What’s your lifeboat plan?

Argentine ship General Belgrano surrounded by life rafts after being torpedoed by the HMS Conqueror during the Falklands War. The ship sank in 30 minutes, but 770 of her nearly 1000 man crew survived.

Watch this YouTube video. It’s a bit less than 5 minutes, and I’ll wait right here. Well, I’ll be down below the video.

Financial forecasters are expecting this winter to be, at a minimum, the worst winter in the UK since the winter of 1946-47. Unlike the cold and snow of 1946-47, the big concern this winter is the price of energy. While the normal winter weather in the UK isn’t like Alaska, it tends toward cold and wet, raining as much as half the month in January and February. This means that whatever source of heat you use, you’ll be using it all through the winter, say from early October until sometime in April, and probably more than that. UK energy prices, due to government policies and markets, tend toward the high side by US standards, with an “normal” heating bill of around £2,000 for the season, up until now. It’s widely expected that energy prices will rise 80-100% this winter. Some businesses and industries my curtail their hours or shutdown all together in order to conserve energy for residential use, but that means those workers now have no paychecks coming in. Add to that the increasing cost of food, any food shortages and things may get bad.

As a prepper, I hold it as an article of faith that every responsible adult should have a lifeboat plan. This is your backup for the backup of your backup plan, the one you use when everything has gone wrong and every event has been your worst assumption. It’s when you’ve been forced up to the edge of the precipice, and the only thing for it’s to jump and hope the water’s deep enough.

For me, that point is when we’ve lost the ability to live in our home and we’ll never have that option again. This is distinctly not for a situation where times are “normal” and the infirmities of old age have led us to decide that some sort of retirement community is our best option. This is for when the SHTF fairy has visited. I’m not expecting us to get to that point unless one of three things happens:

  • We run out of income and money in the bank
  • Health issues or age mean we can’t keep up with the demands of running a low energy household
  • Mad Max is actually a thing

At the moment, running out of money is unlikely but increasingly possible. Health/age issues could become a problem, but barring accident or unforeseen illness is unlikely in the next few years. I honestly don’t see Mad Max becoming a thing, although we could slip far closer to it than I’d like. But I have a plan, and even that plan has a backup. For us, it involves our RV, its tow vehicle, and my pickup truck. I’m watching for a cheap bed cover that I can just stick out back somewhere under a tarp, just in case we get to the bitter end, when utterly everything has gone wrong on the contingency ladder. I won’t go into the details; most of you are of the mindset to figure out the broad brushstrokes from just that short description.

I think your lifeboat plan should be the best considered part of your survival plans, because this is likely your last chance to keep body and soul together for a while longer. You’re going to be making hard decisions under conditions of uncertainty and high stress, and you may have to make them quickly. It’ll be easier if you think through as many scenarios as possible beforehand, while it’s quiet and no one is panicking, and document them. Yes, in writing, in a couple of binders, on a thumb drive and with a spare set vacuum-sealed and in some sort of metal container. Have lists of the things you’ll want to take and where each item will be stored. In our case some of each category will be in the RV, the tow vehicle and the pickup. If one or more breaks down or can’t navigate the road, I don’t want to find myself repacking infront of everyone + dog.

Have several destinations in mind, with multiple routes pre-mapped to each. Have a GPS for each vehicle and maps and compases to back up the GPS.

If you’re thinking “Hey, that sounds like a bugout plan,” you’re right. However, a lot of people I talk to think of bugging out as a temporary thing, something to do until things cool off and they can go home. This isn’t temporary-this is a one-way trip into unknown territory. You won’t want to be caught without something important when you’re never going to be able to replace it. Walmart is closed for the duration, which will likely be forever. Plan hard.

I’m not going to bore you with details. Look up any of the various good tutorials on bugging out. Those will get you started. I will be happy to anwer specific questions, as long as you don’t mind your question being turned into a blog post.

Get on it. Time is short.

3 thoughts on “What’s your lifeboat plan?

  1. Moving into new territory may not be possible in some areas. Roads may be closed, the locals may not take kindly to new people. My opinion is to get your new location early, or now, and set up. Try to assess if the spot is relatively secure or defensible. I don’t think we can cover all possibilities, but try to hit some of them.

    1. You’re right, though, about having a plan. Look hard at what is really possible for destination and routes of travel, and what you need. Things may not go as planned, by a long shot. Other people, whether relatives or strangers, may throw your plans off schedule, or add burdens.

  2. At first glance this needs to be done a few different ways. First, a local plan for where do you go….can you double or triple up for security? Is there another site to get to? Second, lets call this one a Regional plan…..within your current state or adjacent state and lastly, what’s the long term plan. Family across country? A former place you lived?
    Now lets think about what is realistic. In most cases if you are being uprooted, the surrounding area is as well so your long term prospects are slim regarding cross country travel. The localized version is most realistic. SouthernNH is correct in what to consider…….Think and Plan. Test that plan and make adjustments.

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