One of the main reasons people build bunkers is because they’re preparing for a situation where life on the surface isn’t safe. This can include bomb radiation, for example. But not everyone can afford to build their own bunker. So instead, they look for alternatives. One such alternative are mines.
Mines and mineshafts offer a lot of what a prepper needs in a shelter. It’s safe from the world above and it has man-made refinement. But there’s a great deal to consider before you start hiding supplies in the local mineshaft.
Occupied VS Abandoned
Many mines are still in operation today, but even more of them aren’t. But which one should you see out as an improvised bunker?
Operational mines are, like most businesses, active and protected. They’ll have cameras, fences, locks, and all that. Even if we assume that everyone abandons their post after a nuclear bomb alert, it’ll still be a challenge getting through all of that. They will, however, have up to date supplies, and the cleanest, safest mineshafts. But unless you’re chummy with the mine executives, this may not be feasible.
Inactive mines present the exact opposite. being abandoned, no one is on the clock, guarding the area. Accessing the mine and hunkering down would be much easier. But the same abandonment introduces new issues to the mix. You may find tunnels that aren’t safe. The supports may have rotted and become weak. A collapse can be lethal, especially in an abandoned mine. Wildlife life snakes, bats, and more may have taken the area up as a home. Worst case scenario, mining operations left the inner environment toxic to man. They kept canaries for a reason.
If you’re serious about looking for a mine to bug out to in a SHTF scenario, check out this map. It’s a chart of all inactive metal mines in the United States. Find the one nearest you. See if there are any videos or maps online of the mine already charted or explored. Maybe even visit yourself (bring a friend or tell someone first). If everything looks acceptable, it could be your next bug out location.