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Your top priority right now, though, is preparing for your own immediate family survival!


WHAT TO DO IF A NUCLEAR DISASTER IS IMMINENT!


This guide is for families preparing for imminent terrorist or strategic nuclear attacks
with expected severe destruction followed by widespread radioactive fallout downwind.

IF ONLY A 'Dirty Bomb' Attack (Not the vastly more devastating nuclear weapon blasts with fallout discussed below.) - You can expect localized and downwind contamination from the explosion and dispersed radioactive materials. If you are near enough to see or hear any local bomb blast, assume that it includes radiological or chemical agents. You should move away from the blast area as quickly as possible. If the wind is blowing toward you from the direction of the blast, travel in a direction that is crosswise or perpendicular to the wind as you move away from the blast area. If possible cover your face with a dust mask or cloth to avoid inhaling potentially radioactive dust. Upon reaching a safe location, remove your outer clothing outside and shower as soon as possible. Refer to local news sources for additional instructions about sheltering or evacuation. The government is better prepared to direct and assist the public in a 'dirty bomb' incident, unlike an actual nuclear weapon attack discussed below.

In a national crisis of imminent nuclear weapon attacks, read all the way through this guide first,

THEN TAKE EFFECTIVE PROTECTIVE ACTION WITH CONFIDENCE... FAST!

 

#1 - STAY OR GO?

You must decide FIRST if you need to prepare where you are, or attempt evacuation. The nature of the threat, your prior preparations, and your confidence in your sources of information should direct your decision. If you know already you will be preparing to stay at your own home or, at least, the immediate local area, go now to #2 below.

If you are considering evacuation, your decision requires a very high confidence that it is worth the risk. You do not want to get stuck between your current location and your hoped for destination, as there will probably be no easy getting back. If you fail to get to your destination, you may be exposed without shelter, in a dangerous situation with little effective law enforcement, perhaps among panicked hordes of refugees. Whatever supplies you have may be limited then to what you can carry on foot. IF you are in a big city or near a military target, AND you have relatives or friends in the country that you know are awaiting you, AND the roads between you and them are clear, AND the authorities are not yet restricting traffic, AND you have the means and fuel, evacuation may be a viable option for a limited time. DO NOT attempt evacuation if all of the above is not clearly known, or if the situation is deteriorating too quickly to make the complete trip. You do not want to get stuck and/or become a refugee being herded along with panicked masses. If evacuation is truly a viable option, do not wait - GO NOW! Do so with as many of the supplies listed on the last page as possible. Better to be two days too early in arriving than two hours too late and getting snagged mid-way, potentially exposing your family to a worse fate than having stayed where you were. Because of the very real danger of getting caught in an evacuation stampede that stalls, almost all families will be better off making the best of it wherever they currently are.

#2 - WHAT YOU NEED TO DO FIRST

Because time is of the essence, you need to first delegate and assign to different adult family members specific tasks so they can all be accomplished at the same time. Your first priorities to assure your family survival are Shelter, Water, and Food/Supplies. While some are working on the water storage and shelter at home, others need to be acquiring, as much as possible, the food and supplies.

#3 - FOOD/SUPPLIES

Because much of the food and supplies listed on the last page of this guide may quickly become unavailable, you need to assign someone NOW to immediately go to the stores with that list! Get cash from the bank and ATM's first, but try and use credit cards at the stores, if at all possible, to preserve your cash.

#4 - WATER

With one or more adults now heading to the stores with the list on the last page, those remaining need to begin storing water IMMEDIATELY! Lack of clean water will devastate your family much more quickly and more severely than any lack of food. Without water for both drinking and continued good sanitary practices in food preparation and for bathroom excursions (which will inevitably be much less sanitary than normal), debilitating sickness could rampage through your household with little hope of prompt medical attention. That is a highly likely but, avoidable, disaster, ONLY IF you have enough water.

Every possible container needs to be filled with water RIGHT NOW! It will be very hard to have stored too much water. When the electricity/pumps go down or everybody in your community is doing the same thing, thus dropping the water pressure, what you've got is all you might be getting for a very long time. Empty pop bottles (1-3 liter) are ideal for water storage, also filling up the bathtub and washing machine. (Remember, later you'll have some in your hot water tank.) If you have any kiddie pools or old water beds, pull them out and fill them up, too. (Water from a water bed should be used only for bathing or cleaning, not for drinking as it may contain traces of algaecide and/or fungicides.) Anything and everything that'll hold water needs to be filled up quickly RIGHT NOW!!

One of the shopping items listed on the last page is new garbage cans and liner bags which you'll also use for storing water. If you can't get any more new cans, you could clean out an existing garbage can and scrub it throughout with bleach, then put in a new garbage bag liner and fill it with water. Even sturdy boxes could be used with bag liners. (Use two liners if they are very thin/flimsy.) Choose well where you fill up garbage cans with water because they won't easily be moved once full and many of them together could be too heavy for some upper floor locations. Ideally, they need to be very near where your shelter will be constructed and can actually add to its shielding properties, as you'll see below. BE ASSURED, YOU CANNOT STORE AND HAVE TOO MUCH WATER! Do not hesitate, fill up every possible container, RIGHT NOW!

#5 - SHELTER

The principles of radiation protection are simple - with many options and resources families can use to prepare or improvise a very effective shelter. You must throw off the self-defeating myths of nuclear un-survivability that may needlessly seal the fate of less informed families.

Radioactive fallout is the particulate matter (dust) produced by a nuclear explosion and carried high up into the air by the mushroom cloud. It drifts on the wind and most of it settles back to earth downwind of the explosion. The heaviest, most dangerous, and most noticeable fallout, will 'fall out' first close to ground zero. It may begin arriving minutes after an explosion. While the smaller and lighter dust-like particles will typically be arriving hours later, as they drift much farther downwind, often for hundreds of miles. As it settles, whether you can see it or not, fallout will accumulate and blow around everywhere just like dust or light snow does on the ground and roofs. Wind and rain can concentrate the fallout into localized 'hot spots' of much more intense radiation with no visible indication of its presence.

This radioactive fallout 'dust' is dangerous because it is emitting penetrating radiation energy (similar to x-ray's). This radiation (not the fallout dust) can go right through walls, roofs and protective clothing. Even if you manage not to inhale or ingest the dust, and keep it off your skin, hair, and clothes, and even if none gets inside your house, the radiation penetrating your home is still extremely dangerous, and can injure or kill you inside.

Radioactive fallout from a nuclear explosion, though very dangerous initially, loses its intensity quickly because it is giving off so much energy. For example, fallout emitting gamma ray radiation at a rate of 500 R/hr (fatal with one hour of exposure) shortly after an explosion, weakens to only 1/10th as strong 7 hours later. Two days later, it's only 1/100th as strong, or as deadly, as it was initially.

That is really very good news, because our families can readily survive it IF we get them into a proper shelter to safely wait it out as it becomes less dangerous with every passing hour.

What stops radiation, and thus shields your family, is simply putting mass between them and the radiation source. Like police body armor stopping bullets, mass stops (absorbs) radiation. The thicker the mass, the more radiation it stops. Also, the denser (heavier) the mass used, the more effective it is with every inch more you add to your fallout shelter. The thickness in inches needed to cut the radiation down to only 1/10th of its initial intensity for different common materials is: Steel 3.3", concrete 11", earth 16", water 24", wood 38", etc. The thickness required to stop 99% of the radiation is: 5" of steel, 16" of solid brick or hollow concrete blocks filled with mortar or sand, 2 feet of packed earth or 3 feet if loose, 3 feet of water. You may not have enough steel available, but anything you do have will have mass and can be used to add to your shielding - it just takes more thickness of lighter wood, for example, than heavier earth, to absorb and stop the same amount of radiation. Increasing the distance between your family and the radiation outside also reduces the radiation intensity.

The goals of your family fallout shelter are:

While a fallout shelter can be built anywhere, you should see what your best options are at home or nearby. Some structures already provide significant shielding or partial shielding that can be enhanced for adequate protection. If you do not have a basement available, you can still use the techniques shown below in any above ground structure, but you'll need to use more mass to achieve the same level of shielding. You may consider using other solid structures nearby, especially those with below ground spaces, such as commercial buildings, schools, churches, below ground parking garages, large and long culverts, tunnels, etc.. Some of these may require permissions and/or the acquiring of additional materials to minimize any fallout drifting or blowing into them, if open ended. Buildings with a half-dozen or more floors, where there is not a concern of blast damage, may provide good radiation protection in the center of the middle floors. This is because of both the distance and the shielding the multiple floors provide from the fallout on the ground and roof.

Bottom Line: choose a structure nearby with both the greatest mass and distance already in place between the outside, where the fallout would settle, and the shelter inside.

If you have a basement in your home, or at a nearby relatives' or friends' house that you can use, your best option is probably to fortify and use it, unless you have ready access to a better/deeper structure nearby.

For an expedient last-minute basement shelter, push a heavy table that you can get under into the corner that has the soil highest on the outside. The ground level outside ideally needs to be above the top of the inside shelter. If no heavy table is available, you can take internal doors off their hinges and lay them on supports to create your 'table'. Then pile any available mass on and around it such as books, wood, cordwood, bricks, sandbags, heavy furniture, full file cabinets, full water containers, your food stocks, and boxes and pillow cases full of anything heavy, like earth. Everything you could pile up and around it has mass that will help absorb and stop more radiation from penetrating inside - the heavier the better. However, be sure to reinforce your table and supports so you do not overload it and risk collapse.


 


 

Leave a small crawl-through entrance and more mass there that can be easily pulled in after you to seal it up. Have at least two gaps or 4-6" square air spaces, one high at one end and one low at the other. Use more if crowded and/or hotter climate. A small piece of cardboard can help fan fresh air in if the natural rising warmer air convection current needs an assist moving the air along. This incoming air won't need to be filtered if the basement has been reasonably sealed up, however any windows or other openings will require some solid mass coverage to assure they stay sealed and to provide additional shielding protection for the basement. More details on this in the next (#6) section.

With more time, materials, and carpentry or masonry skills, you could even construct a more formal fallout shelter, such as the lean-to shown to the right, but you will need to assure structural integrity is achieved and adequate mass is utilized.

An effective fallout shelter constructed in a basement may reduce your radiation exposure 100-200 fold. Thus, if the initial radiation intensity outside was 500 R/hr (fatal in one hour), the basement shelter occupants might only experience 5 R/hr or even less, which is survivable, as the radiation intensity will be decreasing with every passing hour.

 basement fallout shelter

 

Adding mass on the floor above your chosen basement corner, and outside against the walls opposite your shelter, can dramatically increase your shielding protection. Every inch thicker adds up to more effective life-saving radiation shielding.

As cramped as that crawl space fallout shelter might seem, the vital shielding provided by simply moving some mass into place could be the difference between exposure to a lethal dose of radiation and the survival of your family.

The majority of people requiring any sheltering at all will be many miles downwind, and they will not need to stay sheltered for weeks on end. In fact, most people will only need to stay sheltered full-time for a few days before they can start coming out briefly to attend to quick essential chores. Later, they can begin spending ever more time out of the shelter daily, only coming back in to sleep. As miserable as it might seem now, you and your family can easily endure that, especially compared to the alternative.

It's really not so difficult to build an effective family fallout shelter, not to get it done... RIGHT NOW!

 

#6 - ESSENTIAL DETAILS

If you've accomplished the above; securing your supplies, stored water, and built your family fallout shelter, CONGRATULATIONS! You have now succeeded in improving the odds of survival for your family 100-fold, or more! Now, you need to expand your knowledge and fine-tune the tactics that will make the most of your family survival strategy.


This guide was purposely designed with the sober realization that the overwhelming majority of our fellow Americans would not be compelled to read such a guide until a nuclear crisis was imminent and, unfortunately, their preparation options and time to prepare then would be very limited. www.ki4u.com and other survival equipment suppliers will again be quickly sold-out, as all were after 9/11. This guide then will be the best/only help that we can offer. If you are fortunate enough to be exploring your family preparation needs and options before such a future national crisis, there is much more that you can and should do now to insure that they are even better prepared.

"A prudent man foresees the difficulties ahead and prepares for them;
the simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences."
- Proverbs 22:3



LIST OF SUPPLIES TO ACQUIRE LOCALLY

If stores are still at all stocked, and safe to go to, try to buy as many of the following items as possible... IMMEDIATELY! There are no quantities listed here on the food items below as family size varies and because, as the emergency and panic widens, many items will become quickly sold-out or quantities restricted and you'll need to try to get more of what does remain on the shelves. At a minimum you should be looking at two weeks of provisions, but much better to be aiming for two months or more. The reality is, if/when we are attacked, it will be a very long time before anything is ever 'normal' again, especially at any grocery stores. Hurricane victims can attest to the prolonged misery and disruptions from even a localized disaster, even with the rest of the country still able to help out. Nobody can begin to imagine how bad the suffering will be, and for how long, if nuclear weapons have gone off... and in multiple locations!

The half-dozen top listed and UNDERLINED food items below are primarily for use while in the shelter. They are mostly ready-to-eat that requires no cooking or preparation, just a can opener at the most. (The iodine solution is included here because of its importance for its thyroid-blocking topical use detailed above, but it's NEVER to be ingested or swallowed.) The other foods listed below there are better cost/nutrition staples for later use during the extended recovery period. Then follows general non-food supplies, tools and equipment.

Go Acquire It All Now QUICKLY!

It's much better to risk being a little early when securing your families essential food and supplies, rather than a few hours too late...

Canned goods (pasta, soups, chili, vegetables, fruit, tuna, meats, beans, peanut butter, etc.)
Ready-to-eat foods (pop-tarts, raisins, cheese, granola/energy/protein bars, snack-paks, etc.)
Some perishable foods (breads and fruits like bananas, apples, oranges, grapes, etc.)
Assorted drink mix flavorings (with no cold drinks, just plain water, kids will appreciate it!)
Plenty of potent Multi-Vitamins, Vit C, etc.
Iodine solution, like Betadine (16 ounces)- NOT TO BE INGESTED OR SWALLOWED!

Multiple big boxes of dried milk (Could include/use some inside shelter, too.)
Multiple big boxes of pancake and biscuit mix & syrup
Largest bags of rice
Largest bags of beans
Largest bags of flour
Largest bags of potatoes
Largest bags quick oats and other grains
Largest bags of macaroni
Large bag of sugar
Large jar of honey
Large 2 gallons or more of cooking oil
Baking powder & baking soda & spice assortment pack
Bottled water (especially if home supplies not secured yet)

Paper or plastic plates/bowls/cups/utensils
Quality manual can opener, 2 if you don't already have one at home
Kitchen matches and disposable lighters
New garbage cans and lots of liner bags (water storage & waste storage)
5 gallon bucket and smaller garbage bags sized for it (toilet)
Toilet seat for the bucket (or use one from inside the house)
Toilet paper and, if needed, sanitary napkins, diapers
Baby wipes (saves water for personal hygiene use)
Flashlights (ideally LED) and more than one portable radio
Plenty more batteries, at least three sets, for each of the above
Bleach (5.25%, without fragrance or soap additives)
Alcohol and Hydrogen Peroxide
Aspirin/Tylenol/Motrin, Pepto Bismol, etc.
Prescription drugs filled, and as much extra as possible
First aid kits
Fire extinguishers
Plenty of inexpensive dust mask filter protectors
Cheap plastic hooded rain ponchos for everyone
Water filters and all other camping type supplies, such as Coleman cook
stove and fuel, ammo, etc., if any sporting goods stocks still available.
And, of course, rolls of plastic sheeting, duct tape, staple guns, staples, etc.


Everyone is invited to copy, post, print, and distribute this 'WHAT TO DO IF A NUCLEAR DISASTER IS IMMINENT!' guide anywhere, as long as they do so without charging anything for it. It must be reproduced in entirety, including this notice, and not be altered or edited. To contact the author with comments and suggestions, e-mail: Shane Connor at webmaster@ki4u.com. This guide will be continually 'fine-tuned' so, before distributing it, download it fresh from http://www.ki4u.com/guide.htm or to print out, use this PDF version here http://www.ki4u.com/guide.pdf
Last Update: 9/16/2006