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June 21, 2023 10:22 AM
With the Doomsday Clock the closest to midnight it has ever been, over 70% in a new survey of 6,200 said they “do not have faith in the government” in a catastrophe such as a nuclear war or even climate-change-fueled disaster.
As a result, many are hoarding water, food, warm clothing, weapons, and cash to help them get through the worst days of a doomsday event.
The national survey, provided by BonusFinder, said 40 million fear doomsday is coming in a year, even more were inspired by prep for it because of social media posts, and 108 million have spent up to $5,000 to get ready.
The survey confirms concerns charted over the years by Secrets that more Americans are fearful about an attack that will cut off power and make food and water scarce, such as from an electromagnetic pulse attack from Russia, China, Iran, or North Korea. A congressional report said just one EMP attack knocking out power to the East Coast would lead to the deaths of 90% who live there.
Prepper forts have started to pop up, giving some a place to hide. But the survey suggested many people are taking matters into their own hands.
Half of the residents in a handful of states, led by West Virginia and Arizona, have spent over $10,000 preparing for the worst. The leading purchases are for water, warm clothing, and food. Some 20% even bought pet food.
The survey said 10% have put cash away, but it made it sound like dollars might be worthless versus food and material items.
Those aged 40-65 are more likely to be prepping, and twice as many men as women are getting ready for a disaster.
Just what that disaster will be is dividing the nation. Some 55% cited climate change, 36% virus and disease, and 25% a nuclear attack. But there were other concerns. Over 15% are concerned about an asteroid strike, 15% about a robot or artificial intelligence “takeover,” and 7.5% about a “zombie apocalypse.”
Since the COVID-19 crisis, prepping and concerns about a world-ending doomsday have grown. The survey said social media has helped to raise the fears.
It has even helped to drive the development of survival skills. For example, 45% said they have attempted to master foraging, 32% are learning to purify water, and 15% have learned to start fires.
Still, many in the survey that compared prepping state by state were not sure of survival. For example, Rhode Island residents are the least sure, with just 35% “believing in their capability.” But it could be their fault: State residents are also the least preparing for doomsday, with just 30% having stored items away, the analysis said.