Fortification and security are constantly on the mind of people who prep, who carry a weapon and care for the safety and security of their families.
The world is not a nice place, and that’s been proven over and over. Home invasions are violent and rapid crimes, and expecting the police to save you is wishful thinking at best and downright irresponsible at worst.
In New Jersey last year, a woman was savagely beaten in front of her 3-year-old daughter in an incident that was caught on a nanny cam. And in Detroit this year, a woman defended her family with a Hi Point carbine from three home invaders.
And these examples were during the rule of law. Imagine the level of violence during a crisis or disaster scenario, after the rule of law collapses and there’s no electricity. The mere fact one is prepared means a lot. As preppers, we are in many ways painting a target on our back. Even if our OPSEC (operational security) isn’t violated people may begin to wonder why we seem to be doing so well.
The vast majority of houses are easy to get into because locks only keep honest people out. Ripping or kicking down a door isn’t extremely hard. During my time in the Marines, our 0351 Assault men were capable of breaching nearly anything, with shotguns, sledge hammers and hooligan tools. The size of the doors didn’t matter; guys who were 5-foot-4 and 120 pounds soaking wet could peel doors down with a hooligan tool. A slow breach took less than a minute.
While anything can be breached, sieged, burned down or starved out, what we can do is take precautions to make our homes less desirable targets.
The first and probably most expensive thing one should do is take a firm look at their door. Does it have awesome windows that let in a full spectrum of light? It won’t look nice smashed on your floor with an arm sticking through it, unlocking your door. Big windows on doors are a no-go. The second problem is that anyone can see you coming, and gauge you.
Windows on doors should be left to the very top, something that can be ducked under and avoided, and something that no one can reach through. A nice solid wood door is expensive, but it much harder to break down than a light aluminum door.
Deterrence at the farthest distance possible is your best bet. Lights are one of the best deterrents available, and are very affordable. Lights equipped with motion sensors are even better. It’s a simple fact that people doing bad things prefer to do them in the dark. At the least, a good and bright light in front of your home’s door will raise the eyebrows of most thieves.
Reinforcing windows is also important and doesn’t require bars or steel shutters. Both these have the potential to lock someone in, as much as they have of locking someone out. A company called 3M produces a security film for your windows, making them shatter proof and difficult to break. Imagine covering your window with duct tape, from the bottom to the top, and trying to break it. The tape would hold the glass together, and these security films do the same. They won’t make your windows tough as steel, but they’ll stop someone long enough to receive a load of buckshot.
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Now after a disaster or crisis your options for security and necessity for home security increase tenfold. If you live in the burbs your neighbor may give you an odd look when you set up barbwire obstacles. Oh yes, barb wire — God’s gift to pain and security.
A roll of barb wire is compact and only costs about a hundred bucks. Building a barricade with barb wire is easy. All you need is some wire, some boards, staple nails and a hammer. Nail the boards into an X shape and connect the X with a long board, about five foot or so. Next run barb wire from the four edges of the X-shaped board. You can add more wire if you choose and either tie off or staple nail it from leg to leg. This forms a barrier that can be high enough that jumping it is difficult and low enough where crawling is impossible. The barriers can be combined with one another to make a fence capable of being adjusted and adapted to different needs.
It’s possible the power is going to be long gone in a disaster situation, so your lights aren’t going to be effective. (Unless, of course, you have a backup generator.) Stoking a fire all night for the little light it provides will be both time-consuming and wasteful. A better bet is to rig an alarm system. Now how hard is an alarm system to build? It’s easy and can be made with a bit of junk and some paracord.
The junk can be tin cans, coins, marbles, soda cans, or ball bearings. Using coins or even BBs in the can creates the potential for quite the racket. Now rigged to some paracord (550 cord) and strategically placed, these can create a racket. Outside of the noise giving a heads up you can also locate your intruder, and prepare to engage the threat. Most will probably panic when the sound of the cans go off.
The best bet is too place these in a mixture of low and high, and attach them to thin trees and plants. If these plants are hit they will make the cans go off.
An alternative trap is one sold that is used with twelve gauge blanks. This is a trip wire trap that when hit fires the twelve gauge blank and creates a heck of an alarm. Using live rounds will not be effective, and will destroy the trap, as well as being illegal.
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Of course the best defense is a good offense. Being able to engage your target before or during their attempt to penetrate your home will stop you from being placed into danger. This of course, means firearms. Being trained, ready and armed will do a lot to keep you alive.
In all reality, a combination of both defensive and offensive will keep you ready for anything. Your defensive preparations should be thought of as a delay for a determined attacker. For most, though, they will make you a hard, and therefore an undesirable target.
These are just a few suggestions. One can always board everything up and be fine. Everyone will have their own needs and abilities to fortify their house. Take careful examination and take stock of your situation. My situation is different than yours, and your different from your friends, so one guide is not enough for every situation. Stay safe.