Welcome Preppers and Survivalists,
National Archives and Records Administration
What to Say (11 March 2011)
Welcome Preppers and Survivalists,
So what did we (my brothers and I) decide to tell folks asking about getting prepared, the other day?
First, tell the folks the most important thing to store is water. They can go down to the local store and purchase a case of 1/2 liter bottles of water for each person in the family.
So, 24 bottles of water (.5 liters each) works out to 3 gallons of water (24 times .5 liters divided by 4 liters in a gallon = 3 gallons of water per person)
Buying bottles of water is an expensive method but quick. A kind'a cheaper method is to buy water containers from the China-Marts (Wal-Mart, K-Mart, Target) or a sporting goods store and fill with regular tap water.
Make sure you tell them to figure 1 gallon of water a day per person. So a family of five needs 15 gallons for three days. Don't forget the pets!
If they ask: Why water?
It's possible that government workers might go on strike. Since most folks get their water from a community/city water system, a strike might cause the water to stop flowing.
Next, tell the folks to buy extra food they normally eat. Make sure to emphasize to buy bottled, boxed or canned food their families normally eat. If they ask how much food to buy, tell them at least enough for three days.
If they ask about frozen food, tell them it's cool but they will need a generator to power the freezer or refrigerator.
After this ask them if they have a way of cooking if the electricity goes off. If they do, tell 'em good then ask them how much fuel they have? They will know, if they need more fuel. If they ask how much fuel they need? You'll figure it out ; - )
If they don't have a way of heating their family's food, tell them to buy a propane stove (a small one) and a couple big fat bottles of propane from the store.
They probably won't ask why they need to store food, but just in case tell them that truckers might go on strike/go out of business because of fuel prices
We assumed our coworkers would keep their home in this potential emergency, so they should have a plan for keeping warm if any problems go down in the next couple of months.
One plan is having the kids build a "fort" or "tent" big enough for everyone in the family, using multiple layers of sheets in the living room, so the family can sleep together if the power goes out. (Don't use plastic sheeting and make sure the fort/tent has ventilation) The family will sleep huddled together wrapped with all the available blankets.
Another plan is for everyone to sleep with "Mom and Dad" with all the blankets piled on top of them to stay warm.
For those folks with fireplaces, they need to make sure they have enough wood to last a couple of days, kindling, and matches to start the fire.
Lastly, families can double or triple up in one house. Heck, four, five, or six families could come together, if they plan ahead for this possibility.
If they ask about guns, you are going to have to decide if they are able to handle a pistol or revolver. This is a big responsibility that I can't stress enough because (all joking and politics aside) "Guns Kill" and maim and injure and ...
If you decide they are cool, I suggest a .38 special or .357 magnum revolver with 50 to 250 rounds of semi-jacketed hollow points and a holster. At least one firearm and two if there is another adult even if the other adult is resistant to the idea of firearms.
Don't forget a holster. An inexpensive nylon holster will work fine, for now.
Then, take them (both adults, if possible) out shooting to zero, get familiar with the firearm, and practice the safety rules Here and Here. Make sure to use cheap Lead Round Nose (LRN), the semi-jacketed hollow points are expensive compared to LRN bullets.
In all my years, no one has ever asked why they need a firearm. They usually ask where they can get one.
Note: Please, use .38 special bullets in the .357 magnum, if your co-worker's partner is recoil sensitive.
We decided to tell folks to make sure they have enough of their regular medicine to last a couple of weeks and get a small first-aid kit.
Folks, we don't know what the market is going to do, so the only advice we're going to give is have an emergency stash of cash, Several hundred or a few thousand is fine, if they can afford it.
Almost lastly, this advice is only good for three days. (3 days of water, 3 days of food, and improvised shelter) If they are interested in prepping for more than three days, they are going to need a lot of schooling on getting prepared.
To school them, send 'em to this blog and have them read the archives.
Once they're finished (If you like them) tell 'em they can ask you all the question they have about prepping and what they have read.
Lastly, make sure they know that you have a big family and they aren't invited to your home.
Family Members (2 August 2015)
If you have been sent here by one of the family members, you have asked them about getting prepared. The easiest method is to purchase the e-book Prepper: Surviving the Tough Times Ahead written by me and start buying the supplies and equipment that you and your family decide to purchase. Next, start practicing with this equipment and supplies.
Yes, I know this sounds like an advertisement for the e-book, but you can read 16 Weeks, instead.