SECURITY

Neighborhood Security After TSHTF

neighborhood-watch-after-the-shtf

Here’s the scenario: The ‘S’ has hit the fan and social collapse has brought on social strife and chaos. People have become hungry, thirsty, desperate, panicked – while systems of distribution and infrastructure have broken down – and the government hasn’t been there to help.

Many people are just trying to survive, and some are doing things they’ve never thought they would do before – to get what they need…

The question is, how will you deal with your own security in a post-collapse world?


 

Personal Security

Before any neighborhood can achieve a level of general security, it needs to start with the individual. A neighborhood after all, is made up of individuals living in their homes.

What ‘tools’ do you have for own personal security?

A few thoughts include good old common sense, the ability of critical thinking, the skill of situational awareness, good physical health, and tactical training or abilities. And then there’s the ‘hardware’. This might include anything that you may be proficient with in the realm of personal security – not least of which is the firearm.

 

Home Security

Before a neighborhood can achieve a level of general security, the homes contained within must be secure. More importantly, those who live there have to be ‘on board’ with the notion of a wider participation for the benefit of all. That said, it starts with one’s own home and its perimeter. How’s your home security? How easy or difficult would it be for an intrusion? Not only that, but how would you know if and when someone intrudes onto your property outside, and are there any deterrents in place to slow or prevent this?

There are technological systems that one could employ in this regard, but ‘what if’ there’s no electricity and you don’t have a stand-alone alternative energy system to provide power? Consider having additional mechanisms in place that don’t rely on the grid. Bear in mind that ‘keeping watch’ or ‘patrols’ (for larger properties) take their toll on manpower (and sleep). Unless you have enough members in the household to rotate shifts, this becomes nearly impossible.

One key principle to home security is deterrence. You are trying to avoid a confrontation. What are the things that you can do with your home and property to lessen the likelihood of ‘looking like’ a target?

 

Neighborhood Security

The reason that neighborhood security would be so important (if achievable) in a post-shtf world, is the fact that there is power in numbers. No man is an island. Eventually (possibly) in such a world, there will be forces that may try to ‘take’. To stop or deter them, you may need the cooperation and inclusion of others.

To achieve neighborhood security, the neighborhood needs ‘enough’ of the resident homes and individuals to participate in an overall security plan. The level of planning might vary from basic neighborhood watch all the way to intricate methods of funneling, perimeter defense, patrols, tactical positioning, communications, and more…

The more who participate, the more effective the overall security.

A problem I foresee though is the fact that most people are not prepared, and therefore within a given neighborhood most people may simply be up the creek without a paddle with the rest of them – making it difficult to organize if they’re part of the overall problem. This will vary, and no doubt there are plenty of communities who are more adept, adaptable, and prepared than others – those (for example) who already live a lifestyle (rural?) with tendencies toward more self-sufficiency than urban or heavily populated suburban areas.

 

Conclusion

Much of course will depend on where you live, the level of descent into chaos, your proximity to population density, and the preparations and mindset of the people who live near you.

When the rule of law breaks down and when the police are not there to come to your aid, you are left with your own self. Your security will become your responsibility. Your layers of perceived security will be stripped away while your personal safety will rest entirely on your own shoulders. It all starts with YOU.

A neighborhood taking responsibility to police their own community will be essential for bettering the odds of overall survival in a collapsed chaotic society. Will it be possible? For most, probably not. But for some, perhaps yes.

I’m curious to get your input and opinion about neighborhood security after the SHTF (in the context of major societal collapse – not just a local event). While it all starts with the individual and one’s own home and property, how might you take it to the next level with one’s own neighborhood?

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54 Comments

  1. Driveway alerts are cheap and run on double “A” batteries. You can program them to give four separate alert sounds and are good out to 1000 feet. The elk and deer can be a problem though if it’s not hunting season.

  2. I’m wondering if a blatant overt threat would work…a few sign posts around the property declaring that “looters will be shot on site” should deter most people.

    It might be overly aggressive in some areas and I highly doubt the effectiveness in the inner urban setting…but suburban, it might be enough to ‘reset’ the moral reasoning of any potential aggressor.

    1. you would need to live in the country for this to work..

      I have seen a number of country dwellers post signs around property perimeter stating….

      Aggressive Bull at Large. Dangerous

    2. We are fairly rural. 7 miles from closest town of 9000. Closest neighbor is 3/4 miles away. Depending on how bad it gets, one may consider posting the bodies of those who failed to attack your property on the telephone poles leading to it.

  3. 12 guage perimeter alarms using trip wires. No batteries required. I prefer 3.5″ black powder blanks or tracer rounds. Any number of non-lethal ammo is available including CS. After the first week or two you probably won’t have to worry about deer setting them off as they will all be salted by then.

    There are also many “intense light stick” trip flares available for night use.

  4. The most important part of neighborhood security is forming some kind of alliance with your neighbors. We live in a rural, wooded area and most of us only see each other at the mailboxes. Still, we have a homemade neighborhood directory with phone numbers and addresses. It’s amazing what a simple Barbeque with neighbors can lead to.
    Blessings.

  5. The best security is to not be seen. Once an event progresses to open looting and robbing. It is time to hide and hole up in a safe room a basement room or fallout shelter that is well hidden. Neighborhoods that are fortified and organized become prime targets and over time would fail due to attrition. If its a short term event they may survive. long term its better to hide and let the worst die off . Community’s can be formed after an event but you have to survive first.

    1. Hope while your hiding in your hole, that your house is not burned down with you in it!!!! Bad plan.

    2. Agree, stealth is the best first line of defense. Next might be deception. Just a thought, at our country house break a few non-critical windows, decorate with soot throw some non-critical household items, broken, in the yard. Make it look pre-looted.
      No signs waring anything because that just tells looters where the good stuff is located.

  6. One of the reasons we left our previous state was our neighborhood was changing in a way that was less-than-good. Prior to leaving, we had a neighborhood watch within our cul-de-sac. The most basic element of our security was 2-fold approach: 1. Retired people with pencil and pad, by the front window, writing down vehicle descriptions license numbers and people descriptions. of people driving through our complex. 2. Mobile patrols in the form of people walking their dogs within the complex several times per day. (in good times, we just carried house keys and poop bags. In bad times I often added a concealed weapon on my person as well.)

    These days, I would add the modern cell phone with camera app. We had trouble with some residents dealing drugs from within a house on the block. WE also had a disgruntled renter come back to trash their old rental unit. Those of us that owned our homes were stakeholders and we established our Neighborhood Watch Program with monthly meetings and check-ins. We cooperated and communicated with our local authorities on regular basis because we fed our documented observations of traffic and activity to their narcotics detectives in order to drive out the bad elements.

    This was not exciting or fun like that depicted on cop shows. It was more mundane and boring like cutting grass. When things got too weird, We left our old neighborhood. The neighbors missed us because we were integral in the establishment of our neighborhood security team. Most of our neighbors were getting on in age. We probably did more “health and welfare check-ins” with our neighbors in those last years as opposed to crime prevention prior to leaving.

    Now I live in a different state. We were one of the first families on our block years ago and they have built homes around our house. Many moving here came from areas that were not nice. We still walk our dog and communicate with fellow dog owners and parents out with their children. Talking to each other is the first and most important step to establishing neighborhood security. Maintain a cooperative relationship with the local authorities as well as fire department. I am at an age where I may need them to respond to me or my house these days.

  7. In a post shtf scenario, post at entrances to communities maybe the best idea. This would stop most who would enter at least on roadways but you would also need other positions of concealment to insure security. Rural areas may be more difficult due to less people to defend larger areas. While most people in rural areas are probably better prepared, the down side is people who aren’t will be heading towards farms for food. It maybe large hoards who may easily over run areas that are not heavily defended and with less people to defend ??? Just a thought.

    1. Assess which of your neighbors may have to be driven out. A distasteful idea, but such an action may well become necessary.

  8. My 2¢ worth
    Become the “gray man”, Disappear, get gone, become a shadow, hide, just become non-existent.
    In the first few weeks/months the “hordes” will find that smoke of a fire burning, the smell of cooking food, that BBQ, the noise of a generator, the sound of a radio, hell even that light on inside your house. There will be absolutely no “neighborhood” group that will fight off a hundred or more starving people bent on taking what you have. Even worse will be the “gangs” looking to TAKE anything and anyone they please. The exodus from the cities will spread across the countryside and rural areas like a wildfire. That father with a starving wife and 2 children WILL do anything and I do mean anything to feed his family. Having a group of like-minded people is a fantastic idea until someone opens their big mouth at work and tells a few others what they have planed. If that happens, you’re toast. Personally I have a group of 6 that can be trusted. and each of us knows the problems with OPSEC breakdown and the dangers of that happening, it is ideal, no, is it something I worry about, hell yes, that’s 5 other people I have no control over, and those 5 others could get me killed. I guess what I’m saying is a neighborhood defense is a great idea, until someone in that neighborhood finally runs out of preps or opens their mouth, than guess who is your new nightmare that knows what your doing and maybe what you have?

    Even after the initial few months, there will still be groups that will want what you have, they will kill you for a meal and a place to sleep. Are you able to fight for your life every second?

    I just pray that the EOTWAWKI never happens, can you imagine WROL where someone/gangs can murder/rape/steal/destroy without any fear of reprisal? I spoke of the Human Animal before, can you imagine that animal without control or fear of punishment? Just look at what people do now, after a major SHTF, OMG.

    So Yes, organize the community protection groups, and the neighborhood watch groups. But you may also find a need to protect yourself from those within also.

    Sorry don’t mean to sound so doom and gloom, but just things to think about as you open yourselves up to more people knowing about what you are planning for.

    NRP

    1. This is why i have very little confidence things will work out well, hard decisions to make, when its them or me it sure as hell will be them that goes, too many sheep, ill be damned if i get stuck making up for others short sightedness.

    2. Well written statement that we always hear, but I wonder how easily gangs and the dangerous family of 4’s there really will be. After the SHTF, there will be martial law, no gas, road blocks etc. if you live in cold snowy areas this will also slow movement down. It won’t be easy to get around. Walking around could get you killed so people won’t travel. Then, there is the energy factor. If you have been without food for a while, how much energy do you have to put up a fight? When I am hungry, I am not bursting with energy particularly for an assault on somebody. I think most will die near where they live slowly. Knowing how to use a fire arm with ample ammo will give you a big advantage in your ability to survive and protect your family. I routinely work on my fire arm skills. I agree with you about praying. I pray this never happens because it will be an incredibly painful and sad experience. The last thing I want to do is shoot somebody.

  9. Our neighborhood consist of ourselves, a neighbor next door who isn’t even prepared for a few hours without power (so we are not relying on them for anything), then on the other side of that neighbor is someone we can count on, but they are gone for the summer. Then the house across the street up on a hill is deserted and bank owned at the moment. Then there is one more house that sits on the very corner of the entrance to our street. This is a very young couple whom we have spoken to on a few occasions. It was hard to gage them as far as preparedness, so they are a wild card. Our street is actually almost a mile long and ends at a 5 acre swamp, so the only area we have to worry about is the entrance to our road. There are others that live farther down on the road consisting of mostly retired, disabled residents. We see and talk to them from time to time and fear that none of these people are prepared. So at it stands now, we are alone.

    We have binoculars and night vision binoculars to watch who is coming down the road. Then we have hardware to increase the difficulty level of trying to penetrate any of the outside doors. (I haven’t installed these yet). We also had a driveway alert at one time many years ago (it doesn’t work anymore)we will not be replacing this, as only the unit that was outside used a battery, but the main receiver relied on house current. Unless there is a complete stand alone system that does not require electricity I will not be getting another. Really the only area we need to worry about is the driveway entrance. Trying to get into our yard from the road includes thick prickly bushes then about a five foot drop into the yard. Even the deer use our driveway.

    One thing I have been researching and cannot find anything even close to what I want is a “listening post” type set up. Something that I can listen for activity in a certain area (or lack of noise, as all the crickets, and frogs get real quiet when something is moving through the area). I figure I can hear someone long before I can see them. Does anyone know of a good set-up or have a set-up like this, I would be interested. The closest thing I have come up with is a baby monitor.

    Anyway in conclusion, we are not relying on the neighborhood, but our house will be very hard to breech.

    1. The Chamberlain wireless motion alert uses batteries on the outside sensor and you can run the inside receiver on double “A”s if the power goes out,

  10. We carefully looked for our present home. We did in fact, even pray about which home to purchase. The one we did, wasn’t even on our “top 10” list, but they were ALL within 1/2 mile of this one. A retired USA-SF major friend of mine was at our home recently, and remarked, “You could defend this place with a Ruger 10/22!”. We have the “high ground”, and from the street, our home is deceiving in it’s looks, and appearance. We could easily defend this place if it became necessary. We are on a cul-de-sac, with nasty winters, and decent land behind us.We have neighbors that are like minded about preparedness as well as their personal/residential security. One of the families is next to useless,but still decent folks. Several of us are hard core shooters in the neighborhood, and we’ve all drawn up range cards to each others homes in the event that those are needed as well.We are pretty aggressive in making our presence “known” to solicitors in the area and as soon as they start at one end of the neighborhood,we all try to run them off. Lately, one drip was trying to engage people in conversation, by asking rather pointed questions about income levels, “what kind of work do you guys do to afford a home like this?” etc. basically we gave him the opportunity to speak with our local gendarmes about his casing the area. They ran him and found he had outstanding warrants from out-of-state for being a bad boy. Off he went. Of course, we held him for their arrival and all of us were legally carrying concealed of course. I feel comfortable tossing a set of keys to my two closest neighbors(have done it several times, as have they in return) when we are out of town. We try to look out for each other without “crowding” in on each other’s personal lives. Makes for a great place to live and have “neighbors” too. Can it all go down the crapper? In a heartbeat. There are no guarantees in life. Still, we want in this area, the members of the thugocracy to FEAR US! Instead of the other way around.Screw ’em.

  11. Peanut:

    Can you make use of that deserted house in some way? Maybe post an extra sentry there or hide some of your supplies somewhere on that property in case your home is overrun and ransacked?

    I am thinking that if it is the GOVERNMENT that is foraging for food & supplies being stored by “hoarders” they might ignore an empty house. Of course, if it is someone else, they might decide to appropriate that home as their own, so I would only store a small amount there — well hidden or buried.

    1. We suspect a transient has been staying there from time to time, so at this point I wouldn’t chance it. I have opted to hide/bury supplies instead.

  12. I live in a upper middle class area and most people would be without food in three days or less. They are to busy living the good life to prepare for something they think will never happen. If you live in a neighbor hood that would pull together and fight together you are one lucky person. THIS IS A VERY GOOD ARTICLE AND WE ALL NEED TO GIVE IT SOME SERIOUS THOUGHT. Just who could you trust and depend on.

  13. Asess
    Inventory
    Deterrents
    Area denial
    Erect improvised Hesco barriers around house
    Then check out the neighborhood slowly and cautiously,
    Say nothing to give clues as to capabilities or resources
    (Give appearance of being bewildered or lost unless situation is known)
    Its going to be interesting

  14. Listen all. Keep all security so simple, “even a caveman could do it”.

    Small bells on strings, cans with pebbles for clappers, small dogs, ducks, any animal that raises a ruckus when a strange creature come near, trip wires that in turn are connected to a catapult flinging any of the above into the air (especially the damned chihuahuas – never have like them anyway), keep your defensive weapons on you 24/7 – follow the American Express mantra “don’t leave home without it”, keep noises/smells/dust/smoke down to a minimum, stay aware and alert – in other words, rest hard when you can.

    Keep it all simple. Forget any b.s. about this or that being the ultimate in firearm, knife….. gizmo. And if need be – when defense is really needed – keep it short, quick and final.

    1. The only problem with having outdoor critters to alert one, is that you are announcing that you have a critter that is a potential food source. During the housing bust of the 80’s and tent cities were popping up in CA, the authorities had cleared out one such encampment, and they found bones of cats and dogs as desperate people started catching and eating peoples pets. So I would rather be stealthy and not let anyone know I am watching/listening, or that I am even there. If need be, we can abandon our home if it appears that we are severely outnumbered, and return after they pass.

      Trip wires can do the same thing. Now the people who are sneaking around have just set off a trip wire, so now they know that someone was just informed of their presence. You just took your advantage away. Unless you can set up a silent trip wire that will notify you in your house, so they wont realize that they have given away their position.

  15. You will need help. Organize. But, if needed, drop a couple quick and the rest tend to lose interest.

    BI

  16. We have prepped for more than a decade. food, medical, alternative energy, written library, protection. Our nearest neighbor is nearly two miles away and very like minded. All those that have been invited have signed a “duty” list (special talents etc) and we have prepared for their entrance should they need to be here. I have sent each and every one of them to Front Sight for training in protective weapons.

    I guess we are ready….we “practice” often, and remain vigilant daily. We can do without most daily amenities, because we live in the country and have practiced for years. Big family, lots of room, high ground and far from the crowds. Plenty of entertainment and lots of hard work to keep folks busy. Year round water supply, gardens and livestock all very defensible with the right number of people!
    Keep the oil lamps full folks. and keep sharing ideas.
    Ken, as usual, great article. very thought provoking.

  17. My dogs don’t tend to be friendly towards strangers. I know chances are slim being alone way out in the sticks, but I have a good warning system. Not often do you read about someone killed at home with 120+ lb guard dog breeds inside. You always hear of those who don’t have them. Hopefully they will deter anyone from stealing as they have kept people intimidated since I moved here.

  18. History has shown us that people who group together tend to do better at survival than the lone individual. Turning your back on community during SHTF is a sure death sentence, because you can not hide forever, just only for the rest of your life!!!!

    1. Jon, I think you may be referring to like-minded people in a self sufficient, possibly survivable area. The lessons of the LA riots, Katrina, Ferguson, Baltimore should remind us all that these were just localized, transitory events. After TSHTF, all bets will be off, except one: if you’re still in a big city, you (and yours) are done.

  19. I’m with NRD people that you have known for years will turn on you to survive , I’m not staying in my home. I’m going to the least populated areas in my state along the river . maybe after 3 or 4 months pass I “might” sneek back to see what things are like. I think low numbers of people will be best , at least for the first 3-4 months.

    1. I don’t know, there are over 330,000,000 people in this country. About 1/3 have 3 days of food so that leaves 220,000,000 people unprepared and will become zombies in a shtf scenario. Buy more bullets !!! There are also a lot of improvised munitions and booby traps that can be deployed in wrol but we are hopelessly out numbered. If they can’t over run your position they might just use molotov cocktails and burn you out. It will definitely be really bad for all involved. Good luck what ever your plan is. Just a thought.

      1. @ Thor
        I believe your being way to kind in your estimates of numbers that are prepared. I seriously doubt it 1/3 even have 3 days stored. and maybe Maybe 5% have a true prepared storage.
        Most people will starve to death if it were not for 24/7/365 restaurants.

        Seriously if a SHTF scenario hits, give it a month and the “masses” will be toast. The hard part is to outlast those “masses”.
        NRP

        1. NRP, I did say zombies for a reason. If they don’t have food they may resort to cannibalism after a week or two. Just like the airline passengers from planes that crashed in the mountains. They will be like wild animals at this point with just the primal need to feed. Man is at the top of the food chain for a reason. I believe our furry friends will disappear first so it may take a month if the weather is good if its cold and snowy maybe sooner. Just a thought.

  20. To: Thor, I was one of the neighbors that lived at the entrance to our cul-de-sac in California. I was on friendly terms with the couple that lived on the other side of the entrance to our complex. We talked of setting up a rotation of guard duties within our complex when there was talk of breakdown during Y2K (can any body remember that far back?). We also set up a high resolution digital camera system to record license plates and vehicle/driver descriptions, (drug dealing within our complex) and we also agreed to share ammo/have common weapons systems within our houses since we were at the entrance to our neighborhood. (12 gauge pump shotguns with at least 3 cases of shells. Enough to make a short end-table.) Enough continuous fire to convince less desirable people to move on in search of an easier target.

    To KulaFarmer: Have not heard of hesco barriers outside the military. The road into our community could be set up with moveable barriers within 2 hrs of trouble. These were simply garbage cans filled with rocks,gravel, sand or any substance that would stop a bullet/attenuate a blast or do heavy damage to a car that rammed it. Barriers were set up in such a way that it forced the incoming/outgoing cars to slow down and zig-zag through. This was the location where the posted guard was to check and verify incoming traffic. This was a system I observed being used on the perimeter of embassy security.

    To NRP: You are so right on beware of the enemy within. A majority of the drug dealing within our complex was being done by the children and foster children that were being raised by the parents that owned homes within our neighborhood. We steered clear of each other because they knew I’d just assume shoot them as look at them. When I witnessed them with their hands in the cookie jar, I did not call their parents. I turned them into the cops and filed my statement. No love lost there.

    To those going about it alone: I have this story of the Korean store owners that banded together during the Rodney King riots in Los Angeles in the 1990s. Their shops did get damaged and they suffered some losses but they sustained far less than other shops around them. They stuck together. They worked together and they came through with minimal damage to their businesses. Some of their secrets: They communicated to each other in code (they spoke Korean as most of these people were Fresh-Off-The-Boat.) They put aside their business interests to help each other out. (2 shop owners would be competitors until you find out that their children are getting married to each other.) Many of these Korean Nationals came from South Korea where the men served in the ROKs prior to coming to America. (highly disciplined and organized military group that has a fearsome reputation even among US forces.) It was inspirational to drive by and watch these people defending their real estate while the National Guard stood on the street corners with no ammunition for their weapons. (first day of the riot)

    1. @ Cali
      Anyone here remember Ferguson Riots?

      Here’s a couple of news quotes for ya all;

      “At Riverfront Tattoo, owners Mike Gutierrez ( below left) and Adam Weinstein (third from left) brought AR-15s, body armor and lots of high-capacity magazines (the type Obama wants banned) to guard their store against mayhem; And rioters passed them right by.”

      “And over at Mally’s Supermarket, had men with concealed 9mm handguns and revolvers, lined up and ready to defend , right on West Florissant:”

      Geeeee I wonder what happened? Where were the police, NG and Military? Where was that president of yours, oh that’s right, he was sending his clowns down there to INSITE the riots!!! Can anyone say Defend your own? This is exactly what will happen WTSHTF. This is exactly why you will be alone (with your group) When The Sh!t Hits The Fan. Be wary of the Government, “We’re from the government, We’re here to help you” HAHAHAHA Yeah Right!!!! Do NOT count on it. Remember Katrina, some of the worst looters were the cops.

      NRP

      PS; Cali, I’m so old I remember the Y1K breakdown, LOL

    2. Cali, while it is good to have a plan and you and your neighbor are fighting a valiant battle at the entrance, who is covering your 6. Which is what I meant about Molotov cocktails being a viable threat. Flare guns and even fireworks can be used for setting a fire or as a diversion. I don’t know the terrain where your house is but check for places of cover around your house were the enemy may take up positions. Just a thought.

  21. Surprised no one mentioned radios. I have 5 Midland GMRS/FRS radios (and extra battery packs) specifically for handing out to neighbors, though I haven’t told them that yet. Will suggest some simple rules that think everyone can agree with: report anything suspicious, don’t enter anyone’s property without their permission each and every time, let everyone know if you’re going to wander/patrol the neighborhood after dark, and only use lethal force to defend your own property (unless someone specifically calls for help). If everyone can agree on and follow these rules, then you can build on it from there.

    1. Excellent suggestion. Communication with the rest of the neighborhood will be key to a quick response. Who knows if phones will be working. We do have 3 short range walkie-talkies, certainly not enough for the neighborhood. For people who don’t have this capability maybe they can set up a phone tree so to speak (just without the phone).

    2. I have several sets (of the previous version) of the following Midland 2-way radio. Have owned them for years – and they have performed quite well (given the limitations of any such similar radio and their associated frequencies). Great for general comms for fairly close proximity (you NEVER get the miles that they claim, but it’s still pretty decent depending on terrain and location).

      Midland GXT1000VP4 FRS/GMRS Two-Way Radio (Pair)

      1. I have 4 cobra short range rechargeables, 2 handheld a base and a vehicle cb. Plan is 2 upstairs as look outs at a time. Backyard is fenced with motion detectors front and rear. At least 2 downstairs with heavy calibers and shotguns and dogs to stop entrance. Upstairs long range and AR15s. That’s just the basics.won’t go into more details but wouldn’t want to attack my house without armor or a professional army. Just a thought.

      1. Got it covered. Barbed wire for top of fence inside to injure or trap once they climb over. Nail boards are good too. Long sharp sticks can also be interesting. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best. Just a thought.

  22. Interesting comments by all. Something I worry about is if something does happen all our “friends, relatives, etc.” from the city will show up naked and hungry. Suddenly we will have our rural neighborhood full of outsiders of unknown integrity. They are likely to be the biggest problem we will have. It is unlikely most of us will turn sweet old aunt Edna away. However, it is drug addict cousin Eddie she brings with her who will be the problem.

    1. I keep my personal OSPEC to myself, I have warned all my neighbors and relatives about a crash and civil unrest coming with dire consequences and they all dismiss me as crazy and delusional. My own daughter won’t prepare and she is 250 miles away. I have to play the hand I am given being so remote.

      You need like-minded people to have a community to protect the area you live in. If that doesn’t exist, you have to use other ways for protection and hope for the best. There won’t be hoards coming where I live and it is too cold in winter for even me to go beyond my mailbox,.. So being isolated from this kind of danger came with my decision to live here. I remember what defeated Napoleon and his armies in Russia, it was the extreme cold weather conditions.

  23. Lots of ideas on this one. Again, as Ken says, much will depend on where you live and level of descent and I might add, length of collapse. With an extended or long term collapse, there will likely be a “peak” when it will get real bad. It would be important to know or sense when that “peak” of violence, looting, murder, etc. is about to occur in your neck of the woods. One will need to make this observation as prior to this, isolation will be key to making it through the difficult time.

    Many ideas on how to defend one’s home, property, etc. have been offered when the looters are at your doorstep. I would hope the prepared can handle the single or small group of thugs that attempt to take what is yours. When a violent group numbering many are rolling down your road, all bets are off as you will likely be overrun, burnt out, etc. What about preventing them from ever finding the road to your house in the first place?

    My area has topographic pinch points that MAY offer the ability to detour looters in a different direction, especially if they are large numbered gangs relying on vehicles to ravage the countryside.

    I have looked closely at all access to our house a mile or two out and have identified several culvert locations, well away from my residence that if washed out, would prevent any vehicular traffic from traversing. Culverts at these pinch points have been measured and plate steel and plywood, cut to size, stashed near the culverts. Should that “peak” event appear inevitable, the barriers would be placed in front of the culverts and with a minimal amount of precipitation, would deeply cut out the roadway and culvert preventing any vehicular traffic from traveling over or around these locations. Removing roadway access would greatly stack the odds of protecting your home in your favor. Not knowing what is out the road may turn looters a different direction as they likely would not leave vehicles unattended to travel by foot. A few bridges as well have been eyed and wouldn’t take much to bring down, ONLY as a last ditch effort to get through that “peak” of violence. Again, isolation will be key.

  24. To NRP : Y1K? Is that when Rome was trying to prevent the Visigoths away from their Northern Border or when Constantinople was losing 1/3 of their population to the plague? (War and Pestilence- the 2 constants of world history)

    Dude! You are old!

    The New Yorker did a magazine feature on the New Orleans Police Department after Katrina. Estimates are that 1/3 to 1/2 of the department quit by not showing up for work when the dikes broke. Those that stayed were very angry. Some of the people that are on video for looting wearing the uniforms? May have also been civilians with purloined uniforms in addition to cops abusing their authority. The NOPD had a reputation as one of the most corrupt PD within the nation prior to Katrina. When the department rebuilt after the storm, they sought to rebuild with a leaner, better department. They began by NOT hiring those who ran away. Most of the cops that stayed were multigenrational cops raised in the city. Some good came out of the flood. Like the city and the government, the NOPD was gutted starting with the chief, then it began to rebuild from within.

  25. I’m carefully reading these comments and am seeing a frequent theme — and fallacy — which is about having other families, friends, relatives who are prepared like us. In a neighborhood, that doesn’t matter that much. Yes, you may “double up” and have several people on your property. But it’s only your property, and when you Google map the roof tops and estimate families then you realize the problem.

    The problem for most of us this: no matter if there are five men pulling guard duty on our place, there are fifty men who don’t know what an “EMP” is or what “SHTF” stands for. They may work with you. They may panic. They may be an asset — or any enemy. My argument is those people — not your battle buddies — are what we have to prepare for.

    And how do we do that? I frankly don’t know — that’s why I’m here.

  26. I “buried” freeze dried food pouches (about 3 months worth inside my walls, when I did a remodel a few years ago.

    I also have a 20 gauge pump, .357 lever action carbine and a 6 inch revolver in the walls with the food. There’s 500 rds of 38 special, 500 rds 357 and 300 rds of assorted shotgun ammo. There’s also some basic equipment inside the walls, sheath knives, water straws, etc.

    The upside is if my house is breeched and looted, I won’t lose everything (if I can escape/evade of course). The downside is if the house is set alight, I’ll lose everything at this location.

    Luckily, I have an alternate location that’s already setup with some friends. However, that location will be tough to get to as it’s a little over 200 miles away and it will involve traversing a major metropolitan area.

    Oh well, nothing’s perfect.

  27. Anyone have any ideas for securing a cottage neighbourhood on the waterfront? Its got one road in and out with a steel mill right at the entrance which we could use as a security HQ. It also has in and out gates and if the road were blocked out front of it, it would allow us to use those gates to check traffic in and out. There would be issues with securing two areas- firstly the forested areas which surround us to the east and west (to the north is a rail line and cut brush and we could defend it much easier), and secondly the waterfront from people arriving by boat. Most of the waterfront is cleared but there are areas inside our “zone” which are forested waterfront, which could make an ideal late night boat landing spot for a team of raiders. Maybe someone has suggestions. Love the site btw thanks for your work on the subject

    1. @ mike… use the trees to your advantage. Find ones in your “forested” areas that have a good view of the water at each area. Set up a tree stand for deer in them and use the a guardposts on the water side. For the wooded areas east and west, plenty of options for that. It’s just how creative and how mean you want to be on that front.

  28. If the grid goes down for a long period of time,remember in the early To later stages,plenty of vehicles will be stranded and there is plenty of gas to be had.In other words no matter how well you are prepared(food,water,ammunition)wise including a group of like minded preppers,it only takes a few(Molotov Cocktails from the bad guys to toss at your abode and burn you out and that can be done to quite a few neighborhoods.I’ve seen this in other countries.So if you and your family think you are safe think again.Getting in a firefight is one thing.Seeing your roof on fire and your family inside is another

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