9:00am PT by Kimberly Nordyke
New Discovery Channel Series 'Masters of Disaster' Aims to Help Doomsday Survivors (Exclusive)
Discovery Channel's newest series is a new take on doomsday.
The cable network has ordered Masters of Disaster, which follows a crew of craftsmen who source, restore and sell vintage objects that may be useful in any calamity.
The show follows mechanic Beau Boruff, owner of Survival Research Inc., on the outskirts of Chattanooga, Tennessee, and his team as they hunt for bygone technology that will work in any worst-case scenario. The idea is that if there is a major disaster, such as a hurricane, power outage or nuclear fallout, most modern devices won't work.
For example, if there's a run on gas stations, fuel is likely to become a top-tier commodity. But with an old-fashioned whiskey still, Boruff's team shows how it can be used to create ethanol and power most modern gasoline engines.
Among the other items restored in Masters of Disaster are a 1950s OC-6 Crawler Tractor capable of climbing any terrain, a well-drilling rig from the 1920s so survivors will never run out of fresh water and a Velocipede railroad handcar from the 1880s that could be a transportation lifeline if the highways are clogged.
"Modern technology has transformed our lives, but may not be able to help us in survival situations. Vintage tech that is reliable, durable and easy to repair will be what saves us," said Marc Etkind, general manager at Science Channel.
The six-episode series debuts at 10 p.m. on May 3 on Discovery. The show also will air on Science Channel following the Discovery premiere.
Masters of Disaster is produced for Discovery and Science Channel by Fight or Flight Studios. Executive producers are Rob Hill, Dave Greider and Dave Luce for Fight or Flight, Michael Gara for Discovery and Neil Laird for Science Channel.