Monthly Archives: January 2014

“The Next Plane Could Bring a Pandemic”- CDC Prepares for Perfect Storm

It’s happening.

The avian flu virus, which up until last year infected poultry exclusively, has now mutated and crossed over to humans.

What’s even scarier is the fact that the Chinese have been unable to contain the novel H7N9 strain of the virus and health officials the world over are getting ready for the worst. It’s spreading and we now have confirmation that the virus has begun appearing in other countries.

On Thursday, billions of Chinese will be on the move to celebrate the Lunar New Year, creating ripe conditions for the spread of the influenza virus from those already infected. And many of those celebrations will include chickens, the primary carriers of H7N9. In addition, with the Winter Olympics, one of the world’s largest sporting events, just two weeks away, the virus could find the ideal conditions for breaking out.

And that means the next plane could bring a pandemic to the U.S. or anywhere else around the world. “The bottom line is the health security of the U.S. is only as strong as the health security of every country around the world,” says Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

“We are all connected by the food we eat, the water the drink and the air we breathe.”

But that’s not the worst of it. Last year the World Health Organization warned that H7N9 is one of the most lethal influenza strains ever identified.

Of the nearly 250 officially confirmed reports of human infection since last year, a quarter of those infected have died.

Those are the official numbers, but it is likely that the number of active infections could be a hundred-fold (or more) higher.

Moreover, like any flu virus, H7N9 continues to mutate and scientists recently suggested that all it would take for this particular strain to become a deadly global pandemic is an increase in its transmission rate.

It was initially thought that the virus only spread through human contact with poultry, but that theory was quickly turned on its head when a team of researchers at the University of Hong Kong confirmed that the virus had gone airborne.

If H7N9 mutates to transmission rates of other flu viruses, which is certainly a possibility, then we could well be looking at a mass global pandemic – and according to WHO the H7N9 is mutating eight (8) times faster than a typical flu virus.

To put this in perspective, the 1918 Spanish Flu infected as many as half a billion people (about a quarter of the world’s population). The mortality rate was somewhere in the area of 5% to 10%, with a final death toll of around 50 million people.

At a 25% mortality rate the H7N9 avlian flu, combined with modern transportation systems and metropolitan areas housing tens of millions of people, there is serious potential for a globally significant catastrophe.

Should this virus increase its transmission rate we could be looking at a scenario where a billion or more people contract the virus around the world.

The math is straight forward. One in four will perish.

While we’ve had pandemic scares in the recent past, this one really has researchers and global health officials spooked:

The fast mutation makes the virus’ evolutionary development very hard to predict. “We don’t know whether it will evolve into something harmless or dangerous,” He said. “Our samples are too limited. But the authorities should definitely be alarmed and get prepared for the worst-case scenario.”

As of yet, there is no available vaccine, and one novel mechanism of action for H7N9 is that as soon as it infects its host it develops rapid antiviral resistance, so traditional medicines like Tamiflu don’t work.

One infected student at a local school, or a restaurant worker, or a passenger on an airplane could take this to the next level.

And once it takes hold, there will be no stopping it.

Most don’t believe it is possible with our advanced sciences and research facilities.

History proves otherwise.

  • Plague of Justinian (541 – 542) – At it’s peak over 5,000 people per day died in the city of Constantinople
  • Black Death (1348 – 1350) – Over 75 Million Dead. Nearly 60% of Europe.
  • Smallpox (16th Century) – Wiped out entire civilizations like the Aztecs.
  • The Third Pandemic (1855 – circa 1990) – A Bubonic Plague that killed over 10 million in China and India
  • The Spanish Flu (1918 – 1919) – Over 50 million dead

The only steps one can take is to be ready in advance with a Pandemic Preparedness Plan, as recommended by Tess Pennington:

When an outbreak occurs, many will remain in a state of denial about any approaching epidemics. Simply put, most people believe themselves to be invincible to negative situations and do not like the idea change of any kind.

They will remain in this state until they realize they are unable to deny it to themselves any longer. Being prepared before the masses come out of their daze will ensure that you are better prepared before the hoards run to the store to stock up.

In addition to remaining isolated from the general population, you must have (in advance) access to food, water, medicine, and self defense armaments.

If such a virus were to spread, infecting millions and killing off 25% of those who contract it, you can be assured of widespread panic as the unprepared search and fight for resources.


Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.


Via: shtfplan

Grab Your Guns

As preppers and survivalists, one of the topics we spend a significant amount of time discussing is guns. What type to use for what purposes, as well as what types of firearms might be best suited for a specific environment, or for a particular person. Guns, believe it or not, will play an enormous role in any and all TEOTWAWKI type scenarios. The federal government, under the leadership of the Obama administration, continues to look for ways to prevent otherwise law abiding American citizens, from owning guns.

While on yet another 7 figure, taxpayer funded vacation to Hawaii over the Christmas holidays, Obama once again made it known that he wasn’t done trying to grab your guns. This month the Obama administration announced two new proposals to help keep guns out of the hands of American citizens. Sure they used some flowery language to indicate these proposals would only assist in sharing information discovered during background checks, but like everything else this administration states publicly, more remains hidden than transparent. Be prepared to revisit the controlling of guns issue once again as we enter 2014.


“The Obama administration proposed two new gun control regulations aimed at clarifying restrictions on gun ownership for the mentally ill and strengthening a database used for background checks before firearm purchases.

The measures are the latest step in a year-long push by President Barack Obama to tighten U.S. gun laws in the wake of a school shooting in Newtown, Conn., in which 20 children were killed.

Obama tried last year to bring in sweeping new gun control measures in the aftermath of that shooting, but most of his proposals were defeated in Congress. He has pledged to continue working on the issue despite that setback.

Obama had directed his officials to take steps that do not require approval from Congress, such as Friday’s two proposals.

The first action, proposed by the Department of Justice, would clarify who is prohibited from possessing firearms because of mental illness and would outline for states what information can be shared with the federal database.

The department will seek public comment over the next 90 days about whether the ban should encompass people under the age of 18 who were either adjudicated by a court to be suffering from a serious mental illness, or who were involuntarily treated for a mental illness.

The second measure, led by the Department of Health and Human Services, would remove barriers that could prevent states from passing on information to the database.

“The administration’s two new executive actions will help ensure that better and more reliable information makes its way into the background check system,” the White House said in a statement on Friday.

The proposals have raised concerns from mental health advocates, who fear that people with mental illnesses will not seek care because of concern that their conditions will be entered into federal records.

The database, called the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, or NICS, is used by gun dealers to check whether a potential buyer is prohibited from owning a gun.

States are encouraged to report to the database the names of people who are not allowed to buy guns because they have been involuntarily committed to a mental hospital, or have been found to have serious mental illnesses by courts.

Many states do not participate. So the administration studied changing a health privacy rule — part of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act — to remove a potential barrier.

HHS said the new regulation would not require routine mental health visits to be logged — and would apply only to agencies that are not directly involved in treatment.

“Seeking help for mental health problems or getting treatment does not make someone legally prohibited from having a firearm, and nothing in this proposed rule changes that,” HHS said in a statement.

“Furthermore, nothing in this proposed rule would require reporting on general mental health visits or other routine mental health care, or exempt providers solely performing these treatment services from existing privacy rules,” said the department, which will take comments on the regulation for 60 days before finalizing it.”


Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.


Via: survivalist

How prepared are you?

Get Your Prepper Score…

How long would you survive after a global cataclysm? If you’ve watched the show “Doomsday Preppers” then you know that each participate receives a score based on their preps and estimated survivability time.

Well, now you can get your own score, based on the same scoring system and scale as used on the show.

This is a fun exercise that could bring to light some overlooked weak spots in your plans and preps.

Click here to start the survey and get your “Prepper Score.”


Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.


Via: thesurvivalistblog

Sew – a needle pulling thread

Guest post by Vicki C


When I am cleaning house or doing the laundry my mind roams but eventually comes around to a SHTF scenario. When I consider the most common immediate needs, to me the order of importance would be — water, food, weapons, fuel, tools, medications and so forth, but what about…Material? The following is a small list with a smaller list of usage ideas, use your imagination, walk around and look at materials in your home. Better yet spend an hour and go to a fabric store and look around, this will give you an idea of what is out there to use and what possible purposes they could be used for.

Fabrics and notions (buttons, thread, elastic, snaps, etc)

So many to choose from, what is most important and what can I use it to make?

1. Wool or fur to be used for blankets, jackets, socks

2. Cotton/muslin/linen for bandages, clothing or heaven forbid, wrapping a body (human or your pet) for burial.

2. Leather for moccasin type shoes or repairing shoes or jackets, making a sling shot

4. Denim to patch your jeans, make a vest, carry all bag

5. Stuffing material to
insulate your jacket, make a pillow

6. Waterproof fabric for ground cloth or lean to

7. Black out fabric in case you need to cover your windows

8. Netting for catching fish or making bags for hanging food or carrying things

9. Cording or heavy string, uses for these items alone are endless

10. Yarn for making caps or scarves. Over the last year I learned to use the “quick knit” looms just as a side hobby, I have made over 100 different size cap for foster kids and a few scarves. I can make a knit cap in about 2 hours. No electricity needed and you might be able to use these for trading.

How about a durable or water type glue for sealing material when you can’t find your needles?  I found this website on what types of glue works on what materials.

Then of course you need thread, elastic, buttons, needles (many types/styles, different uses, get an asst pkg), scissors, etc. These can also be used for bartering items. Think, think, think.

Threads come in all types of weight and strength as well, buy an assortment for your different types of fabrics, you don’t want to use cotton thread if you are sewing a tarp. Maybe fishing line would be stronger for that and your type of needle needs to be appropriate size and strength as well.

Material for clothing, you need to consider is it breathable or too hot for your environment, how thick or heavy does it need to be to patch something else

Even though I took 4 years of home economics in school I couldn’t begin to make a suit but I can do repairs and make some basic items.

This list could go on and on, the area you live in or plan to bug out to would make a difference on what your needs might be. While we might like to think we could take our house and all supplies with us that probably won’t be the case so you have to think/plan ahead.

Most of us wouldn’t think of raiding or stealing from a fabric store, good heavens what good would that do you?  You might just want to think again to locate and remember where you saw the last one. If you have room to store a few yards of such items to get you started before they are needed, even the better.


Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.


Via: thesurvivalistblog

Customers Being Forced to Provide Evidence For Why They Need Cash- Bank Run Fears

In early 2013 the country of Cyprus locked down private banking accounts and restricted access to depositor funds. It was the first widely documented instance of a “bail-in,” as bank officials and European regulators determined that bad loans taken on by the banks were now the responsibility of the banks’ customers. This led to a country-wide confiscation of 10% or more of all customer funds. In the heat of the Cyprian financial panic banks limited cash withdrawals to around $300 and ramped up security to prevent angry Cypriots from breaking down the doors.

What happened in Cyprus was big news all over the world, but within a few news cycles, once European and American officials assured the people it was a limited-scope event, the general population swept potential fears under the rug. No one really reported on the fact that the European Union quickly instituted new regulatory policies that would force bail-ins across the entire continent should such a crisis take hold again. Likewise, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke assured Americans that the crisis in Cyprus and Europe posed no risk to the US financial system, citing FDIC insurance for U.S. bank depositors as the safety net that would prevent a similar situation in the United States.

The United States, Europe, China and all of the world’s developed economies are, if officials are to be believed, completely immune to what happened in Cyprus. The current belief by the best and brightest is that these countries are simply too big to ever be faced with a total collapse of their banking systems.

But what if they were wrong? What if private debt reached such obscene levels that the loans taken on by lenders could never be repaid? What if a country like China, which holds trillions of dollars in cash reserves and has modern central banking regulations, did face such a problem?

Couldn’t happen, right?

It turns out, that’s exactly what is happening right now, as Chinese banks struggle to cope with nearly $23 trillion worth of potentially bad loans. Yes, that’s Trillion, with a “T.” The Chinese, it appears, have mimicked the exact set of circumstances that led to the 2008 crisis in America. Remember all of those empty cities and malls in China – they housed no people or shopping venues, yet cost billions of dollars to develop? It looks like all those bridges to nowhere are catching up with the Chinese. And the panic has begun, as evidenced by capital controls and restrictive withdrawal policies now being implemented by one of the largest banks in the world all across China.

Want to know how a bank run starts? Look no further:

HSBC is imposing restrictions on large cash withdrawals raising a number of red flags. The BBC reports that some HSBC customers have been prevented from withdrawing large amounts of cash because they could not provide evidence of why they wanted it. HSBC admitted it has not informed customers of the change in policy, which was implemented in November for their own good: “We ask our customers about the purpose of large cash withdrawals when they are unusual… the reason being we have an obligation to protect our customers, and to minimise the opportunity for financial crime.” As one customer responded: “you shouldn’t have to explain to your bank why you want that money. It’s not theirs, it’s yours.”

“When we presented them with the withdrawal slip, they declined to give us the money because we could not provide them with a satisfactory explanation for what the money was for. They wanted a letter from the person involved.”

Mr Cotton says the staff refused to tell him how much he could have: “So I wrote out a few slips. I said, ‘Can I have £5,000?’ They said no. I said, ‘Can I have £4,000?’ They said no. And then I wrote one out for £3,000 and they said, ‘OK, we’ll give you that.’ “

          He asked if he could return later that day to withdraw another £3,000, but he was told he could not do the same   thing  twice in one day.

Mr Cotton cannot understand HSBC’s attitude: “I’ve been banking in that bank for 28 years. They all know me in there. You shouldn’t have to explain to your bank why you want that money. It’s not theirs, it’s yours.”

Via: Zero Hedge

As in China, the debt party in the United States has returned in force. We are now very close to the same levels of personal and commercial debt as we saw prior to the crash of ’08, but rather than being concerned the experts say don’t fight it, embrace it.

But as is the case in China, the debt party will soon be coming to an end in the United States as tens of millions of Americans see their wealth and jobs wiped out. Like the people of China who took on loans they can’t repay, Americans are under the gun. And in the near future, the same credit problems that gripped the world before will do so again. And this time we’ll be footing the bill directly from our bank accounts (rather than the Federal Reserve’s printing presses).

We may not yet have official regulatory or bank policies for restricting cash withdrawals here in the USA, but just try to head to your local bank and withdraw $5000 or $10,000 and see what happens. You will invariably be met with stares from bank employees and questions about your intentions and why you need that much cash.

We’ve already seen how fast they can lock down the entire banking system. It’ll only take a push of a button and everything you think you have in your personal bank account could be seized.

But then again, as Ben Bernanke has said previously, there is no risk to the financial system. Moreover, the FDIC has insured your money, so if something does go wrong with the American banking system, all of your losses are totally covered by the roughly $50 billion in FDIC reserves. That should be plenty of money to handle the $9 trillion in US-based domestic customer deposits, plus the $300 trillion in derivatives bets made by the banks.

So, no need to worry, because the government’s got your back (and they would NEVER think of using your deposited funds to offset any bank losses).

But even though it is impossible to conceive that such a thing might happen we recommend preparing for it just in case. We know FEMA will be there to provide emergency cash, food and recovery tents. But in the off chance the credit system locks up again, ATM’s are limited to minimal withdrawals, and the banks do seize your money you might want to have some food, supplies, gold, and reserve cash on hand.

We realize such a thing could never happen – not in the world’s most developed and richest economy. Ben Bernanke, Janet Yellen, government officials and TV pundits say it can’t. So, these extra supplies would be just for fun and entertainment – something to show friends and family when they come over so you can have a laugh about all these crazy Doomsday scenarios.

Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.


Via: shtfplan

Polar Vortex

What is a polar vortex you might ask? To be quite honest I’m not sure there is an actual standardized and accepted definition for the term polar vortex. I first came across the term polar vortex while reading a news article about the newly named winter storm systems that have recently played a role in burying several American cities under huge deposits of snow. Polar vortex appears to be a new part of the parlance associated with describing wild winter weather patterns.

Winter, and the weather it brings, are nothing to shrug off as insignificant, and the use of terms such as polar vortex, and the naming of winter storms, appear to be the preferred method of bringing attention and awareness to a potentially life threatening situation. While this polar vortex is only expected to be severe for a period of a few days, the long term effects could extend throughout the rest of the winter season, keeping average temperatures at, or below normal levels.


“As much of the country digs out from a powerful winter storm that buried parts of the Northeast, tundra-like temperatures are poised to deliver a rare and potentially dangerous blow to the Midwest, with forecasters predicting a near-record or historic cold outbreak.

The “polar vortex,” as one meteorologist calls it, is expected to send cold air piled up at the North Pole down to the U.S., funneling it as far south as the Gulf Coast and driving temperatures below freezing for most of the nation.

Forecasters expect a weekend warm-up in some areas before temperatures plunge again, sending wind chill temperatures in areas in North Dakota and Minnesota to minus 50 degrees by Saturday night.

Those states are notorious for their cold winters, but states in the Mid-Atlantic and New England can also expect wind chill temperatures as low as minus 20 degrees.

Sunday’s playoff game in Green Bay could be among one of the coldest NFL games ever played. Temperatures at Lambeau Field are expected to be a frigid minus 2 degrees when the Packers and San Francisco 49ers kick off, and by the fourth quarter it’ll be a bone-chilling minus 7, with wind chills approaching minus 30, according to the National Weather Service. Officials are warning fans to take extra safety measures to stay warm including dressing in layers and sipping warm drinks.

Warming centers opened around the region, homeless shelters saw larger crowds and cities took special measures to look after those most vulnerable to the cold. Outreach teams were searching New York City streets for homeless people at risk of freezing to death.

And though this cold spell will last just a few days as warmer air comes behind, it likely will freeze over the Great Lakes and other bodies of water, meaning frigid temperatures will likely last the rest of winter, said Ryan Maue, a meteorologist for Weather Bell.

“It raises the chances for future cold,” he said, adding it could include next month’s Super Bowl in New York.”

As we move forward through the rest of this winter season, and those in the future, named winter storms, and terms like polar vortex, are going to become more commonplace. We cannot prevent such things as a polar vortex, but we can prepare and survive them when they occur.

Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.


Via: survivalist

Limited Space Survival

Millions of people around the world travel on a daily basis, millions more travel via mass transit systems, and still millions more embark on vacations. When these daily activities occur, they place hundreds, even thousands of people in close proximity with one another. For the most part these situations consist of confined quarters. Individuals who participate in these activities should be concerned with limited space survival techniques and methods.

Limited space survival ideas are slightly different than the normal survival skills we discuss; however they also provide a variety of situations and scenarios we may not be considering as a serious threat. Confined quarters and limited spaces pose a greater risk to everyone involved, especially where health issues are concerned. Limited space survival techniques should focus on maintaining our health first and foremost. Cramped spaces, occupied by large groups of people, can result in cess pools of contaminants being passed from one passenger to the next. This can, and has, led to outbreaks of sickness and disease, as witnessed recently on a Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship.


“A Miami-based cruise line is allowing passengers on one of its ships to reschedule their vacation plans after sixty-six passengers and two crew were sickened during the vessel’s last Caribbean tour.

The Majesty of the Seas – a Royal Caribbean International ship – reportedly embarked on a new cruise, Friday, following its return to PortMiami from a disastrous four-day outing in which dozens of passengers fell ill.

The Miami Herald reports the company asked incoming passengers if they had suffered from gastrointestinal maladies over the past three days when they boarded the ship for its subsequent outing.

The paper added that anyone disinclined to proceed was allowed to reschedule, although it wasn’t clear if the offer extended to anyone who had booked a room on the ship beyond the cruise that departed Friday.

Royal Caribbean International is – along with Celebrity Cruises – one of five cruise brands operated, worldwide, by the eponymous parent company, Royal Caribbean.

The line reportedly blamed the recent outbreak that affected about 2.5 percent of Majesty of the Seas’ more than 2,500 passengers to a norovirus.

The Herald cites a Royal Caribbean statement in writing that those sickened – the vessel docked at Key West and two Bahamian ports – “responded well,” to over-the-counter remedies distributed at sea. The company also reportedly said it conducted “an extensive and thorough sanitizing,” of the boat.”

What action plans do you currently have in place for limited space survival? Have you even considered threats of this nature in your daily survival plan? What type of alternative healthcare options do you have in your bag for events such as this? Essential Oils are an option that would be wise to have in an EDC kit, one which you could take with you when limited space survival issues are a concern.

Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.


Via: survivalist

California Drought Declaration

For the most part, when people hear the state of California mentioned, they envision beaches, tourist attractions, Hollywood and movie stars, all living together in peaceful harmony. The truth of the matter is, an enormous portion of California consists of dry, arid and barren landscape. Water is a valuable commodity for all forms of life, and when natural disasters such as drought strike, the adverse effects can be extensive and devastating, lasting much longer than most other forms of natural disaster scenarios.

Surviving drought conditions is not impossible, although it can be a very difficult dilemma to deal with. The drought being declared in California is extending into its third year. When drought hits an area, water restrictions are generally put in place, limiting an absolutely essential ingredient of life. Not all areas suffer drought, but those that do, can experience some very harsh circumstances to contend with. Does your survival plan include actions for surviving in drought areas, or where drought conditions might appear?


“Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday declared a drought emergency in California as the state struggles with the least amount of rainfall in its 153-year history, reservoir levels fall and firefighters remain on high alert.

“We are in an unprecedented, very serious situation,” said Brown, who asked California residents and businesses to voluntarily reduce their water consumption by 20 percent. “Hopefully, it will rain eventually. But in the meantime, we have to do our part.”

Although California has a Mediterranean climate and periodically experiences drought, current conditions are particularly dry.

The Sierra Nevada snowpack on Thursday was 17 percent of normal. And last year, most cities in the state received the lowest amount of rain in any living Californian’s lifetime. The rainfall records go back to 1850.

For the past 13 months, a huge high-pressure ridge in the atmosphere has sat off the West Coast, diverting storms that normally would bring winter rain northward to Canada.

As a result, reservoir levels are low, farmers and ranchers are suffering, and fire danger is at an extreme level.

So far, farmers have been affected more by the dry conditions than most California residents.

Although many residents think that population growth is the main driver of water demand statewide, it actually is agriculture. In an average year, farmers use 80 percent of the water used by people and businesses — 34 million acre-feet from a total of 43 million acre-feet that is diverted from rivers, lakes and groundwater, according to the state Department of Water Resources.

Most of the water goes to irrigate crops. Without rain, many farmers have been heavily pumping groundwater in the Central Valley, and some areas expect that thousands of acres of fields will be fallowed this summer.

California normally receives nearly all its annual rainfall during the winter. However, time is running out on this winter.

On Thursday, the drought outlook worsened, as the U.S. Drought Monitor, a weekly update of drought conditions by federal agencies and researchers at the University of Nebraska, classified large sections of Northern California, including the Bay Area, as the fourth most severe of five drought categories: “extreme drought.”

The update showed that 63 percent of California’s land is at that level of drought now, including the Bay Area, up from 27 percent the week before. Worse, scientists at the National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center in Maryland issued a 90-day precipitation outlook that said it is likely that California will continue to receive below-normal rainfall at least through April.”

Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.


Via: survivalist

Ginger and Asthma


Aother great post by Dr. Bones the Disaster Doctor


In our efforts to find natural remedies to deal with medical issues, we’ve found some new information on the use of Ginger for asthma. Asthma is a respiratory condition marked by spasms in the airways, causing difficulty in breathing. It often results from an allergic reaction or other forms of hypersensitivity and is a chronic condition for many people (26 million in the U.S. alone).  Standard medications exist for asthma, such as inhalers like Ventolin, but some may find relief with alternatives at well.

We are proponents of “integrative medicine”; in other words, we want everyone to use ALL the tools in the medical woodshed.  As such, our “Survival Medicine Handbook” tells you how to deal with medical issues both conventionally and naturally, with herbs, essential oils, etc.. The first natural item on the list for asthma is Ginger, and finally we have scientific proof of its effectiveness!

Ginger is attracting the notice of many scientists. A study published in the American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology indicates the Ginger is instrumental in inhibiting chemicals that constrict airways.  Animal tests find that extracts of Ginger helps ease asthmatic symptoms in rodents.  Ginger also worked well in a French study to decrease inflammation in mouse lungs exposed to common allergens (substances that cause allergic reactions).

Although more tests are needed to prove its worth to humans, professors at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing say that Ginger is safe to use. It may even improve the effectiveness of some conventional medicines currently used in asthma treatment.

As always, I would like to strongly urge people to use organic root, as there could easily be pesticides contaminating commercial ginger.

Don’t discount the usefulness of natural substances to deal with medical issues. In disaster situations, pharmaceuticals will likely be unavailable and natural remedies will become the conventional way to treat illness. Consider starting a medicinal garden to increase the chances of keeping it together, even if things fall apart. Of course, discuss your condition with your physician before the you-know-what hits the fan.

Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.


Via: doomandbloom

Surviving in Cold Water


It’s winter, and mishaps can occur that lead us to a discussion about surviving in cold water. Whether a boat capsizes or you fall through the ice, you can get into trouble quickly if you don’t know what to do. Water doesn’t have to be extremely cold to cause hypothermia. Any water that’s cooler than normal body temperature will cause heat loss. You could die of hypothermia floating in a life vest off a tropical coast if immersed long enough.

In the event that you find yourself in cold water, you’ll need to have a strategy that will keep you alive until you’re rescued. Most, if not all, of your body surface will be exposed in an immersion event; you could succumb to exposure in a very short time.  Consider all the people who fell into the water when the Titanic sank. Within 15 minutes, most of them were most likely beyond medical help. First, we’ll talk about falling into the water when your boat capsizes, and then we’ll talk about falling through the ice during a winter hike.


To increase your chances of survival in cold water, do the following:


    Whenever you’re on a boat, wear a life jacket. A life jacket can help you stay alive longer by enabling you to float without using a lot of energy and by providing some insulation. The life jackets with built-in whistles are best, so you can signal that you’re in distress.
  • KEEP YOUR CLOTHES ON. While you’re in the water, don’t remove your clothing. Button or zip up. Cover your head if at all possible. The layer of water between your clothing and your body is slightly warmer and will help insulate you from the cold. Remove your clothing only after you’re safely out of the water and then do whatever you can to get dry and warm.
  • GET AS MUCH OF YOUR BODY OUT OF THE WATER AS POSSIBLE. The less percentage of your body exposed to cold, the less heat you will lose. Climbing onto a capsized boat or grabbing onto a floating object will increase your chances of survival, even if you can only partially get out of the water. However, don’t use up energy swimming unless you have a dry place to swim to. Note: If you saw the movie “Titanic”, you know that the girl survived by climbing onto some debris. There was no room for the boy, who subsequently perished.

H.E.L.P. Position

  • POSITION YOUR BODY TO LESSEN HEAT LOSS. Use a body position known as the Heat Escape Lessening Position or Posture (think H.E.L.P.) to reduce heat loss while you wait for help to arrive. Just hold your knees to your chest; this will help protect your torso (the body core) from heat loss.
  • HUDDLE TOGETHER. If you’ve fallen into cold water with others, keep warm by facing each other in a tight circle and holding on to each other.


What if you’re hiking in the wilderness and that snow field turns out to be the icy surface of a lake?  Whenever you’re out in the wild, it makes sense to take a change of clothes in a waterproof container so that you’ll have something dry to wear if the clothes you’re wearing get wet.  Also have a fire starter that will work even when wet.

You might be able to identify weak areas in the ice.  If a thin area of ice on a lake is covered with snow, it tends to look darker than the surrounding area.  Interestingly, thin areas of bare ice without snow appear lighter.  Beware of areas of contrasting color as you’re walking.

KEEP CALM: Your body will react to the sudden immersion in cold water by an increased pulse rate, blood pressure, and respirations.  Although it won’t be easy, make every effort to keep calm.  You have a few minutes to get out before you succumb to the effects of the cold. Panic is your enemy.

GET YOUR HEAD OUT OF THE WATER: This is best accomplished
by breathing in and bending backward.  Tread water and quickly turn your body in the direction of where you came from; you know the ice was strong enough to hold you there.

GET RID OF HEAVY OBJECTS THAT WEIGH YOU DOWN: The more you weigh, the harder it will be to get your body out of the water.

TRY TO LIFT UP OUT OF THE ICE: Place your arms on the ice spread widely apart in front of you.  Kick with your feet to give you some forward momentum and try to get more of your body out of the water.  Lift a leg onto the ice and then lift and roll out onto the firmer surface.

DO NOT STAND UP! Keep rolling in the direction that you were walking before you feel through.  This will spread your weight out, instead of concentrating it on your feet.  Then crawl away until you’re sure you’re safe.

START WORKING TO GET WARM IMMEDIATELY. If possible, get out of wet clothes. Having spare clothes available in a hiking partner’s backpack is an important consideration.

I would like to mention a brand new item that would be helpful for falls through the ice or avalanche protection. An air bag accessory is now available for those who are traveling in snow country. It can be easily deployed to achieve buoyancy in the water or to help prevent from being deeply buried in the snow. Upon burial in an avalanche, hypothermia will set in quickly. The air bag causes the victim to become a larger object; these seem to stay towards the top of the snow in avalanches.


Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.


Via: doomandbloom