7 Surprising Prepping Statistics: Beyond the Numbers

Prepping statistics are almost always surprising, but a few on this list may cause you to do a double take. Unbelievable stats can be harrowing and frustrating, but they can also motivate logical people to be even more prepared. Before we get too far into the discussion, I’ll go ahead and admit it; I’m a data nerd. If you haven’t gathered that fact by seeing me crunch the probabilities, impacts, and tangible risks into our TrueRisk index- then you haven’t been paying attention. Numbers and statistics can provide very clear pictures of what is going on in the world. Prepping statistics are particularly useful for convincing others how important being prepared actually is. Sometimes stats can catch even a seasoned prepper off guard with shocking evidence of the importance of preparedness. I’ve grabbed the prepping statistics that have caught my eye over the years and share them below. Feel free to share with any ‘naysayers’ who feel that a prepping lifestyle simply isn’t important.

Stat 1: Federal spending on disasters increased 6698% from 1953 to 2009 (1)

Going well past any possible increase of disaster exposure, population growth, and inflation- this giant growth can be attributed to a cultural change that has de-valued the importance of prepping and preparedness. In 1953 there were no ‘preppers’- only everyday people living their lives according to the risks they knew rather than the risks they chose to ignore.

Stat 2: Only 39% of individuals have a basic emergency plan (2)

This means that 61% of people have not discussed what they will do even if a simple house fire occurs. If you don’t have a basic emergency plan, increase this statistic and print our easy to use template for free: TruePrepper Basic Emergency Plan

Stat 3: 75% of health care workers claim to be unprepared (2)

This is surprising considering that these are the same people that see the impact of disasters and emergencies all the time. People that understand the fragility of the human body would seemingly take care to prepare for emergencies, and especially pandemics, in their situation.

Stat 4: 44% of Americans don’t have first-aid kits in their homes (3)

This statistic just seems crazy. First aid kits are so cheap and readily available; I just take for granted that most homes would have these. I would be interested to see this stat for other countries to see if it goes up or down.

Stat 5: The survival rate for CPR has been calculated at 20% (4)

While it may seem low, ‘shockable treatment’ is at a whopping 57% survival rate. This is a good reason why AEDs are a good investment for first responders, businesses, and communities. Even the 20% survival rate is great when compared to 0% when you are untrained in CPR.

Stat 6: 42% of Americans do not know an immediate family members phone number (5)

While this sounds ridiculous, most people rely on their cell phones and the one touch dial to contact each other. Learning an “ICE (In Case of Emergency)” phone number and making an emergency contact list is a great way to get prepared for any simple emergency.

Stat 7: Over half of Americans do not have copies of their critical documents (3)

Social Security cards, birth certificates, passports, and photo IDs are all important to have if you are bugging out, displaced, or just need them in an emergency. Waterproof and even better: fireproof pouches are great for stashing these items where you can grab them in a hurry.

Prepping Statistics Sources

It’s always a good idea to grab info from a variety of reliable sources. We got our stats from these surveys, papers, and books:

  1. Disaster Resilience: A National Imperative (Print Book) by National Academies, Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy.
  2. FEMA surveys
  3. CDC surveys
  4. AHA statistics
  5. Pew Research Center

The Final Word

Statistics can either be boring and mundane, or a tool you can used to convince others of the importance of prepping. Some do not care for the numbers or the bigger picture and are better swayed with anecdotal stories. This is where sharing your own experiences can help. I prefer to use numbers and my personal experiences together to share how important being prepared actually is. Keep exploring, stay prepared, and be safe.

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7 Surprising Prepping Statistics_ Beyond the Numbers

Rusty Collins

I am an engineer, Air Force veteran, emergency manager, husband, dad, and experienced prepper. I developed emergency and disaster plans around the globe and responded to many attacks and accidents as a HAZMAT technician. I have been exposed to deadly chemical agents, responded to biological incidents, and dealt with natural disasters. Check out my full story here: Rusty's Story

One thought on “7 Surprising Prepping Statistics: Beyond the Numbers

  • These stats are powerful and a little disturbing. People are too dependent in the infrastructure that will fail in a SHTF situation. Great post. I plan to do a few things after reading. First get important contact information on a card that each family member can keep other than on their smartphones. Also buy a few extra first aid kits. :)


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