credits to zeker for this one
Ready for doomsday? Some of our neighbors are
Pat and Lynette Brabble returned from church on a laid-back Sunday and flipped on Animal Planet's "River Monsters" on their 82-inch, high-definition TV.
Lynette fielded phone calls from her two grown daughters, a daily occurrence to check in and see how the family's doing.
The front door stood open as traffic rolled by on N.C. Route 42 outside this small North Carolina town.
The pair relaxed in their separate recliners and talked about Pat's dad, who started the family business, Brabble Insulation, nearly 40 years ago, their melded family of four daughters and one son, and one of their favorite pastimes: preparing for disaster.
In the past 13 years, the Brabbles have experienced several natural disasters, including Hurricane Floyd in 1999, which flooded Pat's home; Hurricane Isabel in 2003, which left them without power for more than a week; and a tornado that damaged their daughter's house in 2011.
They've also experienced a downturn in the economy, which forced Pat and his brother, Scott Brabble, to sell their gun shop and refocus their energy on and money into their "bread and butter" business: insulation installation.
So the collecting and stockpiling began, more in earnest in the past couple years, when the Brabbles started filling a 20-foot-by-20-foot room in the barn behind their ranch house with all the essentials they would need to live, trade and survive in case Mother Nature wreaks havoc or the economy of the good ole' USA fails.
"How can you take care of your family?" Pat asked. "We got a big family; we really need to plan for things like that."
"Preppers" is the 21st century term for folks like the Brabbles, who lead normal lives working, playing and taking care of their families. They also sport a hobby of sorts, like playing golf or collecting stamps - buying up what they need in case disaster strikes.
While the term is new, the phenomenon is not.
In America, not so long ago, as the threat of nuclear war loomed over our ideological differences with the former Soviet Union, citizens built bomb shelters and filled them with everyday conveniences to withstand an atomic attack.
While many of those bomb shelters were outside the family abode, nowadays, many folks are stockpiling goods - gas masks, guns, non-perishable food, medical supplies and much more - in garages, sheds or rooms, turning their homes into storage facilities.
They're also prepping for various threats that weigh on people's minds: pandemics, solar flares, natural catastrophes such as earthquakes, tsunamis or hurricanes, economic collapse and terrorist attacks.
"Everybody comes up with a scenario that matches their resources. There are no two scenarios that are alike," said Richard G. Mitchell Jr., emeritus professor of sociology at Oregon State University and author of 2001's "Dancing at Armageddon: Survivalism and Chaos in Modern Times."
Mitchell spent 20 years with a colleague participating in the "survivalist movement," he said. "People who build bomb shelters don't talk about floods."
Contrary to popular belief, Mitchell continued, survivalists aren't loners with a "pickup truck, a chain saw and 5 acres in the woods." It's really become a suburban phenomenon, he said, with people who work 9-to-5 jobs and have retirement funds.
"It's a hobby structure being represented as a primary lifestyle," Mitchell said.
For some, that hobby can get expensive, and can offer a separate, well-sealed, well-hidden living area if disaster strikes.
For Brian Camden, founder of Hardened Structures Hardened Shelters LLC in Virginia Beach, his clients are willing to pay $250 to $800 a square foot, depending on their needs, for that piece of mind.
Camden's architects and engineers design and build everything from reinforced homes to multi-room underground bunkers.
A steel, prefab bunker is the company's biggest seller at $40,000, Camden said.
When asked if it's a growing business, Camden replied, "You have no idea. Today alone I signed two non-disclosure agreements."
Camden will not pinpoint where his clients live - only in general terms, like the client in the Pacific Northwest who has a reinforced shelter underneath his house.
For people like Ilona Bruner, and her husband, Mike, who live in Norfolk's Larchmont neighborhood, their penchant to prepare launched after Hurricane Isabel in 2003, said Bruner, director of The Dwelling Place, a homeless shelter in Norfolk.
With flooding and tornadoes in her neighborhood, and folks without electricity for days, even weeks, Bruner said she started to think about ways to prepare for a disaster, to have a plan for her and her husband.
Nearly nine years later, Bruner picks up "shelf-stable supplies" when she goes to the grocery store and adds them to their supplies at home.
"I don't want to get five years of food; I don't want to be a food hoarder," she said.
However, "I think about what we're buying. I'm thinking about medical supplies, what I have on hand."
Bruner has a self-confessed obsession with anti-bacterial soap, she said. And she recently bought a machete from Bass Pro Shop.
Like Pat and Lynette Brabble, Bruner talks about her "bug-out bag," or a bag that contains everything one would need to survive for 72 hours, in case disaster struck and you'd have to abandon your home fast.
The machete would go in the bug-out bag.
Bruner also has important documents scanned in and saved on thumb drives; she's also done the same with family photos and requested her medical records from her doctor to copy them and save them on a portable device as well.
"If you have to leave your house and had 15 minutes to actually evacuate, I'm trying to get those things to me that are irreplaceable," she said. "If we had to rebuild, we would have those important items."
Bruner said that people need to be more aware of the potential for disaster, whether natural or human-made.
"It's not like you have to live your life under this black cloud; the key word is we need to be prepared," she said.
Larry Friedman, vice president/manager of M&G Sales Co., an Army-Navy surplus store on Granby Street in Norfolk, said he sees all types of people preparing for different scenarios.
His biggest sellers are gas masks. He also sells a lot of MREs, or Meals Ready to Eat.
"They're not bad," Friedman said.
A run on certain items "usually follows some event," he said, like when Chernobyl hit the Ukraine in 1986. "A lot of people were really concerned it was going to be global nuclear fallout."
Friedman said some of the shows on TV now, such as the Discovery Channel's "The Colony" and National Geographic's "Doomsday Preppers" (which features R.E.M.'s hit "It's the End of the World as We Know It" in its introduction), feed the hysteria.
Pat and Lynette Brabble were featured on Episode 3 of season one of Nat Geo's show.
It depicted them praying in their shelter with their pastor; heaving Molotov cocktails into a fire pit and showcasing the more than 60 guns Pat owns and stores in the shelter, their cars or in the house.
The Brabbles have enough gas to run their generator for six months, enough food for 18 months for their entire family, and some bargaining chips if they need them, including bottles of liquor to trade for necessities they may need in times of trouble - even though both do not drink.
Lynette called the room where they store everything - from the night-vision goggles to over-the-counter medicine like Pepto-Bismol to DayQuil - her husband's "pride and joy."
The couple has peace of mind if the unthinkable happens.
"We're going to look out for our family," Pat Brabble said. "If they need something to eat, they have a place to go."http://hamptonroads.com/2012/05/ready-d ... ghbors-are
Read This First Before You Decide That Preppers Are Crazy
Do you believe that preppers are a few cards short of a full deck? Do you assume that anyone that is "preparing for doomsday" does not have their elevator going all the way to the top floor? Well, you might want to read this first before you make a final decision that all preppers are crazy. The information that you are about to read shook me up a bit when I first looked it over. To be honest, I had no idea how incredibly vulnerable our economic system is to a transportation disruption. I am continually getting emails and comments on my websites asking "how to prepare" for what is coming, so when I came across this information I knew that I had to share it with all of you. Hopefully what you are about to read will motivate you to prepare like never before, and hopefully you will share this information with others.
Originally, I was going to write an article about the rising unemployment in Europe today. Did you know that unemployment in the eurozone is now at a 15 year high? It has risen for 10 months in a row with no end in sight.
But I have written dozens of articles about the economic crisis in Europe already. So before starting on that article I started thinking of all the "preparation" questions I have been getting lately and I went over and checked out one of my favorite preparation websites: shtfplan.com.
Well, an article had just been posted over there about a report put out by the American Trucker Associations entitled "When Trucks Stop, America Stops".
I went and found that original report and I was stunned as I read it.
The truth is that our "just in time" inventory and delivery systems leave us incredibly vulnerable to a nationwide disaster.
You see, it is very expensive to hold and store inventory, so most manufacturers and retailers rely on a continual flow of deliveries that are scheduled to arrive "just in time", and this significantly reduces their operating expenses.
This is considered to be good business practice for manufacturers and retailers, but it also means that if there was a major nationwide transportation disruption that our economic system would grind to a halt almost immediately.
Once store shelves are picked clean, they would not be able to be replenished until trucks could get back on the road. In the event of a major nationwide disaster, that could be quite a while.
So what could potentially cause a nationwide transportation shutdown?
Well, it is easy to imagine a lot of potential scenarios - a volcanic eruption, a historic earthquake, an EMP attack, a solar megastorm, a war, a major terror attack, an asteroid strike, a killer pandemic, mass rioting in U.S. cities, or even martial law.
If something caused the trucks to stop running, life in America would immediately start changing.
So exactly what would that look like?
The following is an excerpt from the report mentioned above put out by the American Trucker Associations entitled "When Trucks Stop, America Stops"....
A Timeline Showing the Deterioration of Major Industries Following a Truck Stoppage
The first 24 hours
• Delivery of medical supplies to the affected area will cease.
• Hospitals will run out of basic supplies such as syringes and catheters within hours. Radiopharmaceuticals will deteriorate and become unusable.
• Service stations will begin to run out of fuel.
• Manufacturers using just-in-time manufacturing will develop component shortages.
• U.S. mail and other package delivery will cease.
Within one day
• Food shortages will begin to develop.
• Automobile fuel availability and delivery will dwindle, leading to skyrocketing prices and long lines at the gas pumps.
• Without manufacturing components and trucks for product delivery,
assembly lines will shut down, putting thousands out of work.
Within two to three days
• Food shortages will escalate, especially in the face of hoarding and consumer panic.
• Supplies of essentials—such as bottled water, powdered milk, and
canned meat—at major retailers will disappear.
• ATMs will run out of cash and banks will be unable to process
• Service stations will completely run out of fuel for autos and trucks.
• Garbage will start piling up in urban and suburban areas.
• Container ships will sit idle in ports and rail transport will be disrupted, eventually coming to a standstill.
Within a week
• Automobile travel will cease due to the lack of fuel. Without autos and busses, many people will not be able to get to work, shop for groceries, or access medical care.
• Hospitals will begin to exhaust oxygen supplies.
Within two weeks
• The nation’s clean water supply will begin to run dry.
Within four weeks
• The nation will exhaust its clean water supply and water will be safe for drinking only after boiling. As a result gastrointestinal illnesses will increase, further taxing an already weakened health care system.
This timeline presents only the primary effects of a freeze on truck travel. Secondary effects must be considered as well, such as inability to maintain telecommunications service, reduced law enforcement, increased crime, increased illness and injury, higher death rates, and likely, civil unrest.
Earlier in the report, the reasons why America's water supply would be in such jeopardy are described in greater detail....
According to the American Water Works Association, Americans drink more than one billion glasses of tap water per day. For safety and security reasons, most water supply plants maintain a larger inventory of supplies than the typical business. However, the amount of chemical storage varies significantly and is site specific. According to the Chlorine Institute, most water treatment facilities receive chlorine in cylinders (150 pounds and one ton cylinders) that are delivered by motor carriers. On average, trucks deliver purification chemicals to water supply plants every seven to 14 days. Without these chemicals, water cannot be purified and made safe for drinking. Without truck deliveries of purification chemicals, water supply plants will run out of drinkable water in 14 to 28 days. Once the water supply is drained, water will be deemed safe for drinking only when boiled. Lack of clean drinking water will lead to increased gastrointestinal and other illnesses, further taxing an already weakened healthcare system.
Can you see why I always recommend that you make sure that you and your family have access to fresh water and a way to purify it?
This report should be very sobering for all of us.
What would you and your family do if you had no food, no clean water and the stores were shut down because their supplies were gone?
An article by Tess Pennington entitled "Emergency Items: What Will Disappear First" contains a list of 100 things that are likely to disappear from store shelves first. The following are the first 10 things on her list....
1. Generators (Good ones cost dearly. Gas storage, risky. Noisy…target of
thieves; maintenance etc.)
2. Water Filters/Purifiers
3. Portable Toilets
4. Seasoned Firewood. Wood takes about 6 – 12 months to become dried, for home
5. Lamp Oil, Wicks, Lamps (First Choice: Buy CLEAR oil. If scarce, stockpile
6. Coleman Fuel. Impossible to stockpile too much.
7. Guns, Ammunition, Pepper Spray, Knives, Clubs, Bats & Slingshots.
8. Hand-can openers, & hand egg beaters, whisks.
9. Honey/Syrups/white, brown sugar
10. Rice – Beans – Wheat
You can find the rest of the list right here.
Most Americans just assume that they will always be able to run out to the supermarket or to Wal-Mart and buy anything that they need.
But if the trucks stop running that will change almost overnight.
After reading the information above, does anyone out there still believe that preppers are crazy?
The truth is that there are good, solid reasons why millions of Americans have been storing up food, water filters and other supplies.
Our world is becoming increasingly unstable, and all of us need to get educated about how to prepare for the difficult years that are coming.
One nightmarish event can change everything that we take for granted in a single moment.
Just remember what happened after Hurricane Katrina. Even though that was only a regional disaster, millions of people had their lives completely turned upside down by that tragedy.
Don't make the mistake of assuming that just because the U.S. has always known tremendous peace and prosperity since World War II that things will always be that way.
Our lives will only continue to be "normal" as long as the trucks continue running.
When the trucks stop running in America, there will be mass chaos.
Are you prepared for that?http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/arch ... -are-crazy