When the term “Urban Survival” is discussed, thoughts of MREs stacked to the ceiling, closets filled with cases of bottled water, tons of dried beans and rice piled up in every corner of the house – those kinds of thoughts come to mind. The fact is, there is more to urban survival then just stockpiling food and water. There are several factors that should be considered, such as food production, water, money, disease and infection control.
A small home garden can produce a lot of food. When people get into gardening, they often have so much food they are having to give it away. Home gardens can supply a typical family with a food source if a disaster were to strike.
Most urbanites depend on city water as their only source of fresh water. This is also a weakness in the plans of a survivalist. Alternative water sources should be found and plans should be in place on how to use those sources of water. Examples of this include – lakes, streams, ponds, swimming pools, rain collection, rain water run off, ditches, canals,,,, only to name a few. If water from these sources is to be used, there most be a plan in place on how to purify the water to make it safe for human consumption. It does no good to drink the water, only for it to be full of bacteria and viruses.
Urban survivalist should have their finances in order – this also means living well within the income limits. There are a lot of people that buy a new truck or car as soon as theirs is payed off. This kind of behavior only keeps the family in debt.
Debt = Bad – try to stay out of debt as much as possible.
Have enough cash on hand to buy enough food – water – gasoline – supplies for the family for a couple of weeks. During times following a disaster merchants probably will not accept credit or debit cards or checks. The only money that will be accepted is cash.
Sanitation after a disaster should be a very, very important consideration. When the running water stops, the toilets will start to over flow. When the toilets overflow, disease can spread. An alternative to the toilet is going to the restroom outside, or in a bucket. Putting human waste in a bucket is still a short term solution, sooner or later the bucket is going to get filled up.
To help keep the human waste flushed out of the house, fill the bathtubs with water – this has to be done while running water is still available. A full bathtub or two can sometimes equal to a couple hundred gallons of water. Use a 5 gallon bucket to scoop the water from the bathtub and use that water to flush the toilet. Just pour the water directly into the toilet bowl and it will flush.
Have enough hand soap and hand sanitizer for everyone to keep their hands clean. Soap can require water to wash off, so in some cases, hand sanitizer might be a better option. Instead of buying several large bottles of hand sanitizer, buy several smaller bottles and hand them out so that each person has their own bottle of hand sanitizer. With everyone sharing a community bottle, there is chance for infection to spread from one person to the next.
The fecal to oral route is one of the fastest and easiest ways to spread disease. After someone goes to the restroom, its important that they take measures to insure that they do not spread any kind of disease that they might have.
When cooking and serving food, whoever cooks and serves the food should wash or otherwise make sure they have clean hands. Eating utensils should be cleaned and sanitized- one way to do this is by washing and then boiling them. If there is no way to wash eating utensils, use disposable items. This means that a supply of disposable plates and eating utensils should be kept on hand. When buying supplies for parties, just buy a few extra plates, along with plastic spoons, knifes and forks.