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The CDC has tips for surviving a zombie apocalypse – No, seriously

What started as a tongue-in-cheek campaign to connect with Americans has proven an effective way to get folks ready for hurricanes or even pandemics.
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WASHINGTON — As if 2020 didn't throw enough life-altering events our way, 2021 has been prophesized by at least one person as the year a zombie apocalypse could begin.

While that first line may have made you chuckle, actual health experts are using the wild prediction as a way to educate families nationwide.

Let's start with the extremely unlikely zombie apocalypse theory. The prediction has been all over the internet recently, and it originates from a 16th-century French astrologer named Nostradamus. He's known for his book Les Prophéties, which has reportedly predicted future events.

The book is filled with mystifying poems, called quatrains, which have been linked to the death of kings, the rise of dictators, and assassination attempts. And, now the latest prediction the internet is obsessing over is something gamers and Walking Dead fans have theorizing about for years – a zombie apocalypse.

While that may seem like the Internet being the Internet, you might be surprised to learn the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has some tips to help you survive such a zombie situation.

The agency says what started out as a tongue-in-cheek campaign to get a new audience engaged with the CDC's mission has turned into a "very effective platform" to just get more Americans prepared for a crisis in general.

Whether you believe a zombie apocalypse could ever happen is irrelevant. That's because the CDC says you would treat a zombie apocalypse like any other disaster such as a hurricane or pandemic. The first thing everyone should do is create an emergency kit filled with items that'll get you and your family through the first couple of days before getting help.

The CDC says your emergency kit should include:

  • Water (1 gallon per person per day)
  • Food (stock up on non-perishable items that you eat regularly)
  • Medications (this includes prescription and non-prescription meds)
  • Tools and Supplies (utility knife, duct tape, battery-powered radio, etc.)
  • Sanitation and Hygiene (household bleach, soap, towels, etc.)
  • Clothing and Bedding (a change of clothes for each family member and blankets)
  • Important documents (copies of your driver’s license, passport, and birth certificate to name a few)
  • First Aid supplies (although you’re a goner if a zombie bites you, you can use these supplies to treat basic cuts and lacerations that you might get during a tornado or hurricane)

Next, the agency says to create an emergency plan by doing the following:

  1. Identify the types of emergencies that are possible in your area. Besides a zombie apocalypse, this may include floods, tornadoes, or earthquakes.
  2. Pick a meeting place for your family to regroup in case zombies invade your home…or your town evacuates because of a hurricane. 
  3. Identify your emergency contacts. Make a list of local contacts like the police, fire department, and your local zombie response team. Also, identify an out-of-state contact that you can call during an emergency to let the rest of your family know you are ok.
  4. Plan your evacuation route. When zombies are hungry they won’t stop until they get food (i.e., brains), which means you need to get out of town fast! Plan where you would go and multiple routes you would take ahead of time so that the flesh eaters don’t have a chance!

If Nostradmus' prediction does come true, the CDC says there will be no reason to fear. The agency would conduct an investigation just like any other pandemic by assisting cities, states, or international partners.

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