I’ve been watching AMC’s Walking Dead and formulating my zombie survival plan, so unless the zombie apocalypse happens in the next day or two, I don’t need an answer fast.
My plan is based on stealing boats and seeking safety on the water, so it’s important to know if zombies can swim (doubtful) or even survive the water.
Zombies can only be killed by “killing the brain” and blunt force trauma is the only method I’m familiar with. Zombies do breathe and they are basically humans that got a disease that turned them into mental vegetables, so brain death should occur if one inhaled water. But they can also drag themselves around for days with 2/3 of their body missing and a cut off zombie head is still alive until you shoot it, so this indicates that loss of blood and oxygen doesn’t really affect the zombie brain.
FWIW, Here’s my plan, assuming zombies die in the water…
I would find a Marina on a map, load everyone up and drive up to the largest, closest and easiest to load boat in the Marina then put out a couple of guards while everyone loads all their belongings and supplies onto it. The boat doesn’t matter since it will only be used temporarily to get the women and children out of reach of the zombies.
A couple other guys go steal another boat that runs and has fuel and as soon as the first boat is loaded, everyone gets on and the “runner” boat tows it to the middle of the lake and anchors it.
Now that everyone is safe, use the small boat to go back and get other boats to build a floating city. This would be safe as you could drive the boat up to the other and attach a rope, then get off long enough to cut the ropes that tie it to the dock. 15 seconds exposure max, and it’s on a dock where you can see if there are any zombies around and have a clear field of fire, etc.
Once you have a floating city, everyone should be completely safe. You can even pick the place to go ashore for supplies when needed. Another benefit is that it may weed down the zombie population. If a zombie saw you in a boat, they would want to come eat you and would probably walk out into the water to… their death?