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5 Must-have radios for survival in a grid-down situation
By Amy Goodrich // Sep 10, 2018

With so many threats on the horizon, learning ways to prepare yourself and your family for survival might save your life one day. Whether it is an economic collapse, natural disaster, or chemical attack, don’t count on governments to come to your aid.


Riots, looting, and disasters can unfold anytime. Being prepared for these emergency events will give you a head start and a much better chance of survival. If you are new to prepping, it may seem like a daunting task. Have you ever taken the time to consider what makes the best survival tools for an emergency?

Sure you’ve thought of the basic essentials such as a Big Berkey gravity water filter, first aid kit, power supply, emergency lighting, and survival food. But whether you’re a seasoned prepper or someone who just started out, emergency radios are one of the most overlooked survival tools missing from many prepper kits.

In today’s world, many people rely on their smartphone or tablet. These communications methods, however, are unreliable. During any catastrophic event, a complete power outage is usually the first thing that happens. Even if the electricity grid is still operational, when thousands of people are dialing for help at the same time the mobile networks simply clog up.

Whether the outage is caused by heightened call volume (which happened during the Boston attack and the San Francisco Earthquake in 2007) or a physical destruction of the mobile network infrastructure (which occurred during Superstorm Sandy), cell phones aren’t the best survival communication devices out there.

In a time of disaster, there is nothing more important than to check up on your loved ones and get a clear understanding of what’s happening out there, so you can make the critical decision whether you should bug out or not. Instead of relying on modern communication technology when the grid goes black, use one of these five emergency radios that will work when standard equipment fails.

NOAA Emergency Radio equipped with Specific Area Messaging Encoder (S.A.M.E.)

If you don’t have a S.A.M.E. radio in your basic survival kit, it is recommended that you get one as soon as possible. This device can save your life by sending an alert to your home or business when a disaster strikes in your area. With so many weather radios out there it is important to choose one that also offers individual alerts for your county and surroundings.

A battery powered AM/FM radio or MP3 player

A small compact radio powered by batteries will not only provide you with essential information, but a little bit of music can also uplift the spirits during times of disaster. Don’t forget to store some new batteries alongside it.

Scanner radio

For real-time information, a police/fire scanner is what you need. It can help you make better decisions whether to bug our or not. Since some agencies have converted to digital systems, we recommend doing your research to see whether scanner radios are usable in your area.

Short-range handheld 2-way radios

To stay in touch with the rest of your survival group, GMRS, CB, MURS or eXRS are a must. They are very popular, cheap, and can be used everywhere.

Portable shortwave radio

While this is the least important of all survival radios, when the conditions are right, shortwave radios can help you monitor the disaster Ham radio frequencies.

Stay informed about the best survival gear and prepping strategies at Survival.news.

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