The CDC Wants You To Prepare For Nuclear Attack

With what feels like retro vibes from the 1950’s, the CDC (Center for Disease Control) has announced a January 16th presentation to teach the public how to  prepare for nuclear attack. Am I the only one hearing the theme to the Twilight Zone playing in the background?

Steps To Take To Prepare For A Nuclear Strike

Though nuclear detonation is unlikely, it could have devastating effects, and there would be limited time to take the steps necessary to protect our families.  This makes preparing before hand vital.

First, forget every Hollywood movie you’ve ever seen on the topic of nuclear war. The apocalyptic wasteland throughout the country stuff.   Unless you are at Ground Zero of a nuclear strike, there are steps you can take to survive.  But, you’ve got to know what to do immediately after an attack.  The biggest loss of life could come from simply not knowing what to do after a strike.

Who Is At The Greatest Risk Of A Nuclear Strike?

Do you live in a large city like Washington, D.C.?  New York?  Los Angeles?  Are you near a large military base?   These are the types of places more likely to be the target of a nuclear strike.

Be Prepared To Shelter In Place

If you have a basement, that is where you will want to be.  If not, then stay in the most central part of your home,  located away from the direction that the wind is blowing if possible.

Seal off all windows, doors, vents and chimneys. Duct tape, garbage bags and tarps will be your friends.  Store plenty.  Turn off heating and air conditioners that pull in outside air into the home.  Unseal your home after the fall out cloud has passed.

What If You Are Caught Outside?

  • Find something to cover your mouth and nose, that you can still breath through.  Having one of  *this post contains affiliate links these on hand, or in your EDC bag would be excellent.
  • Move to a shelter, basement, or other underground area, preferably located away from the direction that the wind is blowing.
  • Decontaminate if possible by showering and changing clothes before you enter the shelter.

No Lights. No Water.  Now What?

Plan as though there will be no utilities after a nuclear strike.  Do you have at least a 14 day supply (three weeks would be better!) of water and food?   How about ways to keep warm or cool depending on the weather?    How will you see when it gets dark?  Do not drink water from open water supplies.

Stock Up On Emergency Food

Consider a supply of foods that don’t require cooking, or refrigeration.  If you’d like to kick it up a notch, invest in a butane stove and freeze dried meals that only need hot water to finish off.  Do not eat local fresh food.

What Goes In Must Come Out

Products such as the *this post contains affiliate links Luggable Loo Portable Toilet allow you a place to relieve yourself, and a way to dispose of your offerings.  BTW, if you have pets you’ll need to have a way for them to relieve themselves as well.

A Checklist to Survive a Nuclear Attack

News From The Outside

An emergency radio is going to be a must, in order to receive the latest updates after a nuclear attack.   This Kaito Emergency Radio allows you to charge it using solar, battery, crank, and through a wall plug.  You can also charge cell phones with it.

Potassium Iodide

You can learn more of the whys and hows of this product in this post.   Remember, only the IOSAT brand is approved to protect your thyroid gland.  As talks heats up about the potential of a nuclear war, I expect IOSAT to either go up in price or become really hard to get.  Now would be the time to stock up.

Have A Good First Aid Kit On Hand

Be prepared to handle your family’s medical needs after a nuclear attack, including a supply of any prescription medications they may be on.  A comprehensive first aid kit will come in handy too.  Think about adding a few compression bandages and a book on first aid medicine as well.

Protecting Your Lungs From Potential Nuclear Fallout

With it’s NBC protection rating, an Israeli gas mask will protect your lungs in case you needed to leave your shelter before the ‘all clear’ was given.

Another option, without as great of protection,  would include putting a wet cloth or towel over your mouth and nose.

If you are concerned about needing to leave your shelter early,  you may want to stock a few disposable Tyvek suits and protective gloves.

Knowledge Is Power.  Preparation Brings Peace.

Take the time to make these preparations now, not because nuclear war is imminent, but because there is no reason not to have the basic preps for any emergency on hand anyway.

When people are knowledgeable about emergencies like a nuclear strike,  they are able to act in a calmer and more efficient manner.  If you are interested in learning more about how to survive a nuclear attack, I highly recommend the book, Nuclear War Survival Skills: Lifesaving Nuclear Facts and Self -Help Instructions.  



The Importance of a Well Prepped Map

When was the last time you used a printed map? In this day and age of GPS and Smartphones not many of us do anymore. It’s a skill many of our kids only get a glimpse of in 2nd grade Social Studies. But printed maps have an important place in the prepared home.

Looking at the lessons people are learning from Hurricane Sandy got me thinking how a printed map would have been useful for many of those families desperately looking for gas and other resources. Since Sandy is a localized disaster, in many cases the towns next to those hit hardest where operating as usual. But how many of those people knew where to find resources in the nearest town without an Around Me or Yelp apps? Or knew which back roads to take to avoid long traffic lines and road closures?

One of the things I found in my grandmothers things when she passed were travel journals. She would write things down that they passed that would be helpful to know about next time. I started doing this when we road tripped when the kids were little. Sure, I mostly wrote down where the best indoor play places were, but it is the same concept. I can’t tell you how many times it helped me remember that the cleaner restrooms were off exit 100 or silly things like that.

Today I challenge all of you to get maps of your city, your state, and those of surrounding states within driving distance. If you are a AAA member, they will send you maps for free. Or, you can use their interactive maps to print off ones with several things already marked off for you. You can sometimes get free maps at the tourist brochure places inside hotels or attractions. You can even go to and print some off.

Printed maps as a part of your emergency and disaster planning

Now, lets use those maps to start marking places that would help us in an emergency. Places to consider marking:

  • Hospitals
  • Police Stations
  • Fire Departments
  • Red Cross Local Station
  • Large high schools, middle schools and elementary schools (often used as temporary rescue stations)
  • Gas Stations (especially ones off the beaten path)
  • Hardware stores
  • Camping Areas
  • Grocery Stores
  • Truck Stops
  • Churches
  • Hotels and Motels

As you travel in and around your areas, take a mental note of where you could find resources that not everyone is going to hit up. That small gas station 20 miles away may be a much better bet than the one 1 mile down the road off the highway with a 5 hour line.

Keep your maps in either your 72 hour emergency kit or your car so you are always prepared to find your way without the help of technology.