Bugout News

Emergency preparedness: How to plan an escape route before SHTF

Tuesday, November 05, 2019 by

If disaster hits close to your house, you only have two options: hunker down in your own home and hope for the best, or you can bug out to safety. Regardless of your decision, a preparedness plan is required for any SHTF situation. Knowing what to do and when to do it can save you and your loved ones valuable time.

In any disaster situation, getting from point A to point B can become a daunting task. Many people will scramble around town to gather supplies or trying to get away from it all. Because of this, you don’t have the time to get lost. Learning how to get to your bug-out location and how to get back to your home safely without any dillydally is vital for any preparedness plan. (h/t to PreppersWill.com)

Get up, get out, and keep moving

Escape plans aren’t as easy as leaving your house and heading straight to your chosen bug-out location. They require proper planning, creativity, resourcefulness, pragmatism, and proper analysis. Some plans may look good on paper but, in reality, are difficult to execute. Here are a few steps you can follow to plan a successful escape before SHTF.

  1. Prepare your bug-out vehicle
    Evacuation orders can come at any moment so having your vehicle prepared should be your first order of business. Not only should you make sure its gassed up and well-maintained, but you should also make sure to stock up on extra fuel since gas stations will either be closed or overrun with people. If you happen to live alone, adding a mountain bike or motorcycle to your plan can be a big help if things get way too congested on the road. (Related: How to bug out in your car.)
  2. Gear up for the long run
    Any disaster situation would have you accounting for the environment, the weather, and the time of year. You should be able to adjust your bug-out bag accordingly to keep yourself comfortable while bugging out. But don’t forget to keep things light. A lot of people tend to forget that lugging around heavier objects when bugging out will make it more difficult for them. Water, for instance, is an essential item that weighs quite a lot when mass transporting. One thing you can do is map all the rivers and lakes along your route toward your destination to help ease the burden. Besides, your bug-out location should already be prepared with additional supplies.
  3. Know your city
    Anyone bugging out knows that the first rule of evacuating is to avoid highways and other overly populated areas as these can fill up quite fast with people sharing the same idea. You should always have a map of your city on hand so you can see all the alternative routes you can take to get to your desired location.
  4. Plan B
    No matter how perfect your plan may seem, you should also plan for possible failure. The city highways could become so jammed that the alternative routes have become congested as well. A tree could have fallen right on your desired escape route. What if your car breaks down? Disasters can happen on top of another disaster. Look for even more obscure routes you can take, no matter how long the detour could be. Additionally, you should be carrying extra supplies like tools just in case your vehicle gives out.
  5. Know how long to stay away
    In most cases, you wouldn’t really know when it is okay to go home. The priority should always be your safety. Keep safe at your bug-out location until you get the go signal that it’s safe to return home. Having a radio with you when you bug-out can help keep yourself updated on the situation and plan accordingly.

Planning for an escape route is essential for people living in areas that natural disasters frequent. It is a challenging effort to travel safe, but it is absolutely necessary if you want to survive when SHTF. However, as with all disasters, anything can happen. Plan for both the expected and the unexpected to ensure your safety in the times to come.

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