Science says zombies — lumbering, flesh-eating
corpses — don't exist in the real world. Except in rare
emergency room situations, dead people can't come back to life,
and even if they could, there is little reason to suspect they'd
wake up with a sudden, unquenchable appetite for human flesh.
Still, every time a criminal act of cannibalism
makes headlines, the Internet comes alive with chatter about an
impending zombie apocalypse. A spate of flesh-chomping that
occurred earlier this year, including the famous "Miami zombie
attack," even prompted the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention to reassure people that the zombie apocalypse isn't
But judging by the ongoing interest in zombies,
not everyone was convinced. For all those who fear that the
living dead really could rise up and go on a mass cannibalistic
rampage à la the classic 1968 film "Night of the Living Dead,"
we've put together a little guide to help you prepare for the
Fortunately, these tips will help you weather
many other types of disasters, too, from hurricanes to tornadoes
to pandemic virus outbreaks. So whether or not you believe in
the living dead, read on.
If a zombie attack (or some other catastrophe) crippled
society's infrastructure, you wouldn't want to be stuck without
basic necessities. Keep an emergency kit in your house.
According to the CDC, this kit should include enough supplies to
last you until you're able to make your way to a zombie-free
refugee camp (or disaster shelter, or until utility lines are
restored). Here's the gear you need to
survive zombie doomsday:
- Water: 1 gallon per person per day
- Food, namely canned goods and other
- Medications, including prescription and
- Tools and supplies,
such as a utility knife, duct tape, candles or flashlights,
a battery-powered radio
- Sanitation and hygiene supplies, such
as soap, towels, etc.
- Clothing and bedding,
including a change of clothes for each family member and
- Important documents, such as copies of
your driver's license, passport, and birth certificate
- First aid supplies to
treat basic cuts and lacerations
And while this wouldn't really help for any
other potential disasters, the online zombie-fearing community
also recommends keeping a baseball bat in
store. It doesn't require ammunition or skill, and can be
effective in clearing a path through hordes of notoriously
When chaos ensues, you won't be able to think
rationally. Your survival may depend on whether you came up with
an emergency plan in advance. The plan should apply in cases of
a flood, earthquake, blackout or, of course, when a pack of
zombies starts clambering across your front yard — and make sure
everyone in your household has it down.
Here's what your emergency plan should entail, according to
- Pick two meeting places for your
family, one close to your home and another farther away.
These come in handy if family members are separated when an
emergency kicks in, or if an immediate evacuation from your
home becomes necessary (such as in the case of a fire).
- Identify the types of emergencies that
are possible in your area. Besides a zombie apocalypse, this
may include floods, tornadoes, or earthquakes.
- Make a list of emergency contacts. This
should include local officials like the police and fire
department, as well as a more geographically-distant contact
who you can call during an emergency. This person can notify
the rest of your loved ones about your status.
- Plan your evacuation route, both out of
your home and out of your town. Make sure you know whose
house you will go to in case of an emergency (zombie-related
or otherwise) in your area.
Good luck out there. If zombies are real, you'll need it.