SHTF Survival: 10 Disturbing Threats That You’re Probably Not Ready For

SHTF Situation

When planning for a SHTF Survival situation, there is really only one thing that you can be absolutely sure of: Survival is going to be a much bigger and tougher challenge than you ever thought possible. While there are some things you can do to prepare yourself for the chaos ahead, the reality of the situation is that when things go bad, there are going to be things happening that none of us prepared for or could have ever imagined.

What is SHTF?

SHTF has multiple survival meanings, but the acronym itself means Shit Hits The Fan. The meaning is pretty straight forward, but basically, it’s just a prepper/survivalist’s way of saying that during a long term survival crisis or collapse of society things are going to get bad, real bad! How bad none of us really know, and what dangers we will face is only speculation at this point, but one thing we do know for sure is that most people have no real clue to the dangers they will face during a collapse scenario.

Prepping for SHTF Scenarios

It’s not hard to imagine things going bad during a long-term disaster or collapse situation; all you have to do is look at how quickly things turn south during normal yearly disasters to get a sense of how bad things could get. Even during somewhat predictable events like summer storms, flooding and hurricanes we see a large section of the population turn desperate. From people who failed to prepare totally losing their shit in the grocery store when they find the shelve empty to the assholes who take advantage of every disaster to hit the streets looting and attacking innocent civilians, you can find plenty of examples that should at least get you thinking of what you need to be prepared to face.

10 Realistic SHTF survival situations that most people Don’t Prepare or Plan for!

While many of the threats you will face can be easily predicted by looking at recent events, we wanted to look at some very likely SHTF scenarios that very few think about, and almost nobody prepares for. These are threats they may present themselves during short-term disasters, but in all likelihood, these threats will be the ones that start to pop up during those extreme long-term situations where people lose hope and become desperate.

SHTF Law Enforcement Issues

Fake Police Officers

1. No Law Enforcement

During an extreme SHTF scenario, it is very likely that law enforcement and emergency responders will be pretty hard to find; in fact, I would go even further and say that they will become nonexistent. Even during small-scale disasters, law enforcement officers often leave to take care of their own families first. When things go bad (empty grocery stores, no utilities, mass riots, violence, etc.) you are more than likely going to have to defend and take care of yourself.

2. Fake Law Enforcement

In a SHTF Scenario, you need to be on the lookout for everything including people impersonating law enforcement and military personnel. During a catastrophic event, you will most likely see criminals preying on the innocent by pretending to be either police, firefighters, emergency personnel, or military officers. In fact, almost every time a natural disaster hits we see criminals posing as some type of first responder in order to gain easy access to areas where they can then take advantage of the situation and loot homes and businesses.

You have to be able to quickly determine who are the real law enforcement officers or be prepared to stay away from people at all costs.

3. Law Enforcement and the Military Will Try to Take Your Guns.

Think it can’t happen? It already has!

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans Police Superintendent Eddie Compass ordered all local law enforcement, including the U.S. Marshalls office and the National Guard, to seize all civilian firearms.

Without warrants, armed National Guard troops and New Orleans law enforcement officials forcibly confiscated over 1,000 legal firearms from law-abiding citizens. The New Orleans gun confiscation should serve as a warning to how the government and law enforcement officials will react during a large-scale national disaster.  

It’s very high on the probability list that they will come for your guns!

SHTF Personal Safety Issues

Safety Threats from Looters

4. Gangs & Raiders

When things go bad, there will likely be more people who mean to do you harm than there will be people who are prepared. This is something that you must accept and learn to deal with. The fact is, most people have no idea what it really takes to survive, and once their safety net is removed, they will become increasingly desperate and unpredictable. Even your once jolly neighbor will become a threat when he is faced with surviving without knowledge or supplies.

Let’s face it, even during the good times there’s a certain segment of our population that’s just downright insane. From the idiots who go nuts and riot after their team loses a game to the violent criminals and gangs who are already terrorizing big cities throughout America, there’s little doubt that a total collapse will make urban living almost impossible.

5. You need to be able to Defend Yourself.

During an extreme emergency situation, the lunatics of the world are going to be roaming the streets looking for easy victims to target.  If you’re serious about survival, you need to train yourself in multiple self-defense styles and techniques. This means arming yourself with not only weapons but also with the knowledge of how to defend yourself without them.

These are things you should be doing now to ensure you can protect yourself during a SHTF situation:

SHTF Sanitation Issues

Garbage in the streets

6. Garbage will become a Killer.

This is another survival topic that’s not often thought about or discussed, but it’s one that will probably become one of the biggest problems you will face during any long-term disaster situation. If the gangs and criminals don’t get you, the real danger might actually come from something that you already have in your home: GARBAGE!  

You need to have a serious plan on how to deal with it and how to make sure your general sanitation doesn’t become a threat. Check out our article on how to deal with Garbage during a SHTF disaster.

7. You have to Stock up on Sanitation Items

When planning to survive a long-term disaster or collapse, one thing that’s often overlooked is the danger associated with a lack of adequate sanitation. It’s certainly not a pleasant thing to think about, but this one issue has the potential to kill more people than any other survival issue we can talk about.

Even today, because of liberal policies that are destroying big cities throughout our country, we are starting to see Medieval diseases reemerge because of unsanitary living conditions in homeless and immigrant populations in these urban hell holes. In fact, in California multiple disease outbreaks are running through these populations including Typhus.

Mental & Physical Health Issues

Mental Health during Survival Situations

8. Maintaining a Positive Mental Attitude during a Survival Situation

The ability to maintain a positive mental attitude during a survival situation is something that needs to be taken seriously. It’s also something that you need to start working on now, before disaster strikes.

Making it through a survival scenario often comes down to how well you can control your emotions. Keeping a positive frame of mind in the face of an unthinkable threat will help you process what’s happening and will help you respond to the situation without giving into fear.

9. You must be prepared to face a number of physical and mental challenges.

From dealing with a lack of sleep and inadequate hydration to coping with hunger pains and other stressors, survival can take a huge toll on your body. One of the best things you can do to ensure your survival, in just about any situation, is to make sure your body and your mind are trained to survive. This means motivating yourself to get off your butt and get in shape before it’s too late.

SHTF Communication Issues

10. You will be cut off from the outside World.

In a survival situation, knowledge is going to be a critical factor in determining the ultimate outcome of your situation. The ability to be able to predict what will happen during a survival situation is an important part of being prepared and often comes down to your ability to send and receive information.

When the power lines go down, and the radio stations stop transmitting, there’s one line of communication that will still be alive and well.  

Having a good Multiband Ham Radio will allow you to send and receive critical emergency information during a disaster. It’s also a great way to find alternative news sources from around the world.

Shirts of Liberty

OFFGRID Survival book



  1. There’s one more thing I would add that you should be concerned of,and that’s animals. Animals, just like garbage, can spread diseases if your not carful always be on the look out (if you have these) for cows or dogs, even birds, that are acting funny. It could be rabies and some other sickness that you probably wont have a shot for.

  2. I don’t know if anyone has mentioned it but pool shock with 65-70% active calcium hypochlorite will treat water for parasites, just don’t get the stuff with additional algicide. Also get a manual grain mill to grind your beans to a flour so you still get your protein without having to cook them for a few hours, especially if wood is hard to come by. Also make yourself a rocket stove to make the most of your wood. A bar of soap finely ground mixed with ten cups HOT water will stretch your soap if you don’t make your own. Candles aren’t hard to make, the wax can be reused. Dollar tree has boxes of wood matches for a dollar or you can get lighter fluid at some hardware stores. One zippo and a 12oz bottle lighter fluid equals 78 bic lighters. Stay safe everyone

  3. Adam, it truly was a privilege to read your comment. Thank you for your service, a real hero protecting the people. Hats off to you sir, and all the brave men&women standing up for We The People.

  4. Actually fleas from animals like rats, cats, and opossums spread typhus, not people, so the outbreak in Los Angeles should not be blamed on “liberals” helping immigrants. Improvements in homeless care and garbage removal would have a great effect on the current outbreak, which is easily treatable with antibiotics.

  5. The one thing I will look forward to is the disruption of social media(FACEBOOK and TWITTER) I believe that they are a major distraction of positive communication

  6. I’ve been preparing for years. I keep quiet about it because I don’t want people knocking at my door if the SHTF. I’m friends with Sheriff and although we haven’t talked anoit it I’m sure he’s preparing as well. I have guns in my safe. And elsewhere. Need to scatter my ammo about though. I moved from the city to outside the suburbs. I got my ham radio license (technician). Left to do is getting a hand pump for my water well. Just need to figure out how deep my well is. My worry are the horsed. These are subject of thievery for hungry people or transport. What I can’t find anywhere is how to get alerted to intrusion without electricity. There’s nothing on how to protect the farm. And if the commies take over, all bets Are off. Sorry but i do not put my name into anyone’s database. Knowing what i know of IT I won’t do it

  7. are soldiers and cops all pants pissing cowards seems like many are my dad fought in nam and when he was in the wrong he was a man about it and said he was wrong and held his head low as he apolagized to thoes he wronged didnt call thoes he wronged names or lie about them to make his evil seem less he stood true a true man will hold his head low and try to learn for his mistakes and become better for it but this aditude of yeh there were 9 of us pigs that beat down a 90 lb woman cus she insultid my brother in arms thin blue line us vs them if you take an otth to defend you stand by it or you are cowardly scum thin blue line = trator its not blue its red white and blue all of us or its us vs you and may god strike you down and have no mercy on your filty soul and to the true heroes and i do still believe in them one bad apple does ruin the bunch stand to keep your own pure before you strike down thoes better than your brothers

  8. and yeah my gramer ist great if you can read a text you can read this or skip it truth is still there anyone but trump 2020

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