Preparing For The Worst: Meet Oklahoma's 'Preppers'
OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahomans shopped for weapons, tools and other gear at this Preparedness Expo in the metro. Mark Smith is a prepper and advocate. He organized this event.
"How many people do we know who are in foreclosure or have lost a job or had their hours cut back?" Smith asked. "You still have to eat, you still have to stay hydrated and you still need shelter."
Smith calls prepping another form of insurance.
"What's the down side of having more food and water in your house? There isn't one" Smith said.
Julie Lewis and her family of three began storing food a few years ago.
"When you're supporting your family, it's the number one thing, how do I feed my family?" Lewis said.
They've needed their extra food supply more than once.
"We've been through snow storms, a job loss," Lewis added.
Lewis said wheat, rice and beans are essentials. But freeze dried foods add some flavor to their diet.
"We have a lot of the fruits and the green and the veggies. We got dairies, even have whole egg powder and meat. We even have dessert. You just add water," Lewis said. "It's not a crazy theory. It's happened in the past and we try to learn from the past."
Prepping isn't just about food. Sixty-five-year-old Hal is ready to get away if the unthinkable happens. His everyday RV is transformed into the great escape on wheels.
"I'd disconnect the antennas, back the truck up to the trailer and I'd be gone," Hal said.
Hal said he has everything he needs, including dehydrated and canned food, water, medical and health supplies, even ammo. Perhaps Hal's biggest defense is ham radio, in case he's forced to "bug in."
"If it's a true emergency and you need somebody, you can get on here and say "may day" or send SOS with Morse Code," Hal said. "It's not insanity, it's reality and it's common sense."
So how do you get started preparing? Your first step: take an inventory.
Mark Smith says until you know what you have, you don't know what you need.
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