I've read quite a few discussions on SHTF scenarios, and what would you do, and where would you go, and things like that, but I think making a decent point is difficult unless you are on the same page in terms of what kind of scenarios we're discussing. With that in mind, I'd like to go over a few different types of scenarios that each have different priorities and would require a different plan. Because to me, someone breaking into my house in the middle of the night is a SHTF scenario, as it is something that directly affects the life, liberty, and welfare of my family and I.
Type 1: Act of domestic terrorism. This is a scenario that has occurred several times within my lifetime (32 years old). I am not bringing politics into this, so my definition of this type of act includes any attack on public or government infrastructure or facilities. The OKC bombing, active shooter events (Columbine, VA Tech, Luby's Cafeteria, etc), WTC attack, these types of incidents should be planned for with family action plans such as alternate modes of communication and predesignated meeting spots to ensure accountability of family.
Type 2: Natural disaster. Depending on the type, you may have to evacuate or you may be stuck wherever you are. I no longer live in Kansas, so tornados and snow storms really aren't a concern. However, living in southern Arizona, wildfires are. The type of weather-related events you need to prepare for are specific to your region. Remember, though, that you may not be home with your 3000 gallon water storage and doomsday vault when the heavens open and dump the snow and ice on your head.
Type 3: Civil unrest. This may, as we've seen, follow a natural disaster, increasing the amounts and types of materials needed as well as change the nature of the mission from surviving nature's indifference to surviving nature and criminals. We have also seen that emergency services may become overwhelmed very quickly and may not be effective again for weeks.
Type 4: Martial law/police state/foreign power invasion. This is a scenario in which each person must decide whether the benefits of personal liberty and a sense of right outweigh the continued standard of living and infrastructure available by being on the side of the government.
Type 5: Complete societal breakdown. With the end of the Cold War, this type of scenario is extremely unlikely and should not be given much in the way of consideration. I know many will disagree with me, but those who really worry about this situation are not priortizing very well. Having said that, if you are prepared for this type of event, you are also likely to be at least reasonably well prepared for the others. This is what I call the Out of the Ashes scenario, because I enjoy reading that book series, even if I think the author is a bit of a kook.
These types of scenarios are my list, and I do not make any claims about being some kind of expert on the classification of bad days. Based on my list here, I will be posting my ideas and opinions on what the priorities in terms of equipment, planning, and training/skills a person should focus on.
Oh, and there is the Type 6, Zombie takeover, but I think that is covered by preparing for type 5.
"I have always been a soldier. I have known no other life. The calling of arms, I have followed from boyhood. I have never sought another." From The Virtues of War, by Steven Pressfield.
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