Hi, I'm ROC from ONETIGRIS, a OneTigris designer and survivalist/prepper, and no matter where you are right now, I know it's more or less affected by the pandemic. So, I’d like to share with you some of the lessons that I’ve learned from the past 3 months, and some of the strategies developed to tackle possible danger.
What is COVID-19? Only by identifying the enemy can we know how to deal with the situation.
COVID-19 (coronavirus) is from a large family of viruses known to cause colds and more serious illnesses such as MERS and SARS. It is a new strain of the virus that has never been found in humans before. The virus has a fatality rate of about 2 to 4 percent, but this is a very early percentage that may change as more information becomes available. At the same time, this does not mean that it is not serious, just that not everyone infected with the virus will face the most serious consequences. The main transmission route of COVID-19 is respiratory droplet transmission and contact transmission.
In China, we classify cases into "suspected cases" and "confirmed cases". Suspected cases are determined in two ways. One is "anyone with an epidemiological history and is consistent with any two of the clinical manifestations (fever and/or respiratory symptoms; It has the imaging characteristics of pneumonia. The total number of white blood cells in the early stage of the disease is normal or decreased, and the lymphocyte count is reduced.” The second way to determine suspected cases is "without a clear epidemiological history and consistent with 3 clinical manifestations.” The confirmed cases require a positive test result.
Now that we’ve covered the basics, I will summarize our experience so far and some tips:
1. Macro Level Assessment:
You need to understand the current situation of the country, region, city, community in which you live. Personally, I tried to assess the impact of the current outbreaks by recording existing and new cases in my country/region. This detailed record is updated every day, and it’s what you can use in the future to evaluate whether you need to change tactics of major factors in the macro risk assessment.
An example: Suppose you live in a big city, at present the city has 10,000 cases with new infections every day. If you see a sharp rise in the number of new cases that is difficult to maintain given the city’s health and living resources (consider food and drinking water supply of necessities), you can consider bugging out to another relatively suitable region and prepare in advance.
2. Inventory of Current Material Reserves:
Survivalists probably already have a mental table chart on the current situation of material reserves, but for those who could use a tip, it’s best to make a chart listing key and urgently needed essential materials that can be purchased as soon as possible. Also include a detailed summary of your current financial situation, and consider whether there is enough emergency cash reserves for the next 3-6 months for the family.
- Essential life-sustaining supplies: The amount allocated can be multiplied depending on the severity of the outbreak.
- Clean water: Take into account the possibility of water shortage caused by the outbreak; it is advisable to reserve drinking water for 3-7 days.
- Food: In case of mobility restrictions that may be enforced by the government as protective measures, reserve 3-7 days of food that can be stored at room temperature.
- Lighting and power: If possible power failure cannot be restored in the short term, reserve backup lighting and power equipment such as aluminum candles, flashlight (dry battery is recommended), power banks, even a gasoline powered generator.
- Fuel: Small stoves, gas tanks, wood stoves, solid fuel stoves, etc., these can be used to cook food, boil water, even if your power and gas system is down.
- First aid kit and conventional medicines, etc.
- Masks: When outbreak trends cannot be estimated, reserve a minimum of 50 units per capita. According to your budget and outbreak situation, stock up accordingly on general medical protective masks and N95 masks for more serious scenarios.
- Gloves: Disposable gloves can be used to avoid contact with contaminated surfaces.
- Goggles: Worn in high-risk environments to avoid membrane transmissions.
- Disinfectant: Chlorine-based recommended. Pay attention to the disinfectant concentration percentage; anything higher or lower than the 70%-75% range will be less effective.
- Ultraviolet disinfection lamp: Can be used for indoor disinfection on masks, glasses and other items.
- Protective clothing or raincoat for high-risk environments.
If it’s low-risk outings such as wood or fuel collection, wear a mask and keep 2 meters away from other people. In the case of high risk level outings that may require close contact with a stranger in a relatively closed environment, you should assume that all objects have been contaminated and take extra precautions.
Go to a supermarket when it’s least crowded, wear the safest protection mask you have in stock, bring protective goggles, a hat, raincoat, and disinfectant. Collect supplies as quickly as you can, do not touch the eyes, mouth and nose. Wash your hands with clean running water and disinfect with alcohol afterwards.
Before returning to your residence, spray chlorine-based disinfectant on your clothes, hat, and shoes (especially the soles). Do not touch family members during the entire process. Finally, keep a record of the trip: When, where, and with whom. Just In case.
Another thing, always carry a backpack with supplies and maintain your BOV (“bug out vehicle”) if you’ve got one. If when you’re outside something happens and you can't get back to the residence nor can you find a safe place to stay, you can rely on your pack and your BOV for the time being.
The above are preparations for home-stay mode that includes regular outings for supply collection. Next we move on to bug-out-mode.
If you've been to a feel-good area in the past, within a few hours' drive and with relatively good supplies, such as a friend or relative's farm, contact for permission. If you don't already have one, go online now to check the map and filter the rules (fewer people, mountains near rivers and reservoirs, clean water, fish, trees, etc.)
Means of transportation: In a pandemic, rely on your car or motorcycle or bicycle and reserve enough fuel. If there is a spare tank, store some, and for electric cars at any time maintain more than 80% power.
The following is the basic configuration of a BOV (“bug out vehicle”):
- Three days’ food and water
- Self-protection items such as knives and guns. Check and maintain in good condition.
- Basic maintenance tools such as knives, axes, saws, etc.
- Camping equipment: Awning (tarpaulin), sleeping bag, waterproof pad, cooking pot, etc.
- Communication equipment such as a radio, walkie-talkies, mobile phone card from different operators, spare mobile phones with long standby time, etc.
Last but not least, here is how I did psychological checks to stay sane during a time of fear:
When the virus spread and stress rates spiked, I stayed home with my family and we tried our best to stay positive and relaxed. Here in China, school was suspended so the children have been staying at home with us as we worked from home. We cooked together, painted with the kids, enjoyed music, worked out at home, played card games and so on.
It turned out that we became closer as a family. If I had a front or back yard, I’d take this opportunity to watch videos and educate my family on camping and survival skills such as fire and shelter setups. Although times are rough, the family is safe at home, we’re staying informed and prepared, and most importantly, we’re on the same team and hopeful this will pass soon.