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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When we plan the distance refugees will get after evacuating from cities, it is often assumed that there would be mass gridlock/traffic jams and panic. I remember hearing that in a 1950s civil defense simulation of evacuating before a nuclear war, the entire city of Portland, Oregon, a city of hundreds of thousands of people, was evacuated relatively smoothly in less than forty-five minutes.

So, in a real SHTF or TEOTWAWKI situation where there is a mass exodus from cities, would there really be the extreme gridlock, traffic jams, and panic many people assume there would be? If so, why would there be that kind of gridlock and panic in real life, and not in the 1950s simulation? What will be the cause of the gridlock? Would it even be possible for all the non-preppers to just drive out of the cities in an 'orderly fashion' after a SHTF or TEOTWAWKI situation without causing massive gridlock and panic?

Sorry if this question seems naive, but I don't yet have my license (although I should have it soon...) so I'm not truly familiar with the way people behave on the road.
 

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What won't cause gridlock?

Flat tires, cars out of gas, too many people trying to leave at the same time, car accidents, people fighting--pick your poison.

Ever seen the video of people trying to evacuate before a hurricane? They aren't tooling along at 65mph.
 

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That's why I have a bike and drive it every single day as fast as I can and up hill as often as I can. When people are all jammed in traffic 15mph won't seem bad at all! I'm also planning on doing runs with my bike trailer loaded with wood to improve my abilities
 

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Why I am not bugging out unless I desperately have to. Let the morons fight it out and I will sit in my garage smoking a cigar drinking beer.

If I had to leave I have researched and followed multiple backways to leave the city that should not be congested. I would also try my hardest to avoid getting stuck in any traffic jams but worst case I will grab the BOB, smack the girlfriend on the butt, and start hoofing it.
 

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By the way if you are thinking there will be calm and ordely exiting apparently you have never seen a video or been at a Black Friday store opening while jackass parents are trying to get their child the greatest and latest present. At least a couple of these morons die a year getting trampled with what should be an orderly and easy process.

People are by nature morons and even worse when they are spooked or freaking out.
 

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Will there be gridlock, problems, slow downs, all that jazz in a crisis? yes, almost certainly. Because in a panicked evacuation you'll have people driving erratically, too fast, too slow, accidents, blown tires, overheating vehicles, cars running out of gas because of delays (and probably because they started out low with the drivers hoping they could fill up along the way, only to discover everyone else had the same idea and the stations are overwhelmed or out). There won't be enough police, tow trucks, or emergency vehicles to keep the roads open. You see this is hurricane evacuations, when everyone tries to flee - usually at the last minute - and it winds up NOBODY gets away. In a disaster, you either hit the road first and floor it to keep ahead of the mob, or if you miss your chance, you hunker down and wait because there's no way out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
And, just from experience with hurricanes and other such events, at what average speed would most traffic be moving after gridlock, at *best*?

Also, how many miles from their house would most people have to travel before traffic became really jammed up?
 

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Add to that a nation of people who pride themselves on being individualists and you have gridlock. :) Nobody ever believes the rules apply in THEIR PARTICULAR CASE...
 

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Proverbs 26:4
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When we plan the distance refugees will get after evacuating from cities, it is often assumed that there would be mass gridlock/traffic jams and panic. I remember hearing that in a 1950s civil defense simulation of evacuating before a nuclear war, the entire city of Portland, Oregon, a city of hundreds of thousands of people, was evacuated relatively smoothly in less than forty-five minutes.

So, in a real SHTF or TEOTWAWKI situation where there is a mass exodus from cities, would there really be the extreme gridlock, traffic jams, and panic many people assume there would be? If so, why would there be that kind of gridlock and panic in real life, and not in the 1950s simulation? What will be the cause of the gridlock? Would it even be possible for all the non-preppers to just drive out of the cities in an 'orderly fashion' after a SHTF or TEOTWAWKI situation without causing massive gridlock and panic?

Sorry if this question seems naive, but I don't yet have my license (although I should have it soon...) so I'm not truly familiar with the way people behave on the road.
Why don't you re-read the responses from your other, nearly identical thread! ...by the way, the 50's were naive.

That's why I have a bike and drive it every single day as fast as I can and up hill as often as I can. When people are all jammed in traffic 15mph won't seem bad at all! I'm also planning on doing runs with my bike trailer loaded with wood to improve my abilities
Great idea until someone opens their car door and upends you to steal your stuff.
 

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Maximus
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... What will be the cause of the gridlock?
Congestion and mechanical breakdowns.

Roads can only handle so much volume especially when you need to merge or enter a highway.

But what many people do no realize is that one broken down vehicle can cause over an hour of delay (more if highly congested). Lets say that it takes 15 minutes to clear a car off the road. By that time the cars behind you have stopped... and the cars behind them and the one behind them. It backs up like a clogged drain. Then when the car is clear, only the first few cars closest to the "clog" move first, then the ones behind that and the ones behind that.

Just like a drain the water closest to the clog needs to run first before the rest of the water can flow past it. Just like a green light. If you are 10 cars back and the light turns green, you can not drive immediately. You need to wait for all the cars to move in front of you. Takes about 1 second for each car to move so you reach the light in 10 seconds. If you 20 cars back, it will take over 20 seconds (if everyone is paying attention).

This is also why there is a lot of traffic you assume is an accident, but as you move out of the congestion, you actually don't see anything. The accident or vehicle was actually cleared an hour ago but you were just caught "in the clog".

And so goes traffic. Believe me, there will be much more than one accident on the road.
 

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OP: You probably haven't entered the work force yet (no license). Ask your parents about their morning and evening commutes to and from work in the city. Now multiply that times a bazzilion during a shtf. No one is going anywhere.
 

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And, just from experience with hurricanes and other such events, at what average speed would most traffic be moving after gridlock, at *best*?

Also, how many miles from their house would most people have to travel before traffic became really jammed up?
Have you ever had to deal with rush hour traffic? Imagine that, times 10. In bad rush hour traffic, you'll be lucky to hit 15 mph. Our freeways aren't designed for mass evacuations, they just can't handle the capacity. You have 5 lanes on a freeway, but everyone is trying to merge onto those 5 lanes from one lane. So you have people already on the freeway switching lanes to the left, to avoid the mergers. This causes the people already in those left lanes to slow down, backing up traffic. This goes on and on for every single freeway entrance.

Add in the fact that some people should not have a license because they are such terrible drivers, accidents are bound to happen. Once gridlock happens, people will run out of gas and then the freeways will be worthless. Just look at footage from the evacuation of New Orleans or Houston. The freeways were parking lots.


Notice it's still gridlock even with both sides of the freeway being used for evacuation.
 

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I remember hearing that in a 1950s civil defense simulation of evacuating before a nuclear war, the entire city of Portland, Oregon, a city of hundreds of thousands of people, was evacuated relatively smoothly in less than forty-five minutes.
Whoever came up with the 45 minutes figure was smoking some really good ****!!

When non-preppers try to evacuate from cities, what will cause gridlock?

Non-preppers evacuating the cities IS what will cause the gridlock.

Every Tom **** and Harry in a panic to get out as fast as possible, not caring about anyone but themselves WILL be the cause of gridlock....
 

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Just look at traffic for any major city during 'rush hour'. One vehicle can back traffic up for miles. Doesn't matter what the cause it happens every day. Even the small city I work in it's almost impossible to head south from the city during this time period. Every road, not just the major highway is congested.

And rush hour isn't all people or cars, probably only 25-30 % of the work force. Others work 8-5, 7-3, (and others that are on the road much earlier). Also swing shift and graveyard shift.

Now multiply that by 4-10 times the traffic.
It can only get worse.
 
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Why don't you re-read the responses from your other, nearly identical thread! ...by the way, the 50's were naive.



Great idea until someone opens their car door and upends you to steal your stuff.
You see that would be true if bikes had to go directly on the road. Even if the curbs are covered then I can maneuver out of traffic. A bug out vehicle will be just as stuck as any of the other traffic while a bike is very mobile.
 

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When we plan the distance refugees will get after evacuating from cities, it is often assumed that there would be mass gridlock/traffic jams and panic. I remember hearing that in a 1950s civil defense simulation of evacuating before a nuclear war, the entire city of Portland, Oregon, a city of hundreds of thousands of people, was evacuated relatively smoothly in less than forty-five minutes.

So, in a real SHTF or TEOTWAWKI situation where there is a mass exodus from cities, would there really be the extreme gridlock, traffic jams, and panic many people assume there would be? If so, why would there be that kind of gridlock and panic in real life, and not in the 1950s simulation? What will be the cause of the gridlock? Would it even be possible for all the non-preppers to just drive out of the cities in an 'orderly fashion' after a SHTF or TEOTWAWKI situation without causing massive gridlock and panic?

Sorry if this question seems naive, but I don't yet have my license (although I should have it soon...) so I'm not truly familiar with the way people behave on the road.
I would have to really question the accuracy of what you may have heard concerning those simulations in the 1950's. In addition, simulations are never like real world.

As someone else already noted, just watch a massive hurricane evacuation...gridlock.

For what will cause gridlock...any number of things already mentioned. Traffic in general, cars broke, out of gas, wrecks, general chaos, etc.

Take a simple fender bender or car pulled over by a cop on the side of the road....neither in the lane of traffic, but traffic will be backed up from that point because of bottle-neckers....people got their necks turned seeing what is going on instead of driving. As as side note, can't tell you how many time I have almost been hit as a volunteer fighter because the idiotic curiosity. Even had a couple wrecks happen at the scene of a wreck for this reason.

The point...such simple events in normal life cause hours of backed up traffic. Mass chaos and a break down in law and order will be gridlock. I would be looking for the less traveled roads to get out of dodge.
 

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I wouldn't be going out of town on the main highways, but instead taking the back roads out of town. Less traffic and congestion.
 

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You see that would be true if bikes had to go directly on the road. Even if the curbs are covered then I can maneuver out of traffic. A bug out vehicle will be just as stuck as any of the other traffic while a bike is very mobile.
You don't think people will try and drive on the shoulder and berms?! Sidewalks too if they are panicked enough.
 

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You see that would be true if bikes had to go directly on the road. Even if the curbs are covered then I can maneuver out of traffic. A bug out vehicle will be just as stuck as any of the other traffic while a bike is very mobile.
Everyone with 4WD will be using all parts of the road too. They'll be on the shoulders, in folks yards and running through fences. And there's lots of those vehicles too. In a massive panic you'll have to stay clear of all roads to get anywhere.

In a mass panic it's sometimes better to not be part of the herd. That's why many here plan on bugging in. Bugging out would come much much later for these folks.
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I would have to really question the accuracy of what you may have heard concerning those simulations in the 1950's. In addition, simulations are never like real world.

As someone else already noted, just watch a massive hurricane evacuation...gridlock.

For what will cause gridlock...any number of things already mentioned. Traffic in general, cars broke, out of gas, wrecks, general chaos, etc.

Take a simple fender bender or car pulled over by a cop on the side of the road....neither in the lane of traffic, but traffic will be backed up from that point because of bottle-neckers....people got their necks turned seeing what is going on instead of driving. As as side note, can't tell you how many time I have almost been hit as a volunteer fighter because the idiotic curiosity. Even had a couple wrecks happen at the scene of a wreck for this reason.

The point...such simple events in normal life cause hours of backed up traffic. Mass chaos and a break down in law and order will be gridlock. I would be looking for the less traveled roads to get out of dodge.
Hm... wouldn't some of the non-preppers notice the less traveled roads and try to get on them? Or would they be too panicked?

Also, I heard someone mention that some non-preppers will get out before the traffic starts, and thus get much further, because they won't have to go through traffic. Is that possible?

Another thing- how much gas do most non-preppers keep on hand in things like lawnmowers, jerry cans, etc., at *most*?
 
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