There are many different disasters that would be catastrophic to the United States. An EMP attack that causes the power grid to collapse, a huge natural disaster, or a complete economic collapse far worse than the Great Depression are just three such disasters that would take years to recover from.
What many people fail to realize, however, is that it won’t be the disaster itself that kills the most people. While it is true that the EMP strike would cause planes to fall out of the sky and cars to crash into one another, and while it’s also true that a natural disaster could claim thousands of lives instantly, it’s what happens after an apocalyptic disaster that would cause most of the deaths.
With communications, food, water, and other necessities all cut off instantly, once ordinary people will do desperate things in order to survive. Hunger and starvation, dehydration and lack of water, and people killing one another savagely for basic necessities are what would claim the most lives.
Nowhere in the United States is going to be truly safe or immune from a disaster on a grand scale. However, some states will certainly be less safe than others, and we’re going to discuss what those states are and why they are more unsafe than others.
Here are the top five worst American states to be in during a collapse, presented in alphabetical order:
Here’s a state that you’re probably surprised to see on this list, especially when you consider Alaska (known as the Last Frontier) is supposed to be a safe haven for survivalists. There’s no denying that Alaska has many factors that would initially make it seem like a good place to be in during a disaster.
For one thing, it’s sparsely populated and its few urban areas are not anywhere near as populous as cities like New York or Los Angeles. It also has an abundance of natural resources such as timber and wild game.
But at the same time, Alaska has many negatives. For one thing, it’s very earthquake prone due to the fact that it’s situated along the West Coast. It’s also cut off from the lower 48 states, so imports of basic supplies and necessities will come to a screeching halt in the midst of disaster with no hope of resupply (gasoline and oil are arguably the biggest of these).
There’s no denying that Alaska is one of the most beautiful places in the entire world. But at the same time, it has serious cons that should make you seriously reconsider it as a bug out location.
You might as well put the whole West Coast under this one, which is incredibly vulnerable to earthquakes and is very densely populated. Those densely populated cities like San Francisco, San Diego, or Los Angeles are not just bad places to be in an earthquake. They are also prime EMP or nuclear targets for our enemies.
Furthermore, California’s economy is incredibly fragile with very high debt. It’s arguably the most prone to an economic collapse over any other state. This is on top of the very high cost of living, taxes, and regulations in the state as well.
All in all, the West Coast is definitely not somewhere you want to be during a disaster, but California will be even more dangerous than Washington and Oregon.
You can probably already guess one reason why Florida is on this list: hurricanes. It’s no secret that Florida is very prone to hurricanes, but even that hasn’t stopped retirees from flocking to the Sunshine State as a warm tropical haven.
Sure, Florida is a very attractive state, but it’s still far too overburdened with negative factors to be considered a good state to be in during a disaster. On the contrary, it’s one of the worst. Miami is a very large city and could be a prime target of a nuclear or EMP attack. The population in Florida is also very dense (it’s surpassed New York) and the crime rate is high.
In addition, most of Florida is already under sea level, which is dangerous should ocean temperatures ever seriously rise. Overall, you would be advised to not consider Florida as a bug out retreat.
Hawaii is on this list for many of the same reasons that Alaska is: it’s cut off from the rest of the United States and therefore will also be cut off from shipping and imports during a disaster. As an added con, Hawaii already has less overall resources than Alaska, with less of a chance to be successful at agriculture due to the generally poor soil.
Hawaii is also a goldmine of military bases that will be prime targets in the event of a global war. Unless you can get out beforehand on a ship or an airplane, you’re essentially stranded in an archipelago out in the middle of the Pacific Ocean with no serious way of getting out.
If Hawaii serves one purpose, it’s a vacation place to make happy memories. But it’s certainly not a place to go to outlast a disaster.
5. New York
Last but not least, we come to New York. The East and West Coasts are both highly and densely populated, and the city of New York itself is going to be a prime target for our enemies.
New York also shares many cons with California: the high cost of living, high taxes and regulations, a high crime rate, strict firearms laws, heavy traffic, and so on.
Granted, not all of New York is so bad. Much of the northern part of the state is very rural and teeming with natural resources. Still, you’re in very close proximity to the city, and refugees will undoubtedly be flooding north towards Canada, so you’re still not that safe anyway.
Alaska, California, Florida, Hawaii, and New York will be the five least safe states to be in during a major nationwide disaster. As an alternative, you would be wise to check out the states in the Great Plains or the Rocky Mountains instead. While those areas certainly have their cons as well (remember that no state is truly safe), they are still much safer than the five states we’ve just gone over.