Top Disaster Threats By Region
Common Natural Disaster Threats
Nuclear Threats Plus Seismic Active Areas
While we constantly see in our news headlines the risk from North Korea, Iran, Pakistan, and a myriad of other potential nuclear threats, we hear very little about the disaster risk from the nuclear industry in our own backyards. Above is a map of nuclear facilities and seismic risks in the country. While many nuclear sites are in lower risk areas, not all are. Unfortunately, we have learned from the Fukushima plant in Japan that any combination of nuclear power and seismic activity needs to be weighed carefully, and if you live near these sites if needs to be a factor in your planning. You having to recover from a major earthquake would be bad enough without having to deal with potential nuclear fallout from a containment breach.
After considering nuclear power plant, we need to also consider nuclear missile sites. Based on estimates, the above map shows types and location of US intercontinental ballistic missile silo fields.
Chemical Weapon Storage Threats
Not only are nuclear weapon stockpiles a concern, there are also chemical weapon stockpiles still left in the United States. Thankfully, many of these stockpiles are dropping as old weapons are destroyed and we do not make more, but for anyone living in close proximity or down wind of these sites they should include bug-in supplies needed to isolate their homes from exterior air for days if needed.
Wildfires are a continuous threat to much of the western United States. For preppers that have a bug-out site in the country, proper wildfire risk reduction before each fire season needs to be performed. Check out Know Your Forest for a great guide to reducing your wildfire risk.
Each local community faces unique and potentially deadly threats that prepper should know about. Here is a great example of a direct threat I faced in a previous place I lived:
Western Washington State – Volcanoes & Lahars
Mount Rainer is an active volcano capped by snow and 25 glaciers which makes it a high risk for lahars; which are basically flowing concrete that can go 50 miles per hour and be as much as 100 feet thick. There are over 80,000 people in south Seattle region at risk from a lahar. Based on previous eruptions, the scientific community estimates a 1-in-10 chance of a lahar from Mount Rainer reaching the Puget Sound during our lifetimes.
A wide range of disaster can happen anywhere in the world. As smart preppers, it does not make sense to prepare for every potential disaster in the world. Instead, each person needs to review the top threats to their community and design their preps accordingly. In addition, unless a disaster is of epic proportions, there will be assistance coming, so you should bookmark Disaster Assistance on your phone. Assuming you can get a cell signal after a disaster, the site will direct you to local FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers that are being setup in the area.
Ultimately, we each need to prepare before a disaster by knowing which disasters are most likely to affect your community. This also means have response plans and guides printed out or in books in your home now, not just websites, which may or may not be available after a disaster. Amazon has a great selection of research books available for prepping for major disasters. We recommend you think about the unique threats to your community and invest in a book to help with preparing to face those threats.