War Survival Tactics

In this article, we have selected key survival tips for civilians in a military conflict zone. They can be useful in case a war has come to your city.

Modern warfare almost always involves civilians. Shelling, fighting, the danger of destruction, and occupation of the city. All this is not only deadly in itself, but often puts a large number of people to flight: this is the only way it seems possible to protect yourself and your loved ones. And if the military is trained for such things, then the civilians, as a rule, are helpless. How should you behave and what survival tactics should you follow if you find yourself in a combat zone? How can civilians survive in a war?

What to do during shelling?

Shelling is very characteristic of modern wars. This is a terrible test for the human psyche. Since the First World War, most of the military casualties have always been caused by shelling – which is why artillery is nicknamed the God of War. The military is being trained for such a test, but the same cannot be said for civilians.

What does artillery fire sound like? 82 mm mines emit a whistle or screech when flying. 120-mm mines emit a dull hiss and whistle during the flight before hitting.

Tank missiles emit a unique howl mixed with rustling during the flight. Projectile arrivals are accompanied by heavy muffled sounds when they hit the ground. Cracks and rumbles are heard when hitting buildings. What to do as soon as you catch a characteristic sound?

Immediately drop to the ground where you are standing and wait out the shelling there. Change location only as a last resort. Open your mouth and cover your ears with your hands. This will help you to avoid concussions and preserve hearing. Remember to close your eyes to protect them from dust and stone chips.

Where to hide during shelling?

The lower you are concerning the surface of the earth, the better: underpasses, basements, sewer hatches, ditches, and trenches are suitable. Shell fragments cause most of the losses. Therefore, it is important to have a barrier that will protect you from fragments. During the explosion, fragments fly up and to the sides tangentially, in the form of a huge cone. The lower you lie down, the higher the chances of staying alive.

Never hide near the walls of buildings. When the shell hits the wall, you can suffer from broken glass and shards of concrete and bricks. Accordingly, you should also stay away from windows. Even a small window, breaking, turns into a dangerous split crumb – it can be more dangerous than shell fragments. 

The safest place during shelling should be a room, preferably with load-bearing walls without windows. If there are windows, preferably those facing the wall of another house. Take care of a mat on the floor. Shelling can last from ten minutes to all night long. Try to cover yourself with a thick blanket: this is additional protection from shrapnel, stone chips, and glass. Remember to lie down as soon as the sounds of shelling are heard. 

Civilians at war: How to cope with panic?

Try to breathe evenly and deeply. Count to one hundred and try to bring your thoughts into a single calm rhythm. Whatever happens around you, the main thing is not to panic. You should not run anywhere during shelling, especially if there are people around. It will not save anyone. Besides, someone may follow your example. Panic is highly contagious. Those who freeze, get lost, and fall into a stupor, throw them on the ground and do not let them move.

Everyone is scared under fire, there are no exceptions. Those who say that they are not scared of shelling are lying. The typical reaction of the body during shelling is an instant release of a high dose of adrenaline into the blood. Our body mobilizes all the reserves of the organism. Strong heartbeat, high pulse, blood pressure spikes, and possible numbness. In these moments, your body burns resources at an accelerated pace, living your years in minutes.

What to do when the shellings have subsided?

Carefully examine yourself and those around you. Count people, and take a roll call. Make sure everyone has responded. Perhaps someone was wounded, but from the excess of adrenaline, a person will not feel it immediately. So you need to take off your clothes and look at each other. It is necessary to make sure that there are no hotbeds of fire. 

Never touch unexploded ordnance!

Drinking is super important for survival!

Our body is 70% water, and even slight dehydration robs us of energy and strength. That is why it’s important to replenish your body’s water reserves regularly. 

Juice, soda, or coffee will not replenish our water losses. To maintain the right balance, especially during physical exertion, you need to drink water. Sweet drinks are poor thirst quenchers and coffee and tea with milk have a diuretic effect.

You should drink even before the onset of acute thirst. The most reasonable is to calculate how much water you are supposed to drink per day (in the norm – at the rate of 30 ml per 1 kg of body weight, in the heat – 40 ml per 1 kg of body weight). It is important to drink in small portions, otherwise, big amounts of liquid can harm your body.

Along with sweat, the body loses sodium. If there is nothing to eat, water can be slightly salted: a quarter teaspoon of salt per liter bottle is enough. If circumstances allow, you should eat fresh fruits and vegetables – the body gets moisture from them as well. For example, such fruits as watermelons, melons, strawberries, and raspberries consist of more than 80% water. 

We strongly hope that you will read about war only in articles and it will never come to your home. Stay safe!

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