warning Hi, we've moved to USCANNENBERGMEDIA.COM. Visit us there!

Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

Preparedness For A Zombie Apocalypse

ChrisAnna Mink, M.D. |
November 5, 2014 | 1:33 p.m. PST


Zombies! (Wikimedia Commons)
Zombies! (Wikimedia Commons)
You’ve seen them in movies, on Facebook and The Walking Dead, zombies.  You never know when they will appear, just to suck the life out of you.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has been aware of the zombie threat for a while.  In 2011, because of the US population’s susceptibility to an attack by zombies, the CDC issued guidance for being prepared, just as we’ve seen the CDC respond to other recent global threats, such as pandemic influenza and Ebola.  As our brains remain a favored food of zombies, a reminder of the CDC’s preparedness, plus a couple of extra tips, for zombie apocalypse is in order:

1. Have an emergency kit. If zombies are lurking outside, you will want to have everything you need for survival inside.  Your kits should include adequate supplies for at least 3 days (likely the time until things are safe, rescuers have arrived and the zombies have moved on to plunder the next neighborhood).  Kit contents should be enough for everyone living with you: 

a. Water 

b. Non-perishable food items (don’t forget a manual can opener if you have canned food)

c. Medications (prescription and common over-the-counter meds such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain relief, antacids and topical antibiotics)

d. First-aid kit – supplies for minor cuts and injuries and bandages for the bigger zombie bites (though then it may be too late for you)

e. Personal hygiene items – toothbrush and toothpaste, soap, pre-moistened towelettes

f. Tools and supplies – flashlight, battery operated radio, extra batteries, duct tape, household bleach, a deck of cards or a book (think no electricity, you may want a distraction) 

g. Clothes and blankets 

h. Cash (small denominations) – if zombies get all the bankers, ATMs won’t work

2. Have an emergency plan. Meet the neighbors before the zombie attack, so you can tell if the neighbors are part of the undead (often difficult to know at the time of final exams.)  Emergency plans should include:

a. Discuss with your family or roommates where you’ll meet and who you will call, including someone local and someone out-of-state

3. Take care of your health.

a. Keeping your vaccinations up-to-date , booster vaccines can help prevent you from getting tetanus from dirty wounds or zombie bites (though you will become one of them, you don’t want lock-jaw.)

b. Eating a healthy diet, exercising and getting plenty of sleep  - this will help you outrun zombies or perhaps improve your hiding skills. 

Apply these zombie apocalypse tips to other possible disasters, such as hurricanes, tsunamis and earthquakes. 

Reach Contributor Chris Mink here. Follow The Science Desk here



Craig Gillespie directed this true story about "the most daring rescue mission in the history of the U.S. Coast Guard.”

Watch USC Annenberg Media's live State of the Union recap and analysis here.