SYSTEMIC RISKS

Traffic Gridlock – Are You Prepared?

traffic-gridlock
Los Angeles, Thanksgiving Getaway 2016

When I saw these traffic images of complete gridlock, and whenever I see or experience a nightmarish traffic situation, it affects me in a way that’s probably a bit different than others…

While others who are stuck in the same traffic jam are most likely annoyed, angry, or pi$$ed off about being late to wherever they’re going next, I instead get a reinforcing jolt of certainty that most people will be absolutely ‘screwed’ who live in population-dense regions if and when the SHTF. It’s absolutely amazing to witness the sea of humanity at times – and to recognize the systemic risks that go along with the supporting infrastructure that keeps it all alive…

That said, people live where they live, and that’s the way it is. So what can be done to be prepared for traffic gridlock?

A few ideas:


 

But first, here’s a video of Thanksgiving 2016 ‘getaway’ traffic from Los Angeles:
source: ABC7 Eyewitness News
Video link

 
1. Keep your gas tank full! I am one of those who rarely lets my tank fall below half. Although I currently live rural and don’t have to worry about traffic gridlock, I have spent many years of my life living and working in very population-dense regions (have even been in the exact traffic-jam location pictured above), I do feel better knowing that I have the range of travel with a near full tank. If you’re caught in a serious traffic jam while running on fumes, you will only make it worse when you run out of gas!

2. Keep food / snacks in your car. It will certainly help your mood if you’re getting hungry around meal time while stuck in a traffic jam.

3. Keep some bottled water in the vehicle.

4. Know alternate routes of travel. Most of us are stuck in the habit and routine of going a certain way. This is usually the quickest way, however in a traffic gridlock situation you ‘might’ be better off going another way (‘might’)…

5. A ‘CB radio’ will often reveal ‘why’ there’s traffic or where an accident may be located ahead, truckers taking alternate routes, etc.. (channel 19), and it’s also amusing to listen to while stuck in traffic. I keep a handheld CB-radio in the truck all the time, and it has come in handy…

6. Learn to enjoy and be entertained by the idiocy that you will observe around you while stuck in traffic. It is amazing to realize the lunacy, selfishness, and stupidity that exists in our fellow man and woman while under duress.

7. And most of all, stay calm ;)

 
This is my CB Radio:
Midland 75-822 40 Channel CB-Way Radio

Related Article: Could You Escape From LA?

 
Care to share your traffic gridlock/jam/nightmare scenarios?
I certainly have lots of stories from over the years!

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Here is the question. I know there are several scenarios for SHTF, but where would we be going? I mean really – other than the fact that my wife would probably be at work and try to make it home to me, where would we be advised to go? As I have mentioned, I live about 5 hours from the Canadian border, but I have no plan per se. So what, we actually get to the border….if the SHTF, is it not likely that the border will be closed? I think that is why so many people on here live in rural areas…more likelihood of surviving in those areas. We live in a semi-rural area, though not rural enough for my liking. I would not call us the suburbs, but our apartment, while in a nice family neighborhood, is only about 5 streets away from some shady sections of town. I would not be happy to have to stay where we are in a time of anarchy, however, I think that would be exactly our reality.

One bit of good news….my wife drives like she was a race car driver in a past life, and she studied maps and back routes like I have never known anyone to do, so at least I feel rather confident that she will make it home to me and our cats.

If that’s your reality, then accept it and plan for what you may be facing. Few of us can change where we live or other circumstances. Know an evacuation route just in case. Run through contingency plans in your mind. Write them down maybe. I do! If you think things through now you will be less likely to panic (as most people will) in an emergency. A clear head and good decisions will make a big difference for you if the shtf.

Great advice Ms. L. Planning is so key.

Escape From L.A., sounds like a great title for a SHTF novel. Hmmmmm, now if only I was a writer.

@ lovelypoet

I have seen you post a few times about the Canadian Border. I guess I would ask why would you plan on trying to make it there and not somewhere NOT 5 hours’ drive (on a good day)? Also, once you get to Canada, then what? I guess I’m asking if you would be better having a Bug-Out-Plan that is a lot closer to your current location (within walking distance). Or as you did mention, Hunkering Down where you are?

I am in the belief that leaving your Home Base, is the very VERY last option, remembering you are leaving a LOT of stuff behind that you may need if the SHTF is serious enough to last more than a day or two. I do know some that have a Bug-Out-Location to head to if TSHTF, and have that place well stocked and defensible. BUT, they still have to make it there. Back to the thinking of hunkering down and staying home. And yes one can hunker down in a city if you have the right plan.

I personally look at the photo Ken has up, and cringe to the core to think that’s the reality for a “friendly” holiday, what would it look like if TSHTF and its pure ciaos or worse? Please remember, people are dangerous and deadly.

JMHO, but the fear I have is those poor people that are stuck trying to “get out”, get out to where? And HOW are you going to get out of that….. Take a good hard look at that photo, frightening to say the least.

NRP

That photo shows it is impossible to maneuver, like getting caught in an avalanche. You have to go where the masses take you. You cannot change lanes until you are run way out of the city!

Flying ain’t no better on holidays. Did a lot of that on winter holidays with overnight delays, standing in line with hundreds before you to reschedule grounded flights, sleeping on the floor of the airports, and watching a tail fall off a passenger jet in Detroit as it was taking off.
Oh what fun.

.

Thank you NRP, you make really good points. I guess I don’t know why I always think of the Canadian border – I guess it is the fight or flight thing. The fact that I never thought of the fact that it is a 5 hour drive on a good day reminds me how naive I am about this stuff. I am never afraid to admit my weaknesses. I do have a very close friend in Newfoundland, but there is no long-term plan about when (if) I get over the border. I mean I would be illegal at some point, and that is not ideal. I guess what scares me about staying close to my home base is that 1. we are two women, which leaves us, in my opinion, a bit more vulnerable, 2. I have no weapons and 3. I don’t want to be faced with someone coming to the door and forcing me into a FEMA camp. You peaked my curiosity when you said you can hunker down in the city if you have the right plan. We are not in the city per se, but we are not in the middle of nowhere either. Populated enough where I think we would see looting. Any further suggestions on making a plan? I just don’t know where to begin.

@ lovelypoet

Will write up some suggestions and post on Saturday, don’t want to get to far off subject.

NRP

lp, have you considered a RV, even a used one in good condition, as a mobile bug out location? The cabin in the woods is an attractive option, but a BOL that moves with you is starting to seem like a better option IMO. The added bonus is that you can use it for regular travel. Down side is driving that big of a vehicle.

Anyway, getting caught in escape traffic would be a lot more comfortable with a mini kitchen and bathroom available.

It would be a very difficult border to close. Maybe the roads but not the countryside. You might be able to ask for refugee status.

Yes, I thought about refugee status. I guess that is one thing in my mind as a maybe, if I ever felt the need to flee. But NRP makes some good points.

After a major “event” don’t try to cross an international border at a state-run border crossing.

That traffic is insane and I thought traffic got bad in Montana. No way would I live in that ant colony. That place is the source of nightmares.

Interestingly enough, I’ve had this conversation with my family before. I tried to tell them that if something really bad happened that caused everyone to pile into their cars and get lost, that we probably wouldn’t be able to get out, and that the worst case scenario is that we walk. Walking a good 150km to my BOL is no small feat either, but that’s worst case scenario. I’m a Canadian… and I got my snowshoes :) .

Looks like a 20-30 day trek in good conditions – perhaps a small motor bike with a trailer might be a better option in all but winter conditions – then a snowmobile may be in order?

150k = 90 miles if your young and in good shape in two days,go light and fast ,digger indans use to cover 80 miles in a day on foot ,in SEAL training we did 35miles a day, 20miles with a full loadout of 80 lbs or more ,tuff you bet ,impossible no ,a bit less on snowshoes breaking trail ,just as fast on good trail ,how do I know? I did it … I actually like it out on a snow trail with a good moonlight ,no need for a headlamp, do have to NOT get too warm summer or winter. Learn the trail before hand , you can do it

65 miles away from home/3 times a week is as far as i go w/o hubby. At my age of 62 yrs, my GOB is set up to get me 10 miles a day thru hills and valleys of Mid TN back country. Would take me 6 days to get home.

At least i wouldn’t have to navigate that nightmare in the picture above !!!

Yikes,,,,
It can happen anywhere though, here if there is an accident it usually blocks the highway, if somebody dies it takes hours and hours for it to reopen,

There has been 3 people killed on the little traveled highway where I need to get home on and the sheriff closed the highway. I had to turn around and go on dirt roads 12 miles around the accidents, and if you don’t know the detours, follow everyone else, especially logging and store delivery trucks.

I frequently travel on I 75 and have seen traffic stopped for hours. This is especially bad if it’s during the summer because cars will run hot just waiting in the traffic. Always keep items necessary to cool your engine if you live where the heat is extreme. Also keep a map and a cell phone.

Got hung up on I-75 in Atlanta last month heading south from Nashville. Google said there was a 2 hr delay ahead so jumped on I-20 to 441 and went only a little ways out of the way.
We live in a rural area with a bug out location in the woods so traffic is not usually a concern. But I began thinking that a “well planned” vacation should include several alternate routes.

Beautiful to see what ants can do for Christmas – decorating the highway :)

All i can say is, be first in line to evacuate.

Ken, thanks for reminding me of what I’m no longer missing. For the last 3 years I travel every other week to L.A. for business. Then in August I retired to the my country home in Michigan. I don’t miss L.A., the traffic, or the airports. Now when I’m in any traffic its either a tractor, or a cow, but I still keep my tank full. Also I few weeks ago I loaded up the winter gear, extra boots, coats, gloves, hats, glove warmers, snow shovel, and cat litter.

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you.

Gridlock in my area is an exceptional large flock of turkeys…

Yes same with me, and also the deer. I’ve stop a few time to let them cross in front of me.

When I traveled to see my mom, aunt, and daughter I had to go through the Twin Cities gridlock, usually an hour delay, usually over someone stalled on the side of the road, not blocking traffic at all, because people slow down to rubberneck turning traffic into a bottleneck.

I found an alternative route bypassing cities on country roads which actually took as long as with gridlock delays on the main thoroughfare. It beat sitting for an hour, and bumper to bumper slow crawling, and I saw different sights, making it more interesting in rural areas….. But in rural areas bypassing heavy traffic means closed gas stations, towing, and restaurants on holidays, where along busy highways, they stay open.

I am not going anywhere now, but earlier planned to go to the cities for Thanksgiving which was cancelled because my female is in heat, no kennel will take her…and for a better excuse I found out today I have to heat my home with wood until parts come in for a major furnace reconstruction in 10 days. I am glad not to be on the road for the holiday!

Traffic — just one (of the many) reasons I am now — FINALLY! — out of California!

At our Thanksgiving dinner we go around and ask everyone what they are most thankful for each year. Since earlier this year is when the last of my California “entanglements” was resolved, being here full time is at the top of my list. Have no plans to return any time in the future, tho’ I do have a space reserved in the family cemetery plot (hopefully not to be used any time soon). :)

Depending on what the SHTF emergency is, you either need to leave well before everyone else figures out there’s a problem (and have a place to go), or hunker down until the dust settles some and then try to find a way out. Not a lot of good choices in a true massive SHTF situation. Having been involved in disaster relief operations for relatively localized earthquakes, hurricanes, etc., the thought of a national SHTF situation boggles the mind.

As I look at the picture it makes me feel all warm and toasty inside. As some of you may recall my step daughter recently went through a nasty and costly divorce. She is left holding about $40,000 in joint debt and he has said he’s not going to pay anything on it even though most of the debt was his. The divorce cost her $20,000 most of which was to fight the false accusations made by her now ex-mother in law who tried to get custody of her daughters for her son. (she envisioned them all living under her roof) He is now going on 4 months in arrears on his support payments. He is currently living in our area and his parents live in Los Angeles. They are coming up to visit for Thanksgiving and he is expecting to get non scheduled visitation with the kids since they are driving so far. Not going to happen! Like I said, makes me feel all warm and toasty since that is what they are going through to get here. I do feel somewhat sorry for the other folks that are stuck in it.

About the CB radio shown in the amazon ad. I’m confused. Is one a handheld and the other one included in it or is the second one with the cables a second radio? I’m weak in the commo section and know I need at least some sort of a CB radio. I’m presuming most of these are now being made in China and after reading Ghost Fleet wonder about hidden chips. Premise in Ghost Fleet was that hidden programs in the chips in our military equipment woke up in a war with china and caused great injury to us through our dependence on electronics. Just recently we’ve been hearing about smart phones sending data back to China. I do have a battery and hand crank powered AM/FM/Weather radio. Several walkie talkie type radios with chargers in the Faraday box and a base and handheld VHF on our boat.

I would guess that the most important thing to keep in the car is the get home bag. If you are in a gridlock because the electronics die abandon the car and start out for your destination. This does cause me to wonder if the reason we have the gridlock is due to an EMP or CME would our electronic locks work? We might be locked in our cars so maybe a window breaker is a good plan to keep in the passenger compartment. Could you get into the trunk if that is where your GHB is?

Hows the distance on that CB? I know all the line o sight stuff but curious real world how it works,

You could always use the key to open the car door or trunk.

Reminds me of a story a Highway Patrolman told me a few years ago:
During a complete traffic gridlock on a local Interstate, due to a very bad (fatal) accident, traffic was at a complete standstill for several hours. During that time, a male passenger in one of the cars had to have a serious bowel movement and just could not hold it in. So he just stepped out of the car at the side of the road and left the door open to hide him from view. Naturally,when he was in mid-operation, the road ahead opened up and the Highway Patrol on the scene were frantically waving the traffic ahead to clear the highway as quickly as they could. The driver (his wife) had no option but to move ahead quickly with the traffic, leaving him wide open to all the traffic moving by. It certainly lightened the mood for a lot of those passing by, who had been stuck for so long. The Patrolmen up ahead had no idea why all those people now passing by were laughing, until they heard what had happened. The Patrolman that related the story to me was laughing so hard, he had tears in his eyes just thinking about the conversation that man was having with his wife later.

Very funny :) but not so much for the unfortunate man with the bowl problem. He probably told his wife to just shoot him now. Humor is definitely the best medicine. Thank’s for sharing.

a word of advice…the west coast uses channel 17 as the ‘trucker’ channel.

Since when.?

I was a commercial driver for may years Midwest to CA, we all used 19 even out in Cali. Could not stand the state – dual speed limits, double standards, arrogant + incompetent drivers, special lanes for trucks then there were the car only lanes. etc.

Ken, Thanks for the reminder:

I’ve gotta get more slim jims to go with my string cheese in my ice chest I keep in my truck. I also keep trail mix and 3- pint bottles of water and soda and gatorade in same ice chest. I keep an empty gatorade bottle around as an emergency urinal and let us not forget 1 roll of our favorite, quilted TP in a ziplock bag.

I try to use the bathroom before I commute home from work. The section of city I work in is rough so I do not stop for fast food before I leave city to go home. (lots of shootings and assorted police activities taking place.) My gas tank always has at least 50% full. I also keep a number of small bills either in my wallet or in the lock box within my vehicle in order to purchase things at truck stops and smaller markets and-gasoline for when the credit card reader goes down on occasion.

To lovelypoet: I have 5 cats and I do not plan on moving. Our suburban home is on high ground (minimal flooding danger) and we live in a neighborhood of young families and semi-retired/retired folks. It sounds like you are in roughly the same situation. Why would you leave? Where you would go to is your personal decision. Years ago, I let my wife make that decision for me with my input. That is how we ended up living where we are living now. The cats had the most trouble with relocation. (we moved with 4 cats and 1 dog)

Hi Cali – wow, 5 cats. Gotta love the creatures. It would not be that I would want to leave. I just wonder if we would be safe here. As I mentioned above to NRP, we are 2 women and we have no weapons. I would be afraid of total anarchy if it was a disaster/incident of national reach.

To ChiefPontiac:

Been there and dun that. Los Angeles traffic is so bad, we did not feel self conscious about letting it all hang out. I also noticed the large numbers of people opening the back of their rigs in order to change the diapers of their youngest ones too. Only the locals would do this stuff. I’m sure I/we horrified some Christian family from Minnesota on their way to see Mickey at Disneyland. (sorry ’bout that.) On a hot, windless day, the section of freeway would smell like an outhouse.

In the end, you gotta doo what you gotta doo. Don’t forget the TP too.

Going to the in-laws for T-day. It’s 150 mile trip each way, and have to go through Colorado Springs to get there. Really not looking forward to the potential traffic. It is really important for us to go, because we don’t think that Dad has much longer, and we want to spend time with him while we still can. That being said, I am making sure that we have water and snacks, and my GHB is ready. My husband thinks that having a GHB is a bit paranoid, but I think it’s better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it. I think it is always a good idea when traveling in the mountains. He is supportive of the idea of being prepared, but doesn’t actually want to do anything about it. Any ideas on how to help him find more inspiration for being an active part of this lifestyle?

@ Skibum

Yeah, here are a couple of ideas on how to get him on-board.

1. “Lights-Out” weekend, meaning not using anything to do with electricity or anything that’s gets it’s power from the grid. No using the Refrigerator, no heater, not lights, no water from the faucet, no NADA. Plus not cell/smart phones or radios that use the grid, AND absolutely NO TV, or using the cars/trucks. This is a GREAT way to test your preps. OHHH and no pizza delivery or cooking on the stove.

2. Backyard Camping, with nothing but your GHB and what you normally would have in the Car/Truck. Again no using the House Facilities. Try it for a weekend, no cheating by using “extra” camping stuff.

3. Go for a full month without buying anything, no food, no gas, no TP, no nada. You can use the House and everything in it, but nothing extra from the “outside” sources. Its only 30 days, this will show ya how fast those “preps” can disappear.

4. Have someone drop ya both off 30 miles from home with only the GHB and what you would have in the truck. See how ya do on getting home before ya run out of stuff in the GHB.

5. Spend a night in the truck parked somewhere (own driveway or backyard) where ya would not get harassed. When its 20 deg outside that old hunk of steel gets very cold and uncomfortable.

Sometimes I hear it’s hard to get someone onboard, but….

NRP

@ NRP
Thanks! Those are some great ideas. We did something similar a few years ago. During a short hike to a nearby lake, we decided to spend the night out with just the day packs we had. It was a good experience. Applying the same process for a GHB or “bugging in” makes sense.

2 cars on our road and we think it is a traffic jam. Also know a route to Canada with nonexistent traffic!

Just finished an interesting novel about over-population

Patriarch Run

Don’t expect a happy ending.

My son recently convinced me to shelter in place during a SHTF scenario. I had grandiose dreams of filling the 4×4 with supplies, and bugging out. My son brought up gridlock, abandoned cars blocking roads. I was at a loss.

We live in the suburbs of the second or third largest city in Texas. The area around us is okay, but no open land for 40 or 50 miles. Gridlock is a daily way of life for most around here (not me). I refuse to work any further than 10 miles from home, so getting home is a pretty sure thing if SHTF. As some have stated…(and my son’s words) “Where are you going to go?” It was like cold water in the face! I have no land, no friends with land and all the people I know of that are prepper minded are here.

So I am formulating a new plan for survival. Unfortunately the plan is not as utopian as my other plan, but as in nature the strong and adaptable live to see another day.

Luckily, my son is an E.M.T., the communication guru (HAM, CB) and a fine shot. Oh, and he is the cool headed one also. LOL.

Thank you for another good article Ken. I can hardly digest all of the knowledge I glean from this site! Happy thanksgiving to all!

Hi Tex N. I think what you said about the harsh reality of “where are you going to go?” is a hard one. I think that was what NRP was gently telling me in an above post. I guess I need a much strong plan.

@ lovelypoet

Howdy!
Yes, the ‘where are you going to go?’ statement from my son is/was a real eye and mind opener! I a very new at this prepping lifestyle, and many points made by the kind people on this site have made me realize that there is more to prepping than having a few extra items in my pantry.
Today’s topic on gridlock on the roads is just one of many that jerk me out of my one dimensional thinking, and into the “bigger picture” camp.
So don’t be discouraged by the realization of the need for a new plan. I was at first, but now I have a couple of plans and many sub- plans of the original plan. One must stay fluid, because nothing goes according to plan. LOL.
Endeavor to preserver! Or is Preserver to endeavor? Meh, you get the point.
Have a great turkey day lovelypoet!

May help to use a traffic app to see what’s going on ahead of you in order to make plans for a detour if necessary. Keep emergency blanket in vehicle during cold weather.

After 29 years of Dallas traffic, Springfield MO is like a walk in the park. After about a year here I asked a guy “why do they bother with traffic reports, a broken radiator hose at Sunshine & Campbell isn’t a traffic report, I’m used to body counts?”

We live about 25 miles from Springfield, but there are many back routes if the main one gets clogged. Plus, every vehicle we have is 4wd.

I do not miss gridlock. We only have 2 lanes each direction on our nearest interstate. When there is an accident – the state closes the road in both or one direction depending on the severity. Gridlock on 2 lanes for 8 hours isn’t fun. I don’t think any of those people are prepared for an 8 hour sit if there is an accident. Even if they manage to clear one lane to let traffic pass – its still a slow merge. Maybe someday this area will get 3 lanes! whew! we’d be big time then baby! LoL!

Commuting 120 miles round trip daily for close to 19 years, 80% freeway, I have been jammed up quite a few tims. Summer tourist season is the nightmare, folks come up north but bring offensive driving with them. Tailgaters equal multi-car chain reactions, pass an 18 wheeler at 80 mph then cut in front with 1/2 a car to spare (some get pulverized). Have seen vans upside down skidding on its top to avoid rear ending some one, deer sticking out of windshields, trailers unhitching, lane changes without looking (sparks, the ka-boom), burning vehicles, snow spinners. Sit for an hour or two inall kinds of weather, as others have said minimum 1/2 tank of fuel, food, water, GHB, tote of cloths, insulated the email blanket, cell charger, head knocker, some other stuff. Phone addicts are entertaining to watch weaving along. MPAs for alternate routes, always check the weather and road reports. 16-18 more months, then no more. So far, knock on wood, no crashes, did the shoulder and median dive a few time, smoked the tires standing on the brakes. NASCAR is tame compared to John and Jane Q. Public’s driving skills, live rural, 1/2 home the bee hive dwellers have exited, hand cramps from the steering wheel start to fade, stress level drops, feeling human again, stay safe, enjoy Thanksgiving!

Maps, not MPA. Tote of clothes, tote of cloths is just off.

I did the last minute shopping early today and it wasn’t to bad traffic or store wise. Then it ‘hit’- jammed up horribly and ended up with sitting through an entire traffic light as some dumb *** couldn’t tear herself away from her iphone despite horns honking at her. Then she blasted through as the light went to red and almost caused another mess. Can’t imagine trying to get out in an emergency.

Chances of ‘bugging-out’ successfully in a SHTF situation is about the same as winning the Lottery.
Very poor odds !
To be stuck on ‘The Road’ is a Very Bad situation to be in.

If you do not have enough advance notice, or if you do not make your move at the right time– you ain’t gonna get there.
It is just that simple.
When you are stuck in a massive evacuation/traffic jam– you are mostly screwed!
Hell, the highway will be backed up for miles, due to rubberneckers, because someone is off the road with a flat.

If it looks like you might get caught in traffic (such as in the pictures)get in the driving lane where you can at least get off onto the shoulder if need be and don’t let yourself get boxed in while in that bumper to bumper stuff.

Why Live there in the first place? Don’t give me that nonsense you have to live there , when SHTF happens your screwed ,living and working some place that doesn’t have the risks is doable. So you don’t make the same money ,what’s money and a job worth if you are putting yourself at senseless risk ? Have a BIL in town (portland or)on a treadmill to nowhere ,tells me they will come out to the ranch if things get bad? First question I ask is HOW,your fat and out of shape,and if you somehow do ,what are you good for ????? Bottom line is you can make the move ,you might have to give up somethings that you really don’t need anyway, GET OUT WHILE THE GETTING IS GOOD , first step is get rid of your TV!!!!!! Bug out now ,do more with less but get OUT NOW , you will feel better and sleep better,then you can use your energy to build and have something that’s real and lasting, I did it you can too

The way that you wander is the way that you choose,,,,the day that you wait is the day that you lose

Yes you can do it!!!!!!

Before we became grounded(home bound). Dh & I would use alternate routes to avoid going into major cities when we traveled. Personally I hate being stuck in stop & go traffic, which causes the broom Hilda to come out. It only took one trip when dh took me into LA many many years ago to meet his grand mother. Cured this woman from ever wanting to go over that mountain top in to LA ever again.

About 7 years ago driving up to visit dh’s grown children in Portland we ran into stopped traffic, not even a snails pace. Basketball finals were on and the free way was packed..dead stop. It took 45 minutes to drive 5 miles, I was never so happy to see a freeway exit in my entire life. We took it and did a work around to get to where his kids were. When were finally off the freeway I was ready to kiss the mini mart building…it had a bathroom. :-)

First thing I thought of was what if you had to pee?
Y’all educated me on that. But gridlock is no way to live. Trying to get my 84 year old Dad out of San Diego…it’s stressful now, imagine SHTF. We live in small town in Oregon. Unless volcanoes go off, we’re staying here.

Audio books can help ease stress by taking your mind off of the traffic, and pass time.

To Lovelypoet:

Please consider arming yourselves if you are worried about human predators or humans behaving badly in times of anarchy. Considering you all live close to Canada with possibility of that being your bug-out location potential, I would get or consider the lowly shotgun. I am a big fan of inexpensive pump shotguns that are un-modified. (no pistol grips or side saddle shell holders etc.) I have the original factory lumber as the stocks. They are used primarily for sporting purposes (bird hunting or shooting clay targets) A shotgun is generally cheaper than a handgun and much more versatile in terms of defending the home and/or putting food on the table. Minimal expertise is needed. With proper paperwork, shotguns are allowed into Canada. (same cannot be said of handguns in Canada.)

Other than that, take stock of the existing knives in the kitchen and bats or improvised clubs within reach within your home. Lastly, Talk with your Significant Other about having a firearm within the home. It is a very personal decision that should be shared with all residents.

If you decide to go with the purchase of a shotgun, ask me later about types of ammunition to purchase for your tool of choice. I worked a bit with aka earlier this year about her choice in scattergun here on the Left Coast.

Happy Thanksgiving to all on this site!

Love all of the ideas & suggestions.
On a lighter note…having a small container of bubbles in the car helps when you’re stuck in traffic. It’s fun to watch the faces of the other drivers when they notice the bubbles floating past them. (Although I’m not sure there are enough bubbles in the world to help what was picured above.)

There are some cheap travel urinals that have absorbents to gel urine so it doesn’t splash or leak. They are designed for male and female anatomies. Now your vehicle is a portable toilet!!!

Aww jeez, not this again.

That sure looks like 405 through West LA, probably on the incline to Sepulveda pass. Truth be told, it looks like that almost EVERY night. Same with 91 through Santa Ana canyon or I-5 north through Newhall pass. I only head out that way to do work at Fox, Paramount or Sony. I plan the work very carefully. On the road by 4am and out of Dodge no later than 13.00.

LA county is a pretty big place. I live and work on the east side. After work last night the typical 3 mile stack of Semi’s headed for the on-ramp was non-existent. I was on I-10 after only one light cycle. 80+ MPH the whole way home. Westbound transition from the off-ramp to home was likewise only one light cycle.

The west side is almost entirely liberal and with an extreme leftist mindset. They are totally into the collective existence. So spending four or five hours gridlocked in their leased Beemer is acceptable. Any THINKING person with >4 brain cells can and will avoid that scene with little effort.

Happy Thanksgiving all!

Spent some time in Ca,. many years ago (US Navy).
Could not wait to get out.
IMO, people put up with that because they want to, for the money, weather, whatever.
They can have it!!

Normal gridlock has a foreseeable end when the road clears. SHTF gridlock will be in effect permanent. You will have to abandon your vehicle to make any progress. Sailors address the issue of abandonning ship by using liferafts. Swimming is a last option. What is a liferaft for a car, something you can use which is better than walking? A folding bike can get you home at a speed of 10mph instead of 2-3mph, and can support the load of your get home bag, even if you have to push it along a rough trail for a while.

The folding bike is a great idea as long as you have it in the trunk and meant to get home or short distances at a time. Gridlock scares me because it ruins all my other preparedness. I hope to be first on the draw if it means bugging out and leaving the state. But all goes bad if we get caught with our best bug-out vehicle stranded on a gridlocked highway. I have a Jeep and a boat but it’s no good without enough space to get through.
So the wife and I talked today about getting a couple of small cheap dirt bikes to play with. If we were to be faced with gridlock roads we needed to transverse, dirt bikes are the only land vehicle that could zig-zag in and out of the available spaces. We can’t keep them in our trunks but we could add them to our capabilities and have fun with them on the weekends.

I have a hydabike from the 1970’s. It folds in half, really cool! BUT it must weigh 40-50 lbs! I can’t even lift it.

I also have a dirt cheap walmart special I picked up at a garage sale for $8 (then was swindled into spending $120 to fix it up by a jerk of a bike shop owner)…let me tell ya, it weighs A TON.

My fave road bike ever weighed 21 lbs…this is back in ’89. Could lift it with my pinkie.

Be sure to heft it…makes a huge difference in how hard you have to work to push it!

that said, I’ve thought of a razor scooter…better than nuthin’…
dude

EDBDeyes: When I was working and going to college in San Jose, CA I rode my mountain bike around quite a bit. It was outfitted with panniers and racks for front and back. In a dry land with few days of wet weather, it is a fun and healthy way to travel. I used it for grocery shopping too.

if you try and leave when everyone else is leaving too you probably wont make it, the roads will turn into a giant parking lot with nobody going anywhere.