Camping & Survival

How to Prepare for an Ebola Outbreak

Picture shows two men in decontaminate suits carrying an Ebola patient on a stretcher

Government officials including the President say there is nothing to worry about. Do you believe them?


Regardless of your political persuasion, distrust of the government is at an all-time high and for good reason. Sure, both parties engage in political gamesmanship in an effort to secure a majority; however, far too many scandals over the last few years simply do not pass the smell test. The records, or lack thereof, in many cases tell a strong tale. People are simply reluctant to believe the official line any longer. The latest government line claim came less than a month ago when the President held a press conference reassuring the American people that we had no reason to worry about Ebola. After all, it was a half-world away, Americans practice better hygiene and enjoy better health care.

Picture shows an OD green military surplus German M65 gas mask with filter.
Are gas masks necessary for Ebola? Sales would indicate that people think so.

How much of that are you buying? As much as, “If you like your doctors you can keep them?” or “There isn’t even a smidge of corruption in the IRS targeting scandal?” It is true that our health care system is far superior to Africa and as a whole we practice better hygiene.  However, the danger of Ebola is not a national issue; it is a local issue and when you are in the hot zone. When it reaches your neighborhood, you really can’t count on more than yourself.

Look at Patient 1—what, are we up to Patient 5?—in Dallas. He had recently arrived from Liberia, was exhibiting symptoms and was sent home from the doctor’s office with a few antibiotics. The hospital staff did get it right the second time. Nevertheless, the infected person contacted 100 or so people in the meantime. The people he came in contact with, at least those identified, are now quarantined.

What if…

What if you had contact with a person infected with Ebola? Would you be prepared? How much food do you have? Bleach for cleaning? Protective clothing? What if the next breakout was in your neighborhood? Could you afford to simply pick up and move? What about your job, family, school? What if the neighborhood or apartment building was quarantined in the middle of the night—no one in or out? Sure the Red Cross may drop off some food now and then; what else do you need to survive and prevent the spread to you and your loved ones?

Picture shows a cpr mask with gloves and black carrying case.
EMI’s Lifesaver CPR fits adults, children and even infants.

Ebola is an incredibly transmittable disease. Thus far, the only patients “cured” have been the doctor and nurse transported to the U.S. So, if you were Liberian or from another infected country, where would you head if you suspected you had been exposed? That’s right, we painted a huge target on American soil and we have a government that has not shown a willingness to stop travelers coming from infected areas.

Are you prepared for an emergency?

Many prepared individuals and full-blown preppers already have a significant stockpile of supplies to deal with the emergencies most common in their areas. For instance, those living in desert regions prepare for mudslides, wildfires and severe droughts, where someone on the Northeast seaboard may be more concerned with blizzards and hurricanes. Whatever the emergency, much of the preparation is based around regional factors.

What about Ebola? How hard would it be for someone to get off a plane and spread it to your area? It does not have to be someone who just returned from Liberia; it could be Grandma coming to visit the grandkids. Unfortunately, the annoying passenger sitting in 3b next to her did not have a cold, and it was not that hot. However, a sneeze or profuse sweat is all it takes. Worse, it may not be the passenger next to grandma, but the passenger who had that seat on the previous fight, or someone who earlier grabbed the handle of the shopping cart at the grocery store or the doorknob to your office.

Picture shows two men in decontaminate suits carrying an Ebola patient on a stretcher
Ebola has breached our shores. Are you prepared for it to come to your neighborhood?

I am sure there are those with medical backgrounds or who are much wiser to the ways of prepping for communicable diseases, but here is my starting list of items to consider for combating the Ebola threat. I did not come up with the list; instead, I ran a few Internet searches to see products that had suddenly shown significant increases in sales—like a week-over-week 130,000 times increase in the number of units sold by sector in some cases. Are these people getting it right, going overboard or missing key items?

  • Bleach – 5 to 10 gallons
  • Protective clothing –Tyvek coveralls, hood
  • Duct tape — to seal off open seams at wrist, boot, neck
  • Protective particle masks – you cannot live in a HAZMAT suit
  • Gas mask – not sure if this is necessary, but sales are up
  • Emergency food – quarantine will last for 21 days minimum
  • Emergency water – 1 gallon per person, per day
  • Touch-free soap dispenser – great for washing without creating a community touch point
  • Nitrile gloves – medical grade, 2 boxes per person, per week minimum

How about you? Help out the community and post the items that I have missed or you would recommend in the comment section.

[dave]

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (53)

  1. SMITTY 550.

    Is suspect, its POLITICAL. You still have to through the Political Process (a.e. Red-Tape). Example, Spain has an Ebola problem. But, refuse to admit, they have a Ebola problem. I suspect, the Medical Health Care System isn’t up to the challenge. Until other countries get on-board and admitt to the un-admittable. It going to be like the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic, which killed more than 30,000,000-people world wide.

    1. SMITTY 550: I agree with your comment 100%. However, our government and other governments around the world may have a valid reason for not admitting to the public the seriousness of the Ebola outbreak. They fear worldwide panic causing runs on grocery stores as well as banks, fuel, medical supplies, hardware stores and hospital ER’s. A good example of the panic is the Attorney General for the State of Louisiana has refused to accept the incinerated waste to a landfill from the apartment where Eric Duncan (patient 0) was staying even through it had been reduced to ashes. Many nurses in ER’s are now refusing to treat patients with Ebola symptoms, and I can’t say that I blame them, even though our president has said “it’s highly unlikely that Ebola will reach American soil.”

    2. “…it’s highly unlikely that Ebola will reach American soil.” Our Dear Leader simply MUST get back on his medication. Is he really SERIOUS? Judge Jeannine Pirro blasted him and his deeply flawed (and I’m being kind) attitude that is also reflected by the CDC, who has spread the same BS. I hate to inform the Golfer-in-Chief, but the virus has already entered the U.S., so who is he trying to kid? Pirro appears on FOX, and she minces no words about the stupidity that goes on in government.

      What the hell, even though any Ebola carrier who comes to the U.S. by ship or aircraft is stopped and quarantined, it won’t make much difference. Our southern border is virtually wide-open to any terrorist, whether it be a nutcase Muslim who plans an explosion or the poisoning our water supply with a virus or bacterium. The bottom line is that the virus is here and its immigrant carriers will continue to pose a danger unless our government takes steps NOW to stop it. But as you suggest, to do so might make the Europeans mad at us. Screw them; at least more of us would be alive.

    3. Rick, I can’t go along with the panic argument. Would you rather put up with a possible panic or be dead? Frankly, I’ll place my bets on staying alive and hope that our boys in Washington will show some leadership for a change, rather than whitewash the news and insult our intelligence by creating and maintaining a false sense of safety by withholding news we need to know.

      http://www.foxnews.com/?cmpid=NL_breaking

      Again, it looks like the Golfer-in-Chief shrunk to the background with his ridiculous statement. I just read that two healthcare workers in Texas have become stricken with the Ebola virus. My thought is that the CDC had better come up with a cure for the disease or show some leadership by coming up with a plan for us “ordinary” citizens to help us stay alive.

    4. I agree, Skinny. I hope we don’t all have to hang out in our homes, refusing to mix with crowds for fear of picking up the Ebola virus, but this may be in our future if our federal government doesn’t step up to the plate and do its best to keep the virus contained in Africa. So far, I don’t see anything to make me feel safer.

  2. You can take all the Vitamins you want, but the human body will absorb what the body NEEDS and FLUSH the rest. ANTIBIOTICS will only work on BACTERIAL related Infections, NOT VIRUS related Infections. Try a PLACEBO and think Happy-Thoughts!!!

    1. Antibiotics will work on many (but not all) bacterial infections, thanks to the medical profession’s overuse for the past fifty or sixty years, resulting in resistant bacterial strains. As for viruses, we can only hope that we can someday break the genetic code that rules how viruses proliferate.

      What galls me is the fact that the federal government has dithered and is dithering about refusing entrance or re-entrance to anyone who has visited countries where Ebola has been discovered. Trying to isolate and treat Ebola victims here is like locking the barn door after the horse has escaped.

  3. Well stated response! None of the items listed will prevent Ebola or help with a cure. Misinformation about Ebola is just as dangerous whether coming from our government or well meaning but ignorant people.

  4. Miracle is your own internal immune system that can be strengthened by a trip to any vitamin store’s immune section. Colloidal Silver, Garlic, Zinc, Iodine or Kelp or Seaweed, Wild Oregano Oil, Olive Leaf Extract, D3 5,000 capsules, Vitamin C 5 Grams, Selenium, H2O2 or Hydrogen Peroxide, Antioxidants, Greens Powder, Camu- Camu, Herbs. Astragalus. Are not meant to treat cure or prevent any disease. Just make you able to resist, outsmart, kick ass and avoid going to sick bay. Semper Fi

    1. The immune system isn’t bolstered by any of that junk you listed. The only benefits from purchasing these items is that it makes your wallet thinner and the wallets of the sellers fatter. Hydrogen peroxide is a surfactant and has nothing to do with bolstering the immune system.

      You can ingest all the herbs you wish, but the Ebola virus is a killer, and its victims are almost certain to die, regardless of ingestion of any of the so-called snake-oil immune system items you mentioned, and there has been no valid research to prove otherwise.

  5. Both parties suck. Both are absolutely corrupt. The govt. is awful and most definetely not here for you or I. This article smacks of an attempt to drive up cheaper than dirt’s sales. Just sayin.

  6. So far, no-one has committed to discuss other possible preps here. I would like to add that unless you are financially able, your food preps should include MRE type meals. Ones that don’t need to be cooked. Most canned foods including home canned foods are more simple to eat and also use less fuel,(including wood, electricity) needed to heat and eat. Bills will keep coming, so try to become debt free soon as possible.

  7. If you trust what Obama tells the public, not just about Ebola, but about the recovery of the economy, destroying ISIS or anything else that comes out of his mouth you’re a fool. We can’t depend on the government to protect it’s citizens from anything from hurricanes to preventing terrorist from crossing our open boarders. The best thing Americans can do during these dangerous times is to prepare themselves for the worst and hope for the best. We are being threatened by more then one crises, not just in the USA but worldwide. Pull your heads out of the sand or where ever you’ve got it and pay attention to what’s happening around us all.

    1. RICK D.

      Who should I believe, Cheney. He’s told more Whoppers than Junior Samples did on Hee Haw. Five deferments from the draft, from serving it Vietnam, because he thought it was a waste of time and value of HIS most valuable resources.

    2. What does Cheney have to do with it you liberal moron. It’s always the same with the idiots on the left. The can’t defend the liar in chief so you blame someone or something else. As far a lying goes no one even comes close to Oblahblah.

    3. JD

      What did Obama lie about. He never said Ebola wasn’t going to come into the country. He was just off about the timing. And how can you predicate something, before it happens. Does the phrase, “I Shot An Arrow Into the Air, and Where It Fell, I Know Not Where…”. Come to mind. If you can answer that question, I’m probably sure there are a few scientist at MIT, that will ask you exactly when the next Earthquake Hits or the next Asteroid is going too hit the Earth.

    4. Really, What hasn’t Obama lied about? He may be able to sneak by on his Ebola statement. You however brought Cheney into the conversation who has nothing to do with the conversation and the first sentence of your last post is, I assume, deals only with this incident. Obama is without question the worst president we had in the past 60 years and unquestionably the biggest lie ever to grace the white house. Most people be they democrat, republican or independent realize that he is a total failure and perhaps the worse thing ever to happen to this country.

    5. Well said JD~Obama’s lies and failed programs are costing people their lives at this very moment. We cannot trust anything coming out of Obama’s administration including his golf score card. The truth is that the Ebola virus is constantly mutating and could possibly eventually become airborne. Obama and the CDC is down playing this threat to prevent public panic instead of taking aggressive action to prevent more Ebola infected people from entering the USA.

  8. Nick: Am I correct in thinking that Perry is just another underachieving version of Bush backed by a lot of GOP money? I wasn’t too impressed with Perry the last time around when they picked the cannibal capitalist wearing magic underwear. I think when they get that high up they’re just puppets and the strings are being pulled by the industrial/military complex President Eisenhower warned us about sixty years ago. God knows that’s apparently true with congress and the supreme court. Color me disgusted with both parties.

  9. Any one coming from a country that has a outbreak should have at least a 30 day hold preferable 60 days would be better. There are to many drugs that can be taken to hide a fever which is how they are screening for the Ebola virus. Anyone who goes over the to give humanitarian aid should be quarantined for 60 days minimum. We need to keep this out of our back yard. Sometimes I wonder if the government is allowing this to see how the cdc can handle a virtual outbreak. Its to scary if you as me. Watch a movie called outbreak with Dustin Hoffman scary.

    1. @ blndbmber.

      But, you still need a Isolated Holding Area/Facility to house them. You should also read the book EXECUTIVE ORDER, by Tom Clancy (unabridged).

  10. One things for sure, this Medical Crisis isn’t going to look good on Texas Governor’s Rick Perry’s resume. If he plans to run for President, AGAIN. Running around the country, doing fund raisers. And leaving the job for the Texas State Attorney General, too do.

    1. Do you think Perry caused this crisis? You are way off base, it’s Obama who won’t restrict travel to this country.

    2. @ Ern.

      If I recall right, Duncan, came by-way of Brussels, Belgium. Not a direct flight from Liberia. So, have a travel ban with direct flights coming from West Africa. Solves Nothing.

    3. Trust me, I’m from Texas and you don’t want that clown Rick “Twinkle Toes” Perry as president. That guy only talks and walks like Texan when it will boost him politically. That guy has a closet full of skeletons the establishment can blackmail him with. Republicans and Democrats are just two different sides of the same coin and the sooner Texas and America wake up to that fact, the sooner we can start restoring the nation.

  11. Hey folks let’s keep it civil. There’s no need for name calling. We may not all agree politically but let’s take the high road. When you start calling some one a punk you lose. All you’re going to accomplish is pissing them off. Agree to disagree on some things and move on. Let’s see what we can learn from each other.

  12. > JakeD

    I suspect the reason why they keep coming here, is because new organizations like FOX News. Keep telling the WORLD, the their’s a possible Miracle Cure for the virus in the United States!

    1. No really have another drink.

      1. I have never heard Fox say anything of the sort or even close. 2. I am fairly sure that the masses affected in Africa are not spending their time watch Fox or any other news. 3. You’re correct, Fox is responsible for nation security and has the ability to restrict movement between countries. Sorry I thought your moron President and government had something to do with that.
      You should have stopped with the 2 drinks.

    2. Obviously you only listen to Fox news after you have had more than two. They have never mentioned a miracle cure.

    3. Keep voting Democratic and destroy whats left of America,open borders, homosexuality,gun take away, welfare,abortion, attacks on religion,adultery,lies the Democratic Party way…..

    4. REG

      You might want to put on your glasses and read what your writing. Because what you writing, describes the Republican Party more that the Democratic Party.

  13. McRuger

    I assuming their beeing protected from NUT JOBS, like yourselves. In the Presidents case, it comes with the territory. I wonder if the Koch Brothers have private bodyguard security service, 24/7/365. What do you THINK..

    1. I have no idea what you’re talking about, what your problem is or what meds you are supposed to be on. You are however obviously a brainwashed liberal punk.
      To answer you question, yes I assume the Koch Bros have private security just like Reid, Pelosi, George Soros, Bloomberg, Tom Steyer, Irwin & Joan Jacobs, Fred Eychaner, James H. Simons and so on.
      Do you have a point or is it just time for your nap.

  14. If you want to really get upset about it. I read a book many years ago called “The Hot Zone”. It talks about how contagious these viruses are and describes in detail what infected people go through. With the feds leaving the borders open to whoever wants to come in and being unwilling to isolate African countries the possibilities are endless. Read the book and see if you think we are getting good information from our government.

  15. Why the hell are we bringing ebola infected people to the USA.
    Are we STUPID or what !!!
    Send a hand full of DOCTORs to them, DAH !!!
    Take “NO”, I said “NO” Chances !!!

  16. Dave: who’s got the straight scoop on what really happened? I’ve paid close attention to what both Fox and the major channel’s news had to say and from what I gathered he didn’t tell the hospital he had just come from Africa the first time around. Considering that I think it might be understandable that they just thought he was another case of influenza. The damage done though might not be reversible.

  17. Working for a biotech company, I think I am fairly safe and have access to way more useful items than what is on this list. Pocket size hand sanitizer would be a good addition and use it after every time you touch something others use. At work we have gallons of the stuff, two on every desk with a pump spout, and everybody is pretty good about using it regularly.

  18. I worked in the government for 30 years

    If you believe in the government then you must also believe in the tooth fairy and Santa as well.

    1. Secundius,

      The hospital screw up certainly counts, but it only shows the dangers. I just read that it is confirmed one of the hospital workers in Texas was confirmed to now have Ebola, which shows the potential danger.

  19. First, to answer the article’s opening question, “Do you trust the President?” Regrettably no. Not so much him but the clowns associated with him. They haven’t been right up to now.

    As a 73 year old senior raised on antibiotics, I no longer have an immune system. I get the sniffles and it takes a truck load of meds to get me on the mend. If you look or act sick around me and you’re running a fever, sorry, you’re probably going to die because I’m not going to get close to you.

    I have to agree with Secundius, I don’t think a charcoal mask would do it. With all the typhoid Mary’s running around I’m keeping a healthy distance from anyone exhibiting symptoms and I’d recommend the same for every one else.

    1. @ Mc Ruger.

      If I remember right, Fox News reported that story 2-weeks before the first outbreak. And, he didn’t say, they’re weren’t going too be any outbreaks.

      At least get the FACT’S straight. Or, is Fox News retro-acting news reports, NOW TOO!!!

    2. Secundius,

      Perhaps you have your speeches mixed up. Try Sep 16… “First and foremost, I want the American people to know that our experts, here at the CDC and across our government, agree that the chances of an Ebola outbreak here in the United States are extremely low. We’ve been taking the necessary precautions, including working with countries in West Africa to increase screening at airports so that someone with the virus doesn’t get on a plane for the United States. In the unlikely event that someone with Ebola does reach our shores,…” Here the President trivialized the threat to the U.S.

    3. Secundius

      I’m sorry I forgot that Fox news is the official word not Obama. Next time Obama downplays something like. ISIS or Ebola or says the Fox news made up a scandal I’ll just believe him without question. Just like the rest of his sheep.

    4. Obama and Bloomberg also say WE don’t need guns. Then they surround themselves with people who have guns,

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Time limit exceeded. Please click the reload button and complete the captcha once again.

Your discussions, feedback and comments are welcome here as long as they are relevant and insightful. Please be respectful of others. We reserve the right to edit as appropriate, delete profane, harassing, abusive and spam comments or posts, and block repeat offenders. All comments are held for moderation and will appear after approval.