If you absolutely have to leave your home as a result of a catastrophic event, the best alternative is a retreat of some sort, such as a secondary home. If those options are not possible, here are a few ideas that are great alternatives to a site-built retreat.
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Survivor Truck: When considering a self-contained unit that can easily travel in challenging terrain, the SurvivorTruck II is a great option. Built around a Ford Excursion, this truck can carry enough supplies and equipment for a family of three to last up to six months. It has an exoskeleton that supports a rooftop tent and awning for shelter, a generator and extra fuel along with a wide range of mission-specific supplies. The interior has a storage system for organizing various supplies, along with a 12-volt DC refrigerator/freezer combo for keeping food and medications (if needed) from spoiling. Pricing is contingent upon what options are requested and whether or not the client supplies their own vehicle for the build. (survivortruck.com; 844-378-7848)
BIBO Trailer: While a standard option was featured in the last issue of this publication, the BIBO (Bug-In Bug-Out) trailer has a Rough Terrain Package with an articulating hitch and a higher suspension for off-road travel to remote areas. This upgraded model offers enough room for food, water and supplies for two people for 30 days, just like the standard model. It can also be configured for contingency items that will enable self-sustainment for an indefinite amount of time, depending on the need and extent of damage caused by the disaster. The weight of this unit is designed so that, depending on the configuration, a mid-sized sedan or small SUV can tow it. (bibooutfitters.com; 904-502-7693)
DIY Upgrades: The most budget-friendly option is the use of an existing personal vehicle with collected supplies and sustainment items. Going back to the rule of threes in regards to survival—with three hours to find shelter, three days for water and three weeks to find food—I tend to pack the vehicle in reverse.
When planning for the evacuation for an extended stay, the food and sustainment supplies gets packed first, as they will be needed last in the order of importance. Water comes next with related support items, such as a standard cooler or an upgraded model such as the Edgestar FP430 fridge/freezer combination unit (edgestar.com) for keeping food and medications from spoiling if needed.
A backup power source like the lightweight Survival Power Systems’ 30-amp LiFePo4 battery (survpwrsys.com) with the company’s 100-watt solar blanket is a great choice. Last to get packed in the vehicle is the shelter, which consists of a 10-by-10-foot, pop-up canopy with a four-person dome tent and a couple of collapsible camp chairs.
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This article was originally published in the SURVIVOR’S EDGE™ Winter 2016 edition. Subscription is available in print and digital editions here.