Survival Threats – People

Preparedness means understanding what threats are out there, and then figuring out how you’ll deal with those threats in a SHTF situation. It also means considering threats that you may have never considered, including the threat posed by people.

During a crisis situation, people will probably be the most significant risk to your overall safety and security.

Crowd of people

While the world might be filled with millions of good and decent people, in a crisis situation these people can and will quickly become unpredictable.

People that should be Avoided During a Crisis

The Good, but ill-informed public ( OR the followers)

regular people

In even small-scale disasters, it’s often the so-called good people who pose the largest threat to your safety. These are usually the people who are prone to listen to every rumor or bad piece of advice they can get their hands on. They often fall into a group think mentality, that if directed in the wrong way can spell disaster for a huge number of people.

In a survival situation knowledge is power; but you must be aware that most of what you hear during a survival situation will likely be far from reality. Don’t fall into a group think situation, where you blindly follow what’s being said because “everyone else is doing it.”

Reality T.V. Morons, Internet Influencers & Media Hounds

These are people who have been warped by years of believing everything the media has told them. They are the ones who will wait until it’s far too late to help themselves out of a bad situation.

They rely so heavily on the media, or the government to tell them how to live, that during a disaster scenario these people will become very dangerous. Once their lifeline is taken away, they will become unpredictable and should be avoided at all costs.

Armchair Survivalists

Average internet prepper

This is another version of the reality T.V. Moron, except this guy thinks he’s prepared for anything. Chances are he has a bugout bag, loads of tactical gear, and has probably watched every episode of Man VS Wild & Doomsday Preppers.

Although he may have the right gear, he probably has no clue how to use it in a real-world situation. He has seen these skills preformed on the screen, but he never took the time to learn how to do them himself. Once the SHTF, he will be no better off than the millions of other people who spent their time watching bad reality television.

Thugs, Wanabees and Mental Defectives

These people thrive off of misfortune and chaos. They will be the first ones hitting the streets looking for vulnerable victims to target.

These people are extremely good at what they do, and will pose one of the largest threats to your health and safety. While you were busy working, spending time with your family, and living life they have been planning, training and getting better at their criminal craft. Most of them have nothing better to do than learn how to be better criminals.

Fake Law Enforcement

In a SHTF situation, 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 officers or military officials. You have to be able to quickly determine who is who, or stay away from these people at all costs.

The Threat of Large Numbers

crowd of people

During times of social unrest, the most dangerous places to be will be large cities, or areas that have high populations. When things go bad, these areas should be avoided at all costs.

Food & Water

Our modern infrastructure has helped big cities thrive far beyond our founders wildest dreams. That same infrastructure will spell disaster for those living in big cities during a total collapse.

During a crisis situation, areas that have high populations will be the hardest hit. These areas rely on a constant flow of goods that must be shipped in on a regular basis. Once the supply lines stop, these areas will not be able to fulfill people’s basic food and water requirements. They will become death-zones.

Garbage will become a Killer in Big Cities

Oftentimes people who talk about urban survival worry about things like crime and roaming gangs; but the real danger might actually come from something that you already have in your home. GARBAGE!

The average American throws away a lot of stuff, so much stuff that if you added up all the waste that’s produced each year in the United States you would be able to fill over 2.3 million 747 jumbo jets. If the country ever collapsed, and basic services like garbage removal stopped, those who live in the big cities will be in for some real hard times.

Sanitation Problems

It’s not  pleasant to think about, but if the water stops running and the sewage systems stop working, things will quickly spiral out of control.

From people “going in the streets,” to buildings that will quickly become unsanitary hell holes; living in a big city will become a threat to your health and safety.

Shirts of Liberty

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  1. It just occurred to me that if the system collapses I’ll be dead anyway, being a hemodialysis patient. Still though, I ought to prepare on some level. Fellow suburbanites and savvy armed immigrants are what I fear most.

    • Bob, I know the feeling. My husband is diabetic, and will die within a month with no insulin. Me personally, I’ll rob every pharmacy to try and stock pile as much as I can. Then I have to figure out how to keep it cold. :/

      • I too am diabetic so I already know my days are numbered if and when an event occurs.
        I am sure he has become stabilized with insulin, but might want to find out if he can migrate to tablet forms such as Glipizide and Metformin.

        Typically, once refrigeration is lost, the water tank for toilets tend to be one of the cooler spots in a home due to the nature they are usually out of the sun and an inside room. Just do not flush.

        • I am a diabetic as well an the doc said that I would die with out the med. he was offering some 8 years ago he gave me 6 months to live they’re full of shit …diabetes is environmental control what you eat an the way you eat and there’s herbs that god put here and you will have no problem …..GOD WILL be done….

          • solar refrigerator….A few clay pot,sand , water,and you can chill off down to ruffly 38* …..check it out the Egyptians weren’t stupid

          • You’re right that the doctors are full of shit. It’s not so much herbs as much as what you eat. Check out the alkaline diet

          • Absolutely church… Keeping diet in check is the most important factor in my opinion… I like to supplement my diet with super foods that you can store for long periods – like Moringa powder or capsules.

            It truly has just about anything your body needs.

            First tree I’ll plant will be Moringa, then a coconut tree :)


      • Get the diabetes under control now so that isn’t a concern later. Green Smoothie Girl has excellent resources for taking charge of your health. She has a short video of a man who reversed his diabetes in 30 days with diet. It can be done! I’ve reversed my own blood sugar problems.

      • Get yourselves some Goal Zero Solar Lights & Power and a 12Volt Fridge used by Overlanders, like an ARB or Engel fridge freezer. They’re ice chest size, fit in a car/SUV… and can run off the 12V port (cigarette lighter plug). I do not work for these companies, but have their products and recommend them only!

      • If you are a Type 2 diabetic. There is hope you could live. Your diet would have to be strictly protein – no carbs! Sugar, flour would kill. Type 1 diabetics will be a lost cause – we have two daughters type 1 and mentally handicapped as well.

        • NO NO NO NO!!!!!! Our diet is actually a high carb high sugar yes high sugar diet w/ low fat low protein. Check out the alkaline diet it’s the true path to health. Don’t believe the bulls**t doctors they don’t learn anything in med-school.

      • Just read your reply and saw a utube video that may be the answer. I watch quite a bit of the “survival” videos. engineer775 has one for diabetics. I didn’t pay that much attention but thought it would be important for poeple that need to keep medicine cold. It’s not hard to do and couldbe used in any blackout situation that lasts awhile. Hope you pass this on to others.

    • Bob,
      Are you going to a center, or doing it at home? Alot of insurance providers will allow home treatments becuase its cheaper. Just make sure you have a genny, a large sterile water supply, and enough supplies to get through a rough spot. Are you a fistula, graft, or catheter? These are important determinig factors. I wish you the best of luck.

    • Anyone with a serious medical condition needs to try and have extra medications on hand if at all possible. If someone has a situation that can be improved by making some lifestyle changes, do it NOW, as this may well prolong your life.
      The touchy topic is what happens if you run out of meds and you are faced with a slow painful death? Friends have needed meds that someone can use to die a peaceful painless death if needed.
      Its not a topic most people want to even think about.

      • I’m new to being a prepper/survivalist. Even though I’m only 43, I have had 9 heartattacks, 3 heart surgeries and open heart surgery with a double bypass. My last cardiologist appt last month, I was told there was nothing else they could do for me. I’ve been researching online and there are sooooooooo many medical conditions that you can aid with the use of essential oils and plants and herbs. I guess I’ll continue to use my synthetic medicine until the SHTF but am stocking up on alot of essential oils. Don’t give up and just assume you’ll die whenever you run out of medicine. You can find a way to aid your medical conditions with the help of nature and what you eat. Stay positive! I am! I’m not giving up now or especially when the SHTF! I’m going to survive damnit! :D

    • Is it possible for you to do, I forget the name but you would know, the portable dialysis that is on your body and drains. I know many people have turned that. If so possibly your outcome could be much longer. ❤️

  2. I think we should be on the lookout for “real” law enforcement as well. This gang of thugs my do more harm than all of the other misguided clowns put together. Good luck and be well. nyquil762

    • Correction

      I think we should be on the lookout for “real” law enforcement as well. This gang of thugs may do more harm than all of the other misguided clowns put together. Good luck and be well. nyquil762

  3. As a person that already lives in the woods, my greatest concern is about the folks in the cities that have been convinced they need to “bug out” and come to the woods. Most, if not all, of these people have no experience that would prepare them for this kind of life and they are armed to the gills. By the time they reach my place they will be desperate. Desperate people that are well armed is a recipe for disaster.

    • I agree 100%. The general consensus on alot of these sites is “Bug out and head to the mountains”. This is about the dumbest thing I have ever heard. I live in the mountains too, for most of my life. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you will die. Either from exposure, injury, and of course wolves are nasty creatures. Do you know that we’ve opened season on wolves??? They are over-running the place! Oh, lets not forget the bears…and that wonderful little cave you found for your family to live in.
      @Enteryourname..unfortunately, those uninvited at my cabin will simply be shot. We cannot afford to risk the safety of our families.
      Message to everyone else: Bug out now, or prepare to stay where you are. period.

      • over this side of the pond i have heard people talk about bugging out into the woods without any kind of preparation. i live out in a farming community, a small town of 1300 people in the South West of England, anyone who thinks they can do a “Rambo” out in the woods, even in our mild climate, will be dead in the first cold winter after TSHTF!

  4. 99.9% of the people i know are survival losers. That’s a fact. Even if they were armed and most aren’t, they have a zero chance of fending off an attack. And instead of doing a damn thing they count on obam dummy or their new fake hope obamney, to save the day. Its not happening. That’s a paper tiger and it ain’t bringing no paper tiger milk for douches to suck on. Harsh, but that’s the way it is.

  5. nyquil62 has the right idea! Law enforcement, the real ones, and associated gov’t agency hacks will be, and are at the present time, far more dangerous than what we might face in a shtf scenario. But then maybe poor, misguided “church” is right, the gov’t will save us, NOT!

    • misguided…OK…I been a survivalist far longer than most of you have been alive in this world going on 38 years now I’ve carried a BOB has you all call it for longer than and father than most of you all put together I’ve acquired a wealth of knowledge an understanding about how thing are an work in this world…well there’s no need to explain my self I don’t have to I know… the govt. official the military the law enforcement agents will disband to go and protect there families think about it….they love they’re kids an family’s as much as the next guy dose….

      • When I discuss prep with my family I often remind the the same thing “the govt. official the military the law enforcement agents will disband to go and protect they’re familys think about it….they love they’re kids an familys as much as the next guy” I really think practicing skills like treks, camping, hunting etc. as well as a large base supply of water ,food and of course weapons with knowing how to use them but keeping a low profile and band together with only people you can trust.

      • Yeah, I sure as heck ain’t sticking around at my base when my wife and daughter are at home in danger. Most of my Battle Buddies are of the same mind. The govt officials can carry out their own agendas, but all the soldiers and sailors and marines are going to do the same thing you will, get to their families ASAP and worry about their own crap…

        Although, you try to f*@& with my family, then yeah, you do have to worry about me and my buddies, and we will be your biggest threat.

  6. All of the concerns expressed above are legit. As I move from the arm chair prepper to a hands on survivalist my concern grows – I realize how much I don’t know – how many details I haven’t considered…

    • There is no way to consider every potential combination of events leading to a disaster, and to become so engulfed with those contemplations would detract from living life.

      The day you stop learning is the day you die. So what you don’t know, you learn and keep learning, and remain aware of conditions and react as best you can, for as long as you can until you stop learning.

  7. Good comments by all, although my thought is that anyone who has not been through a disaster IS an arm-chair prepper.

    That includes me because I have not lived through a disaster bigger than a hurricane, which we came through just fine.

    What I do have is about 80 years of family history. Grandparents who were young adults in 1929 when The Great Depression began and parents who lived through WWII. I listened very closely to what they had to say about those times and what they did. They led by example, so learning from them to be independent in many ways yet work together as families and communities is very worthwhile information that they paid a high price to obtain and that would be foolish for me to waste and not pass on to others.

    Since there is no way that we can know exactly what form the coming disaster(s) will take, all we can do is prep in a general way and for that which we think most likely. Therefore, food, water, meds, guns, ammo, barter goods, hand tools, and anything that is useful / cheap / manufactured but difficult to make by hand will be good to stock… think needles & thread, matches, fish hooks & line, etc. Protection from desperate people, storms, floods, disease, and radiation may very well be needed.

    Best of all, seek a good area in which to live that has a low population density, a good growing season, and that does not require electricity to maintain life.

    Seek out others of like mind, check them out carefully, and try to organize with them. Community will be huge because it is far easier to survive a SHTF situation when you have good people around you with different useful skills.

    • I believe most are armchair preppers that have been preparing for a multitude of conditions unknown to them.

      My parents were teens during the depression of the 30’s; my dad was an officer during WWII and into Vietnam, so I learned a lot from their frugal lifestyle of only paying cash for your possessions (other than the house). As a teen, we survived Hurricane Camille in 69 by evacuating Gulfport, in the 70’s I experienced California shakers, but thankfully none were devastating beyond having to turn off the gas and water and get the building checked before turning back on. In the mid-80’s I became homeless due to a neighbors’ negligence with fire in their apartment (who needs insurance?), which also turned into my becoming unemployed as well. Talk about not being prepared, and an eye opening experience that lasted a few months.

      Having endured from ‘nothing but the clothes on my back’ and to attain the life I currently have, I am thankful to God, because I have found that through all the bad times in my life, HE has ensured I was provided for.

      Sure, some of those times were difficult, but faith had carried me through those. It also made me more aware of how quickly you can go from being in a comfortable position to having nothing in just a few hours, and to be thankful that I had a good head on my shoulders and the knowledge to rebuild what I had lost.

      However, times then were not at a point where there is a potential for a large economic collapse, or social uprising, or some TEOTWAWKI event prohibiting the ability to start fresh… although, if the SHTF does happen, more of us would be required to ‘start fresh’ making it that much harder to do so than if it occurred during times of plenty.

      So yes, being prepared for any number of perceived catastrophes at any level is better than not being prepared at all for anything going wrong. There IS strength in numbers; the more people you have that can work together, the more variety of supplies you collectively have, the longer you will be able to maintain a reasonable level of stability and security, and normalcy.

    • You need seek out people today and not wait for the event. I f you have never lived in a 3rd world country or deployed in some remote place when the shtf it will be the biggest shock being that said people in 3rd world live in primitive lifestyles and survive by experience and low resources everyday you have to forget the western luxuries and start today practicing some old time survival common sense and know how put yourself out in the non-comfort zone and you can adapt to the loss of superstores and conveniences of our modern lifestyle. But you have to live it not just observe and read up on it.

  8. Ex and current military. We have neen told point blank they will group together and take all they need. They have the training and the hardware and i believe they will.

    • I believe that makes sense. In addition to the training, the current military are typically in better physical condition than most civilians.

      In an event, the military will likely be one of, if not the largest ‘hordes’ of people armed with all those extra millions of rounds recently acquired by the various governmental agencies, they would have the federal stockpile of supplies to back them up as well. They would also be the ones ‘in control’ under a martial law scenario, so their positioning would pretty much put them ‘in the right place at the right time’ to be one of the more dominant groups… “Survival of the fittest.”

      I think the “ex-military,” depending on how recent their separation was, and how their actual preparedness or readiness state is maintained, would be more in-line for neighborhood groups with a more appropriate analogy of “Survival of the fit enough.”

      • Don’t count on the military being all that much of a threat . Today they use tech to fight but wshtf the young will freak the old on the other hand are the ones to watch. they were trained differently . the best way for an outside force to get things done here would be to set off some type of e.m.p . Remove the tech and there is a break down. some will head to their families but the single one will band together and they will be the ones to stay clear of depending on their training .larger forces are in some ways easier to deal with than smaller groups or individuals. morals plays a big part in that fight. They have numbers and they think most people are not ready but one that knows can boot their moral out the window. pot shots will get you dead mass confusion at the right time is the way to go.taking out the leaders is a good way to start no one in charge one gives orders and the unit falls apart . Mind games and sleep deprivation are great weapons, make every shot count, shoot and move, most people that prepare for wtshf haven’t considered larger groups . you have a rifle they have granades. If you have a safe base and it’s well hidden just sit tight they will pass you by .You don’t have to look for trouble it will usually find you.

  9. Since 2009 I have slowly been getting friends to be better prepared. Starting with taking a week end and turning off the electricity, and learning to make do with what one has.

    Including learning how to keep perishables cold, and learning to use a saw dust toilet, homemade solar shower where the water is then used to hand wash laundry.

    One thing I tell everyone is do NOT tell people what food you have, what if any ammo etc you have, money, gear etc. Keep your mouth shut!!

    Growing up I knew what my family had as far as home canned, dehydrated food, as well as hunting/fishing gear and other items one needs when living fifty miles from town and pretty much self sufficient. But I never ever talked about it.

    Start using a solar or crank style all band radio, and solar set up for running the computer. This is a good start to off grid living. TV has so little to offer that we ditched ours and encourage others to do the same. Take the money you pay the cable or tv satellite bill and invest in things you can use now and later.

    With all the talk about buying silver and gold I remind folks that food is what one will use for bartering, so have heirloom seeds that can produce food, year after year.

  10. People will definitely be the greatest danger. Bug out now, if you can, and establish yourself before all these people start flooding the woods, mountains, and deserts. They’ll leave their cities once all their garbage starts piling up, if they have any sense. If you set up a small community with weaponry, food, and defended territory, you’ll be safe from all but the most hardy of them. I really hope it never gets to the point that I have to hurt someone to defend my community, but I guess when ‘shtf’ it’s gonna be inevitable. :(

  11. I spoke with a friend in the gov and I found what he had to say of interest on several points The gov contracts hollywood to draw up what if senarios and they write up the possibles that could be done and the Gov applies secuity to those areas. They monitor all sites and what I find funny is that on several sites including this one that people still can’t keep quiet about what they are doing. people talking about buying property that will be safe and then they want to know it they need a building permit . wshtf the rerecords will be checked and you will be found . As A.S. RA stated forget the things you are use to now fancy easy will be gone . it can be done but not easy . Start now and it would be possible to a point. If you go the Bunker rethink the steel one they are ok but the a pain to make them conform to what you really need.if you dig it out then drill a water well then when you inclose it you have a good water source. Solar panels are good for telling people where you are .I knew a man whose house ran on a 12 volt system and he is completly off grid. A tree house is a good idea if concealed very few people ever look up when chasing someone. Heating with wood ? The smoke can be smelled for at least a mile depending.I have always hid in plain sight. Go figure .a man wanted by the police sat on the courthouse steps during the day for three weeks . They never even looked his way once. Imagine that.
    Look like you belong there . Make your footprint small where ever you go.

  12. I have been on and off homeless since I was 14 I have been in the military I am enjoying the prepped movement some times you end up in situations were you get robbed have 1000 in the bank and it is completely worthless you have no I’d and no help so you get in trouble Perrier a home invasion and the invader turns the police on you and if you did call them they would leave and your stuck with the goons or you get shot at just because I have gone through multiple places y and lost everything I own repededly I get gear and replace or I test it and it breaks because it’s cheap I have even experienced men trying to rape other men I have slot of experience with violent people seems like the society wants you to be the victim so it is imperative to learn guerrilla type tactics to adapt to the violence get left with nowhere to fun and you can’t hide

  13. I have a 42+ acre ranch that has woods, secrets,shale reserves, abundance of game, water. Preppers dream for $300,000 . surrounded by 6.5 million hunting lodge on 2 sides, and animals that do not exit naturally!!

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