How should you protect yourself from the Coronavirus? What about the people who will inevitably panic when things become scarce? This is a very serious question. Everyone will need to go outside for food and thus risk infection. I believe that grocery stores will become infection hot-spots. Once truckers, power plant workers, grocery store clerks, delivery persons, and first responders get sick everything will begin to shut down. The United States will begin to look like the countries we invaded in the Middle East. Roving gangs of armed bandits will probably be out for all they can steal to survive. Many will probably be infected or dying from the virus but desperately looking for means to hang on to life. This is where the person who has hoarded rice and beans, potatoes, Tylenol, cough syrup, and canned foods becomes the ultimate target. The best means of protection that can be acquired at this late date in the crisis, March 22, 2020, will be posted below.
DECONTAMINATE AND WASH
First and foremost, you must protect yourself from infection. Hand-washing with soap kills the coronavirus. Be fastidious. Wash your hands and your face every time you come in contact with something that could even potentially be contaminated with virus particles. Move slowly and thoroughly. The virus can live on surfaces for up to 5 days.
Other improvised decontaminants include:
- Bleach solution: 1/3 cup of bleach to 1 gallon of water
- 90 proof and above liquor.
- Methylated spirits
- Rubbing alcohol
Here is the CDC list of approved disinfectants: https://www.epa.gov/pesticide-registration/list-n-disinfectants-use-against-sars-cov-2
PROPER PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT
You need to protect your face. Do not believe the nonsense about hand washing being sufficient to protect you. It isn’t. The Coronavirus is airborne and can be transmitted by simple exhalation. The minimum level of protection you need to keep this virus out of your mouth and nose is an N95 mask.
NIOSH — the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health regulates that standards for protective equipment in the work place in the USA. NIOSH rates ventilators, the technical name for masks that filter particles, with a letter and a number. N is for non oil resistant, P is for oil proof, and R is for oil resistant. The number rating denotes the percentage of particles that mask is capable of filtering out in a worst case scenario, 95 being 95%, 100 being 100%.
N95 is the lowest level of protection that will protect you from the Coronavirus, but they can fail. N95 rated masks can let particles through, and may not protect you in all circumstances. P100 full face respirator masks provide the highest levels of protection and are not quite as highly sought after. You can still find them in non-obvious places. Paint shops, hardware stores, industrial supply online store, et cetera. 3M and honeywell are the top brands for masks. Good luck trying to grab one.
You need to protect your hands. Wear surgical gloves if you can get them. If you can’t, you can try thicker rubber gloves that can be found at an auto parts store online or, if your neighborhood is not locked down, at a brick and mortar auto parts store.
You need to use proper technique for removing your gloves and mask. found here: https://www.cdc.gov/niosh/npptl/pdfs/PPE-Sequence-508.pdf
You need to be armed. In much less severe disasters like Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy, looters tried to capitalize and prey on the weak. Guns are almost all gone. If you can find one get it right away. Soon the guns will be gone and gun stores will be closed. Buy any firearm you can get and learn to use it by reading the operation manual.
For those who are afraid of guns or have no information about guns, I suggest buying the easiest and most beginner friendly firearm. The simplest, safest, and most useful firearms for beginners are break action shotguns. They are also among the most reliable and least expensive guns. They are beginner guns. You can kill anything from a bear to a squirrel with a break action shotgun. Shotguns are very easy to shoot. You point them like a finger and pull the trigger.
Follow the operation manual that comes with your gun, and if you do not buy a new gun, research the model on google and see if you can find an operation manual. Since facebook and social media are still active you can find facebook groups of gun owners to ask questions. Hopefully you can find ammo.
Below is a video tutorial on basic gun safety so you do not shoot yourself or others by accident.
What if the gun stores have been picked clean? You will need bladed, electrical, or chemical weapons to give yourself the edge over looters. The best hand to hand combat weapons that I can suggest for a person limited to what is available now are swords that are made for close quarters battle. The Roman gladius is an especially deadly sword that is easily maneuverable and can be purchased very inexpensively. The gladius was wielded by the Roman phalanx units, which were completely invincible before the invention of plate armor. The phalanx used a pike for long range engagements and when the enemy had advanced on the phalanx closely enough the pike were recycled and the gladius was used to dispatch their enemies.
The gladius is very easy to use. In the words of Arya Stark — “stick em with the pointy end”. https://www.amazon.com/Cold-Steel-97GMSZ-Gladius-Machete/dp/B004MMS0PE
Another option would be a cutlass, being a fully hilted sword, the cutlass offers excellent hand protection, with the further advantage of a swept blade. The swept blade cuts far deeper than a straight blade. https://www.amazon.com/Cold-Steel-Improved-1917-Cutlass/dp/B00HZIDYBW/ref=sr_1_1?crid=23EL7B5H8W4YW&dchild=1&keywords=cold+steel+cutlass&qid=1584856116&s=sporting-goods&sprefix=coldsteel+cutl%2Csporting%2C160&sr=1-1
Get a shield too. The use is obvious. Use it to block. https://www.amazon.com/Gauge-Combat-Functional-Medieval-Shield/dp/B07Q3SQ6NT/ref=sr_1_2?dchild=1&keywords=hema+metal+shield&qid=1584855303&s=electronics&sr=8-2
Oleoresin capsicum spray, aka pepper spray, is a highly effective and extremely painful defensive measure. Use it to protect yourself. I prefer Sabre Red brand. It has been used to stop countless civil disturbances and arrest tons of criminals. Bear spray is much stronger and more of an offensive weapon. Hornet spray, believe it or not, has anecdotally been said to be just as caustic as pepper spray.
I do not know much about tasers but, if you can get your hands on one, good on you. A taser might be able to save you from a single attacker.
To adequately wait this thing out, you will need plenty of food. My best suggestion would be to find massive bags of rice and beans, potatoes, and canned food. Good luck.
Also, look into night vision and blinding flashlights.