hide.

Put the kill in a bag and wait for another one to land.

Squirrel Hunting

How To Lure Squirrels To You?

Squirrels tend to remain still when predators get close. If you are sitting in a potential hunting area, for example under an oak tree, use your hand to make some sound by stirring the leaves.

This action imitates the sound of a squirrel that is searching for food, and will lure other squirrels into your hunting area.

Find Your Easy Targets

You may find many relaxing squirrels along rivers and streams surrounded by woods such as oak, sycamores, and ash.

If you keep your movement minimized and silent, you can spot many squirrels that are very relaxed, since they do not anticipate any danger from water.

Sneaky Spotting & Stalking

Generally squirrels are very active during daylight hours, a good time to hunt them is in morning or evening.

Places to find squirrels often have acorns and beech nuts which are some of the squirrels’ favourite foods.

You should approach slowly, with your back against the sun. Step silently 2-3 steps at a time. Open your eyes and you can shoot squirrels that did not sense your coming.

Remember that rabbits have good hearing.

Choose the type of clothing that does not make rattling or crisp shuffling sounds. Most water proof clothing is covered in wax or has a plastic type outer which are noisy.

The last thing to be considered is smell. A neutral smell is good. A muddy, dirty and smelly hunting outfit is OK, too.

Just do not cover yourself with deodorant or soap before going air rifle hunting. Also, do not wash your clothes unless you really have to.

If you do, make sure to air dry them so the soap smell goes completely.

Journey On The Hunt Location

You have to find a field with bunnies and ask the land owner’s permission first. The best time for air rifle hunting is in the late afternoon (when rabbits feed) and a few hours before sunset.

You should already know the approximate location of the rabbits. You can use your scope or if possible, binoculars to check the area.

If you spot bunnies, it is time to hunt.

Check wind direction and try to move upwind side, even if it takes longer to your chosen location.

This will cover your scent and reduce the noise you make.

As you get into range, get down onto the ground and crawl slowly using your elbows and knees.

A careful, steady and silent approach is the best way to get close to rabbits in order to make an accurate shot.

Be patient, slowly and carefully approach the tasty bunnies. Do not crawl around hedgerows or under trees because you will snap dried twigs and crush leafs.

The best shooting distance for pellet gun is around 30 yards.

Once you enter this range, move very slow, hold onto the air rifle and be ready for a shot.

Do not stiffen your body. Instead, relax and focus on the shot.

Zoom your scope, aim for the spot just behind the eyes, between the eyes on the front (or between the ears from the back).

Yes, you are aiming for the brain.

Once you are ready, squeeze the trigger and take your shot.

Normally, the best pellet gun shot would kill the prey instantly. However if the impact is not enough, finish it with a second shot or with a knife.

Once the bunny is downed, rush over to the animal and finish it with a blow if necessary.

Sounds brutal but it is one of the most humane ways to catch the rabbits without any suffering.

If you are unable to find a chance to shoot or fail in your approach to the bunny, it is possible to find their holes and wait for them to come out.

This is a slower and less fun method, but it can help you catch a bunny. It is better than nothing! Keep calm and happy air rifle hunting!

Farmers will be happy if you hunt down some wood pigeons, squirrels and rabbits since they eat their crops. You should give some of the hunt to land owner to express your gratitude, too.

It is a common sense, and it will be beneficial for your next hunt. Also, the best pellet gun is the one you used the most, remember to clean and maintain your air-gun well after each hunt. Keep calm and aim well.

Cold Weather Camping

It’s cold. It’s snowing. And it’s a great time for a camping trip.

The moon makes the snow-draped forest glow, and the retreat of the summertime campers means you have plenty of space to yourself.

But a winter camping trip requires a little more thought and planning than your average summer outing.

Dress Properly

You want clothes that can keep you warm during periods of inactivity. Chances are you’ll create plenty of heat during that walk in, but it’s tougher to maintain a comfortable temperature when you stop moving.

So layer up.

Start with polyester thermal underwear for the base layer. Choose breathable fleece to inhibit the accumulation of perspiration during exertion.

If you prefer natural fibres, choose merino wool and wool-fleece blends that offer the warmth of wool without the itchiness.

Pack a scarf or neck gaiter or Shemagh that you can take off and on easily to regulate body temperature, and take a lightweight jacket that is both waterproof and breathable.

Layering can also keep your head and feet warm.

Fleece or wool stocking caps can be made windproof when covered with a detachable hood. Leave your cotton socks at home.

Instead, choose wool (merino wool won’t be itchy) or wicking polyester socks designed for hiking.

Your boots don’t have to be expensive, but they should be waterproof or water-repellent, especially if you plan on hiking through snow.

Never Neglect Your Hands

To keep those digits warm, pack polyester glove liners and gloves, then gauntlets to layer over them. Stock up on chemical heating pads for when you need a little heat boost.

Think Fire

When you arrive at your campsite, start your fire before doing any other setup. Plan ahead and always pack fire sources. You can go low-tech with tightly packed dryer lint stuffed into old pill bottles or film canisters, or high-tech with magnesium fire starters.

Choose the Right Campsite

Summer campers might prefer the shadiest and most secluded spot. In winter, however, the morning sun can be a welcome companion. Take note of where the sun will first appear at sunrise, and angle your tent to take advantage of the early rays while shielding the door from the wind.

Hydrate, Then Hydrate Some More

You may not feel thirsty in cold weather, but staying hydrated is just as important in winter as it is in summer. Drink water (warm or cold), hot tea, or hot chocolate—the latter also provides high-calorie fuel for your outdoor adventure.

Be Ready for Condensation

As you breathe in a warm tent on a cold night, condensation will form on your tent, even if it’s a four-season model.

Be ready for it to “snow” down on you in the morning. There’s not a lot you can do about condensation, but the next morning be sure to dry out your sleeping bag before using it again.

To minimize condensation, you can vent your tent at night—it won’t hold in heat as well, but it will stay dryer.

Wear Your Clothes to Bed

The old wisdom of stripping down before you get into a sleeping bag doesn’t make sense. Put on everything you brought before you turn in for the night.

And if the campfire is still going, heat some water, pour it into a heat-proof water bottle, and snuggle into your bag with it.

Winter is a great time for a camping trip. The key to a successful excursion is to remember that even a little bit of heat can go a long way.

How To Know When Ice is Safe

Yes, I know it’s the UK, but we have frozen rivers and lakes too, and anyway who it to say that you are not going on holiday to a winter destination abroad.

Walking, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, ice fishing (with or without a car), cross-country skiing,skating,and playing sports are dangerous pastimes when you don’t know how to tell if ice is thick enough to withstand weight.

There are ways to assist in gauging the potential safety of ice, such as observing its colour, testing its thickness and being aware of external factors such as temperature, local conditions and local knowledge.

However, no sport undertaken on ice over water bodies is ever without risk. If in doubt, do not go onto the ice; moreover, it never pays to be too early or too late in the season.

Recognize that ice will never be completely safe.

Conditions and unseen or unknown factors can render seemingly safe ice suddenly dangerous. Take all care and precautions to avoid mishaps and to put rescue plans into immediate action should something go wrong.

Create an emergency safety plan.

Tell people where you are going. If something does go wrong while you are testing or on the ice, you already have in place the safety procedures that you will carry out for immediate rescue.

For starters, you should be adequately dressed in full cold weather gear.

Wear some form of flotation device, even a boating life-jacket, especially if you are testing or snowmobiling.

Carry an ice-pick which can assist in giving you grip should you fall in.

Never go without a buddy or two.

Tell other people where you and your buddy are and what time you expect to return home. This is not a time for bravado.

Have a spare set of warm dry clothes in a waterproof bag handy.

That way you can reduce the risk of hypothermia by changing the wet clothes immediately.

Other useful supplies to have as part of an emergency kit include an emergency blanket, hand and foot warmers, thick socks, candles and matches and a hot drink.

Recognize that determining the safety of ice is dependent on a combination of factors, not on one factor alone.

Ice safety is determined by assessing the following factors together:

Appearance of the ice – its colour, texture and features

Thickness of the ice – there are recommended thicknesses for different uses.

External temperature over a period of time and on the day

Snow coverage

Depth of water under ice

Size of water body

Chemical composition of water – whether water is fresh or salt

Local climate fluctuations

Extent of ice

Prefer ice that is checked by designated authorities on a regular basis.

Such authorities may be staff at resorts, clubs or national parks or they may be government officials.

At a minimum, such checking should occur daily.

Ask them about their procedures if you need to know more to satisfy yourself.

In the main, they will have access to quality measurement tools and procedures, along with full training in dealing with ice and ice accidents.

This will save you the risk of testing and can reassure you. Nevertheless, continue to take all safety precautions.

Ask the locals.

If you’re “a visitor”, don’t make any assumptions.

Stop at the local shop, tackle shop, local ski store and have a chat, or even drop into a police or fire station and ask questions about the known danger spots and safer spots in the area.

People would rather help you out now than have to haul you out later.

Observe the ice.

Look at the ice to see if you can see any cracks, breaks, weak spots or abnormal surfaces and to identify the colour(s) of the ice.

You cannot rely on your eyesight alone.

This is just an initial look to help you to decide if it is even worth proceeding to the next step of testing the ice.

If you see any of these signs, you may wish to abandon any further attempt to go on the ice:

Flowing water near or at the edges of the ice

Flowing springs under the ice in spring fed ponds and lakes.

Water flows in and/or out of the iced-over water body

Cracks, breaks or holes

Ice that appears to have thawed and refrozen

Abnormal surfaces that you have not seen before – e.g., pressure ridges caused by currents or winds

Remember this ditty: “Thick and blue, tried and true; Thin and crispy, way too risky.”

Know your ice colour meanings.

Although a useful indicator, colour alone should not be relied upon.

For instance, ice of any colour subjected to a running water force underneath will be weaker than ice not subject to that pressure. In general, you can surmise the following from ice colours:

Light grey to dark black – Melting ice, occurs even if air temperature is below 32°F (0°C). Not safe, its weak density can’t hold a load, stay off.

White to Opaque – Water-saturated snow freezes on top of ice forming another thin ice layer. Most times it’s weak due to being porous from air pockets.

Blue to Clear – High density, very strong, safest ice to be on if thick enough, stay off if less than 4 inches (10 cm) thick.

Mottled and slushy or “rotten” ice – not so much its color but its texture. This ice is thawing and slushy. It is deceptive – it may seem thick at the top but it is rotting away at the center and base. Most prevalent in spring, may be showing signs of browns from plant tannins, dirt and other natural materials that are resurfacing from thawing. Not suitable for even a footstep.

Test the thickness of the ice.

If you have already made your observations and you still feel confident, you will need to back this up by checking the thickness of the ice.

Test with at least one other person (the buddy system). Wear a flotation suit or device and use ropes that your buddy can pull on if something goes wrong.

Only go on the ice if the edge of the water body is firm. If it is slushy or cracking, it is unlikely to be safe to proceed as shoreline ice is the weakest.

Chip the ice with an axe or hatchet to create a small hole in the ice, or use an ice auger (a special tool which drills into the ice), for measuring the thickness through. Use a measuring device to determine the thickness.

Learn the thickness safety margins of ice. There are recommended thickness measurements for the safety of ice that you will need to establish to for each activity being undertaken. (N.B. These are recommended, not guaranteed.)

Ice begins to be “safe” at around 4 – 6 inches thickness. Do not even walk on ice 3″ or less in thickness. However, even at a 9″ – 10″ thickness, there may be unforeseen hazards such as a flowing current underneath that is ceaselessly weakening the underside of the ice.

In this instance, even the thickness is not a good indicator of safety, as the ice could collapse at any time.

In general, the rules for ice thickness measurements are:

3″ (7 cm) (new ice) – KEEP OFF

4″ (10 cm) – suitable for ice fishing, cross-country skiing and walking (approx. 200 pounds)

5″ (12 cm) – suitable for a single snowmobile or ATV (approx. 800 pounds)

8″ – 12″ (20 – 30 cm) – suitable for one car, group of people (approx. 1500 – 2000 pounds)

12″ – 15″ (30 – 38 cm) – suitable for a light pickup truck or a van

These are commonly cited measurements.

Understand that ice strength is not the same everywhere, not even on the same body of water.

The strength of ice is also affected by factors other than color and thickness. Also take into account:

Location of the ice: is it on a pond, a lake, a stream or is there evident flowing water underneath it? Is there a flow into or out of the water body? This will give cause for concern.

Constitution of the water: is it fresh water or saltwater? Sea ice tends to be weaker and needs greater thickness to support the same weight as fresh water. See the External Links below for more information on exact measurements.

External temperature and season: temperature changes constantly. Beware microclimates in the local area. Mid-winter ice is bound to be a lot stronger than spring ice which is subject to rapid thawing and warming bouts of sunshine.

Size and depth of the water body: larger bodies of water take longer to freeze than smaller ones.

Presence of snow on the ice: snow can warm up the ice because it acts as an insulator; ice under snow is generally thinner and weaker than ice without snow.

Weight on ice: what are you putting on the ice? Just you or you and a vehicle? There is a big difference in the weight distribution between a body and a snowmobile with said body on to

Find alternatives if in any doubt. Skaters can always find a rink or a supervised lake area; snowmobilers and skiers can always stick to trails on land in place of crossing ice; walkers can keep off the ice and continue with their snowshoes along the trail.

All out-doors people should carry emergency supplies no matter how long they plan to be out nor where they plan to go.

Leaving Dodge

Evacuation

If you had to evacuate your home 15 minutes from now, would you know what to take with you—and would you be able to find it and get it into a sturdy bag within the allotted time frame?

What about your kids (if you have any)? Would they know what to do and where to go if a disaster happened while they were in a different area of the city than you?

People living in an urban setting will have to address one issue that those in suburban or rural settings don’t—the sheer number of people they’ll have to deal with just to evacuate.

You may have an established evacuation (or “bug out”) location outside the city—but don’t forget that you also need to address how to get there in an emergency. If you own a car, you might not be able to get through traffic, or there might not be gasoline available, even if you have money. A few extra steps in your preparedness will help you deal with the evacuation issues you might face:

Plan to Leave Early if You Can

The longer you wait, the greater the chance crowds or other events will throw kinks into your plan. If you’re dealing with a situation of an approaching storm such as a hurricane, evacuating before everyone else means you don’t have to fight additional traffic, you can get gas for your car, and you’ll have plenty of time to get to your evacuation spot.

It also means not sitting in jammed traffic for hours when you need to use the restroom, not having to use your emergency rations to tide you over just for your evacuation, and evacuating in safer conditions.

Have Various Evacuation Options

Don’t plan on your favourite routes always being available for evacuation. They might be jam-packed, inaccessible, or completely destroyed.

Do you have an alternate means of transportation? If you plan to leave by car, do you also have a plan for leaving on foot? By bike?

Also have a plan in place for getting injured family members or neighbours out of the building—especially if you live several floors up.

Also have an evacuation plan for getting home or to your evacuation location from work if you aren’t able to meet up with the rest of your family.

Have Extra Supplies in Case of a Long Evacuation

Having additional food, water, and sanitation supplies will be especially important if your evacuation suddenly takes two, three, or four times longer than planned.

For example, if you unexpectedly have to leave on foot rather than by car, your evacuation will take much longer than planned. One idea to incorporate in case of a situation like this is having a secondary emergency kit for an on-foot evacuation.

On foot you’ll have to take fewer things overall, but adding a rolling duffel or other wheeled bag will allow you to carry extra water a water filter, food (make it extra light-weight, like freeze-dried pouches),, and other gear that might weigh down your basic emergency kit.

Another thing to think about is where you’re most likely to be when an emergency occurs. If you may be at work, having an Evac Pack at the office will be helpful so you can get home to your family and your stored supplies. These are also great for kids to keep in their lockers or at school.

A great item for evacuation is a Water-to-Go water filter bottle each. If there is a source of water (not salt water) along your evacuation route, you can simply take this bottle instead of carrying a supply of water with you. The bottle will filter water for a minimum of 2 months, (depending on bottle size) before you need to replace the filter.

Navigation

Most people who live in a big city or a large urban area only know certain areas well—the areas around home, school, work, parks, and their daily commute.

If the areas you are familiar with in your city became inaccessible, would you know where to find a pharmacy, a food shop, a police station, a hospital, and other important places?

Would you be able to navigate an unfamiliar neighbourhood without getting lost, putting yourself in danger, or going in circles?

One important aspect of preparedness in the city is keeping a current, easy-to-use map on hand that shows the streets of your city.

Mark important locations, so you can find them in a crisis.

Many city maps are available as small booklets with multiple pages, to make it easier to navigate a specific neighbourhood without holding, unfolding, and refolding a huge map.

A map or atlas that shows the route to your evacuation location is also important to have. It will give you the flexibility to find a new route without getting lost if your first evacuation route is blocked or unsafe.

A printed out Google map with specific locations, resources, and geographical features marked is a great idea, because you won’t have to carry a whole atlas with dozens of pages you won’t need.

Laminate it to protect it from dirt and moisture.

Know which direction is North so you can orient yourself in the city and accurately follow maps or verbal directions. Be able to recognize landmarks in the city that will give you an idea of your location as you evacuate or navigate to a specific location, like a police station or shelter.

Crowds and Safety Issues

In the city, one issue you’re practically guaranteed to face is dealing with huge crowds of people. Many people might be panicking or scared, and there will likely be some violence and looting.

If you are given an evacuation order, follow it immediately and be prepared to deal with crowds of people who are also trying to evacuate.

In a worst-case scenario, you may have to use some self-defence techniques to protect yourself or your family.

You might not think of this as a safety issue, but when the power goes out… so may the keypad to get you into your building. If your building or room doesn’t have physical keys, but relies exclusively on electronic keypads, say, like a hotel door.

Communications

In the case of a power outage especially, it can be difficult to keep communication lines open. Having some tools on hand before an emergency will allow you and your loved ones to keep in touch.

Have a way to charge your electronic devices, like phones and laptops. And have a back-up charging method (or three). It’s a good idea to have a battery-powered, wind-up, and solar charger available to give yourself multiple options.

Light

Having alternative light sources will come in handy for most emergencies—and for the occasional temporary power cut because of a thunderstorm or a randomly downed power line.

In an emergency such as an earthquake where there is the possibility of gas leaks, you should never use candles until your location has been checked.

It’s a good idea to keep flameless sources of light available—items like the LED glow stick, headlamps, flash lights, solar lanterns, and spotlights are all great choices.

In towns and cities, it’s more likely you live in a flat or bedsit. Check with the owner/landlord to see if the building has a backup generator for the stairwell lights.

And if not, a handful of light sticks might just make you the building favourite for allowing your neighbours to find their way up and down the stairs in safety (always keep the light sticks OFF the treads of the stairs to avoid causing accidents.

Sanitation

If the water supply or power is out for very long, then sanitation can become an issue really quickly.

No working toilets means everyone will have to find another way to deal with waste, and in a big city, this can quickly lead to issues with sanitation and the spread of disease.

Be sure to have options available to deal with sanitation in case the power is out for a long time.

A home made toilet or strong black rubbish bags are both great choices. These options are only temporary, of course, so if the situation goes on for very long, your best bet might be to take a little breather from the city and evacuate to an unaffected location.

First Aid

It’s likely that in a disaster scenario, first responders will have major accidents and injuries to deal with, so they won’t be able to travel to your area of the city to help.

Get some basic first aid training and have a good stock of supplies at home.

If you’re evacuating, keep some of the most important items, like bandages, plasters, finger splints, tweezers, over the counter medicines (pain relief, cold/flu, allergy), cleansing and disinfecting wipes, triple antibiotic ointment, and any prescription medications you’ll need.

As with your evacuation plan, have a plan in place for getting injured family members or neighbours out of the building—especially if you live several floors up.

Shelter and Warmth

If you have to evacuate, or spend the night in your office or school, having some shelter and items to keep you warm will be invaluable.

Something as simple as a hooded top or blanket/poncho can serve not only as a blanket, but as protection for yourself and your emergency kit.

It can protect you from the elements—crucial in keeping your body temperature normal. In the heat, the reflective side of the poncho can be turned out, to reflect sunlight away from you.

An emergency sleeping bag is an inexpensive and compact item to help you stay warm.

It retains up to 80% of your body heat and is small enough to fit in your pocket.

The SOL Escape bivvy is an excellent way to keep warm and protected from the elements if you’re stranded outside—or at home without heat in the winter.

It retains and reflects most of your body heat, while allowing moisture to escape, so you don’t sleep nice and warm only to be freezing in the morning because you were sweating all night.

Something you might not think about when considering how to stay warm is a change of clothes.

Staying dry isn’t always possible in an emergency, so to avoid losing more heat, change out of wet clothes as soon as you can.

And don’t forget the simple but effective warmth provided by hand and body warmers. They are compact, inexpensive, and can make all the difference in a cold situation.

Emergency Binder or Folder

Many people like to keep copies of important financial, medical, insurance, and identification documents in a binder, folder, or sturdy envelope that can easily fit into their emergency kit in case of evacuation.

The contents of your binder will all depend on your individual circumstances, but you can get some good ideas here.

Resources

Know what resources are available in your neighbourhood, and those that are offered by your village, town, city, county, and government.

Also be aware of hospital, medical clinic, and Red Cross locations, along with the locations of shelters, public restrooms, police stations, churches, food banks, soup kitchens, and emergency response resources throughout your area.

Networking

Networking is one of the most important things you can do to be prepared.

Having a group of like-minded people around you in an emergency can be priceless. If you haven’t already, why not start building a network of people you can rely on for help in an emergency—people you will also be willing to help if they have an emergency situation.

It’s a great idea to have a network of people in your neighbourhood, and also to have a network along your evacuation route—people you trust who would allow you to stay the night, stop for a rest from the heat or cold, take a shower, or make a meal.

Include people in your networks who have skills you don’t. Knowing a dentist, doctor, paramedic, electrician, and builder could come in quite handy in a time of crisis.

Ask if your local community centre, school, or church group has a preparedness group you could join. These groups will often have space and resources that individuals might not be able to access.

Develop skills that will make you a valuable resource—having valuable people in your network is great—and you’ll want to be sure you have something to contribute to them in a time of need.

If you live in an urban area, keep these issues in mind as you plan and prioritize your emergency preparedness efforts.

Thinking strategically through scenarios that may occur where you live may give you additional ideas.

Many steps toward emergency preparedness are the same no matter where you live—but knowing what extra steps to take for your specific situation will certainly pay off when SHTF.

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