What to do when the SHTF and you’re not a Prepper

when the SHTF

In this guide we will try to make a quick reference beginner’s guide for people who aren’t preppers.  We’ve got a wealth of information on here but the reality is if you’re not a prepper and you aren’t ready when the SHTF, you’ll get jammed up in a hurry.  The goal of this article is to inform those too apathetic or lazy to begin prepping to give you a fighting chance in hell.  When you’re faced with a disaster such as; a natural disaster (i.e. hurricane, tornado, flooding), a terrorist attack, or the government coming to enslave you, you’re going to need to take some pretty important steps in a hurry.  Please keep in mind I am writing this article as a guide for someone who hasn’t prepped for any kind of disaster whatsoever.  Basically this is a crash course for non preppers


Evaluate the threat…

The hope is you’re watching the news or your local social networks giving you a tant amount of warning when the SHTF.  With this information you will need to determine if you should hunker down or get the hell out of dodge.  To determine this you will need to ask yourself, is it safe to stay home, or will it be safer to bug out?  You determine this by looking at the disaster you’re facing and evaluating the potential threats you’ll face.  For example, if a hurricane is imminent and you drive a Toyota Corolla you won’t want to get caught in the middle of a storm like that, and you’ll want to hunker down.  If a dirty bomb goes off downtown, you’ll need to boogie and get away from any potential fallout and civil unrest.  Sticking around in a situation like that will get you dead in a hurry.  Moral of the story is you will need to decide whether it’s safe to stay home, or you need to bug out on a case by case basis…


One thing I need to make perfectly clear.  If you have no where to go (like grandma’s house out in the country), and the only place you can bug out to is somewhere out in the woods, but you have no survival skills like being able to fish, hunt, or gather food, you might be putting yourself into a worse situation by leaving your house. Essentially your reason for bugging out better be a damn good reason before putting you and your family in danger.

Must read! Why Aren’t You Prepared? Wake Up & Get Ready!

Getting what you need in a hurry…

If you need to bug out leave your house within five minutes of receiving the news.  If you were to wait any longer you’ll end up getting stuck amidst the chaos.  First as a rule of thumb never have less than half a tank of gas in your car.  You will need to grab a backpack and fill it up with enough food and water to sustain each member of your family for three days.  If any of your family members have a medical condition that requires certain medicine such as penicillin, be sure to pack it up.  Make sure you grab anything that will create fire (matches,lighters), anything you can use to protect yourself (knives, guns), and a first aid kit.  Where are you bugging out to?  You will need to have a location far outside city limits (at least fifteen miles) that is near a natural water source(lake, river, pond), and has plenty of potential food sources (fishing, game, edible vegetation).   Again I have to stress that if you have no survival skills whatsoever you better hope you have somewhere to go…  Wherever you decide to go should not rely on the use of major highways that run through arterial population centers.  your exit route should rely on rural bi-ways, surface streets, and/or off road routes., basically anything that keeps you from large groups of people…


Deciding to shelter in place could be the wiser decision for those with no discerning skills.  In almost all natural disasters water is your greatest commodity.  With this in mind the minute you learn of an impending disaster fill up every container in your home with water, once those containers are full, fill up your bathtubs and sinks.  In almost every disaster civil unrest, and looting and all but assured.  Protect your home and prioritize fortification by boarding up all first floor windows in a hurry.  Break up any furniture made of wood and attach them to your window frame with 4” wood screws.  Barricade all standard entry points like front and back doors as much as you possible can.  Since you didn’t prep any food or water you will only be able to rely upon what you have on hand.  Let’s hope you’re lucky when that time comes.  The harsh reality is there’s no way of knowing how long you will be sheltering in place.  Depending on how long the disaster lasts food, water, and/or medicine will eventually run out and you will need to leave.

Recommended article: Be Prepared, Not Scared! The Three Famous Excuses

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Rules to survive by…

Stay away from people you do not know.  There will be people who are less fortunate than you, and much more desperate than you.  These people may or may not have weapons, but there is no doubt they will be a prominent danger to you and your family.  If you don’t know them or absolutely trust them, stay away at all costs.

Always have a weapon on you.  For the reason stated above you will always need a weapon, and I hope you are practicing your God given second amendment right.  Otherwise you will need to use whatever you can find to protect yourself with. Knives, crossbow, shit..even if you have to grab a rock and tie it to a rope to have some sort of defense you damned well better get that ready.  There are far more people out there willing to hurt you than you can possibly imagine.

You’re not too good to scavenge.  If you’re sheltering in place you are more than likely going to run out of onhand resources.  This means you will have to leave your home and find said resources if you plan on living longer than three days.  When scavenging never go into a building without knowing what you’re walking into.  For example, never go into a building or structure you’re not familiar with.

Keep a level head.  When the shit hits the fan things are going to get worse before they get better.  You will be faced with the feeling of impending doom, lives will be lost, and things are going to get really tense.  Anxiety, tension, depression, and all kinds of perturbing emotions will be racing through your body causing a variety of involuntary bodily reactions that could get you killed.  You’ll need to push all those feelings way down, buttercup.  The only feeling you need when survival is your only priority is your instincts..

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Remember the rule of three. You can survive three minutes without air, three hours in a harsh environment without shelter, three days without water, and three weeks without food.  At all times the rule of three dictates your survival priorities.  If you get close to these limits you had better hope you get a solution together quickly.

In closing..

The idea behind this article was to put myself into the shoes of someone who has no survival skills, and hasn’t prepper any food or water.  A person like this might do a quick search when things go down with only a few minutes to read this article.  With that in mind I outlined the most important things people like this will need to know before the power goes out.  If you are smart enough to search this prior to the SHTF, be sure to read everything in ‘Survival Skills’ and get informed.

This article has been written by Ryan.

Ryan has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Emergency Administration and Management from the University of Kentucky, and has been the primary handler for usCrow.org since it’s founding.



One Reply to “What to do when the SHTF and you’re not a Prepper”

  1. Oh my goodness! a great article dude. Thanks a ton Nevertheless I will be experiencing problem with ur rss . Don’t know why Can not sign up for it. Perhaps there is anyone acquiring identical rss issue? Anybody who knows kindly respond. Thnkx

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