So, as a moderate prepper myself I am compelled to broach this subject. As of now there seems to be two extremes concerning the emerging spread of Coronavirus: those who are already labeling it a pandemic, and those who say it is not an issue, less problem then even the common flu. So, is it truly an issue?
Yes, it is an issue, as of this writing the American economy has already taken a significant hit and the stock market has plummeted. So, yes, it is an issue and it is going to do some damage. With that said, I believe the response to Coronavirus is going to be more damaging than the virus itself. Many people are going to panic and pull out of the market, thus fostering an economic downturn. If the virus continues to spread, which now looks likely, we may see economic impact in other areas as people stop, through personal choice or mandate, going to work. This is the biggest threat the virus is likely to pose.
The virus is not that deadly and the mortality rate is not that high, but it is still bad due to the long incubation period that makes it likely to spread. People with pre-existing health issues are more susceptible to danger from this illness. Even if the mortality rate is only 2-3% imagine if 50 million Americans contract the virus over the next year. That is a lot of dead people. So, while this is hardly a rapidly spreading airborne form of Ebola, this is a potential pandemic. There also remains the possibility that the virus can mutate and get worse, but that is only speculation for now.
Still, we are going to be impacted. We are going to see an economic downturn to a greater or lesser extent. We are already seeing the big box stores running out of stock of certain items as the masses scramble to prepare and stock up. Therefore, at this point, what should be the lessons learned? The greatest lesson of all is this:
Preparation should be a consistent part of your life and you should be prepared for dealing with this, or any other emergency, well ahead of time.
Being prepared is being prepared. If you have a well-stocked house with water purification options, several month’s worth of food, and medical supplies, you are prepared for all sorts of emergencies, whether that be a blizzard or a quarantine due to a pandemic. The time to prepare is now (obviously, before now at this point) not during a crisis, or the threat of a crisis. Also, beyond having the house well stocked, you need to maintain a bug out plan. No matter how secure your home is, there are emergencies that can force you to flee.
Stay prepared. If this is your wakeup call to start prepping you are behind the curb. Just as carrying your gun and knowing how to use it is preparation for the unexpected, so is maintaining a stock of needed supplies for your household.