Jebobek wrote:Lets fast forward to a few days, to when and IF the miltary responds. When a swat team comes in and begins to clear out zombie houses that were appropriately marked with Z, what should they mark it with to tell people they've turned it into a safe house? How do they cancel out the Z? I like the Z idea, but when they did a full clear, moved on, but left supplies for survivors, I would like to know its "safe, even though there WERE zombies".
If you're working on a plan to clear a block, a town, a state, a nation, whatever... In the cases of a block/town, clearing it would require weeks/months. You basically would start in one home and form a defensive perimeter. After such time as you are 100% confident that you have cleared your area (Since you're starting with one house, it should be cleared already, we'll count this as 0 time. In the case of a military force moving in, I'd expect they'd do the same thing, so we'll say an hour to to two hours to completely search a single home. Because I mean completely. Search the crawlspaces, the attics, every closet, cabinet, entertainment center.. everything. If there's a big screen TV, pop the back off just to be sure. Because you have to be 100% sure. Sure enough to let your spouse and children sleep on the floor without a guard sure.)
So you start with the one house and you form the defensive perimeter and kill off all visible zombies. This will take however long it takes and will likely kill off most of the mobile zombies in the area. In the case of a military force, I'd assume they'd set this up outside of the town.. we'll get to cities later. You then send a team to the house next door to search it completely - again, we'll say roughly one to two hours of searching time. Once they have deemed the place as completely clear, you extend your perimeter to that home, kill any visible zombies, once there are no more, you continue on to the next home. And so on, in this fashion, until the area you're taking is clear.
I would not try to take more than one home in a day (Otherwise, your search team might get lazy and just start assuming things like there's no way a zombie is in the cabinet under the bathroom sink, or forget to check the crawlspace ["Was that this house, or the last one?"] and somehow miss one) so.. if your average block has 25 houses, that's almost a month.
During the entire process, you need fireteams on the perimeter, watching, clearing any approaching zombies. I figure the World War Z approach would work for this - get half your best shots on the line, the other half is relaxing, napping, etc. As soon as someone misses a shot, they're taken off the line and replaced, forced to go take a break as they're obviously getting tired. Doesn't matter if they were on the line for a half-hour, or for six, as soon as they miss, they're on break for at least six hours.
Your office buildings and the like are, obviously, going to take a lot more time to clear. Even a small strip mall type building will take a whole day to clear out, much less an actual block of offices. In large cities, I can see skyscrapers taking a month or more to clear out 100%, what with all the closets, cubicles and the like. When clearing a building, you have to assume two distinctly opposite things - the first being that at any moment, right as you open a door or turn a corner, there's going to be a raring to go zombie right there, not even an inch away, trying to bite you. Every time. Which is stressful as hell. The other thing you have to assume is that there are zombies that are little more than detached heads hiding in places - in trash cans, in cabinets, under piles of junk, and so on.. just waiting for someone to come along later in this supposedly clear area and stick their hand in somewhere without looking... only to get bit by what's essentially just a head.
So to clear a building, you have to make sure that you've searched everywhere a softball could fit. Because you have to be 100% sure before you can say the building has been cleared.
So, I figure, during the days and months and years of clearing an area, you've got plenty of time to paint a large block of paint over the Z to erase it.
As far as clearing cities goes... I'm looking at the city I'm in, Louisville, Jefferson Co. Kentucky.. 700,000+ people in the county. I say that number just to give you an idea of the number of houses, apartments, condos and so on. Getting Jefferson Co. to the state where you can say it is 100% Clear of the Zombie Menace would take years. I'd rather not even think about how many people would be required to do so. By the time the defensive line extended out that far, you'd need thousands of marksmen to man it, or thousands to build a wall around the place, to funnel zombies in to an area where there are guards.
Which is kinda the problem, I suppose. To keep a defensive perimeter up for even a single block of houses, you'd need dozens of people to construct a wall or something, even if it's just sandbags, and dozens to be guards, especially at first. Eventually you could drop down to the point of just having eight or so constantly patrolling (Basically, as one team rounds a corner, another team should be starting on that straight stretch) but that would still require at least 24 guardsmen (three shifts a 24 hour period) if not 32 for four shifts.