In a world that is obsessed with the Zombie Apocalypse and Sharknados, I find it very curious that few people have begun to prepare for an actual emergency. Watch any show closely and you will notice that there are certain skills we all need to possess to make it through the end of days: hunting, gathering, growing crops, cooking or preparing food, first aid, fire fighting, basic building and construction, power generation, light mechanical and electrical work, operating aircraft and CPR. Throw in a few professional EMTs, soldiers, pilots, historians, nurses, physicians, surgeons, engineers, mathematicians and physicists/chemists and we should be good to go.
If you are not in one of these groups or have been trained as a volunteer disaster responder, I suggest you check out where you can find these courses. Local Firehouses and community colleges are a good starting point, and many prenatal courses will offer a version for infant care. (CPR techniques vary according to the age of the patient. Eight years old and up is usually considered an adult and treated as such.) Most workplaces have contract firms provide training for their employees, which will cost you nothing other than a commitment to volunteer under certain situations.
If you think post apocalyptic shows are prep enough, think again. Many of the first aid protocols you see in the movies are wrong or compromised to add drama to the narrative. Never remove impailed knives or sharp objects until you are prepared to stop any major arterial bleeding that may occur. Also, don’t leave tourniquets on for a prolonged time becausw you risk having to amputate the limb due to inadequate blood flow to the area. People vomit after performing CPR on them for a while so make sure you clear the airway, and don’t stop until you are tired out, the situation becomes unsafe or qualified help arrives. Don’t assume you’ll know what to do or will find a clan leader than will magically save you. In the real world that warlord could turn out to be you! (With the proper training of course.)
Sadly, first aid and basic survival skills aren’t going to be enough. Chaos and anarchy may come with the package, and to keep safe, you will need to build and hone self defense skills. Martial arts, knife handling, fire arms, tazers or mace, you will need to master one of these or several in order to survive. That is the one thing all these life on Earth shattering scenarios have in common. The person that doesn’t know how to protect their families and themselves will be at the mercy of those who can provide it. Of all the skills, this one can be the most valuable of them all.
The one area where I am the weakest is on stashing supplies for an emergency. Although I can walk from my place of employment to my home within a couple of hours, I don’t have enoug backpacks stuffed with the goods. My pantry has items to last a couple of days, and we would need to use the grill to cook at least until we run out of charcoal. With Zach on board, our beloved dog, I set aside kibble and snacks for a few days but I still need to include water and meds for him. An automated feeder wouldn’t be a bad idea either. There’s nothing he could eat if I got stuck at work for 24 hrs due to a disaster.
I bet you are wondering why this subject came to mind and the reason is very straight forward: CPR/First aid/VDR recertification. The instructor couldn’t strees enough how important it is to have an escape and emergency management plan for our families. Would your kids know what to do if you were “incomunicado” for a few hours? Would you? Take the time to write down the rules and build the kits necessary to ensure your family will be taken care of, and will have the tools to survive the Zombie Apocalypse or worse, a natural disaster. According to The Walking Dead, roads and houses will be available to anyone that makes it. If an earthquake or a tornado strikes, we won’t be so lucky.