The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has rolled out a zombie apocalypse preparedness guide on its official website. The unusual section of the CDC site, which was originally launched in 2011, was created to get people’s attention on how to prepare for real-life emergencies.

“Wonder why zombies, zombie apocalypse, and zombie preparedness continue to live or walk dead on a CDC web site? As it turns out what first began as a tongue-in-cheek campaign to engage new audiences with preparedness messages has proven to be a very effective platform,” the CDC writes. “We continue to reach and engage a wide variety of audiences on all hazards preparedness via ‘zombie preparedness.’”

Minus the chainsaw, there’s some similarities between what you need for a zombie apocalypse versus what you need for a hurricane or a pandemic. Water and non-perishable foods, tools, hygienic items and first aid supplies, for example.

Beyond those simple suggestions, the CDC actually lays out what measures they’d take if a real life zombie apocalypse took place:

If zombies did start roaming the streets, CDC would conduct an investigation much like any other disease outbreak. CDC would provide technical assistance to cities, states, or international partners dealing with a zombie infestation. This assistance might include consultation, lab testing and analysis, patient management and care, tracking of contacts, and infection control (including isolation and quarantine). It’s likely that an investigation of this scenario would seek to accomplish several goals: determine the cause of the illness, the source of the infection/virus/toxin, learn how it is transmitted and how readily it is spread, how to break the cycle of transmission and thus prevent further cases, and how patients can best be treated. Not only would scientists be working to identify the cause and cure of the zombie outbreak, but CDC and other federal agencies would send medical teams and first responders to help those in affected areas (I will be volunteering the young nameless disease detectives for the field work).

The CDC even created zombie preparedness lesson plans for educators, posters and a full-blown graphic novel. See you at the Winchester!

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