Former CIA Officer Jason Hanson Reveals...

Spy Secrets That Can

Save Your Life

Get Out Alive

Mailbag Monday

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My biggest concern is flooding. I live below a major dam and if it fails it’s estimated that it would release a 30 to 40 foot wall of water. How do I prepare for this?

-From Jeff L.

Answer: The truth is, the best thing you can do is to evacuate ahead of the dam failing. I realize this is easier said than done, since we can’t predict the exact moment the dam will fail.

However, I would begin preparations now to evacuate at a moments notice. (Get your bug out bags ready so you can quickly flee your home.)

If you are alerted that the dam has failed, try to get to high ground such as a nearby hill or ridge if possible. If you have no time, get to the highest point in your home. (On your roof, not in the attic where you could get trapped.)

After the water hits, stay where you are. Six inches of water is enough to sweep a person off their feet. So, stay put and wait for help to arrive.


What do you know and what can you tell us about the mysterious unmarked 737 aircraft with the red stripes that fly out of Las Vegas and back each day…

-From Greg F.

Answer: I cannot confirm or deny much other than what has been released by the government. In 2013, the CIA declassified a report about Area 51. The report said the area was designed for testing the U-2 and other spy planes. There was never any study of UFO’s.

Planes leave Las Vegas everyday that are known as “Janet” airlines. The airplanes are registered to the U.S. Air Force. The name Janet is not an official name. But, rather a nickname. It stands for the acronym ‘Just Another Non Existent Terminal.’

The plane has its own terminal that performs all of the operations for the airline. The flight attendants and pilots are not your ordinary airline employees. They have the same security clearances as the passengers.


I think I have a stalker. I have noticed a car following me home from work. I think it’s one of our customers that comes into the store right before we close. How can I tell if he is following me?

-From Tabitha M.

Answer: There are simple things you can do to see if someone is following you, especially if you don’t want it to look obvious.

For instance, if you are walking on the street and pass someone walking their dog you could ask to pet their dog. This gives you a chance to stop and look around while you are petting the dog.

It’s a more natural stop rather then you looking paranoid. That’s, of course, just one way.

Now, if you think you are being followed in your car, turns and one-way streets are ideal. If you go down a one-way street and someone wants to follow, they have no choice but to go down the same street.

My point is, after so many turns or one-way streets you will be able to tell if the car is following you since it will be an unusual driving pattern.

I would definitely not drive to your home until you are sure you’re not being followed.


I live near the ocean. In a survival situation would I be able to use a water filter and drink from the ocean? Do any filters remove salt?

-From Keith B.

Answer: The majority of water filters won’t be able to remove salt from water and oftentimes, the salt would end up clogging the filter.

Unfortunately, during a survival situation, one of the only ways to desalinate water would be through distillation. There are survival distillation systems you can buy and they operate using a heat source such as a stove.

The problem with these is that the process is very slow and probably wouldn’t provide enough water for a family.

For example, one survival distillation system produces about 1 quart of drinkable water each hour. So, for a family of 4 you would need to distill water for about 16 hours each day to provide each family member with 1 gallon per a day.

In other words, it wouldn’t be an easy process. There is no simple way to make ocean water drinkable. I wouldn’t plan on using it. Look for lakes and rivers instead.


What are your thoughts on throwing knives in self-defense? I know there are special knives for throwing. Is this a good idea since I can throw the knife before the attacker gets too close?

-From Wesley O.

Answer: Personally, I don’t recommend carrying throwing knives for a few reasons. First, depending on where you live, it can be illegal to conceal or even carry throwing knives.

Second, unless you’ve spent years mastering the skill of throwing knives, they can be very difficult to use and something I would never recommend for someone who is new to knives.

Another reason is that if you throw your knives, you lose your weapon. So, you never want to be in a position where you threw a bunch of knives at an attacker and now have nothing in your hand to defend yourself with.


My husband and I love your articles. We live in New Orleans and survived the recent hurricane and flooding. It wasn’t near as bad as Katrina. Our biggest concern is looters after the storm. Most folks evacuated and there are plenty of empty homes. Any ideas on how to protect our home?

-From Dorothy I.

Answer: One of the first things I recommend doing is installing a security alarm system. While this may not stop someone from coming into your home it can at least alert you to the threat.

The fact is, there are many different security measures you can put in place such as cameras, security doors, window screens and other features that will hopefully prevent someone from coming into your home.

However, in the end, the best defense is you being there in-person with a gun. A lot of looters will think twice once they see an AR-15 in your hand or a shotgun. (You wouldn’t brandish the guns, you would only use them if someone broke into your home.)

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