Lights out

Me and Mr LIL watched a documentary series on SVT called Lights Out which is an experiment where 10 people divided into two houses have to live without electricity for 12 days.

The scenario is that a sun storm that shuts down all the electricity and mobile networks in Sweden and it takes two weeks before the electricity comes back. There has been two recorded sun storms that big but one was before society was dependent on electricity so it didn’t affect us so much and for the other one the earth was on the other side of the sun so it didn’t hit us. If a sun storm that size hit Sweden today it would throw the country into a panic.

During a large power outage all food shops would close due to safety reasons and shops today don’t have huge stores anyways since they rely on just in time deliveries instead. The water supply systems and sewage systems won’t work, you can’t fill up your car, no busses or trains will run, food production stops since most of it is automated, the banks are totally digital so you can’t access money in any form, no internet or access to information except from a FM radio (which most of us don’t own any more) and the big hospitals have backup generators but that need diesel so they can only keep open as long as they get deliveries. In short our world would come to a complete halt.

In the experiment one group lives in a super modern, highly technological house where everything is controlled with electricity. They barely have any food to symbolize modern society where we either shop groceries every day or order take out. The other group lives in an older house with a barn that is close by a stream, with a wood stove and a pantry with some staples.

It’s quite unnerving how quickly panic insures in the modern house. They don’t have heat, water, food, any information about what is happening or a working toilet so after just two days they can’t survive in the house and join the other group in the older house. After 10 days the two groups don’t have any food at all left and abandon the older house in search for an emergency camp to get food.

Since the goverment and municipalities focus on the groups that need help first like hospitals and the elderly the recommendation in Sweden is that every one else has to be able to survive without any help for a week. I would assume that most people in apartments in cities would be in a similar situation as the modern house in the experiment without water, food, information or a working toilet. So a large chunk of the population would probably be panic-stricken after just two days…

Since I had a period where I dove deeply into the world of “prepping” we have put quite a lot of thought and stocked up on things that we would need if sh* hits the fan. Here are some examples of what we have at home and in the car just in case:

  • a large amount of canned food and staples like tomato sause, coconut milk, beans, rice and nuts so that we always have extra
  • a large water container in our basement
  • a “bug out bag” packed with important things to bring if we have to leave our home quickly
  • dry dogfood for the LIL wolf if her frozen food gets spoilt
  • a map over the Stockholm area, compass and a book with edible plants
  • first aid kits in the bug out bag, at home and in our car
  • torches and a battery driven FM radio
  • Lots of extra candles
  • a solar cell charger
  • a camper stove and tent

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