This week we are going to talk about some valuable SHTF skills for preppers, that could be important to know.
While it’s impossible to know everything about everything, we can learn a little about a lot of things. The skills, occupations and trades we have today could drastically change in a post collapse setting. A lot of jobs these days are behind a desk, in a cubicle, or retail sales. Any disaster scenario would require good old hands on work, rebuilding, and require much more self-sufficiency.
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Valuable SHTF Skills for Preppers:
Any thriving society needs a number of different people with different skills, but how this looks in a post collapse scenario is anyone’s guess.
This article and broadcast go through some of the general skills we should be learning now, and some of the trade skills that would be useful for rebuilding society.
General Preparedness Skills
Learning about first aid is not only something very important in a SHTF scenario, it’s also useful today.
The majority of what a SHTF first aid kit is designed to deal with is flesh wounds. This means anything from a paper cut to a severed limb. In all cases, your purpose in providing first-aid is to stop the bleeding and protect the wound. Depending on the size of the wound, this can require many different things.
Consider stocking up on the following:
Irrigation syringe, Alcohol towelettes, Antibacterial ointment, Butterfly closures or Steri-strips
Clotting agents – There are several brands of these available, such as Celox or QuikClot. They are designed to help speed up the clotting process. Available as crystals to sprinkle on the wound or imbedded in a bandage
Cloth adhesive bandage strips – The cloth type are flexible, so they won’t pop off when the patient moves. Cloth knuckle bandages – One of the hardest things to bandage is a knuckle, because of the movement. This specialty bandage will keep scraped knuckles clean, moving with the finger.
- Cloth fingertip bandages, Large bandages, Medical tape
- SWAT Tourniquet – Useful as a tourniquet, but also as a pressure dressing when only tightened half-way. Pressure on the wound reduces the bleeding
- Israeli bandage – The Israeli bandage is a combat bandage designed for use in the Israeli military. It combines a clotting agent with a bandage and a wrap to hold the bandage in place. Used properly, it is also a pressure bandage to reduce bleeding. These are available in 4″ and 6″ sizes. One of the easiest ways to treat a serious wound
As you can see, there is a lot here. That’s partially because of needing different sizes of bandages for different types of wounds. But at the same time, you can literally use half the items listed here for one wound, if it is a serious one.
Broken bones fall into two general categories: fractures and compound fractures.
A compound fracture is when the end of the bone sticks out through the skin. In such cases, the fracture needs to be treated and the open wound needs to be treated. A simple fracture eliminates the need to treat the open wound, leaving only the broken bone to treat.
Sam splint – While just about anything can be used for making a splint, a Sam splint is much easier. This is a sheet of soft aluminum, covered with about 1/4″ of foam rubber. You can cut it with medical scissors and form it with your hands. This makes it easy to make a splint that will protect pretty much any break.
Elastic bandages – Commonly referred to as “Ace bandages,” you will need these to hold the Sam splint in place. They are also useful for dealing with sprains and damaged ligaments
Combat cravat – Referred to as a bandage, it’s really just a big triangular piece of fabric, normally olive drab in color. Ideal for use as a sling for broken arms
Other Useful Medical Tools to Have in Your SHTF First Aid Kit
You’re going to need a few tools to work with, both for treating trauma and for simple diagnosis of disease. While you and I aren’t trained medical personnel, a few tools can make a lot of difference.
- Medical scissors, Fine-pointed tweezers, Blood sugar monitor, Thermometer, Blood pressure monitor, Eye cup
- Jeweler’s loupe – A magnifying glass that is held in place by the eye socket. Great when you’re trying to find those little splinters to remove with the tweezers
- Hemostats – In the case of a severed limb, hemostats allow you to close off veins that are pumping blood
- Tourniquet – Buy the one-handed kind, so you can use it on yourself, if needed. The idea is not to cut off all blood flow, but to slow it down until clotting occur
- Stethoscope – For checking heartbeat (not an absolute requirement)
Fire Starting: If you have been interested in preparedness for any amount of time, you know many different ways to start a fire. This is because it’s absolutely necessary in any survival situation, and something we tend to take for granted.
Sanitation: When things are already bad, the last thing we want to do is make it worse by getting sick. Sanitation is not only washing the dishes, it’s waste Removal, trash removal and personal hygiene. The average American uses 100 single rolls of toilet paper each year.
Shelter: While none of us plan on bugging out, we need to be ready if we need to. Learning how to build a shelter may be one of those things you never need to do, but if you ever need to, you’ll be glad you know how.
Sewing/Mending: In a SHTF scenario there will be no Walmart or clothing stores, so when the seat of your pants splits open, you’re going to be on your own. The same holds true for shoes, socks, and coats.
Ham Radio: When all other forms of communications are down, being able to operate a ham radio will make you a very valuable person.The great thing about ham radio is it doesn’t matter how old you are. As a matter of fact, the older you are, the more you probably know about ham radio.
Alternative Energy: If the power grid goes down we are going to need ways to generate electricity. While batteries are great, they won’t last forever. Learning about solar and other renewable energy could make life a whole lot easier when the sun goes down, or temperatures rise and fall.
The thing is, traditional power companies aren’t the only way to get energy to our homes. What’s more, you don’t need to go off the grid to have these types of alternative energy sources in your home. Some of these types of energies include things like:
- Solar power
- Wind power
- Water power
- Geothermal energy
Water Safety: Another thing that gets taken for granted these days is clean drinking water. A majority of people don’t even think twice about water, because it’s already clean when it comes out of their faucets. Learning about water filtration, and water safety should be a top priority with preparedness.
Food Preservation: While there are many options when it comes to food storage, we need to be ready when refrigeration is not an option. Learning skills like canning, dehydrating, and how to package food to extend it’s shelf life are all important.
Gardening: Depending on how long a situation lasts, the food storage you have will eventually run out. Learning how to garden is a way to replenish your food storage, but it does have a learning curve. Start practicing now, and learn what works, and what doesn’t.
Hunting/Foraging: Another way to replenish your food supply is leaning about hunting and foraging. While the availability of different animals and plants will very depending on your situation, this could be helpful in an emergency. If you keep animals for food (like chickens and rabbits) you will also need to know how to process them, and breed them.
Self Defense: From hand guns to your hands, there are many different types of self defense for preppers. Regardless which method(s) you use, this is important for everyday life, as well as a post collapse or SHTF situation.
Cooking from Scratch: If you learn to cook from scratch, it not only increases your food storage options, it also will get you ready for when the boxed meals and fast food isn’t available.Learning to make bread is one of the easiest ways to learn to cook from scratch, and would be great to have in an SHTF scenario.
Primitive Skills: Leaning some primitive skills is not only fun to do, but it teaches you how to think outside the box. MUCH MORE TO COME WITH ALL THIS!!
Supplies might be in short supply in a post collapse society, and knowing how to MacGyver things might be important.
Here are 10 trade skills that would be useful in the rebuilding stages of a collapse scenario. These are not in any certain order, because it all depends on the situation and the community. While there are far more than just 10, these are the first that came to mind.
If you have any ideas that aren’t listed here, make sure and leave a comment below.
- 1 – Auto Mechanics
- 2 – Construction Workers
- 3 – Electricians
- 4 – Military Experience
- 5 – Welders
- 6 – Blacksmiths
- 7 – Gunsmiths & Reloading
- 8 – Teachers
- 9 – Plumbers
- 10 – Anyone in the Medical Field
Stay tuned for the next few call in shows where we go into detail of each of these skills even further individually!
Other useful items: