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7 Dangerous Places to Avoid When Disaster Strikes

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7 Dangerous Places to Avoid When Disaster StrikesMajor disasters have a way of bringing out the worst in people, turning once safe locations into very dangerous places. Combine this will all of the non-human related risks that certain areas pose in a post-disaster scenario and you certainly have plenty of reason to be careful about where you go.

If and when a major disaster strikes, there are a number of places that you’ll to stay far away from in order to ensure your safety. As you plan your bug out route and survival plan, try to keep a good distance from any of these seven places.

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1. Hospitals

Every hospital in the area is going to be overrun after a large disaster, meaning that your chances of receiving care when you visit one are minimal at best. Even if there is a small chance that you’ll be able to get medical attention, it’s probably best to avoid going to the hospital (depending on the severity of your injury, of course). After a disaster, hospitals are going to become epicenters of chaos and confusion, and full of hurt, desperate people.

What makes hospitals even more dangerous is the risk of contamination. The last thing you want to do at a time when a minimal medical treatment is available is expose yourself to infection, and hospitals are, by nature, full of infected people. Unless your life depends on it, you’ll be better off treating yourself and avoiding hospitals after a disaster.

2. Airports

Like hospitals, airports will become places full of hysteria and chaos as countless people try desperately to escape the area. It’s unlikely that any planes will be flying out after a disaster anyway, so avoiding the airport is your best bet.

If a desperate person realizes they aren’t going to be able to fly away from the disaster, robbing you might become their second best option. The same thing applies to train stations, subways, or any other mode of public transportation.

Crowd at Grocery Store Entrance

3. Supermarkets

The vast majority of people are unprepared for major disasters and do not have food and supplies stockpiled. This means the supermarket is going to be the first place that many people run to. Of course, the store won’t have nearly enough product on hand to meet the demand after a disaster, and many people may be willing to kill over what supplies they do have.

Hopefully, you’ll have enough food stockpiled that you’ll have no need to rush to the supermarket after a disaster. If you don’t, though, trying to gather supplies after a disaster has already struck is a major gamble.

4. Bridges and Tunnels

Many disasters such as earthquakes, nuclear explosions, and more can damage the integrity of the infrastructure in the area, making places like bridges and tunnels a dangerous place to be.

There’s no way to know for sure whether or not these structures have been damaged and are on the brink of collapse. When planning your bug out route, it’s best to avoid these structures as much as possible.

5. Prisons

There’s no reason why you would want to go near a prison after a disaster, but there are plenty of good reasons to stay away from them. If the disaster is serious enough, security in the prison may break down, allowing inmates to escape. With no mode of transportation, these inmates will likely wander around the vicinity of the prison.

Major disasters can make even decent people do terrible things, so you can imagine what society’s worst would be willing to do with newly acquired freedom and a world with no rules. To avoid falling victim to an escaped inmate, you’ll want to plan routes that don’t take you anywhere near a prison.

Lying On The Ground In The Wilderness

6. The Wilderness

Many people have this romanticized idea that when disaster strikes, they will simply head into the wilderness and live off of the land until things return to normalcy. However, bugging out into the woods with no other plan should be a last resort.

The reality is that surviving in the wilderness is much more difficult than it seems. Every single day is a battle to survive, and there are so many things that can kill you. You’ll have only a few days to find a source of water before you die of dehydration, and maybe less time than that to find shelter before you die of exposure. It may take a few weeks before you die of starvation, but finding food in the wilderness is often even more difficult than finding shelter and water.

Factor in all of the other dangers such as injuring yourself and being unable to move, wandering across dangerous wildlife, eating the wrong berry, and much more, and the wilderness becomes a very hostile place. Even trained survivalists have a hard time making it more than a week or two in the wilderness without ample supplies.

Heading for the wilderness is still an option if things simply get so bad that you don’t feel as if you can survive anywhere else. However, it certainly shouldn’t be your first choice, and you should always have a plan for where you are going to go next rather than planning on the wilderness being your final destination.

7. Locations of Riots

Any place that a riot has broken out is a place that you do not want to be. The mob mentality that takes over when a riot starts is extraordinarily dangerous as it takes away people’s fear of consequences as well as much of their individual responsibility. What starts as a mostly peaceful protest can turn violent in little time at all when people are angry.

To avoid getting caught in a riot, you may want to steer clear of places where riots may break out such as near government buildings. If you do see a riot starting to form in your area, act as normal and inconspicuous as possible and maneuver away from the crowd.

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9 Comments

  1. julius on July 16, 2020 at 8:54 pm

    if you live in house build a safe room in it some where that would be able to keep other people out that they would not be able to get into and it big,so that all of your family can live in it and have all of your food, water, and of the other supplies in it. build so the doors can not be broken build two doors one that is the main door and the second door where it can not be sence so that you if had too get out know one would see you leaving the room would have to be build every strong,

  2. Steve on August 29, 2019 at 9:49 pm

    I’m guessing if people don’t shelter at their home, there won’t be a home left, or it will be occupied by others when they do have to return home. There would likely be worse problems if that should happen.

    • Ron on July 14, 2020 at 12:51 pm

      Leaving everything behind to survive sounds reasonably.

  3. Greg on August 29, 2019 at 1:24 pm

    Make sure you have a gun battery operated radio etc

  4. Chuck on August 29, 2019 at 1:02 pm

    Bugging Out v. Bugging In will get more opinions than anyone really wants. You have to look at your personal situation and your preparation planning will depend upon you and your families limitations, before deciding the course of action. To see you not only survive but to thrive under the circumstances. The reality is that not everyone can Rambo up and for some it may be the worst thing to do.
    Looking at my personal situation, I was an avid outdoorsmen as a young man, with a better than average knowledge of how to survive in the woods or on the prairie. That all changed within a short period of time. Heart problems and Degenerative Joint Disease have taken their toll, since being diagnosed 10 years ago, and forcing retirement on Social Security Disability 6 years ago.
    Because of the need for certain medications, trooping off into the toolies is only feasible under certain drastic conditions. The mobility issues make a long trek on foot unlikely to occur without other problems arising. Sure, I might be able to pace myself and limit the walk to a few miles per day, but a fat lot of good it will do if I’m unable to function for 2 or 3 days afterwards.
    Those two factors alone make Bugging In the more feasible option. So I set our supplies up with that view in mind. Luckily, we live in a town of only about 130K in size. For a period of time, at least, we’re not in danger of the societal collapse that bigger cities will probably endure. Water, is nearbye (less than a mile away from our house). Fuel, in the form of wood for cooking is nearby as well. While the house isn’t a fortress yet (I’m working on that), it would be fairly easy to deter any but the most desperate of attackers.
    The best advice is to look at your situation, assess the pros and cons of every option you might have to take, and plan accordingly. I also firmly believe and recommend that the prepping planning, stockpiling and so on, is a conversation that needs to remain within your circle. Desperate times create desperate people. The fewer who know what you’re creating, the safer you’ll be if and when the SHTF. Operational Security should be a part of every decision and course of action you take.

  5. Lori Widener on July 28, 2019 at 7:56 am

    I live near a national guard armory. Needless to say, I won’t be bugging out at home. Friends and I have an emergency plan. How do you handle it when you know someone won’t pull their weight even though they are able to?

  6. Darma on January 23, 2019 at 9:15 pm

    Where we should go then?

    • Phil Harrington on January 29, 2019 at 1:02 pm

      Shelter at home. Everyone’s situation is different so you must make plans ahead of time. It will be easier (?) if it is a single family home and you have multiple members of the same family. That way, some are finding ways to take care of everyday things like cooking etc. and others are guarding at doors and windows to keep others out. You must be ready to kill to protect what you have because there WILL be those who think you are obligated to share food, water & other things just because you have them and others don’t. You prepared, others have been laying on the couch and are letting others invest their money, time and labor to TRY and make sure your family has the things it needs to survive. Regards, an old prepper.

      • Mic on August 29, 2019 at 11:06 am

        The Idea of bugging in, in an Urban environment is suicide, if it is a long term disaster( SHTF). So it depends upon where your “home” is.
        If you live in one of the above areas,(except #6) or near by them, you are not going to be safe.
        If you live in any sized city or near one, you will not be safe.
        The problem is that most people live in denial. Cities have tons of crime and gangs, but it is under reported in the news and suppressed by the politicians. So people think it is relatively safe and will continue to be that way after a disaster.

        Evidence from Katrina and other major disasters, shows this to be false.
        After Katrina hit, there were reports of rape, vandalism, violent assaults, crack dealing/drug abuse, and gang activity inside the Super dome.
        After a National Guardsman was attacked and shot in the dark by an assailant, the National Guard inside the Super dome used barbed wire barricades to separate themselves from the other people in the dome.
        The lesson is, not to expect any help from the government in a disaster. Gangs and criminals
        will rule the landscape and do as they please. With no one to stop them

        Location # 6 is the ONLY safe location during a SHTF scenario. Assuming you are properly prepared for it. It is a good place in a many other disaster scenarios also.

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