Wiggly Amps

Aka Electronics.
Electronics have become an integral part of survivalism BUT apart from modern vehicles, communications, and finance, they aren’t the be all when it comes to getting by when it comes to a survival situation.

There again the modern world totally collapses without the power to make them work.
Electricity is often the first casualty of a disaster and when that goes everything falls apart.

Consider that when the US national grid failed in 2003, it brought down more than 508 generating units at 265 power plants.That represented some 80% of all available power.

From the top, major utilities failed.
Mains power failed, rail, transport in general, water pumping and purification shut down.
Sewage spilled, gas stopped pumping, and fuel for vehicles was unavailable.
Cellular crashed BUT line comms i.e. telephones were OK.
Domestic radio ran on backup power but TV went dark from the distributors to end users.
In short VITAL day to day communications and information networks collapsed.
Fire broke out, some looting, traffic gridlock.
Then there is money. Banks couldn’t function, ATM’s shut down, supermarkets couldn’t trade, credit cards stopped.

Basically NO food, water, power, communication, money, limited medical, and lawlessness.
All because of a simple software glitch.

It took a long time to recover from this event as modern life uses a system of “last second ordering” to maintain stock in shops and essential services .
In short, the computers go down, nothing gets ordered.
You can’t move what stock you’ve got because computers control distribution within warehouses.
They also control transport infrastructure (traffic lights, rail signals, aeroplane movements).
In manufacturing (especially drugs) systems won’t run. Production lines fail so nothing is made, nothing packaged, dispatched, arrives in shops.
What is the main danger to us survivalists then?
Computers, computers, and more computers.
The world has gone totally digitally MAD.

These things are hackable, sensitive to power failure and component failure.
Operator error is also more commonplace than big firms would like to admit.
Not forgetting software errors.
Other factors like an EMP generated pulse from a nuclear explosion, man made pulse weapons, or sun spot activity can also inhibit, disrupt, or at worse destroy the function of electronic equipment.

The simple things in life come into play too such as:-

  1. Bad weather bringing down power lines and my all time favorite worry
  2. The UK Government with their policies that will see brownouts and power outages within the next few years due to poor infrastructure investment.
  3. International and Domestic Terrorism
  4. Simple mischief or criminal hacking of control systems
  5. UK power stations rely HEAVILY on foreign gas imports. Lose them, lose power.
  6. Aged power systems. Our coal fuelled power stations are getting old and due to EU interference are going to be turned off to please the tree huggers.

EVERYTHING is linked nowadays through the Internet, cables, microwave, and optical links, so the chance of a CASCADE SYSTEM FAILURE IS HIGH. 

Yet the modern world largely ignores this danger. Why is that?

There are only three considerations regarding protection of electronic equipment that affect us as survivalists.

  1. Firstly LOSS of power,
  2. ERRATIC power regulation, and finally
  3. RADIATED ENERGY  i.e. an EMP.

1 & 2 are a simple matters to deal with using a generator as a back up and a line conditioning unit to “smooth out” any irregularities.

3 I’ve already covered as far as I want to as it can get to be a complicated point of study.
Follow this link to EMP and Geo-mag Storm Basics 

NOTHING can help you when the information or power infra structure has collapsed. Quite simply the day to day world as we know it ceases to operate.

There again that’s what we plan for isn’t it?
Fuel, water, food, medical, standby power, and finance.

The biggest problem is transport though which is needed for foraging, trade, and basic movement.
Modern society and their stupid “green is best” legislation has largely seen the demise of basic vehicles and most vehicles cannot run without electronics (ECU’s).
It’s also rare to have a vehicle that is “hardened” to withstand the effects of EMP.

My simple approach is to have mothballed a non electronic era vehicle and stock pile the few EMP sensitive devices i.e. capacitors, ignition coils, starter solenoid, electric fuel pump and light bulbs.
I can’t afford to keep it on the road though BUT I figure that when all hell has happened, the police are going to have more important things to worry about than whether my old banger has tax and insurance.

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