Taking Emergency Preparedness to the Next Level

A big part of the scout program is about learning how to be prepared.  Following our motto, we teach young men to tie knots, apply first aid, treat water, prepare meals, camp in cold conditions, etc, etc.  Exercising BSA’s merit badge process is a great way to gain knowledge and experience but it only really scratches the surface.  Imagine if you had to rely on those scout skills for something way more serious.

What if your city lost power for a long period of time following a major winter storm?

What if your community’s drinking water was contaminated by an unknown source?

How would you handle the aftermath of massive flooding or a devastating earthquake?

Would you be prepared for something like this?

Should you be prepared for something like this?

If you’re interested in taking Emergency Preparedness to the next level, read Cody Lundin’s book When All Hell Breaks Loose.  He does a great job explaining what’s involved at each level of the Pyramid of Needs from attitude and awareness to communication and transportation.Here is a very small sample of emergency prep perspectives I found interesting in this 430 page manual on survival:

“Planning to survive the effect of a catastrophe is very different from planning to survive its cause.  The former is dictated by a mind-set of fear and hysteria; the latter, a mind-set of common sense and practical wisdom.”

“Surviving a life-threatening scenario is 90% psychological on the part of the survivor(s) and 10% methodology and gear.”

“Nothing could be more obnoxiously insulting and arrogant than assuming you will be welcome to take shelter and eat the food of anyone who has bothered to prepare as they saw fit while you spewed negative words and did nothing.”

 “The quickest way to find out what you need to live in any situation is to go without.”

While the focus of this book is for extreme urban situations, the reality of getting lost in the mountains, spending the night in a snow storm or being without electricity for a few days are all very likely scenarios we should be prepared for when practicing our scout skills.  Beyond scouting, we should do our best to be ready for any potential natural or environmental disaster that could change life as we know it today.

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