How to Prepare for Nuclear War


( – Gone are the days of the Cuban Missile Crisis, when children were taught to hide beneath their desks in the event of a nuclear war. In fact, for the most part, preparation for a nuclear attack has become all but ignored in America. But with rising tension between Russia, China, and the United States, should the population be reconsidering the need to prepare for this nightmare scenario?

Cover the Basics

As with any disaster, survival starts with having the basics covered: shelter, water, and food.


Immediately following a nuclear blast, it’s important to get indoors as quickly as possible. The best place to be is in a basement (unless a bomb shelter is available), but if that isn’t an option, then stay as close to the middle of the building as possible, on the bottom floor. This will provide a bit of shielding from radiation particles.

Immediately shut off ventilation systems and seal any areas where air could leak in from outside until the fallout cloud has passed. Duct tape is a good option here.


It could be a few days or even weeks before it is safe to go outdoors again, so having a large supply of water is a must. It is recommended that an emergency supply contain one gallon of water per person, per day. For a family of five, this means having five gallons of water on hand for each day.


In tight quarters with all ventilation sealed, cooking will be problematic. To combat this, store foods that do not require heating before being consumed. This can range from a variety of canned goods to food bars.

Beyond the Basics

Surviving the aftermath of a nuclear attack is going to require most of the same things one would need in a blackout, such as:

    •  Emergency Kit – A standard first aid kit to handle any injuries sustained before or after entering the shelter. Potassium iodine is also recommended, as it helps to block radiation from being absorbed by the thyroid.
    • RadioHaving a radio enables communication from the outside world, which will be incredibly important following a nuclear event. A hand-crank radio is advisable, as these don’t require batteries to operate.
    • Light – Being locked in a basement, or in a sealed-off room without power, will be difficult enough without it being dark. Considering there is a good chance a nuclear attack could result in an electromagnetic pulse that will shut down the power grid, it’s important to plan ahead. Candles and lanterns will work, but be careful. In a sealed room, carbon monoxide poisoning is a very real threat.
    • Comforts – Clothes, bedding, toys for children, and anything that will make the stay more bearable. This could even include playing cards or other games to pass the time.

Unfortunately, there is a need to prepare for a nuclear attack on US soil. While most countries would think twice before attacking the United States, countries such as North Korea or Iran might actually consider it. There is always the chance a rogue group gets their hands on a nuclear device and unleashes it in a terrorist attack, as well.

While a terrorist faction may find it difficult to get their hands on a full-blown nuclear weapon, the chance of one managing to set off a dirty bomb is much higher. To see what one can do to survive this scenario, check out our article here.

~Here’s to Your Survival!

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