When the Cold War ended, the whole world heaved a huge sigh of relief as the possibility of a nuclear war was nipped in the bud. However, things aren’t looking that bright with the current state of international affairs. With Russia and Vladimir Putin dangling the nuclear option over everyone’s heads and Kim Jong-un vowing to step up North Korea’s nuclear program, the risk of a nuclear attack is higher than it has been in years. That said, we should all be prepared for the worst and know what to do to survive a nuclear attack.
Preparing for A Nuclear Attack
Preparation is the first and probably the most important step in surviving a nuclear attack or any kind of emergency, for that matter. You need to have a plan and you need to be familiar with it like the back of your hand.
Find A Nuclear Shelter
The first thing on your list is to find out where the nearest fallout shelter is. You need to know where you would go and what you would do in the event of a nuclear attack. In most cases, the best shelters are going to be underground. The more depth you have between you and the outside world, the more protection you’ll have from radiation. If you can’t find an underground shelter, look for a high-rise building or anything that would put distance between you and the nuclear blast.
Look for more than one shelter. In fact, find out where all the shelters are in your state and even in the neighboring ones. The more options you have, the better. This way, you’ll know where to hide if you’re on the road when the attack happens.
Create An Evacuation Plan
You should also have an evacuation route planned out. Check out all possible routes heading to the nuclear shelter. Find at least three different ways to get there so you have options. This is important because you never know what might happen during a nuclear attack. Roads could be blocked, debris could be everywhere, and you might have to take detours. Plan for all the different scenarios that could play out and be prepared for anything.
Build Your Own Fallout Shelter
If you can’t find any existing shelters or if you prefer to be away from the crowd, you’ll have to build your own. This is actually not as difficult as it sounds. You can easily create a fallout shelter in your yard, in your basement, or even in one of the interior rooms of your home. Just make sure that it’s away from any windows and that it has a solid roof and walls.
Store Food and Water
Surviving a nuclear attack is more than just getting out of the way. You have to think about surviving after the bomb is dropped. This means having a stock of supplies that will last you for weeks, months, or even years. Simply put, you’ll die of hunger or thirst if you don’t have anything to eat and drink in your fallout shelter.
Stock up on non-perishable food with the longest shelf life. This includes canned goods, sealed packages of dried food, and anything that doesn’t require refrigeration. You should also have lots of water that you can use for drinking, prepping meals, and cleaning up. Store water filters or purifiers as well as a way to keep your stored water clean and safe. You’ll also need portable water filters and purification tablets, especially if your supply runs out and you have to find water elsewhere.
Stock Up On Emergency Gear and Other Supplies
Other supplies you should have on hand are a first-aid kit, medicines, a battery-operated or hand-crank radio, flashlights, headlamps, camping lanterns, multi-tools, hatchets, and anything else that could come in handy during an emergency.
You’ll also need some type of heating and cooling system in your fallout shelter as well as wool blankets, thermal blankets, sleeping bags, and warm clothes. Don’t forget your personal hygiene items, and books or games to help you pass the time. You should also have a stockpile of cash as ATMs and banks won’t be working after a nuclear attack. Keep valuables, important documents, and family photos in a waterproof and fireproof container.
If you have pets, make sure to include food and water for them as well. It’s also important to have a way to defend yourself. This could be anything from a baseball bat to a gun and ammunition. Just make sure that you know how to use whatever weapon you have and that you have a way to safely store it.
You should also have a generator and fuel on hand in case you need to power up your shelter. This is especially important if you’re using an underground bunker that doesn’t have any access to the outside world. As long as your generator is protected from the explosion and EMP, you should have power even after a nuclear attack.
Keep Your Fallout Shelter Well-Maintained
Once you have everything set up, it’s important to keep your fallout shelter in good condition. This means regularly checking for leaks, cracks, or any other type of damage. You should also test your emergency gear and supplies to make sure that they’re still in working order.
It’s also a good idea to have some type of exercise equipment in your fallout shelter. This could be a treadmill, stationary bike, or even a set of dumbbells. Exercise will help you stay healthy and fit during your time in the shelter.
Make sure that you have a plan for when you need to leave the shelter. This could be due to an issue with the shelter itself or because the outside world is now safe to return to. Whatever the case may be, you should have a plan in place so that you and your family know what to do.
What to Do During A Nuclear Attack
Part of your preparations is knowing the exact things you need to do the moment you find out that a nuclear attack is imminent.
In any emergency situation, the key to survival is to stay calm. This is easier said than done, but it’s important to try. If you panic, you’re more likely to make mistakes that could cost you your life. The calmer you are, the better you’ll be able to think clearly and make smart decisions.
Find Cover Immediately
Once the authorities announce that an attack is imminent, your first instinct should be to head to the nuclear shelter. If you have your own fallout shelter, get inside quickly. If there’s still time, grab more supplies from your pantry and do some last-minute preparations. If you’re not sure how much time you have before the bomb detonates, don’t take risks. Just grab your bug out bags and get inside your shelter immediately.
If you’re caught outside during a nuclear attack and it’s too late to head to a fallout shelter, the first thing you need to do is get indoors as quickly as possible. Head to the basement or an interior room on the lowest level of a building. Get away from windows and anything that could shatter or collapse. Once you’re indoors, close all the doors, windows, and vents to help seal yourself in. If possible, seal off any cracks or openings with duct tape and plastic sheeting. This will help to keep out any radioactive particles that might try to enter your shelter.
Take Cover Behind Something Solid
If you can’t get indoors, try to take cover behind something that will shield you from the blast. This could be a concrete or brick wall, a large piece of furniture, or anything else that’s sturdy enough to protect you. Get as close to the item as possible and crouch down so that you’re covered from head to toe. If you have a blanket or piece of clothing, drape it over yourself to help protect you from the fallout.
Get Underneath a Strong Table or Desk
If you’re indoors, get underneath a strong table or desk. This will help protect you from falling debris.
Cover Your Body with a Blanket or Mattress
If you’re outdoors, lie down on the ground and cover your body with a blanket, sleeping bag, or mattress. This will help to protect you from the effects of the blast wave.
Avoid Looking at the Explosion
If you’re close enough to see the explosion, don’t look at it. The flash of light can damage your eyesight or at least cause temporary blindness. Instead, turn away and cover your eyes with your hands.
Wear Protective Gear
Wear a hazmat suit, gas mask, and other protective gear if you have them. If not, put on as much clothing as possible. Long-sleeved shirts, pants, and closed-toe shoes are ideal. You should also put on a face mask or scarf to cover your nose and mouth.
Turn Off All Electronic Devices
A nuclear explosion produces electro-magnetic pulses (EMPs) that can damage or destroy electronic equipment. To protect your electronics, as well as any sensitive medical equipment you might have in your shelter, turn off all devices and unplug them from the outlets. If possible, put them in a faraday cage. You should have prepared them beforehand but in case you didn’t, you can seal important gadgets inside metal boxes or wrap them in aluminum foil. This will help to shield them from the EMP.
You need to know how to decontaminate yourself in the event of a nuclear attack. This is because radiation will be present in the air and on the ground. The best way to decontaminate yourself is to remove your clothing and any other items that may be contaminated.
You should then wash your skin with soap and water. If you can’t do this, use wipes or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Be sure to avoid using hot water as this could open up your pores and allow the radiation to enter your body.
You should also wash your hair with shampoo and rinse it thoroughly. If you can’t do this, use wipes or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Once you’re done, be sure to put on clean clothing.
Listen to the Radio for Instructions
As soon as you can, turn on a radio and listen for instructions from the authorities. They will be able to tell you what areas to avoid and when it’s safe to come out of your shelter.
Wait for the All-Clear Signal
Once the attack is over, you can’t just leave your shelter and go back to your normal life. There will be fallout that you need to avoid. The best way to know when it’s safe to leave your shelter is to listen for an all-clear signal on your radio. Once you hear it, you can slowly and carefully venture outside. Remember to take precautions to avoid contaminated areas and surfaces.
What to Do After A Nuclear Attack
Even after the all-clear signal, there will still be dangers lurking around. So it’s important to know what to do in the aftermath of a nuclear attack.
Check the Radiation Levels
Even after the authorities give the go-signal that it’s safe to go outside, you should check the radiation level before leaving your shelter. The best way to do this is with a radiation dosimeter or Geiger counter. Once you’re out, use your radiation detector to see if it’s safe to proceed to one area or not. You can also use an EMF counter to determine the radiation level before touching an object that might’ve been exposed.
Assess the Damage
Once you’re out of your shelter, take a look around and assess the damage. If your home or building has been damaged, you’ll need to find a new place to stay. Be careful when entering any damaged buildings. They could collapse at any moment.
Avoid Contaminated Areas
There will likely be areas that are contaminated with radiation. Avoid these areas at all costs. If you need to go into a contaminated area, wear protective clothing and be sure to wash thoroughly afterward.
Be Prepared for Aftershocks
Nuclear explosions can cause aftershocks that can be just as dangerous as the initial blast. Be prepared for aftershocks and take shelter immediately if one occurs.
Know the Radiation Levels
Pay attention to the radiation levels in your area. If they’re high, stay indoors as much as possible. If you must go outside, wear protective clothing and limit your time outdoors.
As gloomy and scary as the topic of a nuclear attack may be, it is something that needs to be discussed. By being prepared for such a disaster, you and your loved ones will be better equipped to survive a nuclear attack. For more survival and disaster preparedness tips, visit Gentleman Pirate Club.