by Owen Sullivan
On May 24, 2018
When Hurricane Sandy smashed into the East Coast in late 2012, it triggered a multistate communications blackout. But you no longer have to suffer through a disaster like this with zero communications.
An article in Preparedness
by Jason Hanson
On May 22, 2018
In addition to fresh fissures and accelerating lava flows, Hawaiians have a new threat to worry about. Read on to discover what this new danger is and what it means for you — even if you live thousands of miles away.
by Jason Hanson
On May 19, 2018
In this week’s mailbag, find out how to stay off the grid without leaving the country, why you can’t trust hotel safes and the best way to maintain your search privacy on the internet with multiple layers of security.
by Laissez Faire Contributors
On May 18, 2018
The fact is there is a TON of misinformation in the survival space. Today, Robert Blaze of the Survival Ready Blog Team runs down nine of the deadliest survival myths as seen on TV.
by Jason Hanson
On May 17, 2018
A quality survival lighter could save your life. Today I want to go over different types of survival lighters, plus a few that I recommend purchasing.
by Jason Hanson
On May 15, 2018
This week’s batch of must-read articles covers a whole host of new threats — from Ebola to steam explosions to domestic violence. Read on to find out how to protect yourself.
On May 9, 2018
Russia has continued to push boundaries and test their cyber capabilities in preparation for a large-scale attack on our power grid. When Russia cuts our power, here’s how to make your own.
by Jason Hanson
On May 8, 2018
This week’s batch of must-read articles kicks off with a story on why the latest volcanic eruption in Hawaii is making experts uneasy. More importantly, you’ll learn what you can do right now to be prepared for ANY kind of natural disaster.
Dear Black Bag Confidential Reader,
Crash-proofing your finances is one aspect of preparedness I don’t touch on as frequently as, say, self-defense techniques, natural disaster prep or what to do in the event of a home invasion. However, in this week’s mailbag, I address one reader’s question on how much cash you should keep on hand for an emergency — and how to keep it safe.
For more advice on how to weather a financial disaster, I suggest signing up for a free subscription to Money & Crisis. This complimentary e-letter is designed to give you simple strategies to bulletproof your finances against the next crisis — no matter how big or small. To take your financial prepping to the next level, click here.
Now let’s dive in to the mailbag.
I understand that it is a good idea to have a stash of cash available in case of a real “bug-out” emergency. How much would you recommend? What is the safest manner of protecting it? I am sure you are aware that Homeland Security is alerted by banks when someone withdraws $10,000 or more, so maintaining an amount like that would require several smaller withdrawals in order not to draw attention to myself — if you are recommending such an amount.
— Sam S.
I recommend having at least six months’ worth of your living expenses saved in a bank and at least one month’s worth of living expenses in cash in your home. Take into consideration your average monthly expenses and then decide how much cash you can realistically set aside each week or per paycheck based on your income.
Ultimately, I would make it your goal to keep at least $1,000 in cash — in twenties — in your home at all times. I also keep $100 in cash in my escape bag inside a Ziploc bag so it’s always ready to go in the event I need to bug out in a hurry.
To safely store your cash, keep it in a small, fireproof safe. Sentry is a reliable company that makes quality, affordable fireproof safes.
Thanks for the affordable $5/week prepping food list. But honestly, I’m not sure what to do with half of it… Any suggestions for recipes?
— Deb P.
I suggest doing a simple online search for food storage recipes. One cookbook I recommend is called I Can’t Believe It’s Food Storage. This book (and others like it) is available on Amazon. Pinterest is another great place to find a TON of recipes posted by other like-minded preppers.
Obviously, during a long-term survival situation, you will be grateful just to have food to eat. Even if you don’t have much variety, at least you will have something to feed your family.
Thank you for all the great information on acquiring food storage for a year. Can you explain what we should buy to cook the food since our electric and gas will likely be out in an emergency?
— Lou G.
Survival stoves come in a large variety of sizes and styles, making it easy to find one to suit your family’s needs. Here are a few things to consider before purchasing a survival stove:
- Do you plan to cook indoors or outdoors?
- Do you want a stove that is portable?
- What kind of fuel is required and how easy is it to obtain and store?
If you’re forced to evacuate your home on short notice, portable stoves are great because they are typically lightweight and easy to carry. One portable stove I recommend is the Coleman Single-Burner Propane Stove. This stove is easy to use, clean and store. But there are other several reliable brands to choose from — I also suggest checking out stoves made by Camp Chef.
When it comes to fuel, I prefer propane because you can store propane tanks indefinitely. Whatever you decide, you’ll need to store enough fuel for at least a month.
Some time ago you mentioned two-way radios that you recommended. Can you mention them again and also address batteries required, battery life and recommended ways to store batteries?
— Jim F.
The Baofeng radio I own is the UV-5R. I have the second-generation model (V2+), but they do have a new third-generation model (the Baofeng BF-F8HP) that is worth checking out — although it is a bit more expensive.
These radios come with a programming cable to connect your radio to your computer so you can program all the frequencies into the radio instead of inputting each one manually. This would be a good idea if you plan on using the Baofeng as a ham radio.
In a survival scenario, having a longer antenna will give your radio a wider operating range. This one is highly rated — and at 15.6 inches, it’s much longer than the one that comes with the radio.
As for batteries, the Baofeng radio uses a rechargeable lithium-ion battery and comes with a charging base. Battery life depends on usage, but in my experience, I’ve used my radio for about two full days before needing to recharge.
Thanks for the great info on firearms. I have a quick question. What does imprinting on a holster mean?
— Carri C.
This term describes when the outline of a firearm is visible through a person’s clothes — which is definitely something you want to avoid. For example, if you have a gun on your hip and you’re wearing a tight shirt, the shape of the gun will “print” through the shirt and people will be able to see that you’re armed.
If you carry a concealed firearm, it’s important to check yourself in the mirror before leaving home to make sure your gun isn’t easy to see. My favorite way to carry concealed is with an inside-the-waistband holster. I prefer this type of holster because it holds my gun very well, doesn’t imprint and is comfortable to wear.