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Registration date : 2008-05-09

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PostSubject: Just to get this started   Sat Jan 30, 2010 11:19 am

Courtesy of: Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

2.1- Establishing Home Defense


KEY CONCEPTS : PLYWOOD NOT PARTICLE-BOARD, IT'S NEVER TOO SOON TO START, SCREWS NOT NAILS, BLACKOUT-CURTAINS, STEEL-REINFORCED DOORS, WATER, FOOD, WEAPONS, ENTERTAINMENT, COMMUNICATION IS ESSENTIAL, WIDE FIELD OF VIEW NECESSARY...

The zombie threat is continuously increasing along with the human population of cities on Earth. A human infected with Myxobolus Haemosteomyelitisnarcosa is extremely dangerous! A fully infected individual's intelligence can be compared with that of a bright canine. A zombie can be smarter than a canine when it comes down to manipulating objects and using tools, but a canine can be more intelligent than a zombie in other areas. (See: Zombies and the Disease). This means that many zombies can be formidable opponents to un-infected humans, even if they are protected in a home. Most zombies can manipulate simple objects to achieve a simple task, such as using a rock to shatter a glass window. It is important to remember that zombies work as a collective organism, and thus will not finish each other off by their own volition. The zombie will mount continuous assaults on your home or building, they will attract other zombies with moans and shrieks, and use simple tools to break through your defenses. This is why it is of the utmost importance to prepare your home or fortress properly for a zombie siege.

Most middle-class citizens of first world countries will probably not have enough funding to build a sound fortress as a shelter to flee to during a zombie outbreak. However, most home owners are capable of securing their residence from the zombie threat. This section will provide tips and instructions to the reader which focus on securing a humble abode. However, if you are a more wealthy citizen, and possess enough money to construct a second home, the next chapter focuses on building a first rate anti-zombie defense fortress.

Windows

One of the most important zones of the home to secure are the windows. Security bars are NOT recommended upgrades for your windows, as they will prevent inhabitants from escaping if a fire occurs or zombies infiltrate a weak point. Plexi-Glass can be installed through a contractor service, it is expensive but incredibly strong and reliable. On a lower budget, purchase "Security Tape" for windows. Apply security tape in a mesh pattern to both sides of every glass window in your home. This method is cheap and effective, as it helps the window resist shattering. This measure will not stop zombies from getting inside the house, but it will slow them down.

Security Tape and Plexi-Glass are two examples of a secondary defense. A primary barrier is necessary to prevent the undead from getting to the point where they can shatter a window. Steel storm shutters provide excellent primary window protection from zombies and projectiles. A cheaper alternative is plywood. If one cannot afford steel storm shutters, then it is necessary to purchase plywood to form a barrier outside the window frame. Plywood boards with a depth, or thickness, of 5cm (2") and a length about 25cm (10") past each side of the window frame will provide excellent defense if stacked and formed into a shutter or locking panel. If an outbreak occurs in your area before you have created or purchased window defense, there are several important steps to take. When boarding up windows and doors, space the boards out so that fingers cannot reach through each board. Always nail boards and panels to the outside of a window or door, nailing wood to the inside will allow a zombie to push the board or panel out of the wall or door frame with relative ease. And remember, plywood is much stronger than particle board! Do not attach defensive boards or panels to dry-wall, as this surface will crumble easily if any pressure is exerted upon the wood. Long screws offer much more strength and pull-resistance than nails, use screws on critical areas and the longest boards with the highest potential leverage.

An optional, yet effective tertiary protection for window-frames is thick, adhesive putty. If one's home is older, it may have structurally unsound window frames, there is no point in having strong glass if the supporting frame is flimsy. Very thick adhesive putty, if liberally applied to the edges of the window frame, will provide fairly solid defense from zombies trying to push the whole frame into a home. Lastly, one will need to purchase either thick drapes or black-out-blinds, some kind of curtain to totally block light from leaving your house and potentially attracting zombies to your premises.

Doors

Despite popular rumors, zombies are not completely brainless. Most zombies can and will open a door with the door handle! They do not have the reasoning capacity to use keys or successfully walk through a revolving door, but unlocked house doors are extremely vulnerable. Thus, the most important method of defending your door is a strong deadbolt locking mechanism. Do not purchase too many locks for a door, or it will be difficult to get in and out of your home quickly in an emergency. Also critical to defense from the living dead is a sturdy door frame. If a door is equipped with six locking mechanisms, but is supported by a flimsy door frame, the whole door could easily get kicked in or knocked over. A steel frame rested in concrete or strong wood framing will provide adequate defense from several attacking zombies. In addition to a strong door frame, the zombie-safe home will need a reinforced door. It is essential to purchase a steel-reinforced door, not a steel-plated door. When positioning a door and attaching it to the frame, ensure that the door will only open outwards.

Sliding-glass doors are a gigantic threat to many homes. Zombies will literally pour into your home through this vulnerable entrance. It is essential to remove all sliding-glass doors and replace them with steel-core, outward-swinging doors with deadbolt locks. If one cannot afford to replace a sliding-glass door, sandbags and plywood barriers are a viable option. Remember, do not leave room in your plywood panels for fingers to reach through, do not attach boards to dry-wall, do not attach boards to the inside of the home, always attach them to the outside walls and frames. Garage doors may seem structurally sound, in reality they are just as vulnerable as any other wood or thin metal door. They can be punched through, pushed down, and lifted up. At the first sign of a zombie outbreak in your area, one can erect long plywood boards and attach them from the floor via a fastening system (large eye hole and hook) to the garage door. Attach long plywood boards to the outside of the garage door in an X pattern. Disable any sensor beams to prevent accidental door openings, and weight the door down with sandbags or some other form of dense material to prevent lifting.

Perimeters

Most homes in the Suburban United States and Europe are equipped with fences on the property. Any fence lower than 2 meters (6.5ft), will NOT prevent a zombie from climbing into your yard. Do not rely on garden gates, or picket fences. All perimeter fences should have supportive beams dividing the fence material into small rectangular sections. Concrete walls are obviously preferred over wooden and chain-link fences, as they cannot be pushed over or easily gripped. Wooden fences are superior to chain-link fences as the surface has less foot-holds, wood is usually stronger than thin metal chain mesh. A chain-link fence will slow a zombie's progress, they will have a hard time climbing it, but it will not stop them entirely. Chain-link fences also emit much more noise than wooden or concrete fences, thus attracting more zombies to the location, ensuring a breach. If there are enough zombies, any wooden or chain-link fence can be compromised either by pushing, tearing, or shattering. Chicken wiring will not stop zombies unless it is used in multiple layers along with strong support beams and sharp barriers. All wooden, concrete, and chain-link fences should have concertina or razor wire firmly attached and thickly rolled atop the fence across its entire perimeter. Zombies do not feel more than a minuscule amount of pain, and will climb over and walk through thick razor wire. However, razor and concertina wire will severely damage a zombie's body, sometimes amputating fingers, cutting major arteries, removing eyes, ears, noses, and skin. The end result is a severely battered zombie whose capacity to fight is diminished. So, a concrete, wood, or chain-link fence topped with razor or concertina wire is an excellent solution to the problem of perimeter defense. There are still more ways of improving security around one of these fences. A fortification used for centuries by many nations throughout history, the spike. Thick, sharpened, wood or metal poles can be placed into the ground next to a fence at a 60 degree angle with the point facing away from the property. Quick-dry cement should be used to secure the spike into a 60cm (2ft) deep hole. The spike should protrude 1.5m (5ft) from the hole. Spikes should be placed in close proximity to each other, approximately 30cm (1ft) spaces between each spike. Mid-sized shrubbery can be placed in front of the spikes to prevent locals from getting worried or calling the police. If one lives in an urban or suburban environment and chooses to hide the spikes, it will be essential to place clear warning signs on the premises to prevent children or adolescents from impaling themselves.

Moats are an excellent alternative to spikes, are completely legal, and can be disguised as decorative landscaping. A suitable depth for an anti-zombie moat is 2 to 2.5 m (6.5-8ft). The moat should be 1.5m (5ft) wide, as most zombies can jump, but not that far. Moats should be placed around the outside of every stretch of fencing on the property, if a segment of fence connects with a neighbor's yard, dig the moat behind your fence or wall. The moat can be filled with water tied into a re-circulation system to prevent evaporation. Be aware that a water-filled moat in a region which experiences winter, will be rendered useless during extended freezing conditions. In addition to this, a water-filled moat will not last long in deserts or regions affected by drought.

Land Mines

As this chapter focuses on improving the security of the average home, it is strongly advised NOT to use land mines or any form of explosive in home defense. Most of the time your home must serve its main purpose, to provide as a peaceful shelter. Placing land mines around a home will risk the lives of all neighbors, and break laws. If a land mine or other explosive detonates during a zombie outbreak, it will only serve to kill one zombie and attract dozens more.

Safe Rooms

If zombies manage to break through your perimeter, doors, or windows, one must retreat to a safe room. A safe-room should have at least one bed, one chair, a sanitary facility (bathroom), entertainment (books, paper, mp3 player), an observation port with a wide field of view (periscope or small window), communication (radio, walkie-talkie, phone), batteries, earplugs, goggles, gloves, extra clothing, camouflage, blankets, enough food and water for several weeks, backpacks, defensive weapons (shotgun, sword), plenty of ammunition, strong doors and windows, and an escape route (hatch in the ceiling, attic entrance, window, etc...)

An ideal safe-room conversion would be a home's master bedroom. These bedrooms are the largest, sometimes have connecting bathrooms, windows, and are on the second floor of many homes. The safe room should ideally be located on the second floor of a house, as one can destroy the stairs leading up to the floor with an axe to prevent zombies from getting in.

A first floor safe-room will work, but will not be as safe as a second floor room, due to the lack of stairs and limited visibility. Basements should be avoided as there are usually limited escape routes, and the possibility of becoming cornered if zombies shamble down the stairs.

Attics are suitable safe-rooms for one or two individuals, in an attic you can be silent, watch the entire neighborhood through a crack or small window, and zombies will probably have no way of getting in. However, attics can become unsanitary, hot, dark, and cramped. If one chooses to utilize an attic as a safe-room, then a rudimentary toilet system can be constructed before the outbreak... Cut a hole in a wall facing the outdoors, attach PVC pipe securely to the hole, and extend piping out the hole, down the house's wall, and into the ground. A threaded plugging section can be used to seal and unseal the toilet pipe at the user's end.

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