In Power Grid Down, Tara Dodrill shines a light on what is one of the most insidious threats our technologically advanced (read dependent) society faces, the complete failure of the nation’s electrical power grid. If you know anything at all about this threat, you know it is a terrifying possibility, but our author immerses us in this stark reality and shows us how to get ready for just such a future.
In the first couple of chapters the author details how precariously fragile the system is and all the ways it could be taken down, touching on everything from terrorism to solar flares. You may have not been aware of the how truly vulnerable our electric grid is to disruption, but after reading this portion of the book you will never flip a switch without thinking about where your electricity comes from again.
Just as the doom of a possible non-electrified future begins to weigh heavy on your shoulders, our author pulls us forward and offers solutions that you can get to work on today. I particularly enjoyed the chapter on grid down communications. Here we are shown practical solutions to a communications outage based on advanced planning. Pointing out solutions like a color coded (or some other) signaling/messaging system to the nice detail in the radio segments, you can pursue a communications plan that is as analog or high-tech as you wish.
With the failure of the grid, our digital economy would cease to exist and with it the power that we have to purchase the things we would need going forward. There is a way forward and the author lights our way once again as we are escorted on a walk through the wonderful world of bartering. Numbers in a bank account or not, you will see that there are still ways for you to get what you need.
Our author delves into what a non-electrified world would look and feel like and the new threats that must be considered. In the middle of the book, Dodrill hits all the high points including heating and cooking in a grid down scenario complete with how-to instructions, how to find and build your perfect off the grid locale with a variety of materials and stock it with the type of gear necessary to handle a time without electricity to sanitation and skill building. It is here you will find suggestions and advice on developing the practical capital you will need to survive a grid down scenario as well as fun ways to get out and keep fit and practice your skills.
Of course, no preparedness book worth the paper it’s written on would be complete without discussing mobile kits like get home bags or bug out bags and Power Grid Down does not disappoint, covering everything from why they are necessary to planning and build out.
In the last three chapters of the book, our author deftly turns towards ways to strengthen your situation using the materials and skills you already have on hand. From pointing out natural remedies and ways to bolster your gardening production to giving thought to what type of skills and work will be valuable in a possible grid down future, Dodrill shows you how to build resilience into your preparations.
The book finishes strong with a discussion about educating your children at home and touches on an aspect of prepping that we feel is especially important in any disaster and that is psychological preparedness by reminding us the need to consider ways to boost the morale of our survivors. This is one aspect of preparedness that we feel is vital and that is often overlooked.
In closing, Power Grid Down is a well rounded and in depth look at the realities of what a failure of the electric grid would look like in America. If you think this is beyond the pale and just is not possible in the United States, you need to think again. If you are aware of the threat and need a guide to getting ready for a non-electrified future, you should read this book. Whether you’re new to prepping or consider it old hat, this book is worth your time. In short, Power Grid Down is PracTac approved and is a resource that should be on the shelf in any preparedness library.
Tara Dodrill is currently a writer at Off The Grid News, Advertising Director at Prepper and Shooter Magazine