Getting home, bugging out, evacuating

This is quite brief, sooooo if you live in one place and commute to work / school etc and you have a plan to get home or bug out PDQ if something goes wrong………….

Does your area suffer from the risk of Flashfloods, Wildfires, Quakes, Tsunamis,  Landslides or Avalanches etc then you need to consider a few points.

1 Normally when trouble turns up on a communities doorstep the first thing people have a habit of doing is jumping into the car and heading for the Freeway / Motorway. This very often leads to total gridlock and traffic chaos within minutes. You need Alternative routes if and where possible. And possibly alternative means of transport. 

Some years ago I read of people in the PNW who had boats , microlights, light aircraft, even helicopters which were positioned for a quick evac if neccessary (Though I dont know the validity of a boat in a Tsunami risk) . Though Bicycles, Motorcycles, Horses and 4×4 mules and quads were more affordable and popular alternatives. Either way the major highway routes are more than likely to be gridlocked very quickly, and possibly in ruins if the issue is Landslide or Quake.

Your best route will nearly always involve NOT using Bridges, Tunnels, Mountainside roads or through Forests, But I accept its not always possible to avoid having to use such vulnerable routes.  So if possible PERSONALLY Recce / Recon as many alternatives as you can find. And revisit them occasionally to ensure they are still open, and try to avoid vulnerable structures.

2 If you face inundation from flash floods or tsunamis or burst reservoirs your route out should ideally avoid any travel that involves going DOWNHILL, Common sense I know, but its not uncommon for folks to not do a realtime recce of their escape routes.

I know of one fellow here in the UK whose original B O route involved crossing a river, but what he assumed was a bridge was in fact only a FORDING PLACE which for much of the year was under 4 feet of water. And flood water from failed dams or tsunamis can outruns cars easily so GO UP not DOWNHILL.

3 Disasters dont make appointments, and they can affect HUGE areas. If your BO/Get home plans rely upon motor vehicles  please I beg you to consider TWO options. (A) never EVER let your fuel tank get under 50% full, EVER. (B) consider keeping one or two extra full fuel cans in your boot (UK) Trunk (US) . During a Hurricane in FLA some people bugged out with full tanks and extra fuels but still ran out in Nowheresville Georgia after heavy traffic caused a 14 hour crawl at 10 MPH which used up their fuel reserves. The Fuel (UK) Gas (US) stations they were not dry were closed by either the police or owners.

4 Forget Public Transport in all contingency plans, chances are if its not knocked out by the disaster it will be cancelled as a safety precaution or the staff will have bugged out themselves.

5 By all means assist friends and close neighbours if you SAFELY can, but under no circumstances get involved with strangers. During disasters whilst goodness and kindness is common but so is panic driven selfishness and criminality.


  • Comments (9)

    • 3

      I’ve been doing better with tip 3A on keeping my car topped off. It has decreased the amount of panic that sets in when I’m nearing empty and the low fuel light goes on. But also if I’m just exhausted after work, I can head straight home and don’t need to worry about getting gas if I really don’t want to.

      • 2

        Better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it.

    • 2

      Good points.  I always keep plenty of gas in my truck to allow me to get home.  If I can’t drive the 40 miles home from work, then I have a get home bag & other supplies in my truck.

      None of those catastrophes apply in north Mississippi, so I hope to be able to drive home.  But one never knows, so I plan on a worst case scenario. 

      • 2

        doesnt the New Madrid fault run in your neck of the woods ? is is my geography out yet again 🙂

      • 2

        It is more to the north & east of us.  We are on the edge of the danger area.  It is most certainly a possibility but I really doubt we would have much severe damage.  They have upgraded most bridges & overpasses in this area to handle seismic motion.  But anything is possible & thus why I plan on having to walk home.

      • 1

        I was fascinated to read about the sand geyzers and the Mississippi running backwards for a while after the last eruption.

      • 2

        Yep, and the earthquake created Reelfoot Lake.

    • 2

      good part of proper prepping involves day-to-day following of the Worldwide SHTF hotspots >>> if your bug out comes days & even weeks after the severe SHTF first poked its head above ground – you aren’t prepping >>> you just accumulated a bunch of “stuff” that could have kept you & yours alive ….

      I saw Covid to become discussed back in late 2019 – saw it was probable animal to man transmission

      • 2

        Real Time Intel is priceless.

    • 1

      I always forget this footnote (pun intended)  but you most comfortable, broke in walking shoes / boots. if you are at home they live next to your BOB, if you are out and about they are in your vehicle.