As we have discussed before, preparedness is not a one time event. The world is ever-changing, and our situations are ever-changing as well. We often fail to recognize the cues that should call us to action.
For example, I switched jobs two months ago and failed to consider that I am now working an hour from home and outside of a major metro area. Here I was, driving my wife’s car because it gets more MPG’s, and would have been absolutely “up the crick” if we had a SHTF event. Previously, I had always driven my truck (which is outfitted for always getting home) and had mapped-out all of the alternative routes home. My wife’s car didn’t even have a map for the state I was working in! What a knuckle-head. Needless to say, I quickly corrected that situation and now am confident I can get home.
You may have just asked yourself, “Good point – could I get home if I needed to?” Here are some ideas to help you answer this. #1 Always keep a full tank of gas. If you are an hour from home and have a quarter of a tank – you are screwed. #2. Have a map and learn the non-interstate routes home. Be sure to consider choke points like bridges. #3 Get your CCL and carry a gun. If it get’s scary out there – you need to be able to protect yourself. #4 Drive a vehicle with some ground clearance. If you have to get off on the berm or onto a rough secondary road, you better not get hung-up. #5 Supplies. Here is what is in my truck: tire chains, come-a-long, tow chain, bow saw, machete, 50′ of rope, matches, toilet paper (you never know when you’ll need to go), maps, rain jacket, spare shoes (does no good to walk ten miles in dress shoes), fleece jacket, bottled-water, tuna, bug spray, sun glasses, gloves, hat, hand tools, and a folding shovel. Also have a backpack in case I have to go over-land, and I always keep a trusty compass (in case I’m not wearing my Luminox Recon). I will get home – one way or another.
Even if you are not changing – the world is. Remember that little Ebola outbreak we mentioned before? It didn’t go away… it is getting bigger. In fact, Mr. President has declared it a major threat (see http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-29231400). In fact, now he says he is sending 3000 troops to Africa to help contain the outbreak (see http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/16/world/africa/obama-to-announce-expanded-effort-against-ebola.html?_r=0). This is not a small issue. This has HUGE risk of going global. If not, we wouldn’t be putting 3000 service people at risk by sending them there. The time to get ready for this is NOW – not when there 100 cases inside the U.S. I’ve reinvigorated my efforts to stockpile food, water, and energy in the event I need to lock my family down for three to four weeks. Everyone should have at least three to four weeks worth of supplies in their homes, and then they should have a means to defend it.
Think this is crazy? Maybe. But I tell you what would suck….. me NOT being crazy and you figuring out you needed to Stay Prepared before the SHTF.