This post may contain affiliate links.* Click here to read our affiliate policy.
Are you really prepared to survive anything? Most preppers would have no trouble getting through a simple hurricane and a few days without power. But what about a few weeks without power? Or a few months? What if gangs of looters are going from house to house, taking whatever they want? What if your home has been flattened and you are forced to bug out of the city? Author Richard Duarte asks these questions along with many other tough questions in his book, Surviving Doomsday: A Guide for Surviving an Urban Disaster. He also provides the answers.
Richard’s home was destroyed by hurricane Andrew in 1992. It was a particularly frightening experience for him because the looters arrived before the first responders, and he and his family survived by hiding in a small closet. After it was over, he was determined to never feel so helpless and unprepared again. Thus began years of research on how to survive an urban disaster. Surviving Doomsday began as a collection of notes that he intended to give to his friends and relatives, but it grew into a detailed urban survival guide that eventually became a full-length book.
Surviving Doomsday covers all the essential topics including water, food storage, first aid, home security, self defense, firearms, bug out bags, sanitation, tools, and even physical fitness. Each topic has an entire chapter devoted to it along with step by step instructions, tips on how to handle various situations, and detailed shopping lists so there’s no chance that you’ll forget anything important.
The book starts with an assessment of how fragile the food transportation system really is. He makes the case that the United States government is ill-equipped to deal with a worst case scenario and that most people in America are spoiled and completely unprepared for a major disaster. Situations like what happened in the Louisiana Superdome after Hurricane Katrina and the 1992 Los Angeles Riots are brought up as examples of this.
Each chapter starts the same way: An assessment of how bad things are. For example, the chapter on survival hygiene and sanitation begins with a description of how dependent we are on trash pickups and running water to stop the spread of disease. There were times when I got annoyed and thought to myself, “You don’t have to convince me. I already bought the book!”
But once I finished reading the book, I realized why the author spends so much time reminding the reader how fragile our way of life is. He doesn’t want his book to be one of those survival guides that people skim, put on the shelf and forget about forever. He wants his book to make an emotional impact strong enough to inspire you to start getting prepared right away. And for me, it worked!
At the end of the book he describes a scenario where a city is without power and water for weeks and how different the experience is for the prepared compared to the unprepared. When I finished reading that, I immediately got up and started cross checking my supplies with the shopping lists in his book. There is no way am I going to be caught unprepared in a situation like that.
Surviving Doomsday is a fantastic guide to urban survival, especially if you’re a beginner. It was written with the average family in mind and in a style that is very easy to read. It’s the perfect introduction for people who are new to urban survival, and it’s a great motivator for more experienced preppers. It’s available on Amazon.com in the paperback format or for the Kindle.