Everyone from the East coast to the West coast was getting ready for the start of the work week. At 9:00 am EST a flash 200 miles up over the state of Kansas brought everything to a halt. The first few seconds that followed were pure chaos. Traffic accidents, planes falling out of the sky and then silence. Silence from nothing running, a silence that most modern Americans haven't heard for 150 years. We had been hit by an Electro Magnetic Pulse delivered by a warhead from Russia.
There were 2 reports put out by the congressional EMP commission. One in 2004 and 2008. These reports are now declassified and are getting attention. We live under the threat of an EMP attack from Nations like China, Russia, Iran and North Korea as well as other nations that possess nuclear missile capability. From an invading standpoint for these nations, the thought of leaving our cities and natural resources intact while eliminating our ability to put up a formidable defense would be enticing.
It's been reported that China and Russia have already considered an EMP as a sole means of attack. Iran is currently developing this capability. In 2004 the EMP commission met with senior Russian scientist and were told that Russian scientist had been recruited by North Korea to develop it's nuclear and EMP capabilities. This is a very scary thought. While we're not on the best of terms with China and Russia, the thought of a totally unhinged bat crap crazy dictator who hates America is truly terrifying.
In 2008 the EMP commission estimated that 90% of the population could die within 12 months of an EMP attack. The reasons given were starvation, disease, and societal breakdown. Former defense secretaries William Perry and James Schlesinger agreed with the EMP commission's findings and urged immediate action to protect the nations electrical grid. The DOE and Federal Energy Regulatory commission along with the National Academy of Sciences and National Intelligence Council came to the same conclusions. In 2013 a bipartisan effort introduced the S.H.I.E.L.D act but as usual it's stalled in a government committee (House Energy and Commerce Committee). While multiple experts and groups agree that this is a real threat, the lack of urgency from our government now seems to be the norm.
Panic in the Streets
Once people realize that something is seriously FUBAR there will be a rush on grocery stores, large hardware stores, camping gear stores, pharmacies and any other stores people think they might find something useful. It's been commonly reported that our grocery stores only have enough food on the shelves for 3 days with out resupplying. How long do you think that food will last in a panic? A matter of hours at most, although the likelihood that most modern vehicles won't run might slow down the emptying of the shelves since people will have to walk and carry what they can. Few people will have cash on them to buy what they need, so they will just take it. I hope you are someone who has had the foresight to stock up on supplies beforehand because trying to do it during a panic will be dangerous.
What should you do?
If you have a modern vehicle with computers running everything, I would suggest that you go out now and purchase extra computer modules and put them in a Faraday cage. Learn which ones you need and where they are located on the vehicle. Learn how to change them out. My particular truck has 2 main computers. After getting the computers, I had the dealership program them from my trucks VIN # so they should be plug and play. If you change out the main computer you may have to do what is called a Key Relearn Procedure. I would suggest printing out the instructions and putting them in the Faraday cage along with your extra computers. Another thing that you might find useful is a DC to AC power converter. These can be hooked to a 12 volt battery and can then run AC appliances. The larger the converter the more things you can run. I would also suggest getting a solar charger and putting that in the Faraday cage as well. This can be used to charge Tablets, phones, car batteries, etc. You also need to think about the food you stock up on. There are Freeze dried packaged foods that will last for years. Stock up on canned foods that you normally eat and rotate them to keep them fresh. a 25 LB. bag of rice and beans are cheap and last a long time. It may be boring but it will fill your belly and keep you nourished. Stock up on Multi-vitamins as well. Your diet will most likely start to suffer so having supplements to keep your body healthy might just help keep you sharp and alive. Water availability is crucial. With no power, the water that cities have stored in their tanks is all you have. If you live in a high rise and the storage tank is lower than your apartment or condo you won't get water. If you live on a lower floor you will only have it for a short period of time. Fill your bath tubs immediately. You should fill any empty containers you have with water. Stock up on bottled water. Your water heater will also have water in it. If you need medications, talk to your doctor and see if you can get an extra 3 month supply to keep on hand. Hopefully you're lucky enough to have a doctor that believes in being prepared. Your Health insurance might not pay for the extra supply but it would be worth it. I think that Type 2 Diabetes and high cholesterol won't be as much of a problem since we won't be eating all of the fast food crap that most Americans are eating that cause these issues in the first place.
Another thing you should consider is a comprehensive First Aid Kit. I wouldn't suggest one of the pre-packaged ones that have 5 of this and 10 of this, I mean put one together like an EMT or Paramedic would have. Splints, Israeli bandages, sutures, Gauze, anti bacterial, Ace Bandages, tape, scissors, tweezers, magnifying glass, disposable gloves, Epipen, Lidocaine, syringes. Learn how to use these items. Don't use them if not absolutely necessary, your supply will be limited and might have to last for years.
If you start looking on the internet for EMP articles, you will find them in abundance. These will run the gamut of well respected experts to the lowly survivalist / prepper. Conspiracy theorist will abound and the information they present or their reasoning might be suspect by some, someone who is truly prepping for an EMP attack will have a lot of useful information as well as some not so realistic suggestions. I'm not saying that all information isn't useful or realistic, only that no one really knows exactly what will happen and what will fail during an EMP attack. If we do overload our electrical grid though, we're screwed for years, and that's if we're not invaded and have to put our efforts toward fending off the invaders.