11/13/11

OPSEC

Hiding In Plain Sight

A couple days ago, I saw a guy driving a Jeep Cherokee, towing a small utility trailer with 10 5-gallon gas cans in the back.  I commented on the Facebook page that he was probably either a prepper or an arsonist.  Some reader comments got me to thinking about OPSEC (operational security) with your preps and keeping things discreet.

For this guy with the trailer and gas cans, a simple plywood and tarp structure would have kept his trailer contents completely hidden.  A reader, Steelheart, sent in this photo:

He took a regular old utility trailer and built up two foot walls with plywood and then added a tarp.  It's low enough, it doesn't affect drivability, yet provides discreet moving of anything you don't want everyone to see.  It also provides secure moving of trash, brush, or other things that would be hard to do in an open trailer.  Big thanks to Steelheart for sharing this.

Another fuel OPSEC issue is storing it.  There is a house near here that backs up to the interstate.  Every time I drive by, I'm amazed at how much propane they have stored behind their shed, in full view of thousands of drivers each day.  They've got a 100 lb tank and 6 or 7 20 pounders back there.  These folks also have a large garden, so my prepper radar goes off.  They've got a 4 foot chain link fence around the back.  It'd be simple to put those plastic strips in the fencing to obscure the view of their yard.

I moved a lot from the time I got out of high school until I got married at 35.  I lived in 11 different places during that time.  If you have to move preps, that's another place to be concerned about what folks see.  All those #10 cans of food?  The gun safe and cases of ammo?  What about the two generators and 10 gas cans?  How to move that into your new home if it is in view of the neighbors.  I sure don't want Gladys Kravitts hollering, "Abner, Abner, you should see what the new people are moving in!"  If you have an attached garage, that can be ideal.  Just back the truck in and unload there to move into the house.  Guns can be wrapped in blankets or carried in duffel bags rather than gun cases.  For the safe, check with an appliance store and see if you can get a refrigerator box, and cover it with that.  For the food, get some big boxes from the U-Haul store and put the manufacturer's boxes in those.  The generators and gas cans might be the hardest.  Sometimes you might have to unload in the wee dark hours of the night.  A friend has a his generators in a small shed with that pink Styrofoam type insulation in it.  The generators plug into a junction box in the shed that is wired to the house power system.  He's adding some low level vents for cross ventilation of the exhaust, and will be able to run them inside the shed, with a minimal sound signature.

You want to keep your preps low key and out of the public view as much as possible.  Sometimes, it takes some creativity to keep them that way.

4 comments:

  1. Good post. Another idea for moving is rent or buying a 20 foot shipping container or Conex. They will drop it at your home with the doors facing your garage if you want. Load it. Then arrange for it to be shipped to your new location. Doors to the garage or on the side of your new home so you can unload it.

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  2. When I've been filling fuel can I ust got 1 5gal can at a time, Usually in the early or late hours when there's just pay-at-the-pump. When I got home I put the right amount of Stabil in the metal can and poured in the gas. Give it a good shaking to mix it well then close it up tight.

    I'll know for sure in another month or so how well the Stabil (double dose for long term storage per the label) did with the winter formula fuel in the NATO cans. I chose to store winter fuel as I might need the cold starting capability here in MN.

    It should be a simple matter to put 5gal in the vehicle then go fill the tank. After work, get 5 gal of fresh gas and repeat the process. I tagged all my fuel cans so I know how old the stuff is & what is in it.

    Steelheart

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