All it takes is one natural disaster, wildfire or other severe weather outbreak to ruin your next camping trip, or your life. Think about it: what if you were camping and suddenly faced evacuation orders, like the tens of thousands of California wildfire victims had to do recently? When the order is given to flee, is your RV zombie apocalypse proof?
How to Make Your RV Zombie Apocalypse Proof
This article isn’t meant to be sensationalist. More than once I’ve had to escape a frightening force of nature, only it wasn’t zombies chasing us, it was nature. Most recently, we fled a wildfire. Here’s what I learned.
One day my husband and I were enjoying our mountain cabin retreat, and the next a power line transformer caught fire and launched us into hell. Dry beetle-kill pine trees exploded into flames as we fled down a bumpy mountain road with only our dog, truck and fifth wheel.
We hardly had time to pack anything more than our “important documents” box, computers, cell phones and wallets. When we made it down the mountain to safety, I realized that our RV was lacking any sort of provisions. No sheets, no food, no water in our tanks.
Sure, we had shelter and a bed, but because I emptied the RV when we moved into the cabin for summer, there was nothing else to survive on if things got worse. From that moment on I vowed to make my RV zombie apocalypse proof.
Don’t Be Caught Empty Handed
When the biggest Northern California wildfire in history ignited recently, many residents fled in their RVs. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, a number of them ended up at a nearby WalMart, unprepared for what lay ahead.
Abramson’s father, Al Abramson, had his camper van parked next to his son’s . . . The elder Abramson lives in Santa Rosa and also evacuated over the weekend, but when he and his 89-year-old mother got to Rohnert Park, they couldn’t find anywhere to eat because restaurants were closed. They grabbed yogurt at a gas station for breakfast. Then they looked for ice. None to be found. — “Exhaustion, frustration set in as evacuees flee fires and blackouts.“
If you must evacuate from a campground or even your home, chances are lots of other people are doing the same. This creates huge problems. Access to services, food and fuel will be in short supply.
However as RVers, we have the upper hand — as long as our rig is stocked. Whether or not you live as a full-time RVer like I do, or only use your RV on weekends, try to think of your RV as a giant life boat.
Eight Things You’ll Wish You Had in Your RV During a Disaster Evacuation
- Basic Toiletries. Toothpaste, toothbrush and a bar of soap go a long way to boost morale during an emergency.
- Cell phone power cables. Keeping your phone charged during an emergency is the key to staying informed.
- Clothing. One extra set of clothing and a jacket for each survivor will come in handy if the incident lasts more than one day.
- Copies of important documents. You may not have time to grab your “important documents” box like I did when we evacuated. Keep copies of your passport, drivers license and insurance policy numbers somewhere safe in the rig.
- Food. Non-perishable meal replacement bars, dehydrated and canned meals will work. Just make sure you keep a can opener on board! And don’t forget a few cans of pet food for the critters.
- Fresh water. If you live in a climate where you can keep at least a couple of days worth of fresh water in your tanks, do it. And if you don’t, consider leaving jugs of drinking water in your bathtub, just in case you need to bug out when your RV is winterized.
- Fuel. A full tank of gas for your RV and a generator is your ticket out of danger. Don’t be without it.
- Propane. You may want heat, or at least hot coffee in the morning, so always keep at least one full tank of propane on board.
This is just a short list of things that our rig is never without. My goal is to get others thinking about the best ways to not get caught empty-handed. Keeping a well-stocked rig is like having a “RV life boat” escape vehicle that can mean the difference between misery and basic comfort during the RV zombie apocalypse or other mayhem like a wildfire evacuation.
If you can think of any other emergency provisions to add, please comment below. Let’s all learn the smartest ways to stay one step ahead of emergencies and zombie apocalypse invasions.
Rene Agredano and her husband, Jim Nelson, became full-time RVers in 2007 and have been touring the country ever since. In her blog, Rene chronicles the ins and outs of the full-timing life and brings readers along to meet the fascinating people and amazing places they visit on the road. Her road trip adventures are chronicled in her blog at LiveWorkDream.com.