pepper spray

Project Prepper, Part 36: New Gear For Around The Property

Getting back on track with the “Project Prepper” series of posts, I want to talk about some new gear I’ve picked up. As a somewhat-new homeowner, I understand there will be times when I’m forced to investigate God-knows-what around the property, day or night. And as my girlfriend and I have come to discover, we have quite the wildlife refuge going on outside our house. As such, I’ve acquired some items in case an encounter with a four-legged (or two-legged) creature isn’t exactly a “pleasant” one:

Outdoor Security Final

Maglite S6D015 6-D Cell Flashlight (Amazon.com, $24.88)

Some specs compiled from Amazon.com:

• 163 lumen Krypton 6-cell bulb
• 19.5 x 2.9 x 2.8 inches
• 2.8 pounds
• Machined aluminum
• Self-cleaning rotary switch, 3 position, On, Off and Signal (manual momentary on-off)
• Spare lamp safely secured in tailcap
• O-ring sealed for water resistance
• 1/2 turn, cam action focus, spot-to-flood

A favorite among old school cops/security guards. After popping 6 D cell batteries into the flashlight and wielding it for the first time, I now understand why. This 19.5-inch machined aluminum device is a beast, and bright to boot. No creature (two- or four-legged) in their right mind would want to mess with this thing.

I also picked up an accessory pack (Amazon.com, $8.68) for the flashlight, and have already affixed the terrific anti-roll device.

Tact Gear Tactical Vest (Sportsman’s Guide, $26.99 with member discount)

From the Sportsman’s Guide website:

16 pockets for mags, radios, flashlights, pepper spray and more.
Rugged 8 1/2-oz. 60/40 Poly / Cotton blend with DuPont™ Teflon® fabric protection
Concealed crossover backup gun pocket with VELCRO® brand closure
Brass zip front
Brass D-ring
Badge tab.

I don’t know if it’s possible to ever run out of pockets with this vest. I’ve treated it with water repellant and have it hanging in a coat closet for fast, easy access. The last two items are contained in the vest.

Mace Brand Pepper Spray Police Strength 10% Pepper Foam (Amazon.com, $14.19)

From Amazon.com:

• Compact yet powerful model is a convenient size for carrying.
• Flip Top Safety Cap
• 10% Foam Spray
• Contains UV Dye for marking assailants for easy identification

I bought a two-pack of Mace Pepper Foam some time ago for potential use indoors (supposed to reduce chance of area contamination). This is one of those canisters. Since the device may have to be deployed in close quarters, I’m sticking with the pepper foam outdoors for now.

Enlan Bee M024A Folding Knife (Ebay, $10.61)

From vendor hellogiftshop’s web page:

Producer: Enlan Cutlery Co.,Ltd
Model: M024A
Blade: 8Cr13MoV (58HRC) stainless steel
Handle: Aluminium+ Stainless Steel; Money clip
Size:
Whole length: ~170mm(6.7″);
Blade’s length: ~71mm(2.8″);
Closed Length: ~100mm(3.94″)
Liner Lock
Net Weight: ~99g

I was on the look out for a good-yet-inexpensive knockaround folding knife that wasn’t “scary” for these parts to keep in the vest. I’d heard decent things about Enlan Cutlery out of China, and came across model M024A (drop point, dual thumb studs, liner lock, realistic-looking wood grain, legal in municipality/Cook County/Illinois) for a measly $10 and change. Like every other piece of gear I talked about in this post, I still have to put my Enlan knife to the test. However, my first impressions of the folder are positive. I would have preferred to buy American here, but was unable to tick all the required boxes.

More next time…

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

(Editor’s note: Items added to “Gear And Supplies” page)

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Is Pepper Spray Legal In Chicago, Illinois? (2015 Update)

Last Wednesday, I blogged that I’d begin reviewing Chicago-area laws concerning self-defense tools starting this week.

Even though Survival And Prosperity addressed the subject of pepper spray or OC spray (from “oleoresin capsicum”) some time back, here’s a question I still keep hearing asked:

“Is pepper spray legal in Chicago, Illinois?”

To find out, let’s start at the top- meaning the State of Illinois. Looking at the Illinois Compiled Statutes, Criminal Offenses, (720 ILCS 5/) Criminal Code of 2012, “ARTICLE 24. DEADLY WEAPONS”:

(720 ILCS 5/24-1) (from Ch. 38, par. 24-1)
Sec. 24-1. Unlawful Use of Weapons.
(a) A person commits the offense of unlawful use of weapons when he knowingly:
(3) Carries on or about his person or in any vehicle, a tear gas gun projector or bomb or any object containing noxious liquid gas or substance, other than an object containing a non-lethal noxious liquid gas or substance designed solely for personal defense carried by a person 18 years of age or older

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Pepper (OC) spray appears legal to own and carry in the state of Illinois- so long as the individual carrying it is “18 years of age or older.”

Now let’s turn to Cook County. Here’s something I was just made aware of recently. From the Cook County Code of Ordinances, Part I- GENERAL ORDINANCES, Chapter 58- OFFENSES AND MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS, ARTICLE VI. OFFENSES AGAINST THE PUBLIC PEACE, Sec. 58-172. – Disorderly Conduct:

(a) It shall be unlawful for any person to commit disorderly conduct. A person commits disorderly conduct when he knowingly:
(6) Carries in a threatening or menacing manner, without authority of law, any razor, knife, stiletto, blackjack, bludgeon, metal knuckles, slingshot, any knife, the blade of which is released by a spring mechanism, including knives known as “switch-blades”, undetectable knives as defined in Section 58-176 of this Code, an object containing noxious or deleterious liquid, gas or substance or other weapon, or conceals said weapon on or about the person or vehicle

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Pepper (OC) spray appears legal to own and carry in Cook County, Illinois- so long as the individual carrying it is “18 years of age or older” (per the State of Illinois), does not carry it “in a threatening or menacing manner,” or “conceals said weapon on or about the person or vehicle.”

That last bit about concealing about the person or vehicle is bound to raise some eyebrows, I’m guessing.

Mace Pepper Foam

Finally, here’s what the City of Chicago has on the books regarding pepper (OC) spray. From the Municipal Code of Chicago, TITLE 8 OFFENSES AFFECTING PUBLIC PEACE, MORALS AND WELFARE, CHAPTER 8-24 FIREARMS AND OTHER WEAPONS, 8-24-020 Sale or possession of deadly weapons:

(e) No person shall carry on or about his person or in any vehicle, a tear gas gun projector or bomb or any object containing noxious liquid gas or substance, other than an object containing a non-lethal noxious liquid gas or substance designed solely for personal defense carried by a person 18 years of age or older; provided that this subsection shall not apply to any person listed in section 5/24-2(a)(1)-(14) of the Criminal Code, 720 ILCS 5/24-2(a).

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

There’s also this under 8-24-045 Noxious gas or liquid:

(a) No person shall use any device to discharge a noxious gas or liquid in an enclosed room in any Class C-1 or Class C-2 Assembly Unit, as defined in Chapter 13-56 of this Code, or in an enclosed room in any restaurant, bar or tavern that is a Class F Assembly Unit as defined in that chapter, if more than 20 persons are present in that room, unless the person is a peace officer, as defined in Section 8-20-010 of this Code, engaged in law enforcement activity. As used in this section, “noxious gas or liquid” means mace, pepper spray or any other substance that is intended or designed to cause irritation to the eyes, nose or mouth, or to cause nausea.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

So Is pepper spray legal in Chicago, Illinois?

Pepper (OC) spray appears legal to own and carry– so long as the individual carrying it:

• Is “18 years of age or older” (per the State of Illinois)
• Does not carry it “in a threatening or menacing manner” or “conceals said weapon on or about the person or vehicle” (per Cook County)
• Shall not use “any device to discharge a noxious gas or liquid in an enclosed room in any Class C-1 or Class C-2 Assembly Unit, as defined in Chapter 13-56 of this Code, or in an enclosed room in any restaurant, bar or tavern that is a Class F Assembly Unit as defined in that chapter, if more than 20 persons are present in that room” (per the City of Chicago)

Next time, I’ll be looking at expandable/collapsible/retractable batons and their legality in Chicago.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

(Legal disclaimer: This post is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact an attorney to obtain such advice.)

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Monday, January 19th, 2015 Government, Legal, Non-Lethal Weapons, Security, Self-Defense Comments Off on Is Pepper Spray Legal In Chicago, Illinois? (2015 Update)

Chicago-Area Legality Of Self-Defense Tools Revisited

“That’s why my attitude has changed to, fuck the citizens.
When you need help people, call a protester.
My check will still come every 1st and 16th of the month.”

-Comment left on Second City Cop blog post, December 24, 2014

In the future, I see a myriad of problems for Chicagoland residents when it comes to police protection. The source will be economic in nature, with the “thin blue line” getting stretched more than most can imagine as Chicago-area police agencies see their budgets slashed significantly with the next financial crisis.

I’d argue this situation has already arrived. Look at the Chicago Police Department and all the spin that’s being deployed and goal posts being moved by City Hall because of financial difficulties in achieving/maintaining a fully-manned police department.

I predict work conditions will also steadily deteriorate. De-policing and work stoppages could very well accompany this slide as law enforcement officers inevitably take stock of their situation.

Police activity could also decrease if certain politicians, race agitators, the mainstream media, and other self-interested parties continue to support and spotlight the police haters in our society. Just to give you an idea of how much attention is being given to these “squeaky wheels making lots of noise,” the Rolling Stone magazine website ran a piece on December 16 entitled:

“Policing is a Dirty Job, But Nobody’s Gotta Do It: 6 Ideas for a Cop-Free World”

And under the headline was this:

“It’s time to start imagining a society that isn’t dominated by police”

“It’s time to start imagining…” That pretty much summed up the piece right there.

Anyway, the point of this post is to announce that in light of what I see coming down the pipeline regarding police protection in and around the “Windy City,” I will be reviewing Chicago-area laws concerning self-defense tools.

Regular readers may recall that I pulled up information on the legality of such personal protection devices as expandable batons, knives, firearms, and pepper spray in Chicago, Cook County, and the State of Illinois starting around Halloween 2013. But seeing as new laws keep being added to the books, and in light of the personal safety challenges I think are ahead of us, now is the perfect time to revisit this material.

We’ll get started next week…

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Wednesday, January 14th, 2015 Firearms, Gear, Knives, Legal, Main Street, Mainstream Media, Preparedness, Public Safety, Self-Defense Comments Off on Chicago-Area Legality Of Self-Defense Tools Revisited

Pepper Spray Humor

Speaking of pepper spray, here’s a funny comment I saw the other day for one pepper spray product listed on Amazon.com, the world’s largest online retailer:

This is now legal in Michigan. Is a foaming spray so you will see it shoot and harder to wipe off. Has a dye added so the person will be marked for days after you spray them. You want a foam so the wind does not blow it back in your face. Has a very good finger safety so you will not set it off easily. Can is a good size and will do the job for sure…. when the attacker falls to the ground be sure to kick the in the head because they need a good kick in the head so they truly know they are stupid

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Think Amazon may have removed a not-so-nice term after “be sure to kick the” and before “in the head”?

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Thursday, January 2nd, 2014 Humor, Self-Defense Comments Off on Pepper Spray Humor

Is Pepper Spray Legal In Cook County, Illinois?

Right before Halloween, I blogged about the legality of pepper spray- or Oleoresin Capsicum (OC) spray as law enforcement/corrections commonly call it- in the city of Chicago, Illinois. I concluded:

So is pepper (OC) spray legal in Chicago? From what the material above says, I would think it is, as long as the spray is used in self-defense and in compliance with what’s stated in the Municipal Code of Chicago, and not in a threatening manner.

Okay. But how about the rest of Cook County, Illinois?

I couldn’t find anything in the Cook County Code of Ordinances that designates pepper spray as illegal. However, similar to what’s stated in the Municipal Code of Chicago, there’s this in Part I, “General Ordinances,” under Chapter 58, “Offenses And Miscellaneous Provisions,” Article VI, “Offenses Against The Public Peace”:

Sec. 58-172. Disorderly conduct.

(a) It shall be unlawful for any person to commit disorderly conduct. A person commits disorderly conduct when he knowingly…

(6) Carries in a threatening or menacing manner, without authority of law, any razor, knife, stiletto, blackjack, bludgeon, metal knuckles, slingshot, any knife, the blade of which is released by a spring mechanism, including knives known as “switch-blades”, undetectable knives as defined in Section 58-176 of this Code, an object containing noxious or deleterious liquid, gas or substance or other weapon, or conceals said weapon on or about the person or vehicle.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Punch in “pepper spray noxious” in a search engine query and the results show the term “noxious” has been used to describe pepper spray. The key here is not to “carry” the pepper spray in a “threatening or menacing manner.”

Otherwise, I would think pepper (OC) spray is legal in Cook County, Illinois, as long as it’s used in self-defense and complies with what’s stated in the Cook County Code of Ordinances.

Still, I would check local (municipal) laws to verify its legality in a particular jurisdiction.

You can read that part about noxious/deleterious liquids in the Cook County Code of Ordinances here.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

(Legal disclaimer: This post is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact an attorney to obtain such advice.)

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Thursday, January 2nd, 2014 Legal, Self-Defense Comments Off on Is Pepper Spray Legal In Cook County, Illinois?

Updated: Chicago Laws Concerning Self-Defense Tools

Phew! It took me a couple of hours this morning, but I just completed updating a number of posts and an entry on this blog’s “Resources” page related to Chicago laws concerning self-defense tools (firearms, knives, pepper spray, etcetera). When I wrote that material, the resource I used- the Municipal Code of Chicago as displayed on the American Legal Publishing Corporation website- did not reflect changes enacted by the City of Chicago on September 11, 2013, in Substitute Ordinance SO2013-6015. However, the revisions have now been addressed in the following posts:

Chicago-Area Laws Concerning Self-Defense Tools
Is Pepper Spray Legal In Chicago, Illinois?
Are Expandable Batons Legal In Chicago, Illinois?

Be advised that the City of Chicago did quite a bit of revising.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

(Legal disclaimer: This post is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact an attorney to obtain such advice.)

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Thursday, November 14th, 2013 Essential Reading, Firearms, Government, Knives, Legal, Self-Defense Comments Off on Updated: Chicago Laws Concerning Self-Defense Tools

Is Pepper Spray Legal In Chicago, Illinois?

(Editor’s note: The information below has been updated, and can be found here)

Kind of quiet today as it concerns local material for Survival And Prosperity.

Good.

That let’s me get away from commenting on the news a bit to focus on other topics.

Here’s one I’ve been wanting to blog about for a while now:

Is pepper spray legal in Chicago, Illinois?

You see, for some reason or another, people keep posting on various Internet sites that pepper spray- or Oleoresin Capsicum (OC) spray as law enforcement/corrections commonly call it- is illegal in the city of Chicago.

Case in point, from Yahoo! Answers:

I live in Chicago and pepper spray and tasers are both illegal in Illinois.

Then there’s this on Yelp:

FYI: Pepper Spray is illegal in the City of Chicago.

Even on websites where one might think an informed answer can be found on this issue is it being unintentionally disseminated that pepper spray is illegal. From INGunOwners.com:

I coulda sworn there’s a recent law that banned the use of tasers and pepper sprays in Chicago.

Referring back to an August 16, 2013, post I wrote about Chicago-area laws concerning self-defense tools, here’s what the Municipal Code of Chicago has to say about the matter. From Title 8, Chapter 24, “FIREARMS AND OTHER WEAPONS”:

8-24-045 Noxious gas or liquid.

(a) No person shall use any device to discharge a noxious gas or liquid in an enclosed room in any Class C-1 or Class C-2 Assembly Unit, as defined in Chapter 13-56 of this Code, or in an enclosed room in any restaurant, bar or tavern that is a Class F Assembly Unit as defined in that chapter, if more than 20 persons are present in that room, unless the person is a peace officer, as defined in Section 8-20-010 of this Code, engaged in law enforcement activity. As used in this section, “noxious gas or liquid” means mace, pepper spray or any other substance that is intended or designed to cause irritation to the eyes, nose or mouth, or to cause nausea.
(b) Any person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor that is punishable by a fine $500.00, or 30 days imprisonment, or both, for each offense.

(Added Coun. J. 4-9-03, p. 106979, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 11-8-12, p. 38872, § 159)

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

And then there’s this, which was added on September 11, 2013, by the City of Chicago when it passed Substitute Ordinance SO2013-6015. 8-24-20 was amended with:

5. No person shall carry on or about his person or in any vehicle, a tear gas gun projector or bomb or any object containing noxious liquid gas or substance, other than an object containing a non-lethal noxious liquid gas or substance designed solely for personal defense carried by a person 18 years of age or older; provided that this subsection shall not apply to any person listed in section 5/24-2(a)(1H14) of the Criminal Code. 720 ILCS 5/24-2(a).

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Back on November 27, 2011, the Chicago Tribune even ran a piece on pepper spray. Dawn Rhodes pointed out:

Major retailers such as Ace Hardware and Sears sell pepper spray products (commonly known by brand names such as Mace), as do a number of online-only stores. But pepper spray regulations vary. In Chicago, for instance, a person can be charged with a misdemeanor for spraying it in an enclosed space, such as a bar or restaurant, if there are more than 20 people present.

So is pepper (OC) spray legal in Chicago? From what the material above says, I would think it is, as long as the spray is used in self-defense and in compliance with what’s stated in the Municipal Code of Chicago, and not in a threatening manner.

(Legal disclaimer: This post is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact an attorney to obtain such advice.)

By Christopher E. Hill, Editor
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Source:

Rhodes, Dawn. “Pepper spray a hot topic of late.” Chicago Tribune. 27 Nov. 2011. (http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-11-27/news/ct-talk-pepper-spray-1127-20111127_1_pepper-spray-hot-peppers-uc-davis-campus-police). 30 Oct. 2013.

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Wednesday, October 30th, 2013 Government, Legal, Self-Defense 7 Comments

Chicago-Area Laws Concerning Self-Defense Tools

(UPDATE: Revised to reflect City of Chicago’s passage of Substitute Ordinance SO2013-6015 on September 11, 2013, regarding personal safety tools)

From my research, I’ve noticed that quite a few Chicago-area residents wanting to find out more about the legality of their personal safety tools in their communities, county, and the state of Illinois often have a difficult time locating that information on the Internet easily.

Which is a shame, considering the amount of changes that have been made recently to state and local laws concerning firearms and other self-defense tools. For example, not only is concealed-carry now on the books at the state-level, but the City of Chicago and Cook County have tightened their gun “control” measures and there are a number of new “assault weapon” bans in effect in several metro-area communities.

So, in my “local” post for the day I thought I’d share with Chicagoland readers some links on the Internet where a bunch of this info can be found.

In my opinion, I’d approach general queries from the state level down to the municipal level. No use trying to find out if something is legal in your community if the state bans it and they supersede local laws in a particular area.

State of Illinois

Criminal Code of 2012 (720 ILCS 5/24-1)- Firearms, Chemicals, Electric
Criminal Code of 2012 (720 ILCS 5/33A-1)- Knives
Criminal Code of 2012 (720 ILCS 5/33F-1)- Body Armor
Public Act 98-63, Firearm Concealed Carry Act (430 ILCS 66)- CCW

Cook County

Cook County Ordinance No. 07-O-36, Blair Holt Assault Weapons Ban- Firearms
No info found on knives, body armor

DuPage County

No info found

Kane County

No info found

Lake County

No info found

McHenry County

No info found

Will County

No info found

City of Chicago

Municipal Code of Chicago, Title 8, Chapter 20- Firearms, amended 9/11/13 by SO2013-6015
Municipal Code of Chicago, Title 4, Chapter 144- Ammunition, amended 9/11/13 by SO2013-6015
Municipal Code of Chicago, Title 8, Chapter 24- Knives, Chemicals, Electric, Amended 9/11/13 by SO2013-6015

Chicago Suburbs

Query the municipality in question in a search engine with the name of the town and state plus “ordinances” and proceed from there. If you can’t find any local ordinances on the town’s website, there’s a good chance the municipality outsources their codification and public display. In which case, check the Illinois municipal client catalogs of the following codifying companies below:

American Legal Publishing Corporation
Municipal Code Corporation
Sterling Codifiers

Hope this comes in handy!

By Christopher E. Hill, Editor
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Friday, August 16th, 2013 Ammunition, Firearms, Government, Knives, Legal, Self-Defense Comments Off on Chicago-Area Laws Concerning Self-Defense Tools

On TV: Doomsday Preppers ‘Taking From The Haves’ Review

Sorry for getting this review of episode 5 (season 2) of National Geographic Channel’s Doomsday Preppers TV series out a little later than usual, but I’ve been tied up with other things. “Taking From the Haves,” which aired Tuesday night, December 4, featured four preppers- John Adrain, Jeff Bushaw, and neighbors Allen and Franco.

John Adrain

During the first part of the show viewers were introduced to John Adrain, an inventor living in the Pacific Northwest with his two dogs. According to John:

I am preparing for the unexpected.

From the show:

John’s not sure which “doomsday” scenario will play out first- a supervirus, biological terrorist attacks, natural disaster. But he’s certain something’s coming. And since travel is often restricted in states of emergency, “bugging out” is the absolute last resort in John’s survival plan.

As such, the episode focused on John and his large fortified home in which he plans to “bug in.” From the show:

His primary goal is to turn his home into a technological fortress, in which he can keep rampaging survivors at bay.

John told viewers:

It doesn’t matter how many preps you have if you can’t protect them from others. Because the “have nots” are going to be taking from the “haves.”

John is shown trying out a .50 caliber long-range rifle called the Beowulf, upgrading the internal/external security of his home, showing off some home security gadgets he invented such as the Burglar Blaster and BedBunker, and practicing some home invasion drills during the remainder of the segment.

Jeff Bushaw

In the second part of the show, viewers were introduced to Jeff Bushaw, a full-time prepper living in Vancouver, Washington. According to Jeff:

I’m preparing for the Yellowstone supervolcano that may end the world as we know it.

From the show:

Yellowstone National Park’s majestic vistas, diverse wildlife, and impressive geysers draw more than 3 million visitors each year. But underneath the seeming tranquility of the park lurks an active supervolcano, one so large that that should it ever blow, the force of the super eruption could be as if 1,000 Hiroshima-size atomic bombs were going off every second … The force of the blast is likely to annihilate everything in the immediate vicinity. Even though Jeff lives more than 800 miles away from Yellowstone, he still doesn’t feel safe. That’s because the supervolcano could spew enough smoldering ash into the atmosphere to bury half of the United States at least several inches deep.

Besides the immediate loss of life and property from such an eruption, the episode noted:

Scientists believe it could take a decade for vegetation in parts of the Midwest to recover from the damage done by the massive ash clouds. Jeff fears the volcano will devastate crops, leading to food shortages throughout the U.S.

Fearing the effects of a “volcanic winter,” Jeff, along with son Hayden, are shown preparing for such an event, socking away food, participating in storage unit auctions in the hope they’ll find valuable preps, practicing bug-out drills, and taking flying lessons to give them the option of bugging out via plane should it come to that.

Allen and Franco

In the last part of the episode, two “neighbors” in Southwest Missouri were introduced. First up, Allen is an electrical engineer and veteran prepper with more than thirty years of experience. Allen said:

I’m preparing for an economic decline of the U.S. economy.

From the show:

Allen worries that the economy is failing, and that as the dollar’s value declines, food prices will skyrocket out of control.

Next, there’s Franco, a master electrician and newer prepper. Franco told viewers:

I’m preparing for the rise of food costs, food shortages, and the corruption of the food supply through big business.

Both Allen and Franco plan on “bugging in” when the food shortages come, but not after they’ve taken charge of their own food production via aquaponics. From the show:

In aquaponic systems, fish and plants are grown together in a closed environment, where the fish waste is converted into food for the plants. The fish excrete waste and ammonia into the water. That water is pumped into the grow beds, where bacteria convert the waste into nitrogen, which the plants use as fertilizer. As the plants use the nitrates, they filter the water, which is then sent back to the fish tanks, completing the circle.

While a challenge to maintain, the results are impressive.


“Doomsday Preppers: Prepper Profile: Franco and Allen”
Nat Geo Channel Video

My thoughts about Doomsday Preppers “Taking From the Haves”:

• While John Adrain’s “technological fortress” is amazing, I wonder how effective it would be in a long-term, grid-down event. His security system is comprised of an electronically-controlled entry gate, a computerized command center, 12 high-definition surveillance cameras, and a front door with sophisticated recognition software, among other things. Does Adrain have enough back-up power to operate this technology should the utilities go down for an extended period of time? And what if a device malfunctions or breaks?

• “But if the attackers come in multiple vehicles and penetrate the gate, John wants to be able to engage them at a distance before they cover the 1,000 feet from the gate to his front door.” Enter the Beowulf, a .50 caliber rifle that Adrain’s weapons guy Bill Alexander brought to the party. Three words. I LIKE IT!

• Another security feature of John Adrain’s fortified home is that its windows are coated with something he called “embassy tint,” a strong film that holds glass together in case it shatters. I’ve done a little bit of research on window security film, and from what I’ve seen via the Internet, the technology is pretty impressive. So much so I’d consider using it on my future residence.

• Adrain busted out some of his inventions in the episode. The Burglar Blaster is a self-contained electronic OC (oleoresin capsicum) spray anti-burglar system. When the infrared detector is tripped, the Burglar Blaster releases OC pepper spray in the immediate area, chasing away the intruder. The BedBunker is a concealed safe that replaces a bed boxspring. Another of Adrain’s inventions shown but not really discussed was the ConsoleBunker, an all-aluminum vehicle center console for storing firearms. The ConsoleBunker is tied in with the vehicle’s factory door locks and has a timing mechanism that prevents unauthorized access. Really neat and useful stuff.

Now I see how John can afford the big house and nice toys.

• In the segment with Jeff Bushaw, the Vancouver, Washington-based prepper was shown taking flying lessons in the event he and his family needed to bug out from the effects of a Yellowstone National Park supervolcano eruption. However, from what I recall, the show never mentioned Bushaw owning a plane. If he doesn’t, and an eruption did take place with an ash cloud headed his way, it might be difficult- if not impossible- to rent a plane in that type of situation. From looking at a map of Vancouver, I can’t help but wonder if he shouldn’t plan on bugging out of the area via ean-going boat.

• Speaking of maps, here’s a link to a 2007 FOX News web article with one showing (right arrow to slide 2) where ash fell from previous Yellowstone National Park supervolcano eruptions.

• In the segment with neighbors Allen and Franco, both preppers were shown riding scooters. While attending the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign in the early nineties, these were cherished forms of transportation for many broke-ass college students such as myself (I didn’t own one, but could be seen riding on the back of one from time to time. That must have been a scary sight.) . I wouldn’t be surprised if some preppers/survivalists are including scooters/mopeds in their preps, especially if they anticipate an energy crunch and sky-high gasoline prices down the road.

• Like the preceding Doomsday Preppers episode, this one had its gross-out moment when Franco ingested one his red wigglers. Classic line by his young daughter though:

I’d rather drink pee.

• I found the following particular interesting in the “Assessment” portion of the final segment:

PRACTICAL PREPPERS LLC: You currently lack weapons, and have no tactical training. Without them, you will be unable to protect your home in a crisis.

FRANCO: Yeah, you’re right about the weapons. I do not possess them nor do I plan on possessing them. It’s not what I believe in.

To each their own. But considering what a juicy target he, his family, and his food could be in a real SHTF situation, I just hope Franco’s got something else up his sleeve to deal with those with weapons wanting what he has.

New episodes of Doomsday Preppers air on the National Geographic Channel on Tuesday nights at 9 PM Eastern Time.

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Thursday, December 13th, 2012 Agriculture, Currencies, Emergencies, Firearms, Food, Health, Man-Made Disasters, Natural Disasters, On TV, Preparedness, Self-Defense, Shelter, Technology, TEOTWAWKI, Terrorism, Training, Transportation, Utilities Comments Off on On TV: Doomsday Preppers ‘Taking From The Haves’ Review

On TV: Doomsday Preppers Season 2 Episode 3 Premieres Tonight

Season 2 of National Geographic Channel’s Doomsday Preppers TV series continues tonight with episode 3, “Bad Times All the Time,” which airs at 9 PM ET/PT.

One again, the Nat Geo Channel provided me with an advanced screening opportunity of the episode, and it didn’t disappoint. There were three prepper “groups” featured in “Bad Times All the Time.” First up were Jay and Holly Blevins of Berryville, Virginia. Jay, a former law-enforcement officer, told viewers:

We’re preparing for the breakdown of social order caused by an economic collapse.

Jay and Holly somehow managed to forge a prepper network out of a number of other households in their cul-de-sac. It was real interesting to see. Also, Jay talked about something called the “Circle of Force,” which included his rifle, handgun, edge weapons, impact weapons, pepper spray, martial arts, and verbal commands. Emphasis on a battery of different weapon groups beyond the traditional battery of firearms- I like that. And as the Blevins family tested plywood sheets that would cover their home’s first-floor windows in a SHTF scenario, the importance of real, functioning window shutters became visually-apparent, although it wasn’t discussed.


“Prepper Profile: Jay Blevins”
Nat Geo Channel Video

Next up was Brian P. Murdock, a real estate agent from Somerville, Massachusetts. Murdock told viewers:

I believe there will be a Third World War in my lifetime.

Two things stood out in this segment of episode 3. First was his acquisition of a bug-out location- 50-acres in rural New York state- and a bug-out vehicle- a recreational vehicle, or RV- to get to it from the Boston metro area.

Second was his search for a “prepper wife,” which was fulfilled in the lovely Colombian national Tatiana Maria Cogollo Fernandez. When Tatiana told viewers:

I can’t believe that I came here to die.

I knew I was in-store for a little bit more “reality” TV than I prefer. Still, this second part of the show was palatable, and I found Brian and Tatiana’s story interesting and informative.

Finally, there was Bryan May and wife Lacey Simmons-May, small business owners living in Indiana. Bryan revealed:

We’re preparing for the New Madrid earthquake that will change the world as we know it.

I did some research on the potential threat to the Chicagoland area from a big New Madrid quake when I was working for a suburban fire department some years back, and it’s real. Deadly real, depending on where you live. Bryan and Lacey have a legitimate concern here. Two things to watch for in this last segment of “Bad Times All the Time” are the couple’s bartering and their willingness to pursue more income as a way of obtaining the preps they think they need but can’t afford. It was inspirational. Sextacular even. And no that wasn’t a typo.

Enjoy tonight’s episode. For more information, please visit the Doomsday Preppers page on the National Geographic Channel website here.

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Survival And Prosperity
Est. 2010, Chicagoland, USA
Christopher E. Hill, Editor

Successor to Boom2Bust.com
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