7 years later, how would you react?

Discuss those "what if" or "what would you do" scenarios you've been wondering about.

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7 years later, how would you react?

Post by preparingnow » Sat Sep 06, 2008 7:58 pm

If the attacks of September 11th, 2001, actually took place in September 11th, 2008, in the big city nearest you, how would you react? Would you be willing to rush into the burning buildings to drag out people? Would you be willing to rush into the dust/smoke after the buildings collapsed to help search/rescue efforts. Remember, it was thought that steel buildings don't collapse from fire, so you wouldn't be thinking of that danger.
What WOULD you do?

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by bonanacrom » Sat Sep 06, 2008 8:29 pm

Watch it on TV.I have yet to meet the person I would go into a burning building for.
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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by spartan » Sat Sep 06, 2008 8:48 pm

I am not a Fire Fighter, First Responder, LEO, EMT, Paramedic, member of PEMA or FEMA. I would let those who have made it there living handle the situation. If anyone I know lost someone in the event, I would do what I can to help and support them.
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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by jor-el » Sat Sep 06, 2008 10:01 pm

spartan wrote:I am not a Fire Fighter, First Responder, LEO, EMT, Paramedic, member of PEMA or FEMA. I would let those who have made it there living handle the situation.
That would be me.

On balance I don't think I would have done anything different. Of course, had certain events occurred differently,...

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by bae » Sat Sep 06, 2008 10:32 pm

preparingnow wrote:If the attacks of September 11th, 2001, actually took place in September 11th, 2008, in the big city nearest you, how would you react?
The nearest big city takes me hours to get to. Our local emergency services folks would likely get dispatched at some point, so I'd do what I could to make sure the remaining members of their family here had food, could get their kids to school, the usual.

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by Seanwins » Sun Sep 07, 2008 12:43 am

preparingnow wrote:If the attacks of September 11th, 2001, actually took place in September 11th, 2008, in the big city nearest you, how would you react? Would you be willing to rush into the burning buildings to drag out people? Would you be willing to rush into the dust/smoke after the buildings collapsed to help search/rescue efforts. Remember, it was thought that steel buildings don't collapse from fire, so you wouldn't be thinking of that danger.
What WOULD you do?
I would freak out.

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by JibbaJabba » Sun Sep 07, 2008 12:46 am

I would probably be too stunned to do much of anything other than become a gibbering, useless ninny for the next 48 to 72 hours.
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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by Space Jockey » Sun Sep 07, 2008 1:46 am

The nearest big city to me is 140 miles (Seattle). If an attack occurred I would pay very close attention to the TV to see if it was a location anyone I know worked at. If it was the Boeing Plant I would go because my half-sister works there, and if it was one of the hospitals I would go because some of my friends work in Harborview Medical Center. Well first I would call my friends phones to see if they were ok. If I got ahold of them I'd probably not go. If I couldn't get ahold of them I would go.

I wouldn't run into a burning skyscraper, maybe a burning two story house but not a skyscraper. As a nurse I'd be on the sidelines saving the lives of the people that were injured but got out somehow.
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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by Bubba Enfield » Sun Sep 07, 2008 1:54 am

I would run into a burning building to rescue my daughters, and no one else, not even my wife. Not being a prick, she's under orders to leave me in there, too. Who'll look after the kids if we're both gone?

This reflects my current situation; if I end up on the Fire Department again then that's different.
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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by charlie505 » Sun Sep 07, 2008 6:13 am

bonanacrom wrote:Watch it on TV.I have yet to meet the person I would go into a burning building for.


I would risk my life only for certain members of my family. Wife, my mom, nephew, niece and one or two great friends who would do the same for me.

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by Chantrea » Sun Sep 07, 2008 3:21 pm

Um...are you asking this if it happened now without the real event happening?

I don't know how people would respond 'differently' from before, if we're assuming the first never happened. :P

Americans by and large were mostly shielded from any knowledge of external terrorism prior to 9/11. All the old operating procedures and mindsets would be in place, unless you were psychic.

If I didn't have any reason to think that a building would fall, I would think that hopefully the people in that building were following the standard evacuation procedure and taking injured people with them as much as possible.

I would not be running over to be a hero, because frankly I would be in the way and endangering myself and others.

I would be immediately on email with other members of my church's pastoral care team so that we would be available to people who needed us, as well as in contact with the interfaith group to see if our resources were needed at the sight/official locations and in what capacity.

I'd be getting the word out as far as where to go for local blood donation, and trying to stay off the phone and out of the streets as much as possible.

I might ask a moms club friend of mine if she and her family would like to come over, since they're sihks and some dumbasses might engage in ignorant asshattery and I'd want her and her family to be safe. And once more I'd volunteer to help out with community safety at the local mosque.

Except this time I wouldn't be pregnant, and could probably help out a little more. Since I have kids now, I'd restrict my media consumption to the radio, so my children wouldn't see the same footage over and over again and think that it was happening continuously.

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by jor-el » Sun Sep 07, 2008 5:32 pm

Chantrea wrote:Um...are you asking this if it happened now without the real event happening?

Americans by and large were mostly shielded from any knowledge of external terrorism prior to 9/11. All the old operating procedures and mindsets would be in place, unless you were psychic.
Has everyone on Earth been hypnotized into believing this but me?
Or has the entire world forgotten 1993?
A little hint; the first time they tried it, didn't knock the towers down. Not for lack of trying, by men of little renown.
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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by Chantrea » Sun Sep 07, 2008 5:56 pm

No, I haven't forgotten it, and I grew up with terrorism and the threat thereof being beaten into my head (my dad is a middle east expert).

However, did you note I said 'average'?

The initial failed attempt was a brief blip on most people's awareness screen. Even the trial didn't capture the attention. I'd say the OKC bombing made more of an impression on people (though understandable, because when something fails, it doesn't stay on the memory as long).

After 9/11 did YOU notice the asinine commentary about how the europeans were weenies who didn't understand terorrism when not everyone decided to go gung ho behind our attacking Iraq? Or was I the only one that noticed that? Yeah, those British/French/Spanish folks, what the hell do they know about terrorism! I so totally admit that kind of thing really irritated me. But on the other hand, really that day WAS the first time the 'average' american ever came face to face with something that spectacular, the first time since the OKC bombing I'd say...and for some reason many people don't even really remember that. :(

I spent a summer in NYC a year after the garage bomb, and there really wasn't even any security to get into the buildings. Visitors were only supposed to use certain elevators (like to get up to the observation deck) but no one was checking. So I'd say that probably I shouldn't be surprised that there's so very little memory of 'almost really bad' incidences, since people were able to go back to their regular lives rather quickly.

How many people still remember daily the DC area sniper team? It's the same sort of thing. Terrifying immediately afterwards, but something with minimal impact simply doesn't stay on the cultural consciousness for very long.

Actually destroying a building from the air, which had never been done before on that scale, is going to make more of an impression.

Edited because silly me hit return too soon, argh.

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by zephir » Mon Sep 08, 2008 12:53 am

in 2001 I was in middle school, it was sometime during morning recess when class was canceled and all parents came to school to pick everyone up. I didn't understand why until the full story came out on the news the day after the attack. Back then, it was a day where a bunch of people died in the world tallest building because some crazy religious nuts crashed some planes into it. It made no impression on me and never really affected me at all. It didn't happen to me or anyone I know, so why should I care?

If it happened today, it would make a much deeper impact or impression in my life. And like many people, stare at the TV and watch the events unfold. The building collapsing isn't all that much a surprise, a plane crashed into it. The fuel caught fire and severely weakened the building. Then the section failed and the weight of the above intact structure fell, pancaking the damaged section. The force is so great the building collapsed. I've been to the structure before and its really big. 50,000 people work in it, I would consider it lucky that less than 5000 (or 10% of capacity) died. Its not like a human can survive a 100 floor building falling down. Or a 1000 foot fall.
As for terrorism, I'm not terrorized. It would open my eyes to terrorism actually, it exists and is a effective way to destroy stuff and kill a bunch of people. More effective than some crazy guy with a truck bomb (Oklahoma city).
Following the event, life will go on as normal. I tune in regularly as more and more details are revealed. But it is no more than a event that killed a bunch of Americans on the other side of the nation.
However, if terrorism strikes again, this time on the west coast and in or around LA county/orange county, I will take that as a sign that I should buy some more guns, ammo, supplies because the shit will hit the fan very soon. A mosin-nagant, keltec su16, howa m1500, and probably a m1 carbine (or 12 ga shotgun).

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by Space Jockey » Mon Sep 08, 2008 1:38 am

zephir wrote:I would consider it lucky that less than 5000 (or 10% of capacity) died. Its not like a human can survive a 100 floor building falling down. Or a 1000 foot fall.
Actually according to the Guiness Book of World Records (1996 edition), a flight attendant fell out of an airplane at 33,000 feet and survived the fall. Not survived for 10 seconds but actually survived, albeit with several months of therapy. The human body (on occasion) is capable of some amazing things. What about several months ago the two window cleaners, I think they were brothers, who fell 60 stories? One was literally torn in half and died, the other was badly damaged but did survive.
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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by zephir » Mon Sep 08, 2008 1:42 am

I've heard of that too, but that kind of stuff is generally rare, if you had 100 people fall from the top of the empire state building, the chances of half surviving that is very very low.
It has something to do with the body being limp and relaxed state, if you tense up more damage occurs. And you need to be very, very lucky to survive a fall like that.

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by Space Jockey » Mon Sep 08, 2008 1:53 am

This might sound somewhat neurotic but if I was in the potential crowd of 100 people that jumped of the Empire State Building, I'd like to be the last one to jump. Not because of fear of death, although I do have a healthy dose of that. But because I could aim my fall to land on some of the bodies below, which would provide some cushioning when compared to concrete or hard earth. I personally believe in making my own luck.
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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by Psyko5616 » Mon Sep 08, 2008 2:11 am

You're all unrealistic and being silly, I hope you're being silly on purpose and not being serious. A flight attendant falling of a plane and surviving is a fluke involving how high she fell from,wind speed, ground conditions and her falling conditions, and is a totally unexpected survival condition. Average human terminal velocity is 120 mph, so even if you hit a pile of bodies youd be shreeded by bone fragments from a dozen other people hitting the fuckin ground at 120 mph. It takes less than 6 seconds to reach this speed, less that 600 feet in the air.
. Deceleration by way of a pile of human wreckage is fatal.
You can slow your decent some by falling in a position parallel to the ground, but still your likely to die without some kind of parachuet. some soldier once fell a few hundred feet out of a plane, fell right and landed in a deep snow patch and lived, but thats rare instances.

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by AmirMortal » Mon Sep 08, 2008 3:03 am

If it was just an airborne bombing that killed less than 2% of capacity (2,974 dead, capacity 200,000), then I would do the same thing I did the first time. Wait and watch for a force to invade on the ground, and standby to take myself and my arms to defend my country. I have all the respect in the world for our troops, but I'm not going overseas to another country.

All the while thinking... **Edited for political content**

-puts on tinfoil hat-

ETA: I'd do anything I can here at the home front to help though. Sorry, missed the near you part. Tampa Bay is a pretty large city/area, so that means it could be my town that got hit. I'd do whatever I can. I used to be a member of CERT, so that is a useful set of skills. Prett strong guess that my services in that respect wouldn't be needed though (plenty of people that do that for a living).
Last edited by AmirMortal on Mon Sep 08, 2008 3:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by me_ofef_seraph » Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:49 am

Well... I would have to eliminate everything I know about what actually happened to answer this.

If terrorists attacked the city where I live, flying into buildings like that, I would work very hard to act in a constructive manner. I would start with going over my B.O.B and my girlfriend's B.O.B, checking that everything was there, then I would call ahead to a friend that lives where I grew up, in the country, informing him that we would come there eventually and prepeare to survive or fight back if this meant the shit had hit the fan 1940 style.

I would hide and lock down my weapons and my B.O.B or get it all to a few friends I have plans to Bug out with (depending on whether they where at home or not) and get them to hide and lock it down there. I would ask my gf to get the stuff to them (they live close by) and prepeare herself and the others to get to the country, unless either she or them wanted to get to the disaster scene and help out.

I would pack a fitting EDC or take my BOB and add all my first aid equipement and head to the disaster scene as fast as I could. At the scene I doubt I would enter and search through two burning buildings like that without the proper equipement. I would report to any Red Cross workers (I am active in a local search and rescue/disaster response group organized under the Red Cross) or paramedics/firefighters/police organizers nearby and start helping anyone I could. I would just do what I could and wait to be called in by the Red Cross instead of using a lot of energy to contact them myself depending on how much help I would be on my own. Even in minor disasters there can be complete chaos in relation to volunteer work, so in a big disaster like this it is better to just help those who are not already getting help.

I would probably try to get people I helped away from the buildings and find a safe spot to give first aid or talk to them, but as far as I can remember from 9/11, I didn't even think about the possibility that the towers would collapse. If I could, I would probably have run for my life when the first building collapsed, most probably trying to hide out in any building I could enter as I ran away from it.

I would strive to keep conntact with my gf and friends as much as possible and keep informed on the situation. If the indications that it was a single terrorist attack where as strong as they where 9/11, I would stay and help for as long as I could, getting some sleep, then going back to help. Rince and repeat for as long as I could take it, or until there was no hope of finding people alive left.

I tend to be drawn TO disaster areas when shit goes down, and in later years (the last 7 years really) I have tried to prepare myself to actually help people victimized by disasters instead of just watching from the sidelines. I have helped dam up during floods, been part of a few searches after missing people that all ended well and reacted to a car crash I came over once (the driver had lost control and drove off the road and down into the bush) where the driver was okay and able to call people in to help with the car himself. So, I have never actually been able to help people directly in a serious death-toll disaster, but I both hope and believe I would be able to help in a 9/11 like disaster. I can't see myself not getting to the disaster area to help, even if scared to death.

This is all just theory. It is what I would do if I was able to think straight and live up to my own ideal of what kind of human I want to be and strive to be. A lot of things could happen to fuck up my plans. Realizing I forgot to pack something in my B.O.B, wasting precious minutes at home just thinking through my plan over and over or being too scared to think straight, not finding something I needed in my EDC or B.O.B, not being able to get into the city center, panicking at the sight of severly hurt people (I have seen badly hurt people before, but I have never with my own eyes seen someone that is for example ripped in two, spilling intestines into the streets or missing several limbs while still alive and consious). In the end I know I would TRY hard to help and be a part of the solution though.

[scenario: signs of invasion]

If I had started getting information indicating it may have been part of a larger offensive against my nation, I would sooner or later have left for my friends, loaded up our B.O.Bs, packed all our weapons down legally (In my opinion, keeping within the boundaries of the law until you know you have to fight is very important during an emergency. Fueling the chaos makes you part of the problem) and headed for our planned BOL in the country. We would follow the news, both internationally and locally 24/7, while prepearing for the worst and waiting it out.

The only option for me, and most of my friends during an invasion of our country is to fight back, ideally organized by our military, but guerilla style from the mountains if we had to. So that is what we would have prepeard for until it was 100% certain that an invasion was not the case. Two of my friends have done tours in Afghanistan, but apart from that neither me or anyone I would be with when the S has HTF has any experience whatsoever with war. We only heard stories and was lectured by our grandparents, who all lived through the invasion and 5 year occupation of our nation. So I realize of course that the part about fighting back is something I hope I would do and not something I know I would do. I feel it's a big part of who I am, but I have no idea if I would be brave enough to fight, or strong enough to survive. I hope I never have to find out, so I can keep on blissfully believing I wont disappoint myself, but I don't know. I have thought hard about it many times though. Both my mother's father and my father's father fought for their country, and I don't think I could even live with myself if I did the opposite and hid or obeyed to the occupational force. I know survivalism is all about surviving and that fighting is a good way to get yourself killed, but I am not all about survivalism. Some things are more important.

But even though I would prepare for this during a 9/11 like disaster, it is a totally different scenario that there probably are threads for all around this forum.

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by Shiner86 » Mon Sep 08, 2008 1:03 pm

Psyko5616 wrote:some soldier once fell a few hundred feet out of a plane, fell right and landed in a deep snow patch and lived, but thats rare instances.
And he didn't even survive on purpose. He jumped because he thought falling to his death would be less painful than burning in his plane.

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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by crypto » Mon Sep 08, 2008 1:29 pm

I'd call my Red Cross supervisor and ask where to go.
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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by andygates » Mon Sep 08, 2008 1:46 pm

Me too. The hospital will be flooded but not on the IT side. I'd get off work and go where my Red Cross boss tells me to go. Failing that, I'd do what the bike messengers in NYC did: run errands for the professionals.
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Re: 7 years later, how would you react?

Post by DFWMTX » Mon Sep 08, 2008 4:01 pm

Same thing I did the first time it happened; stay home, load guns, keep an eye on the news. I thought 9-11 was the first wave in a series of attacks that would happen in public places and upon infrastructure. I thought we were going to become like Israel overnight with the frequent suicide bombings in public places, only on the scale of the United States instead of just a small country.
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