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Duration 01:25

Protect and Survive – Casualties

Protect and Survive was the title of a series of booklets and a Public Information Film series produced by the British government during the late 1970s and early 1980s dealing with emergency planning for a nuclear war.

The purpose of the programme was to provide members of the public with instructions on how to protect themselves and survive a nuclear attack. If such an attack had been deemed likely by the Government during any period of international crisis, a copy of the ‘Protect and Survive’ booklet would have been distributed to every home in the UK, and the films would have been transmitted on domestic television. The booklet and the films detailed a series of steps to be undertaken by the public to improve their chances of survival during a nuclear attack. These included the recognition of an attack warning, fallout warning, and all-clear signals, the preparation of a home “fallout room” and the stockpiling of food, water, and other emergency supplies.

‘Protect and Survive’ was simply designed, easy to understand, and similar to the advice of most other emergency planning authorities of the time. In the opinion of some contemporary critics, however, the ‘Protect and Survive’ films were deeply and surprisingly fatalistic in tone.

The ‘Protect and Survive’ animated series were produced by Richard Taylor Cartoons, who also created ‘Rabies Kills’ and the well-known ‘Charley Says’ series.


After an attack is over and the all-clear has been sounded, arrangements will be made as soon as possible to treat any people who are ill or injured. Listen to your radio, details will be given about what to do, when to do it and how.

If anyone dies while you are kept in your fallout room, move the body to another room in the house. Label the body with name and address and cover it as tightly as possible in polythene, paper, sheets or blankets. Tie a second card to the covering. The radio will advise you what to do about taking the body away for burial.

If however you have had a body in the house for more than five days, and if it is safe to go outside, then you should bury the body for the time being in a trench, or cover it with earth, and mark the spot of the burial.