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How To Build An Emergency Shelter

Since I served in the Navy, Army, and Air Force I learned to survive situations at sea and on the ground. Preparing shelter is one of the most essential survival skills you can have. When it comes to civilians, there are two types of people in this world, those that prepare for the worst and those who fly by the seat of their pants and handle things as they come.

As times change, more and more people are beginning to take on the qualities of the former instead of the latter. It used to be that people on the fringe were the ones that saw disaster looming in the near future, but now due to all the crazy in the world today, the average person has grown concerned with what could happen next. Whether you have concerns about the end of the world or you just want shelter from a worse-than-average storm, constructing a shelter in or near your home can help.

Natural disasters are one of the bitter realities that we have to live with. These catastrophes are unpredictable most of the time and can strike any corner of the world. Whether it is a flood, earthquake, hurricane, or a volcanic eruption, disasters leave thousands of people homeless. Disasters don’t care about your name, gender, social status, race or religion. Although we cannot stop these natural calamities from happening, we can prepare a shelter that can be used when a disaster strikes.

It’s not smart for you to rely only on the government to help you during a disaster because they are not able to help or protect every human being affected in the vast region. You should be self-sufficient and rely on your own skills to survive such a situation. You need to know what steps to take if the unpredictable happens, rehearse them with your family, friends, and loved ones, and plan out procedures to be followed for communications and obtaining needed supplies.


One of the most basic and vital precaution to be taken is the preparation of a shelter. A proper shelter may be used temporarily or as a permanent short notice home if disaster strikes. Various materials that are readily available in regular times, but are almost impossible to find during a natural disaster, can be used to make a shelter.

The first alternative during a disaster scenario is to use a tarp. For some reason, this option usually does not come to mind during a chaotic situation. Most people use a tarp when repairing their homes or covering woodpiles. However, in an emergency situation, these tarps can be used to make an emergency shelter that is economical and resistive to most extreme scenarios and situations. The tarp can be used as a temporary shelter until better living conditions become available.

When creating your shelter space, make sure you and your family can access it easily. If you build a shelter or find an empty house or barn, make sure the doors are secure enough to protect you, but not so secure that you cannot get inside them quickly. You may not have a lot of warning when the time comes to utilize your shelter. If you can access it in just a few minutes, you will reduce the length of time you and your loved ones are exposed to danger. Make sure the entrance is secured once you have entered the shelter, so you are protected from harm.

If you experience a disaster or event that leaves you stuck in your shelter for a few days, you will need the necessities of life to survive. So, before an emergency arises, be sure to stock your shelters with plenty of the essentials: line the walls with shelves of food, water, and utensils necessary for eating. You may also want to include toiletries like toothbrushes and medical supplies, as well. Also, remember essentials like toilet tissue and consider where your bathroom will be within the shelter. If you and your loved ones have to spend several days barricaded, it can be very unpleasant if you do not plan ahead.


When you are in your shelter, you will be closed off from the rest of society, but it is crucial to find a way to receive communications, especially from a news source. Determine if you can use a weather radio or receive an Internet connection in your shelter. Also, consider your electricity needs and keep a stock of batteries on hand in your shelter.

Finally, if all other forms of communication fail, determine a way to notify outsiders that you are in your shelter. Should your family get stuck, you will want rescuers to know they are in the shelter once the threat of danger has passed on the outside.

Make sure you have some extra identification in your shelter in case you forget to bring or lose yours. You want the authorities to easily recognize you as a legal citizen, as such events are an opportunity for criminals to use the situation to their advantage. Since the space inside your shelter is limited, bring only the essential items you need to survive, such as clothes, sleeping bag, blanket, pillow, medicines, cash, checkbooks, credit cards, flashlight, and toiletries.

Finally, be sure all members of your family are aware of the shelter. Let them know it is a gathering place in case of an emergency. You may even want to have a few drills, so everyone knows the procedure before it is needed. I hope you never have to use this advice, but it will be helpful to know if you do.

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One thought on “How To Build An Emergency Shelter”

  1. And a hearty Happy New Year! 2021! To All of the Great Folks @ FIGHTFAST/TRS. Keep up the great work! Thank you for all that you do for all of us! Youz guyz are the BOMB! You are so cool! You freeze ice! LOL!!! Sincerely, Mark Brown, Florida, USA, 34653.🏁🤘🇺🇸✌