Survival: So Simple it's Profound

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I was thinking about what I'd do to get home in a particular disaster scenario, like I often do, and suddenly a light came on. I thought I'd present it to other forum members in a fun sort of way to get us thinking. I'll reveal what my revelation was in a few days, but first I would like to know how others think they may solve the same problem and what ideas you all have about Survival: So Simple it's Profound.

Imagine you're driving home through Oregon or Washington on I-5 when the "Big One" hits, a full-margin rupture of the Cascadia Subduction Zone causing a 9.0+ earthquake. Once the shaking stops you realize that it's time to move while you still can to try and reduce the number of miles between yourself and your home where you have resources and shelter. While others sit in awe, you begin to drive even if it means using the shoulder; the traffic situation isn't going to improve, but rather worsen.

You get about 10 miles before vehicles completely block the highway. The only path available is across the meridian to the empty freeway leading back the way you came, but that won't help complete the mission: to get home. The closest major off ramp is 20 miles back and you have no idea what lies in the opposing lanes beyond where you were when the quake occurred. You decide the best option is to explore finding a way to continue forward.

You exit your vehicle and speak with a truck driver who is on his CB radio. He shares that an overpass is completely collapsed and entirely blocking the freeway and it's shoulders around the corner about 3/4 mile ahead; traffic is blocked in both directions. You realize that you may ultimately end up walking home, but the immediate goal here is to get past this obstacle and continue reducing the number of miles you will need to cover on foot. You walk for 15 minutes and confirm what the truck driver told you: an overpass completely blocks the freeway and traffic is stopped in both directions. There are dozens of other drivers like you staring at the scene and wondering what to do next. How will you get around this obstacle since driving around is not an option even in your jacked-up, locker-and-winch-equipped, mil-spec, go-"anywhere", bad-boy, Tapout sticker-sporting pickup truck, much less my Honda CR-V?

While considering possible solutions to this particular problem, please feel free to share any other ideas that you may have about survival that are so simple and outside-the-box, they're profound. Have fun, but please keep it reality-based.
 

Stepside2000

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I had a similar issue when we had snow a few years ago and a major pile up on I5 made it nearly impossible to get home that night. I work about 35 miles from home. Thankfully I knew of a friend who lived nearby and i was able to stay there for the night.

That was my wake up call. I was woefully unprepared for anything other than a flat tire or dead battery. Let alone a disaster if some sort.

Since then, I always make sure I have my "get home bag" that I put together a day or two after that event. I have the bare essentials needed to hike all the way back home rain or shine and if need be, sleep outside overnight. The pack gets checked with food being rotated and adjusted for the seasons every couple months. I tried to keep it light and compact. I think at its heaviest during winter months, it's about 28-30lbs. At my usual hiking pace with the pack, I could make it home in 12-14 hours depending on conditions. Not ideal for sure, but doable. I have mapped out and familiarized myself with the various routes I would probably take. I have a few friends that live along the routes that I can stop at if need be. I hope I never have to and if I ever do, I hope I can drive at least part of the way.

If the the "big one" did hit, I'm sure I'd have to add a few more hours to the trip due to having to find safe ways to get by potential damaged bridges etc.

Plus my family is aware of how I would try to get home and knows what channels I would use on CB and FRS radio when I get within range if cell service is down.

The whole idea of it when I put it together sounded crazy to my wife, but once I explained and showed how prepared and thought out everything was, she understood. After all, it's all about getting back to my family in an emergency.
 
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Imagine you're driving home through Oregon or Washington on I-5 when the "Big One" hits, a full-margin rupture of the Cascadia Subduction Zone causing a 9.0+ earthquake. Once the shaking stops you realize that it's time to move while you still can to try and reduce the number of miles between yourself and your home where you have resources and shelter. While others sit in awe, you begin to drive even if it means using the shoulder; the traffic situation isn't going to improve, but rather worsen.

You get about 10 miles before vehicles completely block the highway. The only path available is across the meridian to the empty freeway leading back the way you came, but that won't help complete the mission: to get home. The closest major off ramp is 20 miles back and you have no idea what lies in the opposing lanes beyond where you were when the quake occurred. You decide the best option is to explore finding a way to continue forward.

You exit your vehicle and speak with a truck driver who is on his CB radio. He shares that an overpass is completely collapsed and entirely blocking the freeway and it's shoulders around the corner about 3/4 mile ahead; traffic is blocked in both directions. You realize that you may ultimately end up walking home, but the immediate goal here is to get past this obstacle and continue reducing the number of miles you will need to cover on foot. You walk for 15 minutes and confirm what the truck driver told you: an overpass completely blocks the freeway and traffic is stopped in both directions. There are dozens of other drivers like you staring at the scene and wondering what to do next. How will you get around this obstacle since driving around is not an option even in your jacked-up, locker-and-winch-equipped, mil-spec, go-"anywhere", bad-boy, Tapout sticker-sporting pickup truck, much less my Honda CR-V?

While considering possible solutions to this particular problem, please feel free to share any other ideas that you may have about survival that are so simple and outside-the-box, they're profound. Have fun, but please keep it reality-based.
I would explore secondary routes before abandoning a vehicle. Even if it meant backtracking 20 miles
 

The Heretic

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This time of year, heading off across the median or ground beyond the shoulder of a highway, can mean you get stuck in knee deep mud before you get 50 feet. I've seen this numerous times.

That grassy shoulder/median may look firm, but that is just because no one has been foolish enough lately to try to cross it. They were not made to be driven on, and they are usually not packed soil, much less have decent drainage and a roadbed under them.
 
OK, keep it reality based:



1.
I'm ALWAYS armed.

2.
There's ALWAYS a gaggle of "Richard Craniums" (within arms reach) sitting in those "Honda cars" with the big #10 tin can screwed onto the tail-pipe playing Ricky-Bobbie @ Taledega, or Speed Racer on the Interstates.

3.
Round up and conscript a ready-made work crew from said "Honda cars" to hand-move collapsed overpass debris to clear enough for a lane (@ gun-point if needed).



:D
 
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I keep a Lifestraw and MREs some water, emergency blankets, hatchet , pistola, fire ex, tow straps ,small tarp and dress as if I may have to walk home. Good rain proof jacket, gloves . When I see people go out in bad weather, driving without proper boots and jacket I just shake my head. Better to have it and not need it. The hatchets nice if a zombie protester pokes his head in. :)
And 4x4 w lockers, winch, highlift jack, shackles, snatch block. Dad always instilled that it happens. And on icy roads don't drive faster than you want to crash at. I can usually find my way around things and why I like motorcycles. I don't get stuck n traffic on my bike. And people cry when I go by.

1000139.jpg
 
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My kid has lived and worked in LA county for most his life.
First thing you do down there is know all your alternative routes.l cause there may be a jam right around the corner.
When I commuted in puget sound I knew all my routes. I knew what edits would get me some place and others that would put in a worse position.
But with a quake,all bets are off. You can't know what bridge or building g has come down. How many emergency vehicles are plugging the roads that are passable.
I'll be interested to read your brain storm
 

The Heretic

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If you got rid of all that salty meat you wouldn't need so much water:rolleyes:
Munchies. :D There are other munchies forward. Munchies are for eating on the go.

Seriously, the meat can serve as better meat than what is in the FD food that is in the containers above.

And one can never have too much water.
 
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my guess is the OP's epiphany is a foldable bike stored in the trunk. Although i will argue that the idea is not so simple its profound.

A bike would get you home in a total gridlock shutdown you can easily ride between cars and way more efficient travel than walking. But in a quake all bets are off on the road surface condition and most people pay no attention at all to the many small bridges they cross every day driving around. Those small streams are actually dangerous to cross most places and many of them are easily overhead water much of the year.
 

Joe13

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Black garbage bags and rope.

Make a flotation device and pack your gear (including what your wearing) in a bag to keep it dry.

Cross water and pack it all back up.

A bicycle will just get stolen from someone with less morals then you so I don't see that as an option.


Other then that, I keep all the basics you would find in almost every get home bag.


If I get a job 40 miles away then I'll plan on being outside for 4 days because I'm not right now in the shape I would need to be in to make it more then 10 miles a day with a 25-40lb pack as well as find firewood and shelter for each night.

Bugging home isn't as simple as changing shoes and walking home unless your seriously in shape and have no major obsticals to overcome...
 

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