According to Americans, This Is How The World Ends – Forward Observer Shop

According to Americans, This Is How The World Ends

A February YouGov survey of 1,000 respondents has found that Americans aren’t confident in their abilities to survive a SHTF event.  In all, 71% of respondents believe they wouldn’t last a week in post-SHTF America.

How long could you survive during a natural disaster?

29% of respondents believed they’d be able to survive for more than a week if a disaster struck that left their community without any functioning utilities.  25% claimed they could survive for almost a week, followed by 38% who believe they could survive for a few days, and 8% who said they could survive for less than one day.

Do you have a emergency plan for natural disasters?

According to the research, nearly twice as many Republicans (35%) have a natural disaster plan as do Democrats (18%).  (Just 24% of the respondents said they had an emergency plan.)  Yet 58% of Republicans have at least considered an apocalyptic event, followed by 52% of Democrats.  A small minority of both Republicans and Democrats, 13% and 11%, respectively, admitted to having an apocalyptic survival plan.

Would you bug out or shelter in place during a SHTF event?

During an apocalyptic event, 62% of respondents said that they’d shelter in their home, while 38% said they’d seek shelter somewhere else.  If true, these statistics could mitigate the effects of Golden Horde events.

What’s the most likely SHTF event?

Nuclear war was the top response at 28% (36% for Republicans), followed by a tie with climate change and Judgment Day both at 16%.  20% of respondents said they didn’t believe a SHTF was going to happen.


For the full statistics, see the YouGov Survey in PDF (download).


Mike Shelby is a former military intelligence NCO and contract intelligence analyst. He spent three years in Iraq and Afghanistan and is now the intelligence and warfare researcher at Forward Observer.


  1. Wow, 20% of the participants do not believe a SHTF event would ever happen? How naive. Maybe that is why they are so honest about their inability to survive such an event. “It will never happen, so why take the time, energy, and resources to create a plan?” ugh. And then they will run to those who HAVE prepared and demand to be taken care of without any regard to how that will strain the prepped.

  2. This poll doesn’t surprise me much. the one thing that most people miss about a catastrophic event is how easy and inexpensive it is to shut down several different aspects of American civilization. The Norks, Chinese and Russians have some super bright hackers who with several keystrokes could shut down our power grid, the banks, dams, sewage treatment plants and aviation. A cheap and easy method to cause complete chaos for weeks or months.

    I somewhat doubt that Iran, the Norks or Pakistan would launch nukes against the USA becuase they know that a massive retalitory nuke strike would be sitting on their doorstep within 30 minutes. OTOH, a crazy mullah might just push the button but I think the odds are not all that high.

    Snake Plisken

  3. Throughout recorded history, S has HTF plenty of times; sometimes only regionally and other times, globally. I’m not sure what makes today’s society feel so special to think that they are exempt from bad times, but it won’t bode well for anyone when their false sense of immunity is shattered into a million pieces at their feet. As for those who believe that SHTF is either likely or at least possible, but have not made any measurable steps towards securing the future of themselves and their loved ones…well, look up the definition of “cognitive dissonance”. Golden Horde indeed. Fortunately some of us have taken steps to secure our future by seeking instruction from professionals such as Sam Culper, John Mosby, and Max Velocity. GH be advised.

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