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Urban Stealth - Survival in the City

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by Dark Jester, Jun 17, 2014.

  1. Dark Jester

    Dark Jester Quester...

    For all those that have assessed their SHTF Plan and made the decision to hold their position in an urban setting instead of joining the hoards of ill-prepared, directionless and agitated slackers trying to flee on overcrowded highways, how are you prepared to operate in the urban jungle?

    More specifically, will you be able to navigate the streets without being an obvious target or will you hold tight in your position?
    If you choose to move about the area, how will you be able to do so while retaining a low profile?

    If you have a Plan B to move out, how long will/can you hold your urban position before mobilizing?

  2. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    A bug out should be an absolute last resort, and as unlikely as it may seem, it becomes even more unlikely to be required while accompanied by complete societal breakdown. However, it is not impossible, and it has occurred elsewhere in the world before.

    (Part Two can be found here)

    I thought this was a very good overview on urban survival philosophy. You can survive in a city, you just need to alter your perspective from wilderness to urban. These two are obviously quite different settings, but there are also similarities.
  3. nkawtg

    nkawtg Monkey

    I agree Broker, bugging out instantly makes one a refugee and history shows refugees typically do not fare well, so bugging out has always been in my "Last Resort" category.
  4. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    There are advantages and disadvantages attendant to both options, a lot will depend upon the nature of the circumstances as to which option may be the best one to action at the time. One of the factors to consider, is whether you have a safe haven that is sustainable for the duration of the emergency to go to. If you are merely "getting out of Dodge" with no plan, purpose or place to go to, then, staying in place may possibly be a necessary option whilst you have the resources to make that practical.

    The important thing is to build into your prepping plans the flexibility to stay or go as the circumstances require. Flexibility can be achieved by:

    Having a primary and alternative safe havens to move to if staying is not viable. This needs to be planned for well before the emergency emerges, and that may require creating alliances, building upon existing relationships, and having some resources in place to access upon your arrival in the event that you come with what you can carry on your back and in your hands.

    Having primary and alternative routes to your safe haven with the flexibility to change between them. If the distances are long between Dodge and your safe haven, you may need to consider caches along the way.

    Deciding that If holding fast is your better option, (but only for as long as it remains the better option), giving thought as to how you can make that as sustainable as possible for as long as might be necessary.
    Witch Doctor 01, oldawg and Yard Dart like this.
  5. BTPost

    BTPost Old Fart Snow Monkey Moderator

    In an Urban situation, in SHTF Senerios, my best advice,is to pull a "Chuck Heston", and clear the upper floors of a MultiFloor Building, and use multiple BoobyTraps, in depth, on the access up thru the building. Use multiple floors for Storage, of your accumulated supplies, that you forage, for in the dark, using your NV Setup. I would have Solar. on the roof, as well as an Electric powered Transportation System. (BigBoy w/Trailer) Multiple Generators with as many Fuel Types as possible. Genset exhaust into the Sewer System. Basically build an In-Depth Security Zone, around yourself, and discourage, with Prejudice, anyone from approaching your Redoubt. ...... It would take a while, but in the end, you could survive.......
    chelloveck likes this.
  6. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    Very good, and noodling thru SM, anyone can see that it is one of the main points made here, time and time again. What will also be found (by noobs, old timers have it in mind) are ways to deal with any of the options.
    chelloveck likes this.
  7. tacmotusn

    tacmotusn Mosquito Sailor

    I am not urban, I am rural. I started to mistrust my fellow man and see the negatives of city living 35 to 40 years ago. I chose my location due to personal choices, abilities and taking into mind natural resources, and my financial resources. Due to an unexpected death in the immediate family and insurance payout I was prompted to search for and obtain sufficient acreage in the area of my choice asap. This occurred 30 years ago. When I retired from the USN 10 years after that, I got my start in getting to where I am today in my preps. I am a long way from being where I want to be in my preps as it is a never ending evolving process. I am better off than the masses will be after any SHTF scenario (economic, or governmental collapse or natural disaster, or war). I am happy to know that in almost any graded questionnaire thrown out for Monkeys to participate in, we have always scored for the most part in the top 20% or higher of society who responded. We are not dummies here! My association here has probably enhanced greatly my chances for survival until I am ready to leave this mortal existence. I am sure my tribe of family and friends have similarly benefitted, whether they realize it or not. 80% of my fellow man is blind to most of all going on around them, and will perish quickly after any major SHTF situation. Sad no doubt, but all part of the master plan and natural selection. Maybe we as a human race, will do a little better on the next go around. My tribe and many others will have copies of the Constitution to forge a new society. I myself probably won't live to see an out of the ashes scenario, but will have done my best to pass on what is required. jmho YMMV
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2014
    GOG, oldawg, William Antrum and 4 others like this.
  8. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey..... Moderator Site Supporter++

    I live in a suburban area and operate most days within the urban area for my work. I carry a GHB, a bailout bag, a firearm, and multiple means of resupply in my rig which will be of use under most circumstances. If SHTF when I am in downtown Seattle, I have 45 miles give or take to traverse through water crossings, heavy populated areas and rough terrain over elevation getting home. If I had less than a three day supply then I would be cutting into what would be needed on a normal E&E movement back to home base. I am prepared for that movement.

    We have no plan to bug out and move with the mass of any exodus other than due to an environmental thing such as nuke, bio or volcano.

    Once I return home I have my suburban homestead prepared to lock down into a protective zone, also with an extended neighborhood defensive plan with those in the AO that are interested in staying. We have one road into our development which can be easily secured. There are many back avenues for approach that are more troublesome to secure like most folks. It is nothing to breach a wood fence.... funny to hear some of my neighbors think that nobody would ever "dare" to break through.... nice to know they are the first to bug out to better pastures.

    Our plan to secure the area is basically sound as we are a bit off the beaten path, but there is still the local population to contend with when food runs out. Our general philosophy is to let the scavengers pass through and stay low profile as much as possible till they die out. The remaining population at that point will attempt to rally, or fight for what they want to take. In the mid point of these two positions, we will fortify, and reinforce with like minded folks and supplies to secure the AO. This is a short term plan as nobody can know long term what may come.

    But we do prepare the long view..... just do not share that nugget of detail, as that can get you into trouble going to that level.....
    chelloveck and tacmotusn like this.
  9. mrkermit

    mrkermit Monkey+

    I think the key to true urban survival will be in the little things. Naturally, one would have to create a basic rationing plan for food and water to reduce exposure and theft scenarios. Security would be a big issue, as well, since doors and deadbolts in the USA are not as secure as what you would find in Eastern Europe, per se. Lastly, sanity would be another issue... How much cabin fever can you take? Have plenty to read? Reminds me of Anne Frank.
    kellory and chelloveck like this.
  10. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    Whenever the subject of urban stealth in a dystopian world comes to mind, I think of Delicatessen....never hide in a trash can.

  11. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    I do not particularly like the notion of remaining in a city, but if I had to, I would try to maximize my survivability by utilizing the terrain. In an urban setting, I would apply as many principles as I could to assure survival without jeopardizing my potential to scout and to escape when necessary. I believe defense is a flexible subject, and it will be different for every city and is based on many variables. By saying 'defense' I do not mean personal protection like the weapons you may carry, but an actual physical structure in which to live and defend.

    (criteria 1)
    Scouting / Escaping / Defense

    So, we have scouting, escaping and defense as the three primary criteria. The secondary criteria for urban survival, and no less important than the first three, will be the basics of sustaining your personal well being, namely access to food, water and sanitation.

    (criteria 2)
    Food/ Water/ Sanitation

    This synopsis requires the following the parameters below:
    1. You can assume dominance over an industrial sector
    2. You can have access to routes to scout for food, water and other essential items
    3. Access to an egress to escape without going through heavily occupied or dangerous city areas
    4. Enough room to dispose of human and food waste and limit exposure to other people

    I would look for any industrial or commercial sector which will provide adequate cover and concealment from most heavily traveled areas of the city. Some of these areas will be near a river or creek, and are often located on the outskirts or less than centered zone of a city. If you think about it, you will want to keep your potential threats on as few sides as possible, limiting the direction you could be attacked. This philosophy also serves a couple vital roles: a) to provide at least one primary avenue for scouting into the city areas, b) to allow for a clear and safe escape route. Should you group with others or go at it alone? This depends on your own situation and will affect your plan. For the sake of keeping this simple, let's assume you are alone or with a few family members only.

    Of course, you will want to keep low profile, and this follows in accordance with basic survival fundamentals. Keep your area clean, close off and barricade all access to your area except one for daily use and a second, preferably hidden route for escape. Be certain your area is not an attractive site for looters and profiteers. Abandoned structures, if sound and can offer protection from the elements, can be more beneficial than a new office building. Look for bio-hazard signs or something similar and keep a few in your bug out pack just in case and hang them on the perimeter. You can age them slightly in the sun beforehand, and use them to deter some people. Seriously, who is going to venture into a bio-hazard zone when all medical care facilities are shut down due to societal collapse? The only people who may not be fooled are those who have intimate knowledge of the area, but that doesn't include everybody in a city. Many people do not typically access industrial areas, and even fewer on a regular basis.

    I am sure you can build on these criteria I have listed, and provide sound solutions which may apply to your particular area. These are only some suggestions based on a limited but well defined urban survival plan.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2014
    Yard Dart and chelloveck like this.
  12. Dark Jester

    Dark Jester Quester...

    I don't like the idea of of remaining in the city, but like far less the idea of being a refugee. Historically, refugees don't fare well. So, what to do that will mitigate the risks involved with remaining in the city? I look at the pros and cons.

    I can have more supplies available than what would be in a truck, trailer or backpack. Plus I have a work shop/garage. My surroundings will be more familiar. I have made improvements to my home that will help to secure it while not making it look out of place in the neighborhood. I live in an old, established neighborhood on a corner lot.

    I installed real, working and thick wood shutters that latch at two points on the inside of the shutter for both downstairs as well as upstairs windows.

    I replaced the wood fence with a ~6.5 foot brick wall around my side and back yard. I have stored enough concertina wire (razor wire) to attach to the entire wall and the front of the house. When building the wall, I had the contractor imbed recessed, stainless steel attachment points on the top of the wall.

    The doors to the exterior have reinforced door frames, hinges and double bolts; 1 locking, 1 dead.

    I have sufficient lighting to see the entire "compound" and I am in the process of putting up a security camera system which will enable me to monitor all areas from one point.

    I have a 10,000 gallon pool for a water supply. It can be hidden from view with a cover I made with wood panels that will be covered with a rather realistic looking AstroTurf and simulated soil made of plaster. All the gutters on the house will lead to hoses that empty into the pool. I have pumps (electrical and manual) that will pump water to the toilets, faucets and showers.

    I have a generator integrated into my electrical system.

    I know my field of fire.

    I am well supplied.

    With the concertina wire up, it will stick out like a sore thumb. But, there will be many easier targets. If I need to leave, it will probably have been monitored and ingress/egress will need to be more stealthy.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 28, 2015
  13. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    What about adding the wire to the inside of the wall? It would not show, but would still be hard to cross.
  14. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    All that works well for single family houses. Apartment dwellers have a different problem to deal with. Obviously, of course.
  15. Dark Jester

    Dark Jester Quester...

    I have thought about getting more razor wire in a sufficient enough quantity to put on the ground on the inside perimeter of the wall as I have done for the front and part of the side of the house. It would make jumping the wall even more difficult.

    Thankfully, I do not live in or near apartments. Single family dwelling areas have less population density.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 28, 2015
  16. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    bugging out = refugee
    bug out is last resort and there are some arguments (from stories of the collapse in Argentina) that you might be safer in an urban setting than in a remote location. Apparently, the remote folks in Argentina and places like South Africa get home invaded and killed while they sleep....
    chelloveck and Yard Dart like this.
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