What To Do In Case of a Nuclear Explosion: Tips from the US Armed Forces Survival Manual
Amid the Ukraine-Russia conflict, many Americans are concerned about the possibility of a nuclear weapon going off.
A popular TikTok account, Novice Prepper (NP), put together a handy guide on surviving a nuclear explosion.
Novice Prepper presented tips from the U.S. Armed Forces Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Survival Manual in a recent viral video.
NP says that there is practically zero chance of survival if you’re within the actual blast radius. A nuclear explosion would completely incinerate everything within the blast radius, so your best bet is to “bend over and kiss your [butt] goodbye.”
The blast radius in Hiroshima was about 1.5 miles, and modern bombs can reach a radius of 3 to 8 miles.
If you’re roughly 50 to 100 miles away from the blast, you’ll want to make a family plan of action ahead of time.
Get underground and stay there
Ideally, you’d want to grab your loved ones and hunker down in the corner of a basement. Most basements are encased in cinder blocks, concrete, and earth, which greatly decrease the spread of nuclear radiation and fallout.
You can also cover up your windows with sandbags, dirt, wood insulation, or anything that would help stop radiation from seeping into your home.
If you get exposed to radiation and fallout, take off your clothes, take a shower, and put on some fresh clothes. If you react quickly enough, you can avoid up to 95% of the contamination that could very seriously affect your skin and hair.
Now that you’re safely underground, stay there for as long as your food and water supplies can allow.
It is said that nuclear fallout decreases significantly over time—by a factor of 10 every 7 hours, meaning that 48 to 72 hours should be enough for levels to drop to non-lethal levels. However, this 7-10 rule is considered a rule of thumb based on observed data and may be inaccurate.
But wait – what if I don’t have a basement?
NP emphasizes that “nothing is going to be as good as cinder blocks and earth,” but provides advice for people who don’t have basements.
“You’re going to want to cover all of the windows and doors in your house” with things like “blankets, plastic tarps, pillows, whatever you can find.”
“Make sure you have a lot of duct tape, nails, hammers,” he says. After you cover up all the doors and windows, find a room in the center of your house.
“If you don’t have a room, maybe there’s a closet. If there’s no closet, maybe build a little fort. Make sure you’re on the main level of your home, not the top floor.“
Basement or not, you’ll need supplies
“Make sure you have canned food, water, and maybe a bucket to use the bathroom. You might be in there for a while,” NP says, reiterating the 10 to seven rule.
“The longer you stay in a safe place, the better.”