Thursday, April 22, 2010

Post Drill Debriefing - Bugging Out

Post Drill Debriefing: Emergency Bug Out

OK, so you have decided to take the time to create a likely disaster scenario for you and/or your family and the best solution for your safety was determined to be a "bug out" or evacuation of your dwelling - or a location you are staying temporarily like a college dorm or apartment.

This is an extremely difficult decision to make, leaving what has (for most) come to represent security in your life - your home. Not to mention all the time and effort creating your suitable domicile and the ubiquitous "stuff".

Needless if you were not overly prepared you will have discovered that maybe this survival/preparedness idea is considerably more complex and difficult than you first thought.

We certainly appreciate that. Remember - this is an ongoing process - not a one size/one time fits all event.

Some things to discuss....

How long did it take after deciding to leave did it take? Under 5 minutes? 10 minutes? 20 minutes? More? How long? Did you actually leave?

Was the planned conveyance - car-boat-motorcycle-bicycle-bus-atv-plane - able to accommodate all your critical gear? Was there an alternative means available? What changes would need to be made before you could use the alternative and how fast could you switch your means of egress?

Were you actually able to carry your evac bag (assuming you had one or more) any distance or was the kitchen sink too heavy (humor)? Were you prepared to carry on by foot if your vehicle failed you?

Did you have a destination goal that was safer than the place you were leaving? If so, in what way and for how long?

Were you accompanied by others or just yourself? What might be some difficulties with injured family members or neighbors (or yourself). Did you consider your known physical limitations?

How far away did you travel? Did your vehicle have sufficient fuel to make the trip or did you have to refuel enroute?

Was the time you held the drill realistic? If another time was more difficult, would you have fared as well as you did this time or worse?

What were the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) presented by the execution of your plan ? Did you encounter challenges you never thought existed or did you exploit opportunities you had considered in your planning stage? What would you do differently and in what (realistic) situations would your pre-planning not work?

Would have sheltering in place (SIP) been a better alternative? If so, why and for how long?

What are some other preparations would you make knowing what you know now? Would your home and the contents be "safe" for short periods of time knowing alarms and police protection would be non existent? Have you considered that?

More food? More water? Better ride? Safer means of carrying documents? Money? Firearms?

Did you find that in fact under certain scenarios you actually had no realistic expectation of being able to remove yourself safely in time to preserve your safety and that of your family? In this case would shelter in place (SIP) be the only option? Should you prepare instead for that response?

This post can go on for hours with a variety of questions and ideas on how you might have, should have, could have...but it was an exercise and exercises are meant to create ideas and evaluate plans and processes. So, if you developed more questions than answers - do not despair because that is what this was meant to do.

Some of you will undoubtedly throw up your hands and say "if it was meant to be then it was meant to be"......but WTSHTF your flight or fight response will kick in and that previous philosophical lament will quickly become a moot point - so how about "I will prevail" as your mindset instead? Good.

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