I’m receiving a lot of emails by people worried, all over the world regarding the issue with North Korea. First, lets try to be realistic about the potential striking range. For those of you in Europe worried about nuclear war, at this moment North Korea just doesn’t seem to have any way to strike a target that far away. At the most we’re looking at reaching Alaska and the west coast of continental US. Of course South Korea and Guam are well within reach, and this does not mean that smaller bombs cant be sneaked in by other methods, pretty much anywhere in the world, so while all things considered not a top priority, it can happen. Some will even say that a suitcase bomb or smaller dirty bomb being used in terrorist attacks is very much unavoidable and will end up happening eventually.
Even though an unlikely event, the anxiety and concern is understandable and as always knowledge not only helps calm our fears, it might be life-saving in such an event if it ever takes place.
1)You CAN survive a nuclear attack: While very powerful, and even though within a certain range of one or two miles the destruction and fatality is almost complete, the further away you are from where the bomb exploded, the greater the chances of survival you have. For a 10 kiloton nuke, you’re looking at a fatality rate of 20% at an 8 mile radius. So unless you live close or within a major strategic target your chances aren’t that bad.
2)Don’t look at the explosion and breathe in and out: The explosion is so bright that it can blind you momentarily or permanently. Breathing in and out in short pulses will keep your air passages open and help protect your lungs and eardrums from the high pressure shockwave of the explosion. If you hold your breath your lungs can burst due to overpressure waves, causing internal bleeding and death. Pulmonary contusion is the most common cause of death due to blast (explosion) injuries. Find shelter or hit the floor if there’s no shelter near by.
3)Identify the Explosion area and Wind Direction: If you happen to survive the initial blast, and make it out of the fires and collapsed structures, you may have a chance of making it. If the overpressure shock, flying debris and heat didn’t kill you, now you have to worry about the radioactive fallout. You have between 10 and 20 minutes before the radioactive particles start falling. The wind will spread the fallout plume in the direction of the wind, so the fastest way to avoid fallout if the wind is blowing it your way is moving perpendicularly away from it. If you are lucky enough to survive and the wind isn’t blowing the ash your way, evacuate the area moving against the direction of the wind. The wind can change directions at any time but this is your safest bet.
4)Cover up: While evacuating is your main priority if you are able to do so, you also want to cover as much as you can to avoid the contact with radioactive particles. Ideally you would have an NBC suit and respirator. If not you can somewhat improvise protection with rubber boots and gloves and waterproof clothing, using duct tape to close up the gaps. You should only remove these clothes after being decontaminated when you reach a safe area.Gas Mask Complete Family Kit, Two (2) Adult+ Two(2) Children Survival Gas Masks, 4 NBC Filters, 4 Canteens , 4 Straws Plus Anti Radiation 20 Tablets of Potassium Iodide 130mg $149.90
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5)If you cant evacuate you should shelter in place: A basement or better yet a fallout shelter is the best place to be in. You need 3 feet of earth for protection against gamma rays. If you are in an apartment building, you want to be in the 9th floor or higher, and stay in inner rooms, away from exterior walls for added protection. After 72hs radiation will go down considerably.
6) Plan ahead of time: This is the last but most important point. Know your situation. Know if you live in a potential target like a large metropolis or close to an important military base. Know the predominant wind direction and think about how you would evacuate, which would be the fastest route and which would be the second best choice if that main route is packed with cars. Identify any nearby fallout or bomb shelters, check their operational status (if they are still open and working) or other improvised shelter like tunnels or underground structures in case you have to shelter in place. Ideally, you would have either a fallout shelter or an improvised shelter in your basement. Finally have your Standard Preparedness Supplies ready and organized so as to grab what you can and go as fast as possible.