Letter: Staying Put in a Chicago Apartment?


I love the website but having difficulties. I live in an urban environment, in a good town but near a rough section of Chicago…which causes crime to seep into our borders (theft a huge problem). I live in an apartment, with limited storage space….limited space in general. So much seems geared to those who live in a bit more suburban or rural communities. I want to be prepared but overwhelmed is an understatement, as well as feeling stymied by many factors outside of my control, i.e. space and lack of land. I have looked through the archives, perhaps not carefully enough, so forgive me for the following question: Are there any resources you can recommend for someone urban like myself?

JWR Replies: It is fine to plan to stay in the city for a few days during a discrete event wherein the power grid stays up, or when it only goes down briefly. However, attempting to hunker down in an apartment in a major metropolitan region during a grid-down collapse would be foolish. That has already been described at length in the blog, as far back as 2007. See: https://survivalblog.com/letter-re-hunkering-down-in-an/

Your best bet is to have a well-stocked retreat that is well-removed from urban areas, and plan to get there quickly, ahead of the inevitable flood of refugees. My novel “Patriots” was about a group of Chicagoans who planned to do just that.

Some techniques for storing supplies in an apartment have been discussed in the SurvivalBlog on several occasions. See, for example:

The bottom line: Do the best you can with your resources. Team up with like-minded friends and relatives. Always have a Plan B.

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