There are several factors to consider:
- The law - is the situation bad enough to justify breaking the law? The answer to this determines our strategy. If the local law is functioning or outside assistance is expected to arrive, then it is important to obey they law if at all possible.
- Risk - how desperate is our situation; this determines how much risk we are willing to take. Don't underestimate the potential risk in salvaging supplies that are coveted by many people, possibly even desperate, violent ones. House to house salvaging may be extremely hazardous in free countries where guns are permitted. Protecting your supplies will also require a gun, ammo and a good security plan to prevent loosing them.
IF law and order is gone, and finding food is a mater of life and death, then you should find sources of supplies other than the obvious grocery stores which may be crowded, looted or guarded by gangs.
First print or obtain a local map and regional paper phone books. Remember Google Maps may not be working so phone books will be valuable. Then start to look for and mark the following on your map:
- Wal Mart & Grocery Stores or even better - Delivery Trucks
- Truck Stops
- Fuel Trucks
- Food distribution centers
- Gas Stations
- Restaurant supply businesses
- Drug Stores
- Bottled Water or soft drink distributors
- Businesses with large staffs, break rooms or cafeterias
- Gun Shops
- National Guard Armory
- Police Departments
- Sporting Goods Stores
- Hardware or Farm supply stores
- Day cares for baby formula
- Loop Routes that are shaped like flower petals that go out along certain routes and return via other random parallel routes. The goal is to salvage triangular shape segments that extend out from your area as opposed to cleaning out everything immediately around your facility. At the same time, you are exploring far out from your territory. This route may be best with low populations, limited information, and when risk or threats are considered low.
- Concentric Ring Routes consisting of circles of increasing diameter. With these, you first deplete all the supplies that are close to your retreat. After which you must start going out further and further as supplies are exhausted. This allows you to learn your immediate area very well and progressively explore out further and further as the rings grow. This approach might be best for high risk scenarios where you don't want to get too far from home.
If it becomes necessary to Salvage to survive, the situation is serious, and you need to be looking for garden seeds and tools.
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