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By March 31, 2012 Read More →

In Time of Disaster: Short Term Shelter Considerations

In Time of Disaster: Short Term Shelter Considerations
With Your Hosts Karen Johansen and Chris Watson
30 March 2012

Tonight, we hosted a great show with lots of chat room interaction about a topic that many people take for granted until they are suddenly without it- SHELTER.  We focused upon short term sheltering ideas and considerations that one might utilize or incorporate should they find themselves caught short in an emergency or on the road in a bug-out or get-home situation.  For the purposes of the show, we defined short term shelters as shelters in which you normally would not use for more than 72 hours at a time.

We laid out some ideas for expedient shelters, such as lean-tos, cardboard boxes, abandoned vehicles, tarps, snow caves, and ponchos.  While we did not tell HOW to construct these shelters, we aimed to briefly describe them and talk about their employment and safety consideration.  We also discussed how your region and climate have much influence on the type of expedient shelters that you may employ.

We went on to discuss what we called PLANNED shelter options.  These would be options such as tents, hammocks, and bivy tents.  These shelters are carried by those prepared to stay outside and provide good protection from the elements when used properly.  We discussed the use of ground cloths and proper placement to minimize weather challenges and to mitigate drainage issues.

We finished our ideas segment with Environmental shelters.  In essence, we talked about using the environment to provide the shelter for somebody.  No matter where one is, in an urban or suburban location, there are options.  Abandoned buildings such as barns, sheds, offices, stores, warehouses, and homes were options discussed.  We talked about thinking outside of the box and utilizing garbage containers and culverts, in a pinch.  We talked about the legal issues of trespassing and breaking and entering.  We finished with a discussion about the potential confrontations with other squatters and displaced people in the same space.

We moved onto safety and security concerns and talked about approach security to minimize surprise appearances of other travelers or persons with ill will.  We discussed fire and heating options and talked about banking fires to use the heat effectively and to minimize your signature.  We talked about “critters” that may be sharing the space, such as snakes, rodents, bats, and bugs.

We closed the show with some environmental concerns with confined spaces and hazardous materials.  We defined what confined spaces are and how to recognize some inherent and unseen dangers when inhabiting them.  We talked about some simple environmental and haz-mat (HAZardous MATerial) concerns to avoid, as well.

We invite you to join us every Friday evening at 9pm Eastern/8pm Central for our show “In Time of Disaster” on American Prepper Radio .  You can check us out online at  You can check out my bio at the American Preppers Network where I blog under my name and under the handle RedHorse_Ronin and you can see Karen’s bio at  We look forward to seeing every Friday night.  For both us and American Prepper Radio, thank you and we hope that you keep your eye on the horizon, nose to the wind, and head on a swivel!

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2 Comments on "In Time of Disaster: Short Term Shelter Considerations"

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  1. Chris Watson says:

    Follow us on Twitter.!/followers

  2. Shikh says:

    gat31why wouldn’t the ceshee be used? for 6 bucks you can get a box of powdered milk you can mix up what you need to use for the ceshee packet and it doesn’t go bad or need refrigeration if you only mix what you need.Also, think of canned meats or even pouches of meat. I have pouches of turkey and cans of tuna, ham, chicken, and beef.Spam is always good for eggs and grits or just fried. Even the ramen noodle flavor packets or bouillon cubes with flour and a can of chicken will make a mean mess of chicken and dumplings. At sams they have a gallon of popcorn butter oil and it works for butter flavoring as well as cooking oil and again doesn’t need to be refrigerated. Popcorn is an easy snack food as well as a fun food for the kids that’s easy to make, cheap to buy, and easy to store. Jelly packets from restaurants are also easy to store and doesn’t need the fridge. Just ask for extra every time you get a mcmuffin or whatever. Same goes for packets of salad dressing as well. Next time you get a minute look at your fridge and see all the alternative ways to provide those same items without refrigeration you might be surprised at what you can get away with in a smaller scale.