Now this list is in no particular order, but all of these are fantastic reads. All of them will certainly get your mind working, when it comes to what would happen if SHTF…

This book follows John, a retired Army Colonel and history professor, during the aftermath of an EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse). Extremely well written, Forstchen touches on some very real problems one would face during such an event. This book was so well received and thought provoking that it was actually referred to, during a meeting with congress, about the threat of an EMP attack on the United States.

The master of horror does his take on the apocalypse in the form of a Super-flu. The story follows several survivors as they journey across a landscape ravaged by a weaponized strain of influenza. It gives a frightening look at life where 99% of the population is dead and the rest are left to fend for themselves. Anyone that is interested in survival and the apocalypse, would certainly want to check this one out.

Going Home is book one in what’s called The Survivalist Series. A family man named Morgan, breaks down over 200 miles from home, during which the country’s power grid completely crashes. Being a survivalist, Morgan straps on his emergency pack and starts the journey home. Written by a prepper, for preppers, this book(and the rest in the series) will certainly grab ahold of you and leave you wanting more.

What if a secret society was responsible for the Black Death plague of the 14th century? What if it was a plan to wipe out the majority of the population, so that a new era could be born, resulting in The Renaissance? Now imagine if that secret society planned to do it again in the year 2020. JD Dutra has written an excellent story that makes your mind wander, and makes you look at survival from a whole different view. With relatable characters, and a story some may see as not far from non-fiction, this is a great read for any prepper.

A comet slams into Earth resulting in catastrophic natural disasters, the beginning of a new Ice Age, and the end of civilization. Written in the late 70’s, this is a disaster novel that still holds it’s own today. The world is thrown in complete disarray, leading to political issues that change mankind forever. Some very violent and unsettling topics are touched upon, which in the world that’s left over, not much more is to be expected.

This is a real-world story of a man making the transition from another sheep of society, to a prepared individual with his eyes open to what’s going on in the world around him. This is another first in a series, but this one in particular resonates very well with any people new to prepping. Take the title literally, this book is all about a man’s journey into becoming prepared for a post-collapse scenario. It touches on some very real hurdles one faces with their family, friends, and jobs, when it comes to a prepping lifestyle.

Life in Chester’s Mill is pretty normal until all of a sudden an invisible force surrounds the town in a huge dome. Closing the citizens off from the outside world, the town’s people must work together to figure out what exactly is going on. Without knowing how long they will be trapped inside the dome, eventually egos start to clash, supplies starts to dwindle, and people start acting strange. This story does a great job in showing how people can go from friendly neighbor, to someone you need to keep your eye on, in an instant. When you’re trapped with nowhere to go, you’re forced to confront your issues head on.

Written in 1959, this book tells the story of a threat we face even today: nuclear war. A Soviet missile strike tears across the U.S., but a central Florida town is spared for the most part. Survivors band together to try and rebuild a community, and fight back against bandits. An eye-opening look at the struggle society would face, in trying to come back from an event of that nature. Another classic tale, and one that shouldn’t be missed.

This tells the story of a man and his son and their journey of survival. An extremely bleak look into a post-collapse world, McCarthy does a great job of setting the pace and environment for a grueling tale of life on the road. Faced with starvation, lack of water, and blood thirsty cannibals, this father/son duo trek south in order to survive the coming winter. This is one that stays with you for a while after you finish reading.

Isherwood Williams becomes ill and begins to fall in and out of consciousness. He wakes up to find that most of the population has died, due to the same disease that had him down. He goes on a cross country journey scavenging for supplies and other survivors. Once back in his California home, he decides he must attempt to rebuild society. This is a great look at what happens when someone takes the initiative to rebuild, and the consequences that come along with that daunting task.

Article By: KYPrepper89

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While I am a strong proponent of concealed carry, let’s face it, you are still carrying a deadly weapon. You are taking on a huge responsibility to yourself and the public. Carrying a weapon opens up the opportunity for mistakes, some are just embarrassing, but some can be deadly. Whether you just started carrying or …

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When you first enter the survival community, you hear a great deal about bugging out, but for most people in most survival scenarios bugging in makes more sense. Bugging in is the process of fortifying your home and having all the needed resources on hand to survive long term. With most SHTF situations, staying home makes much more sense than packing up and heading into the unknown. You must be prepared for this to work.

Bugging In | Fortifying Your Home Before SHTF

Have a Plan

The most important aspect of bugging in is to have a plan to secure your location. Rarely do people live on high alert in a secure location 365 days a year. That means that when SHTF there will be work to do. You need to figure out what your priorities are and be sure that everybody in your household knows what to do. In addition, you need to practice this drill on a regular basis to ensure everybody is ready to go for bugging in.

Security

One of the biggest priorities with bugging in is keeping your home secure. There is the possibility of looters or other intruders breaking in, so you need to develop several layers of protection for your home. The first layer of security is the perimeter of your property. For us, this is a barbed wire fence extending around all four sides. Next is your on-property security. This can consist of dogs, cameras, motion detectors, and even armed patrols. Next is your outer house security. This is your door locks, bars on windows, and a home security system. Finally, you want a security plan for inside your home. This consists of having a choke point between you and the intruders and having weapons on hand to defend that choke point. With these levels of security in place, it is unlikely that anybody will be able to get to you and your family.

Food

In order to bug in successfully, you will need a good supply of preserved foods to survive. Plan on working without electricity, so frozen foods are out. Canned goods can last for a while, but are not ideal. Your best bet is to have dried goods available to last several months. This includes jerky, hardtack, pemmican, and other salted and dried or dehydrated goods. Dried pasta is good to have, and all grains and beans are ideal if they are kept away from insects. MRE’s are alright, but they are expensive for long-term survival.

Water

Supplying water to your home can be an issue if the pumps that move the water are shut down. We are fortunate to have both a well on the property and a pond for water. Rainwater collection systems are a good way to keep a steady supply of fresh water. In addition, you should have the tools needed to purify water if you are forced to venture out looking for it. With a good filter, boiling, or iodine tablets you can purify water from any stream or pond you find. Be sure you know how to find water around your home, for you can only last three days without it.

Warmth

If you happen to be dealing with a cold climate, you will need a way to stay warm. Fire is always an option, but you risk burning the house down and risk carbon monoxide poisoning. You should have several different tools to start a fire with you including lighters and Ferro rods. In addition, a good supply of blankets can make a huge difference. The best options are wool blankets and emergency blankets. Wool can keep you warm even when wet, and emergency blankets reflect 90% of your body heat back to you.

Watch this video by Reality Survival & Prepping and find out the 25 things you want to avoid when bugging in:

Just put in mind that there are certain scenarios where the need for bugging in has lesser risks compared to bugging out. As you make these preparations you need to know those possible situations and anticipate then plan for it. It’s best to be prepared than not being prepared at all. This is a good bug in prepper list to get you started!

Have you tried making preparation for bugging in before SHTF? Let us know in the comments section below!

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on September 7, 2017, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

Featured Image by rexdixon.com

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When you are in danger, it is natural to get stressed. However, the way you handle your stress and respond to the danger make a huge difference to whether you will come out a winner. And, your odds improve if you have a well-trained dog at your side. So if there is a bug out situation, you definitely want a dog at your side. It will give you peace of mind and also ensure you come out unscathed from the SHTF situation.

If you are skeptical about taking a dog as your companion for bugging out, here are 10 reasons to allay your fears and change your opinion.

1. Early Warning System

Remember, when you are bugging out, resources will be scarce. There will be other survivalists who may not be as prepared as you are. So you will need to protect your resources and stake claim to them. Under such circumstances, your dog can function as an early warning system to make you aware of possible threats, be it humans or animals.

Dogs have an uncanny ability to sense threats, and as a pack animal, their instincts are to protect the pack – meaning you and the rest of the family. So your dog will sound out the alarm let you know that a threat is close at hand. This will buy you time to get prepared or reach out for your gun to protect yourself and your loved ones.

2. Protection

In a bug out situation, your personal protection becomes paramount. A well-trained dog can protect you from all kinds of threats. If you are attacked by a bear or mountain lion, you can command your dog to deter the animal. Similarly, if you are attacked by a person, a single command from you will be sufficient for your dog to attack the person and protect you – well if your dog is trained to do so of course.

It goes without saying that you would have to train your dog for situations like these as just stated. This training should be ongoing so that your dog understands. You can use a combination of words and signs to train your dog to protect you if the need arises. But most dogs will naturally do so anyway.

3. Livestock Gathering and Protection

Many preppers prepare for the long haul. When a situation arises, such as natural disaster or terrorist attack, you never know how long you will have to bug out. So it is best to be prepared. Under such circumstances, you may want to raise livestock to supply you food regularly. Having a dog as a companion for bugging out can help you with the livestock.

Your dog, if trained to follow commands, will prove to be extremely useful in not just gathering livestock, but also protecting them. In the wilderness and in a survival situation, livestock will become extremely rare. So you need to go guns blazing to protect your cattle not just from other survivalists, but also from wild animals. Your dog will be able to do all this and some more to ensure your livestock is safe and secure.

4.  Help in Tracking

Dogs are inherently fantastic trackers. You may be put in a situation where you have to go scouting for water or food. If you get lost, you will be extremely happy to have your dog with you. He will be able to help you retrace your steps.

Also, dogs can prove to be extremely useful if you want to find something or someone. In fact, your pooch could be your only hope during a bug out.

5. Good Hunters

If you are ill-prepared for a bug out situation or your rations are running low, your dog can truly be your best friend! He can help identify small game in the forest and also help you corner it. You can also rely on your dog to fetch the shot small game to you. Of course, once again, it all boils down to the right training.

If you have a dog at your side during a bug out, you can increase your chances that you will not run low on protein sources!

6. Excellent Foragers

Having access to fresh water is the key to your survival in a bug out situation. Your trusted, four-legged companion will be able to find natural sources of water that you may not be able to find. Also, dogs are prolific foragers. So you can use them to find natural sources of food, including edible plants.

This quality of a dog could mean the difference between surviving and dying in an emergency situation where you don’t have access to food and water.

7. Warmth in Cold Weather

In a survival situation, you will not have the benefit of having central heating. Depending on the type of bug out shelter you have built, you may be exposed to the elements. Having your four-legged friend with you will allow you to cuddle up with the animal and stay warm through the night when you cannot light a campfire.

This warmth from your dog can prove to be a lifesaver in situations where you are injured or you are lost while trying to make your way back to your shelter.

8. Emotional Support

Many people, when forced into a bug out situation, tend to give up emotionally rather than physically. It is this that causes their downfall. However, dogs are wonderful and soothing companions. When you have nothing else to do, you can play with your dog and even talk to him to keep you sane and emotionally strong.

If you have children, your dog can keep them entertained so that they don’t get cranky and whiny without their PlayStation, toys, playing cards, cable TV, and so on.

9. Detect Changes in the Weather Pattern

Dogs have an uncanny ability to detect changes in the weather. Dogs are extremely sensitive to any drop in barometric pressure, and this drop is an indication of an impending storm. Also, it has been suggested that dogs have the ability to sense changes in the static electrical field. Coupled with their excellent hearing, your dog will be able to warn you about an approaching storm long before you will realize that it is coming.

If your dog starts pacing and acting anxious while you are out hunting or foraging, take it seriously. It is an indication that a storm is approaching, and you should make your way back to the camp before it hits you.

10. Good Judge of Character

Dog seem to have the ability to discern friend from foe. You will find that your dog sometimes wags his tail at complete strangers and other times, he is snarling and baring his teeth. In a survival situation, this ability of your dog could save your life.

If your dog is unfriendly to people who approach your camp, trust your dog and get rid of them as quickly as possible. There could be a threat to your life or these individuals may have plans to raid your stock.

Once you understand the benefits of having a dog as your companion while bugging out, you may be tempted to get a big dog, who has the ability to carry his own bug out bag, offer better personal protection, and also be better equipped to withstand the rigors of the elements. However, don’t forget a big dog means he will need a lot of food, and you can never predict how long a disaster situation will last.

Hence, you will have to stockpile large amounts of food not just for yourself, but also for your dog. In comparison, smaller breeds tend to require less fuel, but the drawback is they may not be intimidating enough or at all and may also be overly sensitive to cold.

However, it is critical to remember that both large and small breeds can be trained for a bug out situation. While some breeds are bred usually for disaster situations, remember the skills your dog acquires will reflect your ability and skills as a trainer. Your dog will be of no use if you don’t train it properly. Hence, make sure you put in time and effort to train your dog so that he can turn into the perfect companion for bugging out.

Qualities of an Ideal SHTF Dog

When you are scouting for the perfect dog for a disaster situation, you should be looking for certain qualities. Usually, these qualities are breed specific, and include:

The best breeds for survival situations are a German Shepherd, Dutch Shepherd, and a Belgian Malinois. Even crosses of these breeds are judicious and ideal dogs for bugging out. In fact, crosses of these breeds are used by the military and police.

There are other breeds and crosses that make wonderful protection dogs that can prove to be useful during a bug out. However, you should consult a dog trainer to help you identify these breeds so that you find the perfect fit for your personality. Also, request the trainer to customize a dog training program that is suited for you and your dog.

Refrain from using poodles, huskies, Labradors, and great Danes. They are not the best dogs for preppers. Instead, these breeds are more suitable as house pets and companions. They are too playful and loving to act as protection dogs. But if you have seen the movie Old Yeller you will know a Labrador can be a fine dog for protective purposes. Some people have different opinions one what one dog is appropriate for and so on.

The Key is Training

If you want the perfect companion for bugging out, you need to invest time, money, and effort in training your dog. Your dog should be trained to follow your commands and be aware of when to attack or sit by you quietly. The dog should also know when to stay quiet and when to make a noise to raise an alarm. He will learn this only when he receives this type of training, and there is no time better than now to begin this process.

Train your pooch to sit, lie down, and heel. Also, teach him to stay quiet, as you will need complete silence during a tactical operation. The last thing you need is a rambunctious dog in a stressful survival situation. The Internet is a treasure trove of dog training articles, books, and videos. Use these resources to start training your dog right away.

You can reach Alexandra Horowitz’s Inside of a Dog which a fantastic dog book.

While it is best to start training your dog the moment you adopt him, it is never too late to train an old dog. However, you will first have to break their old habits by rewarding them for good behavior. Remember, dogs have this instinct where they want to please their masters. So with a little bit of love and patience, you should be able to get your dog responding to your commands.

Keep each training session short, about 15 minutes, and make sure the commands are short, if possible of a single syllable. You can use code words to train your dog so that no one else has the power to control him. Remember, you can choose how to train your dog, but focus on being consistent so that he remembers what you are doing and saying.

You may also want to focus on teaching your dog certain commands that you can use in a survival situation. These includes:

It is critical when training your dog you take measures not to hurt yourself, your pooch or anyone else. While it is not possible to list down all the commands you will need in a bug out situation, it is best to focus on some of the basic commands. Keep training your dog until he masters these commands, and thereafter continue practicing them so that he does not forget them and responds to them when the need arises.

The Bottom Line

Dogs are wonderful friends and when trained properly, they can become excellent partners in a tactical or bug out situation. Start training your dog now and you will be glad you spent the time and effort on it. Your dog can turn into an asset when you are pushed into an off-grid survival situation, whether it is to alert you about intruders, predict the weather, keep dangerous animals at bay, or offer you warmth and companionship when you feel low and when you need it.

About the author:

Benjamin Roussey is from Sacramento, CA. He has two master’s degrees and served four years in the US Navy. His bachelor’s degree is from CSUS (1999) where he was on a baseball pitching scholarship. He has an MBA in Global Management from the Univ. of Phoenix (2006). He grew up camping and loving the outdoors. He loved to fish and shoot guns as a child. He joined the navy and survived two tours to the Persian Gulf and one to Central America. He now writes about survival and reads a lot about surviving and thriving in the wilderness. He has gone on white water rafting trips, hikes, camped all over the place, operated fishing boats, and so on. If you want to read more of his work, check him out on Survivor’s Fortress. Make sure to follow us on Twitter.

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We have talked about the need for private wells in previous articles, because in a SHTF scenario, you need a water source that you control, and the source must be reliable. If you depend on your local municipality for water, you will be without water in a grid down situation or even worse, your local water supply could become contaminated at anytime.

However, once you have dug or drilled your well, you need a way of pumping that water to the home or to storage tanks. Most wells would have an electric pump inserted when the well is drilled or dug, but what happens when the grid goes down.

Alternatives Include Hand Pumps, Solar Pumps or Even Windmills in Some Cases

The easiest by far would be a hand pump that can be installed right alongside your electric pump. The hand pump can be used when the electric pump is in operation and more importantly, it would pump water when the electric pump is not operational because of a power disruption.

Solar water pumps are an option but of course, the pump unless connected to a battery bank would only work when the sun is shining. You can use solar powered pumps to fill or top off elevated water tanks during the day and then let gravity feed water to the home at night or you can install battery banks for nighttime operation and on days when the sun is behind the clouds.

Windmills are ideal in remote areas or for when you are completely off grid. Windmills are traditionally used for watering livestock or for field irrigation.

Solar Water Pumps

You would need a solar panel array capable of supplying enough Direct Current (DC) to operate your water pump. You can connect a converter to convert the DC from the solar panels to Alternating Current (AC) to power your pump. Otherwise, you would need a pump that operates off DC.

The solar panels would usually be pole mounted near the water source. How many panels you would need would depend on the pump size, which in turn depends on the well depth. You have to decide if the well and pump is to be used for emergencies only, or if it will supply water to all sources inside the home at all times. This would be an off grid scenario in most cases.

Keep in mind that unless you have a battery bank capable of operating the pump at night or on cloudy days, you can only pump when the sun is shining.

Windmills can pump tremendous volumes of water, but you will need holding tanks to store the water. Typically, windmills are used to fill and maintain water levels in livestock watering tanks and for irrigation of crops, but they can also be used to supply water during a crisis. You can purchase windmill kits that can be installed directly over a well housing.

In most cases, you would not be able to insert the pumping components needed for the windmill alongside any electric pumping mechanisms. Windmills would be ideal if you are completely off grid and solar panels are not an option.

Hand Pumps

Hand pumps come in all shapes and sizes with various pumping capabilities. Many of you are familiar with the traditional red metal hand pump that sits atop a well casing. The pump has a handle for pumping and a spout for hanging buckets for filling. The older versions did not have a way of attaching a hose to pump water closer to the source or to the source directly. The water had to be collected at the pump and then carried to the home or to the garden.

Newer model emergency hand pumps can be installed in minutes. The handle is typically “T” shaped and the components are flexible PVC tubing that can usually fit inside a casing as small as 3 inches. This hand pump is considered an emergency pumping system that is not normally attached permanently.

If your electric pump is not operational for whatever reason, you would insert the flexible tubing into the well casing to the water depth and in a matter of minutes, you can be pumping water. This type pump allows you to attach a hose than can be used to service sources inside the home or to anywhere. Once the emergency is over you would remove the flexible tubing and pump handle to store away for next time.

More advanced models can be installed as a permanent fixture right alongside your electric pump. The advanced models require assembly, and it is recommended that you have a helper or two available to help with the installation. The PVC piping is normally connected with PVC glue in sections down to the required depth. Once your electric pump stops operating you would have the hand operated pump ready to go.

Pump housings would be attached on top of the well casement if you have one of the advanced models. You would permanently connect the tubing in sections down to 10 foot or so below the static depth of the water. The pump components would fit alongside your electric pump and all its components in the well casing. You can pump up to 150 feet from the static depth using this type of hand pump in most cases. The pump housing would allow you to attach a hose/pipe to pump water to the house or to water containment tanks in the basement or to anywhere for that matter.

You have to ensure the quality of the water is tested prior to consuming however if you have recently dug or drilled your well.

In some cases, you may have to filter and purify your well water or use a water softening system. This means you would have to pump water to any filtration or purification system inside the home and then pump to user sources such as faucets, showerheads, washing machines and so on.

What Is Meant By Static Depth

Suppose your drilled or dug depth is 200 feet but you have 50 feet of water in the well for example. This means your static depth is 150 feet. However, your pumping mechanism would be lowered to 160 feet. You would choose your pump size based on these figures. Your pumping mechanisms would be installed at 160 feet and you would use a pump capable of pumping from a static depth of 150 feet.

Adding the 10 extra feet allows for a lowering of the water level to ensure the mechanisms is always below the water level. A pump rated at 150 feet will have already configured in the additional 10 feet of depth.

You would purchase a pump that is capable of pumping from a static depth of 150 feet and not from the 200 foot depth at which the well is actually dug or drilled. Typically, hand pumps would be rated at 50, 100 or 150 feet (this is the static depth rating). Of course, you can purchase pumps that can pump from any depth but then you would likely need professional help with the installation.

How Do You Measure Your Water Depth

Attach a bobber to some string, and make sure the bobber is heavy enough to keep the string taunt but will still float on top of the water. Lower the string with the bobber through the casing until the string goes slack. This indicates the bobber is floating on top of the water. Measure the length for the static depth, and then add 10 feet.

Certain models of hand pumps allow you to attach a small electrical motor that would operate the pump handles for you. You could attach a solar system to operate the motor or use a small generator for 24-hour pumping capability during a power outage. Certain pumps would allow pumping directly to the source (s), just as if the electric well pump was in operation.

Things to Consider

What if you are currently receiving water from your local municipality and you dig or drill a well. First, you would have to decide if you want to stay connected to the local water source and use your well for emergencies, or use your well exclusively for your water.

If on “city water”, a water meter is connected to the main water supply line before it’s piped into the home. You would have to connect piping from the well to the main water line “down line” from the water meter.

When choosing a hand pump ensure it has “freeze proof” pump housing. This means once you stop pumping there are weep holes below ground level that allow the water to drain out of the pumping mechanism to prevent it from freezing up. This method to prevent freezing does not cause the pump to lose its prime. The weep holes have to be located below the freeze depth in your area.

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Dehydration can sneak up on you and impair your thinking to the point you may not realize you need to take immediate action. Rescuers have at times found lost hikers and others that have succumbed to dehydration with water still in their canteens. People think they should ration their water for when they need it and this can have serious consequences.

Once you begin to experience dehydration your mental acuity is affected. You will not be thinking straight, and you can make decisions detrimental to your survival. Trying to save water for later is a bad decision, but the amazing thing is the decision is usually made when the mind is clear.

Some people do believe, they need to ration their water in some situations, save it for when they need it, is the thinking. However, when your mind is fuzzy you cannot make any rational decisions, and some people have ended up dying with water within reach.

The human body is made up of approximately 60 percent water. Every part of the body depends on water. You need it for healthy skin, hair, and nails as well as to help control heart rate, blood pressure and most importantly control the body’s temperature (WebMD, n.d.).

So What Counts As Water?

Fruits and vegetables can help hydrate you. Watermelon for example, is 90 percent water, so it can be tapped to help keep you going as well as cantaloupe, oranges, grapefruit, cucumbers, celery, and greens such as romaine lettuce.

There is no substitute for just plain water however, and medical experts are finding that more and more people are fluid deficient, in other words, some are not drinking enough water in the course of a normal day, and this can spell disaster if you find yourself sweating heavily, and do not have an adequate supply of water.

Certain foods can help you stay hydrated, but no one should assume that the foods you eat would hydrate you enough to keep you healthy without adding water to your normal daily routine.

According to WebMD the myth that coffee and tea dehydrates you has been debunked. While both are considered a diuretic they can provide you with essential fluids, but again, you should offset coffee and tea consumption with water (WebMD, n.d.).

Everyone expels fluids throughout the day, fluids that have to be replaced. Headaches are common in people who are dehydrated as well as fatigue, foggy mind, and cranky mood and in the advanced stages you can become unconscious.

How much water a body needs everyday depends on certain factors, but most experts agree for the average adult two quarts/liters is required. Keep in mind teas, fruit drinks and other beverages can contain artificial ingredients as well as, sodium, and sugars and so will add calories to your diet.

The body can lose a gallon or even more of fluids a day in hot weather when sweating heavily. The amount of water you need is dependent upon your body size, overall health and your activity level. This is not an exact science, so drink water, whether you feel thirsty or not, and if the color of your urine is dark or you are not urinating at all then you are not getting enough water.

Dehydration will lower the sodium and sugar levels in the body and treating dehydration with plain water may not be the best treatment method for very young children and older adults. Always consult with a medical professional before treating anyone however. When you sweat you are losing fluids and essential minerals.

Water will dilute the already low mineral levels in the body. For young children, infants, and older adults dehydration is a real concern, and it will have a greater impact on these age groups. You can use an oral hydration formula along with water to help treat mild dehydration in some cases.

Certain sports drinks do contain electrolytes that are necessary for fluid retention and for the cells to function properly, and so can be used to help keep the body hydrated.

A squeeze or two of real lemon in your water can help those who simply do not like water straight from the tap. You can also bruise a few fresh mint leaves to add flavor to your water as well.

WebMD. (n.d.). Retrieved 2015, from http://www.webmd.com/parenting/features/healthy-beverages

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An EMP attack hitting the United States is a popular concept amongst members of the survivalist community.

That being said, while many people are aware of EMP attacks, far fewer people actually understand what an EMP attack is, how it works, or how it would affect the country.

Here’s some truth: an EMP attack would, without question, be one of the very worst things that could happen to the United States. If you’ve ever heard of the idea that an EMP could throw America back to the 1800s, that’s fairly accurate.

In this article, we’ll cover what an EMP is and how it works, and then what you can expect to happen if one were to go off in the United States.

What Is An EMP?

EMP stands for ‘electromagnetic pulse,’ and it’s basically a very powerful and intense pulse of electromagnetic radiation.

If this pule is powerful enough, it can fry the wiring in circuitry, and in a strong enough magnetic field, electronics can be completely destroyed by the burst.

Now, this doesn’t mean that those electronic devices are going to explode or anything.  But it does mean that the electrical components are going to get fried and, well, quit working.

Take note that an EMP is not going to be dangerous to animals, plants, or people (unless if you’re wearing something like a pacemaker or are in a moving vehicle), so you shouldn’t need to fear for your physical health when the blast goes off.  

How can an electromagnetic pulse be created? One way is through detonating a nuclear weapon high in the atmosphere. The energy created by that blast could create an electromagnetic pulse that would then be sent out in all directions.

There are also different kinds of electromagnetic pulses as well: E1, E2, and E3.

An E1 pulse is the most powerful and intense. It creates microwaves as it passes through the earth magnetic field and would most certainly cause voltages in electrical conductors as well.  This is the type of electromagnetic pulse that would fry computers and similar electronic equipment.

The E2 pulse is similar to lightning strikes, and is far less powerful than an E2 pulse. Finally, the E3 pulse is even less powerful than the E2, and is comparable to solar flares created by the sun. While E3s are still powerful enough to damage power lines and other infrastructure, they’re still not nearly as powerful as E1s.

Now that we understand what an electromagnetic pulse is, it’s time to answer the big question: what is (realistically) going to be taken out by an EMP attack?

What’s Going To Get Taken Out By An EMP?

Honestly, the answer to this question depends on a number of different factors: the type of electromagnetic pulse, how high in the atmosphere it’s detonated (the higher the device is detonated, the wider range it’s going to affect), and whether any electronic device are shielded or not.

That being said, any device that is not shielded or protected against an E1 electromagnetic pulse is likely go be either completely fried or at least damaged. These include, but are not necessarily limited to:

Any of those above items that are going to be extremely vulnerable to an EMP.  Phones and laptops that are being housed in a metal building *might* be able to survive an E1, but it’s not at all guaranteed and you can’t count on it.

What Will An EMP Attack Look Like In The United States?

What you need to do is imagine a world where each of the items listed above are taken out instantly, because that is exactly what an EMP attack is going to do.

For instance, cars are going to quit working instantly, at least cars that were built since 1990. Planes will fall out of the sky.  Phones and laptops will be fried, and even if they weren’t, they wouldn’t do you much good without cell service or the internet.  

In essence, America will be thrown back to the Stone Ages as hundreds of millions of people across the country find themselves in a world without power.

Looting and rioting would be almost certain to develop in the hours and days following the attack across most of the major cities in America. Due to the lack of working electronic equipment, military and law enforcement would be enormously slow to respond, which is why 

What’s worse, is that such a scenario could potentially last for literally years.  It would take years, if not a full decade, for the power grid to get back up and running the way it was before, during which up to 90% of Americans could be killed by starvation, rioting, disease, dehydration, murder, and suicide.

In essence, if there’s one thing that an EMP attack would create in the United States it would be this: chaos.  And it wouldn’t be over quickly either.

Preparing for an EMP attack is something that the United States should be doing, as right now, it remains woefully underprepared.

As for you, you need to be prepared as well.   An EMP would change your world as you know it and literally transform your city into a war zone.  The supply trucks would stop, the grocery stores would become looted, and raiders would prowl the streets.  

You will need to take action to stock up on supplies, establish close alliances with people in your area for bartering and mutual protection, and to build Faraday cages to shield electronic items from the effects of an EMP.

Hopefully, this article has given you an idea of what would realistically happen if an EMP attack were to happen in the United States.  If you take anything away from this article, it’s that you need to start preparing now.

This content was originally published here.

Maybe you don’t want to or can’t carry a firearm. Maybe you work in an office high rise where weapons are forbidden, That doesn’t mean that you should be without means to defend yourself. Sometimes you have to be creative to exercise your right to self-defense. For just a few dollars, you can put together a concealable self-defense tool that you can carry practically anywhere for last ditch emergency use. As always, make sure to check your state and local laws to see if they’ve stripped you of the right to defend yourself in this manner. Please be aware that I am not responsible for any bodily harm or injury that may befall you or others with this tool, this is to be made and used at your own discretion.

What You Will Need:

Piece of Rubber or Jar Gripper ( I used a piece of bicycle inner tube)

Hot Glue Gun or Epoxy (if you want it a lot stronger, will take longer for epoxy to set)

Small Screw Driver (like for eyeglasses)

1 Sharpie Fine Point Marker

1 11/64 Drill bit (preferably a longer sized drill bit)

Step 1.

To disassemble the Sharpie with out marking it up take your piece of rubber to grip the cap securing the ink. You’re going to want to pull straight out instead of twisting because the cap has fine splines in it. It does take some strength.

Step 2.

Next remove the ink cartridge and set aside, you’ll need it later. Then take a pair of pliers and pull the felt tip from the marker.

Step 3.

The 11/64 drill bit is slightly bigger than the felt tip was so by hand drill the cap by twisting it so the drill bit will slide through.

Step 4.

Next sharpen the drill bit on the smooth side into a point using a file or a bench grinder. If you use a bench grinder do it in little increments so you won’t heat up the metal too much. Once sharpened to satisfaction slide the drill bit into the marker tip cap. Try and set it so it’s the same height as the felt tip was so it looks original as possible.

Step 5.

Once you have the proper height take your hot glue gun and glue the drill bit into the cap. Try and stuff as much glue or epoxy in as possible. I used a small screw driver to pack the hot glue down as much as possible, then let glue set.

Step 6.

This next step I don’t have a picture for because I had to do it quick. Depending on the length of the drill bit you used, you might have have to cut some off. You want the drill bit to go down into the handle as much as possible. Once you have the bit cut, fill the handle of the pen about 3/4 the way full with hot glue or epoxy then stuff the cap back on. Let glue set up.

Step 7.

Now take the ink cartridge you set aside and color the sharpened tip to make it look like the stock tip. As you can see from the video below it works quit well and the glue and drill bit add a bit of weight to it. Enjoy your new Self-Defense Sharpie.

Here is a video of it stabbing a piece of pine wood.

This content was originally published here.

Preppers Do You Need a Generator or Do You Even Want One: Things to Consider

While it is possible to live without electricity and all the conveniences that go along with electricity, it would be difficult. Those with medical conditions that require portable oxygen or chilled medication, for example, will need a power source if the power grid goes down, so decisions must be made as to how to supply your home with the much-needed electricity when the grid fails.

Options include solar, wind, hydro and portable or not so portable generators that can supply you with some if not all of your electrical needs during a crisis.

Refrigeration would be difficult to give up during a crisis, and not having refrigeration can be costly due to wasted foods because of spoilage. Refrigeration may be needed to chill medications such as insulin as well.

In most cases, insulin can be stored out of refrigeration for up to 28 days but if you have a 90-day supply of insulin then 60 days of insulin will have to be chilled. Heat is important as well and lack of a heat source in the wintertime can be deadly.

Given the lowering of gas prices this may be a good time to look at generators and look to stockpile the much-needed fuel to operate one. There are various ways to power up generators and you will have to choose one that best suits your needs. Keep in mind that if natural gas is used to power a generator it can be disrupted if the power grid fails, and natural gas is not a fuel that can be stockpiled like gasoline, diesel or propane.

What Size Do You Need

The following is just a general guideline. To determine what size generator you would need specifically, you can visit the following website and checkmark the appliances/tools/equipment that you would expect to use during a crisis to determine running watts and starting watts needed.

Things to Think About

What is running watts and starting watts? This is something you will see when shopping for generators and it is an important consideration.

Running watts are the constant watts needed to keep an appliance or piece of equipment running. Starting watts are the additional watts needed on start up, sometimes referred to as the surge wattage needed to start motor-driven products like a refrigerator and certain tools.

A Small portable is capable of producing 3,000 to 4,000 watts what it can power includes 

Midsized portable and small stationary is capable of producing 5,000 to 8,500 watts what it can power includes

Large portable 10,000 watts and what it can power includes

Large stationary 10,000 to 15,000 watts and what it can power includes

A portable generator is one that usually has wheels, which makes it easy to move from one area to another as demand requires or it can be carried by one or two people.

Stationary generators once installed are considered somewhat permanent, but unless they are what is called an “inline generator” they can still be moved, but with considerable effort involved.

Inline generators are installed between the main electrical source and your home. Once the power company flow is disrupted, the inline generator would automatically take over to supply the home. A qualified technician is usually needed to install unless you have a complete understanding of the installation process. The power company in most cases would need to inspect the inline component to ensure the safety of their workers during an outage.

You will need extension cords rated heavy enough for the demand placed on them. Do not skimp on extension cords because having to light of a gauge can cause an electrical fire.

The thicker the wire in the extension cords means a lower gauge and the more amps or current the cord can handle. The length of the cord also has an effect on how many amps the cord can safely handle.

The longer the cord the less amps it can handle. If you need a 100-foot extension cord for an appliance that normally requires a 14-guarge cord, for example, you may need to buy a 12-gauge cord to compensate for the distance the current has to travel.

These are only guidelines, and it is important that the cords you choose be rated for outdoor use.

Generator Placement

Yes, people still need to be reminded not to operate generators in enclosed spaces like garages crawlspaces, basements and even in some carports. Generators placed outside next to a dryer vent can also allow toxic fumes to get inside the home for example. Do not place generators near any windows, doorways or venting from inside the home.

Stationary generators will need a solid foundation and they need to be placed where heavy rains would not leave standing pools of water around the generator. Generators that cannot be moved easily by carrying can be mounted on trailers for easy placement if the trailer can be secured properly once the generator is in operation.

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/news/2012/10/to-get-through-an-emergency-how-big-a-generator-do-you-need/index.htm

This content was originally published here.