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In Part One of this series, I looked at what an EMP is, and the 3 types of EMPs (Electro Magnetic Pulse).
Before I begin, I want to note that it has been pointed out to me that there are some technical differences between a nuclear E3 pulse and a solar storm.
As I explained in the first part, a high altitude nuclear explosion or weaponized EMP would most likely contain all three types of pulses, where as a CME would only contain the characteristics of an E3 type pulse. The E3 component will geomagnetically induce currents in long electrical conductors, which can then damage or destroy components such as power line transformers and burn out power grid transformers by inducing DC-like currents.
What this means is, the E1 pulse of a nuclear EMP has the potential to damage electronic equipment, computers, communication equipment, etc.
The E3 type pulse would primarily affect the power grid, and is not likely to harm things like cell phones, computers, or vehicles unless they were directly connected to the power grid. If the CME was large enough, it could induce geomagnetic currents that could destroy a substantial fraction of the very largest transformers on the power grid (possibly over much of the world in a solar EMP).
Basically, a large solar storm (think Carrington event or larger) could knock out the power grid. Where and how much it takes out would depend upon the size and strength of the storm.
Keep in mind that while your cell phone or Ipad would still function, the communication systems would go down. The US has about 2100 electrical transformers, with about 370 (rough estimate) of those as high voltage (HV) transformers. Compounding this problem, these transformers are NOT one size fits all. The rule of thumb is that for every 13 transformers, there are 10 different designs. Graywolf wrote some exceptional articles on the dangers of planning for worst case scenarios only and not knowing what will happen if SHTF. Scientists have tried to simulate what would happen using computer models, but the hard data they have to base their calculations on is from the last high altitude nuclear EMP… in 1962. And of course much of that data, and the resulting computer simulations and theories are highly classified.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of data available to the general public on what all might be effected by an E1 pulse. For example, scientists are not sure if airplanes would be able to stay in the air after said pulse. Things such as the strength of the E1 pulse, the altitude and angle of the detonation from your vehicle, the current strength of the Earth’s ionosphere at your location (it fluctuates), the direction your vehicle was facing in relation to the denotation, etc all factor into the equation. As mentioned previously, the last nuclear EMP test was in 1962 and the details released have been minimal. Those vehicles were tested up to the level that some sort of upset occurred, then further testing was stopped on that vehicle. Also, it is widely believed within the scientific community (though not proven) that several nations have the ability to produce EMP weapons AT LEAST 4 to 5 times greater strengths than the test limits of the simulator.
I’m not saying older model vehicles won’t work after an E1 pulse, rather that we cannot be 100% certain they will.
Even if the nuke EMP doesn’t kill the electronics in all vehicles, there still would be problems. A third problem is the fact that as vehicles die or run out of fuel, those remaining that are drivable suddenly increase in value exponentially.
Scientists are beginning to study the correlation of solar storms to migraines and disrupted sleep cycles.
I know I’m jumping the gun here but I wanted to give you a takeaway on some things you can do now and what you should start looking into doing. There are come critical items that you might want to consider putting critical items such as a ham radio in Faraday bag things get real bad.
James will be going into much more detail on this in the next article, and this may turn out to be more than one article because it’s not a simple idea. Months before publication, One Second After has already been cited on the floor of Congress as a book all Americans should read, a book already being discussed in the corridors of the Pentagon as a truly realistic look at a weapon and its awesome power to destroy the entire United States, literally within one second. About James LA police officer in Oklahoma, James is a gun enthusiast and certified police instructor. Maybe I am jumping the gun and this will be in part 3, but are there any applications or notification groups that send out information about upcoming CME events, and things of that nature? I wish I could tell you of some way to know about solar storms weeks or months in advance, but if I could do that I’ll be working for NASA making A LOT more than I am now. It’s also kinda scary how exposed our power grid really is, and the fact that it could be protected if the power companies really wanted to. James and Greywolf, thank you for putting together an informative series of articles and links.
I watched the events unfold after hurricane Katrina, as the looting and lawlessness played out on national TV. After the tornadoes took out Moore, Oklahoma last year, my department sent me there to help. The BIG differences between the two, is that those who went to help after the tornadoes knew their families were ok. Order wasn’t restored in New Orleans until people from outside the affected area (whose families were ok) arrived to help. Former Counterintelligence Special Agent, US Army Chief Warrant Officer, and Combat Veteran. My personal go bag contentsThere are a lot of different things you can put on your bug out bag list and there’s not really one list of contents that you should follow. 99 freakin’ awesome ideas for your bug out bagLots of articles tell you the basics of what you need in your bug out bag.
What you need in your bug out bag – a comprehensive lookA bug out bag is critical but what do you put in it? Top 10 best selling prepper gear you should considerOccasionally, I want to let you know which prepper and survival gear is selling better than the rest. Jim takes time to describe the different scenarios that may trigger a long-term survival situation.


He spends a little bit of time describing each and talking about the possibility of it occurring. Clothing is addressed here as well as keeping your shelter warm or cool, depending on the season. Checklists – While there are not a ton of checklists, the ones that are there are VERY pertinent to a long-term survival situation. Overall, I think Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide by Jim Cobb is a solid addition to your long-term survival library.
At the time the nuclear devices were tested and the resulting damage that the EMP created was noted, the electrical grid was not as large, and a number of American families were not yet dependent upon the grid and there were not that many devices, which would have been affected by an EMP. Whether the damage will be as extensive as some experts claim today is yet to be determined. One problem is that it may take days for information to filter down to the citizen level that it was an EMP attack. Those that live in a heavily populated metropolitan area will, in all likelihood, suffer the most from an attack.
In some extreme cases, you could take over a bottom floor apartment if the other occupants evacuated. You might assume that the government would counter to prevent another attack, but you could not count on retaliatory action to be successful.
Martial Law may be enacted and this could mean the military could provide generators for temporary shelters.
The type of civil unrest may be different from what we have seen in the past when riots focused on a particular event that occurred locally.
You would have to bug-out before the riots began if you expected to be able to get clear of the city.
Most people could not, or would not make the decision to leave minutes after the power went out. What would cause violence and riots more than anything else would be the lack of necessities. The authorities would be aware of this fact, but whether they can do anything about it is another story. Some people have actually stated, whether jokingly or not, that they welcome a power grid failure for various reasons. Food poisoning cases will rise and so will deaths from drinking bad water or from lack of water, lack of heat or from lack of air conditioning.
Your cell phones and computers would most likely work…until they ran out of battery power, or unless they were directly connected to the power grid.
So services that your Iphone and laptop are used for, ie the internet and cell coverage, would most likely be out.
Should that happen and the grid across the planet is gone, it could take a lifetime to come back. Also, these different transformers are designed to handle different amounts of electric currents based upon where they are located.
Scientists point out the fact that the Soviet EMP tests burned out many military grade diesel generators that did not have the solid state electronics. Even if an E1 affected only 10% of  vehicles, imagine that one out of every ten cars on the road right now suddenly stopped. But without any sort of actual tests, scientists do not know the full extent that the damage would cause. It has been over 50 years since the last actual tests, and most of the data and simulator tests remain classified. In his off time, he is a single father who enjoys playing with his kids and watching football.
I try to stay current on what new products have been introduced and look for the old and trusted. Neither is expected to be a Carrington event or anything, but it’s a timely reminder that this stuff can and will happen eventually. They have have two other satellites in Earth’s orbit but several months behind which help trianglate the solar weather. The question is how resilient and resourceful people will be in working around the problems. As more and more emergency personnel (and people who provide important services) leave to go protect their families, people will be left to fend for themselves. I grew up in the woods and spent a lifetime in various environments from deserts to jungles to politically-sensitive urban environments, and I'm here to tell you what I know. Each item in your kit will depend on your skill set and what you’re trying to prepare for. When considering disaster preparedness, keep in mind that what survival gear and emergency supplies you add to your bug out bag and then pack for your survival kit can mean the difference between life and death, or at least affect your level of comfort if SHTF and you had to get outta dodge.
Why else do you want your land to produce and become self-sufficient if not to be prepared to take care of yourself?
Each chapter is very on-topic and begins with an interesting narrative that is a fictional journal entry related to that chapter’s central them. Jim’s no-nonsense, straightforward approach to the book gives you the information you need in case the world as you know it goes south. Anyone that has been paying attention has likely gathered information about an EMP, and thus, has a reasonable expectation about what may happen.
Experts do know the damage that can be caused by an EMP resulting from a nuclear detonation however, because nuclear devices were tested decades ago. As with any crisis there are varying degrees, but an EMP attack, regardless of severity, will have an impact on everyone. People living in apartment buildings, for example, may have to leave, because it will become too dangerous to live in a high rise apartment building without electricity.


Being at ground level provides greater options, mainly you can extract yourself more easily if the building is torched or overrun by looters or gangs. However, the fact there was one attack means there would be a high probability of other attacks, so there may be rolling blackouts if you will. This means that if you did bug-out to another area, you may encounter the same problem, but now you have left your home, and getting back home may prove to be an even bigger challenge. However, in the case of an attack against the country all of the people would have a common enemy, one that attacked the nation as a whole. This is all conjecture of course, but certain events in the past have proven that the nation tends to come together when people feel the entire country has been attacked. You would naturally want more information, but it would be difficult to get any information in the hours after. It may even be an accident that causes an EMP that would result in a grid failure just like a nuclear detonation could be an accident. In that case, I hope you know how to farm because the planet just went back in time to the 1800s. Even some older planes that don’t use computers for basic flight controls still require electronics to assist with things such as the hydraulics. In addition, newly unclassified reports state that some of the vehicles in Hawaii at the time of the Star Fish Prime test had their non-electronic ignition systems damaged by the EMP.
And even if you stockpile fuel, in optimal conditions, gas won’t keep from more than 6 months, 1 year max. The more current simulations and some theories on this remain highly classified as I mentioned previously. In the tradition of On the Beach, Fail Safe and Testament, this book, set in a typical American town, is a dire warning of what might be our future…and our end. Many EMP articles conflate E1, E2, and E3 pulses and don’t provide many clues on how one would deal with them.
For example, the guys who used a car battery, an automotive fuel pump, and rubber hose to access stored gasoline at gas stations when Hurricane Sandy disrupted electric power to the pumps.
It may be chaos for a short while but there are always enterprising and charismatic people to take the helm and start rebuilding with whatever’s available. This is currently the list of the top 10 best-selling prepper and survival gear items, along with an explanation for each.
But are you thinking about what would happen if we got into a long-term survival situation?
Getting your mind wrapped around that idea and accepting it is going to be half the battle. Jim seems to have a general sense that most people will band together and that, while life will be tough, the community will make it work. This means that not that many people would be contemplating evacuation in the first 24 to 48 hours.
You do not want to be living on the 10th floor without elevators, smoke alarms, and sprinkler systems or without heat or air conditioning. The highways, side streets, and bridges would be gridlocked, and any vehicle that operates would be a prime target, so it may be commandeered by the authorities or you could be carjacked.
However, more citizens than not will likely rally together, and the anarchists, antagonist, and other trouble makers may be dealt with quickly by other citizens.
You may not have to worry about looters because so-called friends and neighbors may turn on you for what little you may have.
The ones that secretly wish for it to happen will be in for a rude awakening, because they have over anticipated their own abilities.
While you could technically argue that I drove a pickup and not a car, the end result is that I’m in Houston and I drove there.
Because devices such as mobile phones, MP3 players, and remote-controlled toys, can emit electromagnetic radiation that could adversely affect an aircraft’s navigation and communication systems and actually endanger a flight. But in Part III, we will look at some general things you can do to try and be prepared should we ever experience an EMP.
Here is a copy of the Report of the commission to assess the threat to the united states from electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack that you can download and read for yourself: Report of the commission to assess the threat to the united states from electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack. However, in the end they’re electromagnetic energy at power levels not normally experienced except near a lightning strike. Anyone who says that their number one priority isn’t to their family needs to reevaluate their life. Untold numbers of others will die because they will attempt to cobble together generators and from tinkering with equipment and tools with which they have no experience.
We will be trying to survive the fallout, trying to survive without a food and water supply chain.
The main difference between E1 and lightning is pulse rise time is much faster so there is more energy in the HF and VHF region where relatively short wires are efficient antennas. Without medical care and trying to survive without help from the local authorities, that do more for our very existence than we may realize until we have to survive without it. My gut feel is that the Engine Control Module in cars is robust enough to handle lightning, but the car wiring harness will pick up more energy from an E1 pulse.
But basically, the E1 pulse could NOT directly hurt someone physically except in a very specific set of circumstances. It would be a good idea to have one in storage and wrapping the spare in aluminum foil before putting it on the shelf is probably more than adequate protection.



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