Urban Prison Camps: Are Urban Cities Survival Deathtraps

Traffic jams in a City during an evacuation.

Many of this country’s most populated cities are deathtraps, in that during an emergency situation residents will likely become trapped without a way out.

If you look at cities like San Francisco, Las Vegas, New York and many other large urban areas, there are actually very few ways out. During a disaster, where these routes are destroyed, clogged by millions of evacuees, or closed down by the government, most people would be forced to stay within the city’s confines ­ – which could be a death sentence for unprepared residents.

Think about it, on a normal day these highways and roadways are routinely congested and bogged down by traffic. Even driving in normal everyday traffic can be an absolute complete nightmare, having to navigate through hordes of complete morons, and siting for hours on end in standstill traffic.

Average Commute times in Major Cities

If you live in one of these major cities, the odds of being able to make in out during a mandatory excavation or large-scale disaster are pretty small.

Why would you want to leave your home?

This is often a question I receive from people who don’t understand preparedness and in some cases even from those who have a pretty good grasp on survival topics – there are those who absolutely refuse to leave during any circumstance.

But if you live in one of these urban areas, there are a countless number of reasons you need to have a good evacuation plan that you can put into place the moment things start to go bad.

Things that might cause you to have to evacuate include:

  • Deadly chemical spills or industrial accidents
  • Civil unrest
  • Pandemics
  • Terrorist attacks
  • Biological or nuclear attacks
  • Lack of resources after a disaster

Knowing when it’s time to leave:

In order to safely bug out, you need to be aware of what’s going on around you, especially if you live in one of the large urban centers. Your best bet for survival during an evacuation causing disaster is not getting caught in the chaos – that means being able to make your escape BEFORE the shit hits the fan.

To do that, you need to have a plan in place that includes when you would leave, what types of disasters would cause you to leave, and of course a predetermined destination where you intend on heading during a crisis. Check out my article on building the ultimate bug out bag for more ideas on what you need to pack, and what considerations you need to prepare for when planning to evacuate.

If you wait for things to go bad, or you wait for an evacuation notice from your local government, you probably waited too long. Put your plans in place now, and don’t be caught off guard. The last thing you want to do is count on a government agency that has very little vested interest in your health and safety.

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  1. what are a few good radio staions or trusted websites to look for heads up on potential disasters? ive read stories online and watched the news but all seem to play different cards and give you a run around. I’ve seen and heard of things from friends that are possibly taking place as we speak,but how would i be more sure? i can’t afford to just drop spend and move. i do have a place planned to go but as this article states freeways can be clogged or shut down. anything can help, thanks

    • find and memorize routes off of highways to your destination. country roads make take longer to get where you’re going, but it will be less congested. fewer people will know about them. try to google a route off of highways. find paper maps that are up to date. the internet might be down when TSHTF. I don’t know about radio stations or websites. if you find out, let me know.

    • Google Maps, a Road Atlas, and Off-road recreation maps are all good resources that can be used to find alternative evacuation routes. As far as monitoring the news you can do something like setting up custom Google news alerts or using as RSS feed reader to monitor your local news sites. You can also monitor social media sites like twitter for local information. Whenever a disaster hits, social media sites like twitter are my go to source because it’s in real-time and will be hours ahead of even local news stations. You might also want to look into police scanners and a Ham Radio.

    • Walk the route with your vehicle ahead of time to get an ideas of travel time, etc. Regarding scanners, most police agencies are going with frequency hopping radios. Whata this means is you will have to purchase a hi priced scanner to receive. Low priced pocket scanners, can’t keep up with the frequency hopping and few if any radio traffic is received. An idea is a tone alert weather radio. The warnings are put out around an hr before the projected emergency. As for being reluctant to move, remember what happened in the riots of 68 in DC: the counties around the city sealed it off. Wait too long then survival will really get complicated. Just some ideas.

    • Try and get hold of a map of the storm sewers in your city. If all other routes are blocked, you may be able to escape that way.

  2. If roadways are unusable, it would be possible to follow train tracks out of a city. Rail traffic will continue to move in most scenarios. In the event of the government shutting down the roadways, sneaking onto a ralcar may be the only way to escape the city. Remember, the sky may be full of eyes (drones, helicopters, etc.), so either get inside of or under a car/tarp/cover of some kind and ride out of the city that way. Getting on and off moving rail cars is extremely dangerous and can kill you, so don’t be stupid. Wait for the train to slow. It will when it approaches a rail yard or signal not in it’s favor…then get off.

  3. Be careful to avoid choke points like bridges or tunnels. Try and find alternative forms of travel like boats or bike/horse trails.

  4. Hello, You need to get out of this country before the whistle blows. The Jews found out the hard way by staying in Germany thinking things would get better. Have we forgotten the lessons learned from World War Two? History always repeats itself. Things are not getting better now they are getting worse. What are you waiting for…go now while you still can. Sell everything you own and move to a safe country. The USA has been targeted for termination, we are living on borrowed time. These are the End Times the Bible tells us about. WAKE UP AMERICA

  5. This article has nothing to do with (urban prison camps). The second part of the title would suffice. That said, the article makes some sound suggestions. Having lived through several of these senarios, I witnessed the closing of the entrance/exit to a city. It was done to protect the citizens of that city from out of control, mostly youths, who were “rioting”. During a chemical spill buses were still allowed to go in and out to evacuate even though cars were prohibited so you might want to familiarize yourself and support local transit. San Francisco’s only natural disaster problem is earthquake, the last big one was in 1989. These major quakes reoccur every ninty to one hundred years. That gives the citizens of SF at least eighty years to prepare. If there is a pandemic, anyone on either coast, might consider a little fishing, their is no better place to be in a pandemic than in the ocean, having fun while the rest of humanity deals with it. What would you do? I don’t have a yacht YET!! Now if there’s a sunami, all bets are off.

  6. Probably the “best’, most prepared couple I know not only have quality B.O.Bs, impressive gear, ample provisions and have ‘scenario mapped’ with several potential circumstances es and plans… among all this, they’ve added caches/ stashes to their mix. These are hidden personal waypoints which contain supplies are located along predetermined routes which thereby can become previous resources enabling more extensive bug-out.

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