Get Out of Dodge: Strategies for Evacuation

Get Out of Dodge: Strategies for Evacuation

( – While bugging in during a major emergency may be ideal for people who live in rural areas, that’s not the case for many people living in urban areas. The closer people live to the central parts of the city, the more difficult it will be for them to bug out. That doesn’t mean it’s impossible to hit the road, just that extra preparations will be needed.

Before Getting Started

While having a detailed plan can increase your odds of survival, don’t create something overly-elaborate where you’d have to spend precious minutes decoding every next step. In order to make a good evacuation plan, you first need to assess your current situation. Not everyone lives the exact same life, so there are some variables to cover.

  • Do you live alone?
  • Do you have kids?
  • Maybe you have pets that you’re responsible for; do you have a plan for them?
  • What kind of environment do you live in?
  • Do you have a certain location in mind?
  • How will you get there?
  • How do you know when to leave?

These are all things to consider and cover in your bug-out plan. After you’ve weighed the pros and cons of bugging out. There are a few more questions you need to ask yourself.

Is There Reason To Leave?

While most preppers agree bugging in and building a defensive strategy is often the best option, that’s not the case for everyone. One of the first things to consider after you’ve assessed your situation is determining whether or not you actually need to leave everything behind and head out. Sometimes, as is the case in a forced evacuation, you may not have a choice but to do so.

When To Go

Leaving too early you might get where you were going only to later find out that there was no reason to leave in the first place. Or, that staying put was a better option. On the other hand, if you wait too long to leave, it may become more difficult to reach your destination.

There are certain circumstances that most people agree means it is time to get out now. Things like natural disasters, war, grid-down events, or a nuclear attack are all good candidates for immediate evacuation. Sometimes, there is no choice to be made as mandatory evacuations are issued. Each of these events has its own reasons for needing to leave ASAP, especially if you are in life-threatening danger.

Getting Out

First of all, you are going to need a plan — where you are going to go, how to get there, and what actions need to be taken so that you can leave in a hurry. Once you have a plan, you and your family should be ready to put it into action instantaneously. The best way to be sure you can act on your plan quickly is to practice it. Dry runs of your evacuation can ensure everyone knows their job and can do it in a timely manner. Just like a fire drill, you should have an evac drill — just in case.

Each and every member of the family, pets included, should have some form of a bug-out bag. Include printed maps with all possible escape routes marked, main roads and highways. You never know when you’ll need to take an alternate course — relying on one route won’t help you if it is compromised. A solid plan will have a variety of destinations, in different directions, with different ways to arrive.

A good evacuation plan will have multiple bug-out locations, ranging from anywhere between 20 and 100 miles from your current area. Every member of the family should have a map and know which destination you are targeting. Establishing keywords is a good way to let everyone know where to go covertly. For instance, you could use “Grandma” or “Big Hill” to designate specific locations. If your group is split up, at least everyone will still be traveling to the same goal.

Having an out-of-town emergency contact is also a great idea. Be sure to have their number printed on a piece of paper and give a copy to each member of the family. If your bug out location is closer to the 100-mile range, you want to make sure your vehicle has a full tank of gas, or at least enough to get you there.

Being 100% Ready

The reality is you can never be 100% prepared, but this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t come up with a solid plan. Simple things help more than you think, even just a manual crank AM/FM radio. Remember that preparing and practicing now will work in your favor should you ever need to leave in a hurry.

Have you ever been forced to evacuate due to an emergency? Would you be ready to do so if necessary? Reply to your email and let us know, we would love to hear from you!

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