Back to the Dark Ages: 3 Months later half of Puerto Rico still without Power

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Puerto Rico Hurricane Maria

Hurricane Maria sent Puerto Rico back to the Dark Ages and three months later half of Puerto Rico is still without power and struggling badly. What’s it like to live without power, how people cope and what challenges they face.

Like our previous post, the linked presentation below is also worth the time.

Puerto Rico, back to the dark ages.

Nothing like hands on accounts of actual events to understand for real what SHTF is like.

Notice that in general the areas that struggle the most are the more isolated ones and the ones further away from the main power grid. It is logical that these would be the ones where it is harder to re-establish power for. This contradicts the common “preper” advice of living away from main urban areas.

In the real world there’s no easy, black and white answers. The reality of such events is far more complex, what can be a benefit in some aspects can be a big handicap in other areas.

The trick is to know how to balance and prepare accordingly for whatever compromises you decide to make.

Have a great weekend folks!

FerFAL
Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Puerto Rico: What It’s Really Like After the SHTF

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Puerto Rico: What It’s Really Like After the SHTF Things are dire in Puerto Rico. We haven’t heard much directly from people there since Hurricane Maria took out power for the entire island, but what we do know is that the situation is desperate. This is a shocking, real-life glimpse into what it’s really like …

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These Crimes Against Harvey Victims Will Make You Angry — and teach you how to avoid becoming a victim

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crimes against harvey victimsHurricane Harvey put a huge dent in my hometown, with close to 200 businesses and 20% of the homes here flooded, some up past their rooflines. It’s been a tough couple of months. Our home was spared but if the flood waters had continued to rise for just a few more hours, we wouldn’t have been so lucky.

Piles and piles of “house guts” as I called them quickly lined the streets, and in some cases are still there, waiting to be picked up. Needless to say, the mounds of wet carpet, sheetrock, furniture, clothing, and every type of belonging you could imagine drew flies, rodents, bred mosquitoes, and, unfortunately, attracted a certain group of human predators who focused on bedraggled families as their next victims.

You can see from this photo how many, many people have lived in the weeks, and now months, post-Harvey.

Now, don’t get me wrong. The community here was and continues to be outstanding in their level of support. Our church was one of the leaders in organizing work crews who went into homes and helped shellshocked owners do what had to be done — dismantle the remnants of their secure lives, leaving them with nothing but concrete floors and wall studs. It was backbreaking work, but “Texas Strong” was a reality, every single day.

The worst in human nature came in the form of those who had no shame in taking advantage of my community in every possible way. Looters, of course, arrived to go through homes that had been temporarily abandoned, taking off with what very little the homeowner had salvaged. I now completely understand the sentiment, “Looters will be shot.”

Homeowners, in their rush to gut their homes and start the drying process, piled things in the front yard to sort through later, but soon discovered that ANYTHING left outside was considered fair game. At different hours of the day and into the night, cars prowled these neighborhoods, with human vultures looking for anything with potential value.

Along with piles of house guts, people had no choice but to put out piles of soggy paperwork, mail, and files of family and financial records. Incredibly, the dregs of society soon found those and began putting them to use, creating fake identities, complete with drivers licenses, checks, and credit cards. In some cases it was the work crews who found the documents and sold them to other criminals. Here’s an example of one identity thief who was caught. I’ve heard of many instances of mail being stolen out of mailboxes once mail delivery resumed. With so many homeowners unable to stay in their homes and check their mail in a timely manner, it was there for the taking.

Speaking of work crews, as you can probably imagine, our town soon attracted construction workers and contractors of all kinds who took advantage of flood victims in every possible way, from demanding large deposits and then never doing the job to doing shoddy work that had to be re-done by actual professionals. Anti-mold companies sold products and services that weren’t necessary, and one experienced construction professional sent this plea on a Facebook page,

As you look for your homes and properties to be repaired, PLEASE don’t tell contractors, bidders, and handyman you’ve just received your insurance check unless you absolutely need to. And please don’t tell them how much it was. I’ve seen several areas become devastated and people will be looking to get the most money from you. Telling them you received your check and how much it was, tells them just how much to bid the job for! Whether or not the work is worth that amount. People unfortunately, are not as honest these days. Do not be afraid to ask to see a portfolio of pictures of their work, request references, and by all means… ask questions! Keep all quotes to yourself, unless using it to negotiate a lower price. This will ensure your quotes and estimates are truthful and honest. Don’t be afraid to get multiple quotes either. This will make the money hungry bids stand out. And last but not least… cheapest isn’t always the best. Some people will cut corners to cut costs.

On Facebook pages and in community forums, I’ve seen multiple examples of scammers, hired by desperate people but, in the end, leaving them even more desperate, betrayed, and a lot poorer.

My wife very actively kept track of people in need and worked to connect them with donations, but in a few cases, she saw that some individuals whose homes had NOT been flooded, were joining in with requests for everything from furniture to appliances, clothing, you name it. One woman posted a variety of sob stories on different Facebook pages, until the community began to catch on. Many of us began requesting more information from those posting needs, like asking for an address so we could make sure there was an actual need, their home had actually flooded, and they weren’t just someone looking for a handout, leaving less for the true flood victims.

And then there were those who used the telephone and a computer to try and defraud:

I just received a call from someone saying they were with FEMA and that I was being offered $9k. They wanted my banking info. They could not tell my name or address. They hung up when I asked if they knew my name. It was from a 202 (DC) number. Don’t give banking info over the phone. FEMA should already have it if you applied for relief.

Here’s another example of the lengths criminals go to in order to defraud victims:

There are individuals out there that are using addresses of homes that have been vacant due to flooding for purposes of obtaining governmental services (i.e. Unemployment Benefits and/or Government Assistance). How can you tell? When you receive mail addressed to strangers with your address and a lot # after the street address. Watch out for this as it has happened to me from about 4 strangers. I contacted the TWC (Texas Workforce Commission) and reported them. I then returned the mail to the Post Office marked RETURN TO SENDER – DOES NOT LIVE HERE. This could stem from strangers driving the neighborhood to Contractors working in the neighborhood.

We asked our community about other crimes they had experienced during this horrific flood, and here’s just a sampling:

  • (People are) selling flooded cars or other items with out disclosing the damage.
  • My friend got her purse stolen at Lowe’s. The police told her a lot of people have come into town to steal. Because everyone is so distracted, we become easy targets.
  • Someone in the streets where I’m volunteering asked me for donations. I talked with other volunteers, asking about help to find donations for him and they said he was selling the donations.
  • There are people selling items they collect from donation points. I see it all over Facebook. Huge stockpiles of diapers, cleaning supplies, clothes, purses, etc.
  • I have had friends have AC companies quote for new AC unit ($10k a pop) and then sent my repair man out to say the units are fine and may need a new coil at $1400 max. Also had a general inspector confirm units were fine.
  • (My husband’s) warehouse was broken into during the hurricane. They took almost everything valuable from his office including his signed print of The Alamo.
  • People trying to return our donated items to the store for cash- we were told to cross through the bar code with a thick black marker so this couldn’t happen.
  • Price gouging! I got quotes for drywall replacement from $20K to $41K!
  • A picture of my collapsed townhome was posted on FB as if it was someone else’s home. They used it so they could garner sympathy and collect donations for a boy who wasn’t living in any of the Townhomes and his home wasn’t flooded. The post was eventually taken down but not until they bragged about getting all kinds of money….for example $5k from someone and $250 from State Farm.
  • The Red Cross hasn’t even been here yet and all I hear is them asking for donations.

I’m sure this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the level of crimes and scams that happened across the Houston area following Hurricane Harvey. I have to admit, I’ve seen a lot in my lifetime and, in fact, lived for more than 20 years in a part of the world where typhoons were a regular occurrence, but seeing up close the impact a record-breaking flood has on families and businesses and then hearing about the lowlifes who saw opportunities to commit crime — well, it’s been discouraging. Life for these families will forever be divided into, “before the flood” and “after the flood,” and they didn’t deserve to be victimized twice, first by Mother Nature and second by their fellow human beings.

Not everything post-Harvey has been terrible. In fact, on our partner blog, The Survival Mom, you can read inspiring examples of how the communities, including my own, pulled together in extraordinary ways. “27 Creative Ways to Help Disaster Victims” and “50+ Ways to Help the Victims of Harvey (and other disasters yet to come)” are encouraging because just about everyone in our community found a way to help out.

There’s no doubt that the crimes listed here are happening again and again across the country, wherever vulnerable people can be found. With these examples from my own experience, I hope you’ll be able to protect yourself and your loved ones from the human scum who see you as their prey.

 

 

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Lessons learned from the Puerto Rico Disaster: Cash and knowing when to Bug Out

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Dear FERFAL: Have you keeping up with the Puerto Rico disaster?.

Lesson learned:

1) Bug out

2) Have a lot of liquid assets available (Cash)

3) Generator, runs out of fuel, then you have hundreds of thousands of individuals with the same problem!

4) You can’t have enough food or water.

5) You may think that you’re prepared, but nearly a meter (39 inches, for my fellow Americans)of rain change all that. Look at number one.

6) In one evening your back in the early 1900.

7) Save your money for bugging out.

8) Just bug out!.

I’ll keep you posted.

-Maria

..

Hello Maria, thanks for those points.

Not surprised to see you mention and insist on the importance of cash and bugging out to safety.

These are essentially the two biggest points during these worst case scenarios. Supplies are important, food, WATER, generator, fuel, but when that water keeps raising and destroys everything in its path you just understand your life may be the next thing you lose.

So when it comes down to it, it’s a)Bug out! And save your life and the life of your loved ones.  b) Have the cash to get back on your feet. That money is all too important for rebuilding, getting things fixed and pay for those million things you just couldn’t prepare for.

For getting ready to bug out and evacuate when these disasters hit, when you have hours, minutes or just seconds to escape, check out my book “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying Put is not an Option”. Floods, fires and a variety of disasters affect people that believe they have prepared, but in fact they only prepared for what they HOPED they would be facing one day rather than true disasters.

Since we’re talking cash. How important was cash in Puerto Rico? Well, it was so important that extra cash had to be rushed to meet the surge in demand. “Demand for cash is extraordinarily high right now, and will evolve as depository institutions regain power, armored car services are able to reach branches, and ATMs are once again active,” said the spokeswoman of the New York branch of the U.S. central bank.

Cash demand soars in Puerto Rico after hurricane hit ATMs, card systems

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

 

Hurricane Items You Must Have Before It Hits

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We really need to get the word out to everyone now before we have another hurricane, and we will, it is inevitable. This year has been a rough year for so many families because of all the damage that comes with the strong winds and rain from a hurricane. We saw Hurricanes Harvey and Irma to name just two of many we’ve seen. Some people were prepared in some ways, but we can never be prepared for the aftermath so many people had to deal with this year. Some people lost their family members, homes, their food storage, emergency preps and many personal things they can never replace.

Here’s the deal, some people are still cleaning up the mess from the flooding, the downed trees, the mold, and dealing with FEMA and their insurance companies. It will take months, and possibly a few years, to restore some of the areas so they are livable again.

I still feel strongly that I need to remind people to start their food and water storage if they haven’t already. So many of us are very prepared because we get it. But, there are still people who don’t get it. You would think after seeing the news that people throughout the country would understand we need to be prepared. I was glued to The Weather Channel for weeks, talk about heart-wrenching.

We may live in areas that don’t have storms like those we’ve seen, many have fires, flooding, and earthquakes, to name just a few disasters. Please start with some of the things I have listed below, today, not tomorrow. If you are comfortable with talking with your neighbors, please get together, they may be your new best friends after an unforeseen emergency. Trust me on that one, I have personally been through a few disasters.

This is a very short list, but if you just pick and choose the ones you can do ASAP, that would be wonderful.

Hurricane Items

Important Documents Binder

Free Download Binder Contents by Linda

Water

You know the drill, one-gallon per person per day as recommended by The American Red Cross. I recommend 4-gallons per person per day. You can never have too much water. Add a water purifier and you rock.

Food

Survival Food Storage by Linda

72-Hour Kits

Linda’s 72-hour Kits Lists

Extra Clothing/Shoes

If you become wet, having an extra set of dry clothes, jackets, underwear, socks, and shoes would be awesome.

Blankets

Mylar blankets are great, quilts are awesome.

Cash-Small Bills

If the power is out, the ATM’s will be closed, the gas pumps will not work. If you need to buy something and if anything is available to buy you will need small bills.

Keep your gas tank at least 3/4 full

Please keep your tanks as full as possible, you do not want to be in line waiting for gas and then find out the gas pumps are empty.

N-95 Masks

I have so many of these stockpiled because I learned in my C.E.R.T. class that you can never have too many masks. I listened and followed instructions.

Gloves

I have so many boxes of non-latex gloves, it’s almost embarrassing, but that’s how I roll. I hate germs and bacteria.

Portable Potty

This is one thing I will not share, every one must have their own porta-potty, thank you very much, just letting you know ahead of time. Linda’s Portable Toilet

Toilet Paper

Need I say more, we all need it.

Diapers/Baby Bottles/Baby Food

You may not have a baby in your family, but your neighbor may have a baby she is unable to care for after a disaster and having a few diapers, whether disposable or cloth, would be a blessing. I would need pacifiers for a baby, I raised my girls on pacifiers and they are awesome!

Baby Wipes

Even if the baby wipe contents dry out just fill it with water, they will be great wipes again.

Paper Towels

I store some paper towels, but I started using these to save money. I love that they are thin and I wash them once a week and rarely use paper towels. Thin Cloth Diapers

Hand Sanitizer/Hand Soap

Clean hands, clean hands, clean hands. We have to be able to keep the bacteria under control after a disaster.

Portable Washing Machine

Now, this can be buckets, wash tubs or whatever works for you. If we lose power for an extended period of time, I want clean underwear at the very least. Linda’s Portable Washers

Clothesline with Clothespins

Here’s the deal, if we lose power for an extended period of time, we will need to wash our clothes and hang them up. Yup, clean underwear at the very least. Here is one Amish large folding dryer I bought a few years ago: Lehman’s Dryer.

Cleaning Supplies

Bleach is #1 and gloves to protect your hands and every cleaning product you like to use. I have all of them, trust me.

Personal hygiene supplies

Toothpaste, toothbrushes, shavers, hand soap, deodorant and anything that will make you feel awesome after getting dirty cleaning up a muddy house or another unforeseen disaster.

Women/Girls Monthly Menstrual Supplies

Tampons, menstrual pads, even if you don’t need them, I promise there will be someone who can use them if the store shelves are empty.

Flashlights-one for every family member

Be sure and have batteries if you buy the battery operated units. Solar ones are great because they do not need batteries.

First Aid Kit

Linda’s First Aid Kit

Benue mentioned: My daughter tells me that her dad recently went through 2 CATEGORY 5’s and weeks after, he is still on the island and tells her that there is an incredible amount of glass fragments in the wind, on the sand, on the leaves, etc. As he is working to clear up debris, he is getting cut up all over his body.

Pat reminded me: make sure you add tweezers so you can pull out glass shards. The ones in the first aid kits are typically not high quality.

Phone Chargers

The one in your car will work or use a solar one.

I hope we all get one new item this week to add to our hurricane emergency preparedness stash. We will never forget the horrific storms people have dealt with this year and previous storms from years past. Thanks again for being prepared for the unexpected.

Frank’s Suggestions:

He has family in Puerto Rico. You really need to read his comment.

Canned Milk

Canned Meat

“C” and “D” Batteries

Battery powered fans (plus lots of batteries)

Battery powered radios (plus lots of batteries)

Power Inverters

Charge Controllers

Solar Panels

Food Storage In A Small House by Linda

My Favorite Things:

Goal Zero Solar Generators

Goal Zero Solar Flashlights

Dutch Ovens

Kevin’s Clothespins

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Preparedness Lessons from Puerto Rico and Hurricane Maria

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Poor Puerto Rico. Hurricane Maria really pummeled the island, further exacerbating their existing problems (poor infrastructure, massive debt, and an out migration of youth). The Governor of Puerto Rico is warning of a brewing humanitarian crisis. Homes are destroyed. Power is out. Dams have collapsed. Streets are flooded. ‘Apocalyptic’ devastation. It’s a sad situation for. . . Read More

100 Perfect Of Puerto Rico Without Electricity; Power May Be Out For MONTHS

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100 Perfect Of Puerto Rico Without Electricity; Power May Be Out For MONTHS

The electricity might be off for months in Puerto Rico following the destruction from Hurricane Maria, Governor Ricardo Rossello says.

A full 100 percent of the island – which is home to 3.5 million people — was without electricity on Thursday afternoon, The New York Times reported. The blackout is so widespread because Hurricane Irma already had knocked out 70 percent of the island’s power.

“Irma gave us a break, but Maria destroyed us,” San Juan resident Edwin Serrano told The Times.

Maria was the strongest hurricane to hit Puerto Rico since 1932, and the devastation on the island is far from over.

Finally, A Backup Generator That Doesn’t Require Gasoline!

All of Puerto Rico was under a flood warning Thursday because of storm surges in the sea and up to 35 inches of rain.

Power Grid Destroyed

“It’s a good time for dads to buy a ball and a glove and change the way you entertain your children,” Ricardo Ramos of Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority told CNN.

President Trump said Thursday that Puerto Rico’s power grid is down.

“It wasn’t in good shape to start off with. But their electrical grid is totally destroyed, and so are many other things,” Trump said.

It will take more than a month to restore electricity to the island, said Jenniffer González-Colón, Puerto Rico’s non-voting representative to the U.S. House. Power lines all over the island are on the ground.

Many families will be without running water for months because the pumps that supply the water system are knocked out, González-Colón added.

“The country is paralyzed — it’s like a war zone,” said real-estate marketer Carmen González. “This has been devastating. The whole of Condado is full of obstacles.”

Telephone service also is out on the island, making the situation worse for millions of Americans who have relatives in Puerto Rico.

What is your reaction? Share your thoughts in the section below:

100 Percent Of Puerto Rico Without Electricity; Power May Be Out For MONTHS

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100 Perfect Of Puerto Rico Without Electricity; Power May Be Out For MONTHS

The electricity might be off for months in Puerto Rico following the destruction from Hurricane Maria, Governor Ricardo Rossello says.

A full 100 percent of the island – which is home to 3.5 million people — was without electricity on Thursday afternoon, The New York Times reported. The blackout is so widespread because Hurricane Irma already had knocked out 70 percent of the island’s power.

“Irma gave us a break, but Maria destroyed us,” San Juan resident Edwin Serrano told The Times.

Maria was the strongest hurricane to hit Puerto Rico since 1932, and the devastation on the island is far from over.

Finally, A Backup Generator That Doesn’t Require Gasoline!

All of Puerto Rico was under a flood warning Thursday because of storm surges in the sea and up to 35 inches of rain.

Power Grid Destroyed

“It’s a good time for dads to buy a ball and a glove and change the way you entertain your children,” Ricardo Ramos of Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority told CNN.

President Trump said Thursday that Puerto Rico’s power grid is down.

“It wasn’t in good shape to start off with. But their electrical grid is totally destroyed, and so are many other things,” Trump said.

It will take more than a month to restore electricity to the island, said Jenniffer González-Colón, Puerto Rico’s non-voting representative to the U.S. House. Power lines all over the island are on the ground.

Many families will be without running water for months because the pumps that supply the water system are knocked out, González-Colón added.

“The country is paralyzed — it’s like a war zone,” said real-estate marketer Carmen González. “This has been devastating. The whole of Condado is full of obstacles.”

Telephone service also is out on the island, making the situation worse for millions of Americans who have relatives in Puerto Rico.

What is your reaction? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Reply: 7 Things I learned from Hurricane Erma

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Fernando

I have been reading your blog for about 3 years now and I thank you very much for your efforts.

I live have lived in Miami and Fort Lauderdale Florida my entire life and I have a lot of family in the Tampa area that have been there for at least 20 years.

There are 2 things that are simply wrong in the post that I wanted to comment on, but my comment doesn’t display, so I thought I would email them to you.

1) There hasn’t been an earthquake in the Tampa/Pinellas County, FL area since 1931 and likely never. I think the 1931 number I find when I search on the internet is simply when they started writing this stuff down for Florida. We simply don’t get earthquakes in Florida. So that part of the post is wrong.

2) This is the more serious point that I hope you relay on your blog. The myth of cracking windows open during a hurricane/tornado is dead wrong. This myth has been debunked and is simply dangerous. You can find the research that Texas Tech did in 1977 easily on the internet about this myth.

The second item is the only reason I am writing you. I just don’t want people thinking that this is something you should do in a hurricane as the poster is dead wrong on it and it could result in others doing it in the future.

Have a great day

Regards
Chet

….

Hello Chet, thanks for your email. Mark had some great points and I really do apreciate it. That piece of advice did sound a bit odd. For what its worth, Snopes also says its a flase myth.  http://www.snopes.com/science/hurricane.asp

Still, I do appreacite everyone imput, especially those hard earned lessons and after action reports.

Take care everyone and thanks!

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

7 Things I learned from Hurricane Erma

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Dear Fernando,

I live in a condo on the Pinellas County peninsula, west from Tampa across the bay. I have endured three tropical storms and an earth quake since moving here 11 years ago. This was the first storm I had been preparing for since reading your blog. There is no replacement for actual storm conditions to test preparedness so here is what I learned.

1. Do NOT believe the Weather Channel

    They ALWAYS exaggerate their predictions to sow fear and terror. Knowing that once the hurricane hit dry land its force would diminish, so I rode the storm out at my condo unit with no fear and knowing I was prepared. So by the time it hit Tampa it was downgraded to a Tropical Storm. Still fierce and dangerous but no 100 mph winds and no storm surge to flood us. Note; I live 50 ft. above sea level and am not in a flood zone.

Which leads me to the following…

2. Do NOT buy the Crane CC Solar Observer for your emergency radio

    They must have a great copy writer because they sound like the be all end all of portable emergency weather radios. I bought this used for the NOAA Weather broadcasts and solar power and crank power extras and found it almost totally useless! 7 separate channels to find a local broadcast of current NOAA weather info and all I could get was an indiscernible murmur! The AM/FM radio was fair, the solar cells useless in cloud cover and I used the flash light mostly to conserve my iPhone battery as its light was far brighter. I need to do further research on what would be useful in this situation when I’m toally out of power.
    As a side note, I got ALL my storm and weather info from a web site; VentuSky.com. I saw this on a friends cell phone and dialed it in immediately before the storm. It gave me a visual and number read-out by location of wind speed, storm track, temp, waves and just about anything else climate wise. This site really refutes Weather Channel in up-to-the-minute weather data and I use it almost daily. I saw and confirmed my understanding that the storm would die down as it got onto land and decided to stay put and not evacuate.

3. ALWAYS leave some windows open, even a crack, during a Hurricane or Tropical Storm

    This I learned from being an Insurance Adjuster in the aftermath of Hurricane Iniki in Hawaii in 1992. Many homes had roofs totally blown off into the neighboring yards due to keeping all the doors and windows shut. The storm is a low pressure weather phenomena and locking up a building tight creates a high pressure in the dwelling. The roof can’t hold the pressure and it pops off. I am on the bottom floor so I told my upstairs neighbors to kept their kitchen door window open a bit and one of the back bedrooms open a bit. Our building had no problems, but one of the other buildings had the roof blown off and onto the cars parked in front.

4. Just because you had power during the worst of the storm, don’t expect it to be on after

    I had power all through the storm and up until late the next morning Monday the 11th. I am assuming the power company had all the power turned off then to check all the lines before resuming power. Then we got power back in 24 hours but all the other units and surrounding homes and business didn’t get power back until Friday the 15th. I was told that since our building was on a main road that power came on to all the street lights, homes and business first before other areas.
    And it follows that …

5. … with power down, don’t drive at night unless you have to.

    With power down there were no street lights nor traffic signals. In other countries that is standard every-day life but here in the US when you can’t see anything due to pitch black accidents can occur. I had to slow down at intersections as many people ‘assumed’ it was natural to just go through, like they had a green light. The next morning I saw broken glass and plastic at almost every intersection, by then the police had put up temporary stop signs and had traffic officers directing traffic at main intersections.

6. Be smart where you park your car

    Tropical Storms can have 40-50 mph winds with gusts up to 80 mph. That can blow down trees, fences, telephone poles, street lights and communication antenna. I had my car in the condo parking and I somehow lost a head lamp cover! The lamp works fine but is now exposed to the elements. Other condo dwellers are snow birds that come for the Fall-Winter-Spring and leave for summer. They usually have cars wrapped in some canvas and wheels on boards (the summer heat can melt the asphalt and melt the tires and ruin the wheel). Most had the covers were blown off and one under a tree had branches knocking dents in them. The city parking structures were open during the storm and next time that happens is where I’ll keep my vehicle.

7. ALWAYS check your supplies and equipment well before the storm hits

    This goes to most of the above but here is what I did wrong and right.
    As my cell phone battery ran down I tried to charge it with a cigarette lighter charger. IT DIDN’T WORK! It had worked in other cars but Apple can be finicky when it comes to non-standard adaptors.
    My food and water were adequate for a storm like this but I will check if there is anything past its expiration date. I had quart containers of frozen distilled water in my fridge freezer and that kept my perishables quite fresh when the power went off. I would like the 3 months standard you have but with the small space I have getting 90 gallons of water stored will be a challenge.
    I found that the stores and gas stations closed up within 3-6 hours once the state authorities said to evacuate. So once the storm is headed your way you should have already stocked up if you are going to. And we had plenty of warning but I noticed the shelves of water and canned goods went fast a day before the store closed. I shrugged and got what dry food others missed as far as that goes.
    I found I also needed more flash lights. I used to have two small Cree flashes and because they were so small I tended to loose them unless I kept them in my EDC. My near useless radio had at least had some utility.
    Medical supplies, I had enough to get me through but I have a prescription to self catheter 3-4 times a day and if I don’t I can’t control my bladder. I have been slowly increasing my supply every month so that I have 4 weeks in back stock but my target now is   now 3 months. As for anti-bacterial I have one gallon of distilled vinegar and one quart of raw apple cider vinegar. That will kill most pathogens and for the rest I have lots of soap and that with hard scrubbing will handle anything else. I also found small tubes of antibiotic ointment that I carry around in my EDC that has been quite useful.
    The Tampa Bay area is in the sub-topics and one must be aware of that at all times. On top of my regular supplements and cell salts for heat exhaustion I always have some sort of Vitamin C with me for urinary infections . What with cathetering I find that no matter how careful I am cleaning myself before hand, I can sometimes get those urinary infection symptoms and I have found ANY vitamin C taken will clear up symptoms within 30 minutes.

I’m sure some other things will pop up as I get on with my life but I made out Ok and will be better prepared for whatever comes next.

Best,
Mark

Hurricane Harvey 2017

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I’ve now lived through two hurricanes in Houston. Hurricane Ike 2008, and Hurricane Harvey 2017. Both were completely different experiences for me. Ike was a disaster, because I wasn’t prepared; Harvey was a breeze, because I was.

Making it through a hurricane without personal tragedy is all about preparation. Pay attention to the changes in forecast as the storm approaches so that you’ll have sufficient information to base your evacuation decision on. Have your home stocked ahead of time so that, if you decide to ride out the storm, you can hunker down and avoid going out to compete for the limited resources needed to make it through the storm and its aftermath. Grocery store shelves and gas station fuel tanks empty quickly, and people panic when they do. Best not to be anywhere near those places as a hurricane approaches.

Hurricane Ike 2008

I was new to Houston and had no clue what to do to prepare for a hurricane, and honestly I didn’t think it would be that big of a deal. I lived over an hour inland from the coast in a great big house. My only preps before the storm were to drain the pool, buy some bottled water, fill up my gas tank and make sure I had batteries for the flashlights. I was a fool. Maybe a better word to describe me was naive.

The category 4 hurricane hit in the afternoon and my pool was overflowing before the sun went down. Ike spent all night wreaking havoc all over Houston. When the sun came up the next morning I had no power. There was so much debris in my pool that there could have been a VW bug in there and I wouldn’t have seen it. One of our trees in the backyard was on its side across some power lines. There was a huge fallen pine tree blocking access to our cul-de-sac, trapping us in because no one could drive out. And water was half way up my lawn.

In the end, the electricity was out in our neighborhood for five weeks because the whole power line infrastructure had to be replaced, not just repaired. The tree was a problem because not a single person in our cul-de-sac owned a chainsaw. But luckily a neighbor did have a generator, so we used circular saws to cut a gap in the tree large enough to drive through. I had to rent a water pump to clean out the pool. Our house didn’t flood, but half of our neighborhood–including two of our cul-de-sac neighbors–weren’t so lucky.

Things working against us during and after Hurricane Ike:

  • Lived in a large older house in an area prone to flooding.
  • Lots of old trees in areas where they could block streets or damage homes if they fell.
  • Overhead power lines were taken out by fallen trees.
  • Located close to large creek, which flooded once the rains became too much for the drainage system.

Hurricane Harvey 2017

Hurricane Harvey 2017By 2017 I have been in prepper mode for a while. I moved to a neighborhood that had newer homes, sitting just high enough to avoid flooding. My wife and I made a habit of keeping our pantry stocked with enough food to feed our family for weeks, if necessary. Our home gets water even when the pump station fails because we are downhill from the water tower. And we have a 1000 gallon water harvesting tank in our back yard, just in case. So, the only thing that we had to do before Hurricane Harvey hit was fill our vehicle gas tanks. We didn’t need to do anything else. We were set. We had plenty of food, water and supplies in our home.

Our neighborhood had over 36″ of rain in four days, but our power never went out for more than thirty seconds. We had flooding all around us, but our neighborhood didn’t flood. There were no trees down in our neighborhood that affected us. Partly luck, partly careful preparation in selection of where we chose to buy our home. We were very fortunate. We made it out without any damage or trauma.

Hurricane Harvey 2017In fact, we ended up doing more to help others than needing help ourselves. We did a lot of donating–clothes, toiletries, cleaning supplies. Stuffed animals for little kids to cuddle with. A little bit of money to help neighbors who’d lost out on work because of the storm. And my wife baked bread to give out to people that needed food, because most stores were closed and those that were open were completely out of food staples like bread. Strangely, though, the baking aisles had plenty of flour and yeast. People could’ve done what we did and made their own bread. I guess most just don’t know how to do that anymore.

We used Nextdoor.com to coordinate volunteer efforts, keep up to date on where flooding was closest to us, and spread information about where shelters were, what they needed, and how we could help. It was great to have that resource in time of emergency. Usually all we see from Nextdoor.com is reports of wandering dogs, suspicious vehicles, and lost pets. Having that resource in place for Harvey made all the normal nuisance posts totally worth enduring.

Things that worked for us during Harvey:

  • A house in a neighborhood on higher ground that has never flooded.
  • Fewer big (older, weaker) trees around the house and lining the neighborhood streets.
  • Power lines are buried.
  • A neighborhood between two small creeks that flow into a large creek, providing good drainage.

Why Being a Prepper is Important

Hurricane Harvey 2017Mother Nature doesn’t care about who you are, where you live or how many kids you have. As far as she is concerned, humans are just another creature walking around on her. Hurricanes will change your life if you are not prepared. But if you’re planning to move to a place that is close to the coast, you should know at some point you will be hit by one. It is the same as living in the middle of tornado alley in a mobile home or in California on the fault line. Eventually Mother Nature is going to reach out and bitch slap you. She will give you the chance to appear on TV in the news as a tragedy that people will set up some fund to “help support those poor people.”

I’m sorry if that came across as insensitive to the people dealing with tragedy after Hurricane Harvey 2017. That is not my intention. All I am saying is that if you live in a place that is prone to natural disasters, than be prepared to handle it. Educate yourself about what could happen and what supplies you will need to have. Then buy them. Don’t wait to the last minute when the stores are empty. Have a place in your home to stock up on necessities.

Know what to expect. And have what you need — sturdy shelter on higher ground, clean water, shelf stable food, and fuel — on hand so that you can deal with whatever the storm throws at you.

Other Houston Prepper Blogger’s Affected By Hurricane Harvey 2017

  1. Apartment Prepper – Hunkering Down Awaiting Hurricane Harvey
  2. The Survival Mom – 50 Survival Tips Harvey Has Taught Me
  3. Ed That Matters (Prepper Website) – In the Midst of the Storm – My Personal Preparedness Experience in Hurricane Harvey
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52 Percent Of Florida Without Electricity; It Could Be Weeks Before Fully Restored

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52 Percent Of Florida Without Electricity; It Could Be Weeks Before Fully Restored

Image source: FP&L

Hurricane Irma exited Florida Monday, leaving more than 7 million homes and businesses without electricity – including more than 5.5 million customers in Florida who were still without power the next morning.

A full 52 percent of all homes and businesses in Florida were without power Tuesday morning, according to FloridaDisaster.org.

Damage was so widespread that not even the deployment of 19,500 electrical workers was enough to get things working, Florida Power & Light (FP&L) reported. The damage caused by Irma is the most widespread in FPL’s history, with power off in parts of at least 35 counties, including Miami-Dade.

It will take days and possibly weeks to restore electricity to many of the homes and businesses, FP&L CEO Eric Silagy told the Associated Press. Damage was greatest around Naples on Florida’s West Coast.

“We’ve never had that many outages,” Silagy told The Washington Post. “I don’t think any utility in the country has.”

Even homeowners with diesel/gas generators were finding it tough to cope, as gas pumps were dry throughout the state.

Finally, A Backup Generator That Doesn’t Require Gasoline!

Another 1.3 million homes and businesses in Georgia and 161,000 electrical customers in South Carolina also were without power on Monday, CNN reported.

Irma was downgraded to a tropical depressions Monday, but was still doing damage. Large areas of the South are still at risk for flooding.

“Intense rainfall rates of 2 inches or more per hour is leading to flash flooding and rapid rises on creeks, streams, and rivers,” the National Hurricane Center warned. “Significant river flooding is possible … Monday and Tuesday in much of central Georgia and southern South Carolina; where average rainfall of three to six inches and isolated 10 inch amounts are expected. Portions of these states within the southern Appalachians will be especially vulnerable to flash flooding.”

Is your neighborhood prepared for an Irma-type disaster? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Hurricane Irma!

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Hurricane Irma Host: Bob Hawkins “The APN Report“ Audio player provided! This weeks show of course will be about Hurricane Irma, another storm that has captured attention of the media & everyone suspected to be in it’s path. No doubt any named storm is a force to deal with, but how much of the coverage … Continue reading Hurricane Irma!

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Harvey and Lessons Learned

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Harvey and Lessons Learned Micheal Kline “Reality Check” Audio player below! In this show we are preaching to the choir and beating a dead horse. However, only through repetition do we build muscle memory. We will be reviewing some of the lessons learned from the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey. One of the biggest issues … Continue reading Harvey and Lessons Learned

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Hurricane Center Warns: Power Out For ‘Weeks To Possibly Months’ After Irma

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Hurricane Center Warns: Power Out For ‘Weeks To Possibly Months’ After Irma

Damage from Irma in St. Martin.

 

Hurricane Irma is bringing confusion, hysteria and a dire threat of devastation of epic proportions to Florida.

The superstorm is already much larger than 1992’s Hurricane Andrew and meteorologists predict it will not miss Miami, The Washington Post reported. In fact, the storm is bigger than the entire state.

Irma is likely to make landfall in Florida as a dangerous major hurricane, and will bring life-threatening wind impacts to much of the state regardless of the exact track of the center,” the National Hurricane Center warned Friday.

If it makes landfall Sunday as a Category 4, the Hurricane Center added, the damage will be significant – especially to the power grid and particularly around the eyewall. Category 4 storms have winds between 130-156 mph.

Finally, A Backup Generator That Doesn’t Require Gasoline!

“Catastrophic damage will occur: Well-built framed homes can sustain severe damage with loss of most of the roof structure and/or some exterior walls,” the Hurricane Center said. “Most trees will be snapped or uprooted and power poles downed. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last weeks to possibly months. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months.”

Irma is already blamed for one injury in Florida; police on Friday shot a man with a knife on the tarmac at Miami International Airport. The panicked individual was trying to reach a flight at the crowded airport. The suspect was arrested and taken to a hospital, the Associated Press reported.

Biggest Mass Evacuation in U.S. History

Highways and airports were jammed Friday morning as panicked residents and travelers rushed to get out of South Florida.

The exodus might turn into one of the biggest mass evacuations in U.S. history, said CNN meteorologist Dave Hennen. Around 6 million people live in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties, which are right in Irma’s path.

Freeways were so crowded that the Highway Patrol had to escort tankers to filling stations. American Airlines and United waived change fees to speed up boarding at airports to help travelers get out. Air traffic controllers also increased airspace to enable more flights to leave.

“We cannot save you when the storm starts,” Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) warned the public. “So, if you are in an evacuation zone and you need help, you need to tell us now.”

Devastation of ‘Epic Proportions’

Floridians had good reason to flee, as Irma already has caused loss of life and damage on a near-apocalyptic scale in the Caribbean, National Public Radio (NPR) reported.

Nearly every building on the island of Barbuda has been destroyed and 1,400 people left homeless, AP reported. Around 95 percent of the houses in the French colony of St. Martin were damaged and 60 percent of the homes made uninhabitable.

Severe damage was also reported in the U.S. and British Virgin Islands. Irma missed Puerto Rico, but more than one million people on that island were without electricity on Friday and airports were closed.

“It will be difficult to estimate how long the power outage will last,” Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló said.

What is your reaction? Share it in the section below:

Got gas? Shortages in Florida

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With Hurricane Irma just around the corner( to hit Florida as early as Sunday morning), Gas is becoming harder to come by as prices go up. Meanwhile Florida’s Governor is warning. “We can’t save you”.

Plywood and bottled water are also in short supply and highly sought after.

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

 

Preparing for Hurricane Irma!

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Preparing for Hurricane Irma Host: Ray Becker… “The Ray Becker Show” Audio player provided! In the first segment I am going to cover the equities markets, metals, the dollar, Shanghai metal prices, BDI, VIX…All of the Indicators that we’ve been following. I believe that it is critical for us to closely monitor all activity at … Continue reading Preparing for Hurricane Irma!

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Hurricane Irma Spaghetti Track Models (and more)

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(click image for latest positional update)   Hurricane Irma Strongest Ever in Atlantic? The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Hurricane Irma was a “potentially catastrophic” storm. The maximum sustained winds are now 185 mph as of this post. Irma could potentially explode into the strongest Atlantic hurricane ever recorded. Currently this hurricane is the strongest ever recorded outside the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean. As Irma churns closer to the U.S. coast, the path is becoming more certain. South Florida, particularly the Keys, is increasingly likely to take a hit. This hurricane is so large that the National Weather Service

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Hurricanes, Surviving and Thriving!

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Hurricanes, Surviving and Thriving Forrest Garvin “The Prepping Academy” Audio player below! Hurricanes can affect everyone and no matter where you live there are things you can do to prepare for the next big one. For those that live in the areas that are prone to hurricanes and tropical storms, planning and preparedness is a … Continue reading Hurricanes, Surviving and Thriving!

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In the Midst of the Storm – My Personal Preparedness Experience in Hurricane Harvey

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Hurricane Harvey slammed into the Texas and Louisiana coasts and caused widespread death, destruction, and damage.  Although Houston didn’t get the direct hit from the hurricane, we were on the dirty side of the storm.  With two high-pressure systems keeping the storm in place, Houston and the surrounding areas received three-fourths of a normal year’s worth of rain in two days!

This article is to share my personal preparedness experience and observations during the storm.  Being from the area, this is not my first hurricane.  But I’ve never seen this much destruction and devastation before. I’ve also never been in a situation where my house almost flooded.  Again, this is my experience and I hope to help someone in the future who might be preparing for a storm.

What Worked – The Intangibles

Planning – You can’t discount this piece of preparedness!  Since this wasn’t our first hurricane, we knew what to expect with the stores running out of supplies, the wind, rain and potential loss of power.

Because my family prepares, we had everything we would need.  As the storm looked like it would hit the coast, we did go to the store and picked up a few cases of water for convenience, bread, milk, fruit and other items we would want if we were to be locked down in the house for a few days.  This was early on in the track of the storm.  Like usual, stores started running out of supplies the closer the hurricane was to landfall.

During the last big rainfall, my son’s vehicle did get some water in it.  This time around, we pulled up our vehicles as close to the house as possible.  We squeezed three vehicles on a two car driveway with my son’s vehicle a little on the yard.  I was worried that the ground would get so soaked and his tires would sink into the grass, but it didn’t happen.  Luckily, my neighbor allowed us to park our fourth vehicle in her driveway.  If we wouldn’t have done that, we would have had a flooded out vehicle!

A Cool Head – Before I get into some of the items that worked for us, I need to talk about the importance of having a cool head and not panicking.

The stress of seeing the water get higher and higher is not something I can put into words.  We used the fire hydrant across the street as a gauge to tell if the water was getting higher or receding.  It was slow and steady, but the water kept rising.

One thing to remember is that although Houston has experience with hurricanes, we have never experienced this level of flooding.  Our neighborhood had never experienced this level of flooding either.  Seeing pictures on the news and then on social media let us all know how wide spread this was.  In the past, one part of the city was usually inundated with water, but this event was city-wide!

The need for a cool head really came into focus when I received a call from my elderly neighbor.  I could hear the panic in her voice.  She called to tell me that a boat was on the way to pick her up and that I should be ready to evacuate.  My neighbor didn’t know where they were taking her. She didn’t know when exactly they were coming, but she was leaving!

I shared the information with my wife but told her that I wouldn’t be leaving. I wanted to stay behind and mitigate any water getting in the house as much as I could.  My wife agreed and we stayed.

I wish I would have taken a picture.  We were in our garage watching the water when the boat pulled up on her yard, all the way to her front door.  It was a crazy scene.  We later found out that the boat took her to a local grocery store parking lot and the National Guard took her to a local church.  There, evacuees spent the night on a pew.  I’m glad I didn’t leave!

What Worked – The Gear

Outlite A100 FlashlightI can’t say enough about this flashlight.  It runs on a 18650 Lithium-ion Battery or 3 AAA batteries.  I use the 18650 battery and I’m very pleased with this little torch.  After our lights went out, we used this flashlight to shine on the hydrant across the street to check the level of the water.  When we needed to go into a room, it would easily stand up on its end and light up the entire room.

The batteries are purchased separately from the flashlight above.  I purchased this setup that comes with the battery and a fast charger.  Outlite 2PCS 18650 3600mAh 3.7V Protected Rechargeable Lithium Battery with Fast Li-ion Battery Charger.

Early on in the storm…

Farberware Classic Stainless Steel Yosemite 8-Cup Coffee Percolator – After we lost power, I took out the old style percolator to make our morning coffee.  I fired up the burner on my outdoor grill (to not warm up the house) and set the percolator on it.  The percolator worked perfectly and made an excellent cup of coffee.  The only downside to the coffee maker is how black the bottom side was charred.  I should have known better and used the little trick I learned in Boy Scouts, put a thin layer of dish soap on the bottom side.

The percolator is stainless steel and did clean up alright.  Next time, I’ll use some soap though.

750w Inverter – After the rain slowed, I busted out a no name inverter that I purchased pre-Prepper Website.  I connected the inverter to my truck battery, started the truck, ran an extension chord and plugged up my refrigerator.  Although the inverter is a cheap, no name brand, it worked well and we were able to keep the refrigerator and freezer cold and didn’t lose anything.

When you consider an inverter to run something like your refrigerator, you need a powerful enough inverter to start the compressor in your refrigerator.  After the initial surge, the wattage levels off and you can plug more items into an electrical strip.

I suggest that every Prepper have an inverter to run electrical items when the power is out, or even when you’re camping.  Vehicles hold many gallons of gas.  I ran my truck for 1 1/2 hours and didn’t really see my gas gauge go down.  If you don’t have an inverter, you might consider this one that is rated well on Amazon – Cobra CPI 880 800 Watt 12 Volt DC to 120 Volt AC Power Inverter with 5 Volt USB output.

Ambient Weather WR-111B Radio – Until we lost power, we watched the local news and kept up with what was going on through social media.  Even after we lost power, I would use the hotspot on my phone to get online and see what was going on around Houston.  But after that first evening, there was some talk that we could be without power for an extended period of time.  And not knowing how long we would be surrounded by water, I decided to save my various battery banks and solar chargers in case I needed them down the road.

But I still wanted to know what was going on.  So I pulled out the Ambient Weather radio and tuned it into the local news.  It is true that communication is a big deal in an emergency.  You want all the information you can get to make informed decisions.

This little radio does a lot for such a small package.  I was glad I had it.

Kogalla Solar Storage Bank – I did a review on the Kogalla back in March.  It just works as a solar battery bank.  You can check out my review for more information about this solar bank charger.

What Worked – Other Considerations

When we lost power, we used what little day light we had left to cook dinner and eat a good meal before we settled in for the evening.  I used the burner on the grill to heat up pulled pork and we all ate sandwiches.

When it started getting dark, I let everyone know that I would be stationing the flashlights on the fireplace mantle.  I wanted there to be a central location to keep all of our lights so they wouldn’t get misplaced in the dark.

I also left a candle going in the living room (where we slept) so that we would have light in case anyone needed to get up in the middle of the night.  The candle was the type in a big glass jar, so it had little chance of tipping over, plus I have older kids.  You still need to proceed with caution when using candles, regardless of their type.  We really didn’t get any sleep though. We were up every hour checking the level of the water!

What I Wished I Had

Rain Boots – I’ve been wanting to purchase rain boots for every member of the family.  I just haven’t done it yet!  My son does have a pair that my father-in-law purchased for him when they go hunting, so I used those to walk out in the water to check the water level around the house.  This is a purchase that I would like to make for everyone soon.

You DON’T want to be walking around in flood waters!  More on that below.

Sandbags – At one point, I thought I would want some sandbags for the garage door and front door.  Of course, this would have only helped to a certain point.  Since I’ve never had to fill sandbags or used them before, I have no clue on what I would do afterward.  Do you just store them in your backyard or do you go get rid of the sand somewhere?

My Other Observations After Getting Out

We experienced gas shortages for a few days, but this was mostly hype.  It settled down after a few days. And at this point, there are already refineries coming back online.

Grocery stores opened up with shortened hours.  Some grocery stores around town had long lines and only allowed a few shoppers in at a time since they had limited staff.  I didn’t encounter this around my area, although we were hit hard.  I was able to always walk right into the grocery store.

The only items that I wasn’t able to find easily were eggs.  Friends at church said this wasn’t an issue for them, but for some reason, the grocery stores around us couldn’t get enough.  I also noticed that the chip aisle was always empty.  More than likely, people wanted things they could easily snack on.

I didn’t do too much driving around, but when I did, I noticed that fast food restaurants had long lines at all hours of the day.  This might be due to people not wanting to cook and wanting something different from what they had stored for the storm.

Warnings!

I don’t understand why people don’t realize that flood waters can hold some nasty things!  Many times, you will have raw sewage mixed with who knows what in the water!  But even with the warnings that newscasters were giving, I still witnessed kids AND adults walking in waist deep water when they didn’t need to.  Many of these people were wearing shorts and flip flops.  One young teenager passed my house, walking in waist deep water, without a shirt, without shoes and only wearing blue jeans.  This wasn’t safe!

It’s one thing when you have to wade through water to evacuate, it is another thing when you willingly go into the water.  If you have cuts or worse, you puncture your foot with debris in the water, you can get really sick!  It’s just not smart!  Prepare to have the proper clothing and shoes!

Lastly, just because the water has receded in some parts, doesn’t mean the city is in the clear.  Things are starting to get back to some sort of normal, but the ramifications of this hurricane will be felt for a long time.  It is estimated that only 20% of those who flooded have flood insurance.  Some of these people are living paycheck to paycheck.  They lost time at work and maybe even their vehicles.  They can barely afford to make a living much less pay to repair their homes and buy new or used vehicles.

I also worry for those who don’t remediate their homes correctly and wind up living with mold.  And although I haven’t personally heard of any looting (there are a ton of stories on social media, I don’t know how true though), I believe that as people start feeling the financial crunch, that we will see crime increase.

All that saying that there might be more to add to my experiences and observations with the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey in a future article.  For those interested, I have been discussing some of my observations on the podcast.

This event was a natural disaster.  We have seen a lot of good and some bad. Luckily, the city and surrounding areas have had a ton of love and support from all over the United States.  It was individuals that got busy and helped.  Many people would still be left stranded and even died if we would have had to only rely on the government.  It gets you thinking though, what would it look like if an event effected the whole nation at one time?  Take responsibility for yourself and your family.  Stay prepped and aware!

Peace,
Todd

Check out the Hurricane Mini-Link Bomb Here!

 

Hurricane Harvey: 12 Lessons from the Disaster in Texas

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1) This is why we prepare. We prepare because it allows us to better overcome these challenges in life, some more unexpected than others. Sometimes being prepared means we deal better with less serious inconveniences and we end up looking like the “handy” guy in the group. Sometimes it’s a serious as it could possibly be. The difference between life and death.

2)Location, Location, Location. These last few days I kept hearing terrible stories of loss, of people that had lost everything, people that have lost their lives even. Some of them said this was the second time in 10 years that they had to start over. That right there is maybe the most valuable lesson. Areas that have flooded in the last 10 years, 50 years or 100 years are likely to flood again. Areas that have never flooded before but are in proximity of such areas are likely to get flooded next for the first time, simply because the growing urban footprint doesn’t leave enough absorbing surface to avoid flooding. True, these CAN indeed be prevented with responsible development and proper infrastructure as the urban setting expands, instead of just thinking of building and flipping houses without caring what happens to them a couple years later. But that’s a topic for another discussion.

Know where you live. Know where you’re moving next. When I moved to Ireland, floods were one of the first things I looked into. It took some digging but I ended up finding maps of past floods going back over a hundred years. Guess who didn’t get flooded when it eventually happened a couple years later?

3) It’s not just the city and urban areas. The countryside gets flooded too. It gets flooded a LOT. You build your house in the middle of nowhere thinking it’s an ideal location an later on if you didn’t do your homework you realize your house is at the bottom of a lake. Be careful yet again with developers. A nice new subdivision can be built in an area that is likely to flood. Maybe that’s why it was cheap in the first place.

4) What killed people during Harvey? In 3rd world countries the main causes of death would be the spread of diseases after the disaster itself, but in a developed country it’s often people making bad decisions. Getting caught inside the houses when the water raises. Above all, its people “bugging out” and getting their car carried by the current, rather than staying put and waiting to be rescued. This isn’t anything new. That’s why before Harvey hit I advised readers precisely about this.

5) People are good. We often focus on the worst mankind has to offer. I do that more than most, and I’ve seen this myself more than enough. But at the end of the day for every scumbag looter there’s two folks willing to give their neighbour a helping hand. There’s random strangers forming a human chain to pull someone out of the water, even risking their own well-being for that stranger.

Be smart about it and remember the saying about loose lips sinking ships, but be kind to your neighbours and the people around you. They will be the first responders when you need help the most, even if you’re not the kind of guy that likes being helped.

6) How many of these people never thought of leaving “because we already live in our bug out location”. How many people focused on “stuff” and “gear” rather than skills, flexibility and mobility? Putting all your eggs in one basked is just a bad idea. A flood, a fire, even a home invasion can leave your with nothing. Ask yourself this: What would I do, where would I go and how would I get back on my feet if my house burned down with everything in it? What would I do if a flood destroyed all my property, destroyed my homestead and my crops along with my gear? 80% of the people in the flooded areas in Texas did not have flood insurance. ( and before you say it, if a company isn’t even willing to insure you that should be the huge red flag that tells you to get the hell out of there!)

7) What if you can’t move at the moment and you know you’re in an area that is likely to be affected? Well, plan for that as well. How high is water likely to get? What if it’s double that next time? What kind of house are we talking about? Do you have a plan, a route, a place to go to when you have to evacuate? Do you have a camping trailer you can use? Do you have the gear you want to salvage ready to go? Do you have a boat in case you don’t make it out on time? Do you have personal flotation devices and helmets for the family? Is your EDC cellophane waterproof? It’s little details like these that make the difference between life and death when you’re hanging for dear life from a tree and all you have to call for help is your dead non-waterproof phone (yes, sometimes you do have a signal, or you can at least send text messages).

8) Got pets? Prepare for them as well. I heard over the news that people were abandoning them. Rescue teams specifically looking for pets were breaking into houses to rescue them. They were being left at shelters. Plan for your animal friends too. Recently we had our own little storm warning around here. It barely rained at all eventually but I did notice I was running low on dog food and would have had to improvise something in the middle of the storm if it had hit. A large extra bag “for emergencies only” is cheap insurance and handy for when caught without at inconvenient moments too.

9) You can’t drink flood water folks. Can’t use your well, your tap water or even your lake. Get a quality filter, but also get enough bottled water to make it through. I keep two weeks of bottled water. Not just a few gallons, but two weeks’ worth of what my family honestly consumes. Talk about cheap insurance, bottled water is maybe your cheapest, yet most vital prep when forced to do without.

10) Like in boxing, protect yourself at all times. We saw scenes of looting. Looters went around looking for places to pick. People defended their property. We saw that looters don’t like getting shot at (an universal fact of live, for all countries it seems) If you stand guard armed chances are they will go looking for easier targets, but expect them to be armed and ready to shoot as well. In this case a long arm provides extra firepower. This would be also the time to done your body armour and night vision. We saw people in boats helping the victims. Many of them would jump from the boat to the houses or vehicles dragged by the current rescuing folks. In that case you can’t go around with your rifle across your back bumping into everything so once again your handgun becomes your main gun. You rifle stays in the vehicle or boat, maybe the person driving the vehicle keeps an eye out with the long arm ready in case there’s trouble.

11) Remember the part about cash being king? After the storm many stores had “cash only” signs. As stores start opening again, you don’t want to be that guy without cash.

12) Besides having a plan and even if you’re not evacuating, supplies are essential in times like these. Again, the stuff we talk about here all the time. As mentioned before, water is a key supply people amazingly still overlook. But there’s also food supplies, means of cooking such food, disposable plates, cups and cutlery. Properly stored gas for your vehicles and generator. Batteries, lots of batteries and flashlights. Medical supplies, both prescription and first aid. All sorts of supplies disappeared in a matter of hours after the storm was announcement. Bleach, soap and cleaning supplies in general. This is important to avoid diseases after the water goes down.

FerFAL
Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

A Hurricane Preparedness List

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A hurricane preparedness checklist will provide reassurance that you will have thought of all the essentials (provided that they are on the list) and will greatly reduce the likelihood that you will forget something during the stressful time immediately before a potential hurricane disaster. Note: No list is a perfect or complete list because we all have our own unique circumstances, concerns, and existing resources. Besides, it would take a book to complete one… That said perhaps this list will help get you going in the right direction. It is intended to provoke thought, prepping & preparedness for a hurricane.

The post A Hurricane Preparedness List appeared first on Modern Survival Blog.

50+ Ways to Help the Victims of Harvey (and other disasters yet to come)

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ways to help harvey victimsAround the world people are reaching out to my beloved Texas, wanting to help. In some cases, well-meaning help comes in the way of used clothing and items that are redundant and no longer needed. The fire station by my house begged, “Please! No more food!”

I’m learning first hand that in situations like this, needs are very fluid. One shelter might be desperate for adult diapers on one day and bottled water and energy bars the very next. I’ve been combing through lists of needed items by shelters, churches, community centers, and schools and believe this is very comprehensive of ways to help Harvey victims. If you have something you believe should be added to my list, leave it in the Comments section.

  • Cash — This isn’t impersonal, whatsoever, but allows groups and recovery efforts to spend that money where it’s most needed.
  • Gift cards — This is almost as versatile as cash. Home Depot, Lowe’s, VISA, grocery stores, Walmart, Target, Sam’s Club, Costco — these are all good choices, and I’m sure a Starbucks gift card would be greatly appreciated as well.
  • Hand sanitizer — Bottles of this in all sizes
  • Combs and brushes
  • Deodorant — Non-gender specific, unscented preferred
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Tampons and feminine pads
  • Laundry detergent
  • Clorox bleach
  • Lysol concentrate
  • Large sponges
  • Rubber gloves
  • Buckets — Here’s a chance to put those empty 5 gallon buckets you’ve stashed for food storage to another use!
  • Wash cloths and towels — Depending on the location, some
  • Lysol/Clorox wipes
  • Windex
  • Shaving razors
  • Water bottles
  • Advil/Tylenol
  • Neosporin
  • Band-Aids
  • Non-perishable food — Print out this list for ideas.
  • Face masks
  • Box fans, portable fans
  • Extension cords
  • Small generators
  • Filled gas cans
  • Brooms and mops
  • Tarps
  • Sheetrock knives
  • Empty spray bottles
  • Garbage bags
  • Gas leaf blowers
  • Wet vacuums
  • Hammers
  • Pet food
  • Pet crates
  • Baby formula
  • Diapers
  • Baby food
  • Adult diapers
  • Baby wipes
  • New underwear
  • New socks
  • Toilet paper
  • Bar soap
  • New towels
  • Toothpaste and toothbrush
  • New t-shirts
  • Water
  • Books or small toys and stuffed animals
  • Paper, crayons, markers, art supplies (kids with trauma from losing everything often need an outlet. It is often expressed in what they draw and create)
  • Bandanas (hair, sweat, etc)
  • Hair clips and bands (it’s hot, keeps hair out of the way when cleaning/working/easy maint. for kids hair)
  • Bug spray
  • Chap stick
  • Sunscreen
  • Powder (chafing)
  • Snacks for kids that are shelf stable, such as Fun Fruits

If you want to be more involved personally, then consider:

  • Calling local churches to see how you can be involved. I’ve discovered in my town that churches are the hubs of hand-to-hand assistance, both with rescue, recovery, and rebuilding.
  • Offer to babysit children and care for pets while families are busy with packing up their belongings, sorting through what can be kept and what is trash, demo work on their homes, etc.
  • Don’t overlook apartment dwellers. A single complex can house hundreds of families and in a flood, the bottom floors, at least will have been affected.
  • Fill an ice chest with bottles of water, let them chill for a while, and then drive through damaged neighborhoods, offering ice cold bottled water. On a warm day, this is nectar of the gods!
  • At this point, Amazon Prime is your friend. There will be shortages of things like face masks, drywall knives, gloves, etc., but Amazon never seems to run short on anything and with Prime, you’ll get what you need in just a couple of days with no need to battle traffic, closed roads, etc.
  • Fill brown bags with snacks for kids: a juice box, a bag of fun fruits, a Lunchable, etc. No peanuts.
  • If you have money, give money. By far, it’s the most versatile form of assistance.
  • If you have physical strength, offer to help with demo work, removing debris, etc.
  • If you have time, spend it as a phone volunteer for organizations that are receiving calls for help.
  • Step out of your comfort zone as you offer help. Some will receive it gladly, some may refuse it because it’s awkward to suddenly be in a position of need.

What else should be on the list of ways to help Harvey victims?

ways to help harvey victims

 

Empty shelves

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What is the first thing to disappear off the shelves in an emergency? Water, that is the main thing I heard people on the news saying, everyone was out of water, and of course food is close behind of the things that will be stripped from the shelves. Fuel, batteries, paper plates and other things that don’t require washing. I have said it again and again, don’t wait until the emergency is on your doorstep to begin to prep, be ready long before that storm, hurricane, power outage or whatever might occur. It’s not a matter of IF, it’s a matter of WHEN, these things will happen and you can either be the folks standing in long lines, possibly leaving empty handed, or you can be the smart people who are ready for whatever may come.

It’s so much easier to prep ahead of time, you can do it little by little each week or payday, rather than worrying about how much money you will have to spend, that is IF the water, food and fuel are even available, you will be sitting at home, safe with your family, ready to ride out whatever is coming.

This is something I will never understand, people who live on the coast, they KNOW that each year there are possibilities of storms, hurricanes, cyclones, tropical storms, and yet when it happens, the news is full of stories of empty shelves at the grocery stores, long lines, running out of fuel at the gas stations, the hardware stores running out of plywood sheets to cover windows… this goes for people living in other areas that are prone to natural disasters, earthquakes, wildfires, storms, up north where they can get deep snow and ice, anyone who lives in a place that can have weather that can cause power outages or prevent you from getting out.

Even if you are on the thinnest of budgets, you can buy a few extra cans of food, things that don’t require heating, buy an inexpensive MANUAL can opener and make sure it works properly. You can buy up one or two gallons of water a week or payday, those only cost a dollar or so each, you don’t have to get the expensive H2O, get the cheapest you can find and stash it away. Buy up some cheap paper plates and plastic eating utensils, some wet wipes and hand sanitizer. Don’t forget about your pets, a few extra cans of food will not break the bank.

Try to have some comfort food, snacks that do not require refrigeration or heating. If you have children, it’s a good idea to have a few coloring books and crayons or colored pencils to help keep them occupied. Also you can invest in some board games, chess, checkers, Life, whatever you like, you can find these inexpensively in the dollar stores.

Depending on the time of the year, you will need to keep warm or cool, warm clothes and blankets will get you through a cold snap, if it’s summer, you will just have to open the windows (if you can), or sit outside, have some clean spray bottles filled with water to mist yourself and hand fans will help keep you cool until the power comes back on.

The important thing here is to have all or most of these things BEFORE the emergency hits. I sincerely hope everyone down in southern Texas on the coast and the other states on the gulf coast get through this OK, hopefully folks will learn from this and not be caught off guard next time.

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Getting ready for Hurricane Harvey

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Hope everyone is sheltered-in-place already and prepared for Hurricane Harvey. You should already have plenty of stored water, food and other essential supplies.

Try to stay put, stay off the roads, make sure everything it locked and tied down to reduce the amount of flying debris out there.

Any updates you want to share with the rest of us leave your comments below.

Good luck everyone and stay safe!

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Prepare For A Natural Disaster – Your Family And Your Homestead

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Natural disasters happen all the time all over the world, fires, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and earthquakes. There is pandemonium and chaos, fear and heartbreak each time. Is it preventable? Most of the time, no. We are at the mercy of Mother Nature. But there are some things you can do to prepare for a natural disaster. Do you know how to prepare you, your family, home, pets, and livestock?

Right now, Marjory and her family are preparing for Hurricane Harvey, which is going to hit the Texas coast today.

Her homestead is expecting 20+ inches of rain and sustained winds of 40 mph. She says that is 2/3 of their annual rainfall.

Marjory knows how to prepare for a natural disaster. They’ve been to the grocery store, cleaned up the homestead, boarded up the windows, and scattered cover crop seeds in the pasture. In her words, “We’ve been broadcasting seed for the fall planting of pasture cover crops. Yes, the time to plant is before the rains or your likelihood of germination goes way down—you never know if/when it will rain again.”

Look for updates on Marjory right here on this blog post!

UPDATE August 25, 2017, 8:03pm CST: Hurricane Harvey has intensified. It is now a Category 4 storm as it makes landfall. Marjory has “battened down the hatches.” They are as prepared as they can be.

Prepare your family for a natural disaster

In 2004, my family and I were living in Florida. We went through 4 hurricanes back-to-back. Two boys, two cats, and I were huddled in the inner bathroom of our house. I lost three refrigerators full of food, and we lost power for weeks each time. It was the tornadoes spawned by the storm that finally got us. A 100 ft. pine tree with a 6-ft. diameter missed my car by inches. Our neighbors were not so lucky.

Make a plan

It’s better to prepare for an emergency or a disaster long before it happens. Choose reliable information sources, and know the warning systems in your area. Talk with your family about your plan, even young children will understand and not be so frightened. Be sure to include your pets and even neighbors in your plans.

  • Choose a safe place to meet.
  • Decide how you will contact each other (if cell service or electricity are out)
  • How will you find each other?
  • What will you do in different situations (fire, tornado, hurricane, earthquake, zombie apocalypse)?

Okay that last one was a bit of a joke, but all joking aside … what is your family’s disaster plan?

Create a disaster kit or bug out bag

Your emergency kit should be stocked and restocked regularly. Be sure to consider all of your needs and don’t forget your pets! You and your family may need to survive on your own for several days. You’ll need to be prepared with food, water, and other supplies for at least 72 hours.

Basic Disaster Supply Kit, or Bug Out Bag

Store everything in airtight plastic bags or put your entire disaster supply kit in one or two easy-to-carry plastic bins or duffel bags. Check the items regularly to make sure they work and have not expired.

  • Water – one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days. This is for drinking and sanitation.
  • Food – at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio or NOAA Weather radio with tone alert. (Don’t forget extra batteries in your kit.)
  • Flashlight – battery-powered, solar-powered, or hand-crank (Personally, I prefer the hand-crank. I know it will work)
  • First Aid Kit – Check it regularly to make sure it is stocked.
  • Extra batteries – make sure you replace these regularly or use rechargables that get charged regularly.
  • Whistle to signal for help – A whistle is much easier to use than your voice and carries over a longer distance. Make sure that each family member has one.
  • Dust mask – in case there is debris in the air
  • Plastic sheeting – makes a great impromptu shelter
  • Duct tape- I never go anywhere without duct tape!
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags, and plastic ties for personal sanitation
  • Manual can opener for your food
  • Local maps
  • Cell phone with solar charger or a battery backup

Personal Emergency Supplies

  • Prescription medications
  • Non-prescription medications (pain-relievers, anti-diarrhea, antacids, and laxatives)
  • Glasses and contact lens solution
  • Infant formula, bottles, diapers, wipes, diaper rash cream
  • Pet supplies – Crate or carrier, pet food, and extra water for your pet
  • Cash
  • Way to cook food
  • Family documents (copies of insurance policies, identifications and bank account records, saved in a waterproof, portable container)
  • Sleeping bag and warm blanket for each person
  • Complete change of clothing appropriate for your climate and sturdy shoes
  • Household chlorine bleach and medicine dropper to disinfect water
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Matches in waterproof container
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant
  • Mess kit, cup
  • Paper and pencil
  • Books, games, puzzles, cards, or other activities for children

After you create your disaster kit, remember to check it regularly.

Keep your canned food in a cool, dry place and replace expired items as needed. Store boxed food in tightly closed plastic containers. Rethink your needs each year.

Prepare your homestead for a natural disaster

Now that your family, pets, and you are safe during a natural disaster. Do you know how to prepare your homestead so it stays running?

  • Remove any debris that could become a dangerous flying object. This includes tomato cages!
  • Generator – if you have solar or wind power, it’s still a good idea to have a backup generator in case your alternative energy sources are damaged or destroyed by the natural disaster.
  • Reliable water source
  • Secure your livestock and small animals – have extra food, water, and bedding ready for at least a week. Have your halters and leads ready.
  • Stock up on vet supplies, including bandages, antibiotics, supplements
  • Make sure housing, food, and supplies for small animals (chickens, ducks, rabbits) are ready to withstand high winds or rising water. Create a make-shift pen in your garage, if necessary.
  • Put heavy farm equipment under cover and tie it down.
  • Tools & gloves – There will be a lot of mending after a natural disaster.
  • Keep a written inventory of all livestock, including breeding and expense records, with your other important family documents.
  • Make sure all animal branding, tagging, and other identification information are up-to-date.

Are you prepared? Tell us in the comments below.

Resources:

Ready.gov. Be Informed
Tractor Supply. Storm preparedness on the farm.

 

 

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The post Prepare For A Natural Disaster – Your Family And Your Homestead appeared first on The Grow Network.

Seven 15 Minute Preps to Get Ready for Hurricane Season

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Seven 15 Minute Preps to Get Ready for Hurricane Season Yes. That time of year is upon us again. If you are on the Atlantic coast then you will be concerning yourself with hurricanes again. The annual threat never ceases to remind us why we need to get generators and flashlights in check before those …

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A Survivors story!

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A Survivors story! Bob Hawkins “The APN Report” Audio in player below! A Survivors story. This week’s show we’ll be introduced to Joe Moore. When Hurricane Matthew roared up the Carolina Coast, all eyes were on the coastal regions as to the extent of the damage it brought. But days afterward an equally devastating storm came … Continue reading A Survivors story!

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Devil In The details & The Trash Man

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Devil In The details & The Trash Man Bob Hopkins “The APN Report” Listen in player below! Just how prepared are you? We can all go on & on about how we’ve set aside for a rainy day. We stockpiled this, acquired that, planned for this, that, or another. Have you really made ready when … Continue reading Devil In The details & The Trash Man

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Mother Nature and Disasters

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Mother Nature and Disasters Bob Hopkins “The APN Report” Listen in player below! This week, Mother Nature takes center stage in a horrible way with Hurricane Matthew turning a mild hurricane season into one of devastation & carnage. We will broadcast live from coastal South Carolina DURING the storm, as it heaps heavy winds, rains … Continue reading Mother Nature and Disasters

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Category 4 Monster Nears U.S.; Towns ‘Uninhabitable For Weeks Or Months’; 7 Million Without Power?

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Category 4 Monster Aims For U.S.; Towns Could Be ‘Uninhabitable For Weeks Or Months’; 7 Million Without Power?

 

JACKSONVILLE, Florida — A rare Category 4 hurricane is set to deliver a devastating blow to the East Coast of Florida tonight, potentially knocking out power for a long time and making some places “uninhabitable for weeks or months,” according to the National Weather Service.

Currently, Hurricane Matthew has winds of 140 mph. About 2.5 million people in Florida and the East Coast are evacuating.

“This can kill you and we cannot save you,” Florida Governor Rick Scott warned.

Most of the Florida’s east coast and all of Georgia’s coast are in a hurricane warning. The only Category 4 hurricane ever to make landfall in the area took place in 1898.

Upwards of 7 million people could be left without power, according to forecasters. It already killed more than 110 people in the Caribbean.

Are You Prepared For A Downed Grid? Get Backup Electricity Today!

“People who have been told to evacuate, they need to get out this morning, right away, because time is running out fast,” Rick Knabb, the director of the National Hurricane Center, told ABC News. “You don’t want to be caught in the storm surge, which is the deadliest hazard of all.”

matthew-skullMatthew is the deadliest hurricane to approach the U.S. coast in more than a decade. The National Weather Service expected it to make landfall north of West Palm Beach early Thursday morning.

Even Walt Disney World – which rarely shuts its gates – is closing. The theme park has closed only four times since 1971.

Winds and Flooding

“The extreme winds of a major hurricane can do a lot of damage and not just at the coast,” Knabb said. “Those winds can penetrate inland and that would be more so the case the closer it gets to the coast. In addition to the wind, you have storm surge potential.”

Crazy Gadget Makes Every Window A Cell Phone Solar Charger

A storm surge of 7-11 feet is also expected.

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley ordered residents to clear out of Charleston and Beaufort Counties by 3 p.m. on Wednesday. The Associated Press reported that Interstate 26 was partially blocked by traffic congestion.

“It’s not going to be a fast evacuation,” Haley said. “If you can leave early, do that; the goal is to not leave all at once.”

What is your reaction? Share it in the section below:

Are You Prepared For Extended Blackouts? Read More Here.

The Ultimate Guide To Hurricane Preparedness – How to Prepare for Hurricane Matthew

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The Ultimate Guide To Hurricane Preparedness: How to Prepare for Hurricane Matthew In light of Hurricane Matthew heading towards the East Coast of the US, I wanted to re-share this article on Hurricane Preparedness. I hope that everyone is safe and prepared to weather the storm, or has bugged out of town! If you are …

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Hurricane Matthew: Ready to Bug Out?

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Hurricane Matthew: Evacuations begin as deadly storm nears

If it’s necessary to do so, don’t wait until the last minute. Mandatory evacuations are already being ordered for residents of Merritt Island and other barrier islands. Residents were ordered to leave starting 3 p.m. Wednesday.

Lines at gas stations are already long, but they will be worse tomorrow. Hopefully you already have gas stored.

If you need to get any last minute preps, better do it now. Ready.gov has some good tips to follow.

Stay safe folks!

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

Preparing For A Hurricane

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How To Prepare For A Hurricane Beyond Just Flashlights And Batteries   How often have you heard this ‘typical’ recommendation (from ‘.gov’)? For emergency preparedness keep a disaster supply kit containing 72 hours of food & water, a flashlight with extra batteries, a battery powered radio, and a First Aid Kit. While those preps are […]

Hurricane Matthew!

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Hurricane Matthew! Tom Martin “Galt$trike” Listen in player below! On this episode of Galt Strike Bob Hawkins will be introducing himself and briefly touching on his practical approach toward Prepping. But most importantly he’ll be discussing Hurricane Matthew, the major hurricane which is currently threatening the entire US east coast. By this time next week, some part … Continue reading Hurricane Matthew!

The post Hurricane Matthew! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Disaster Preparedness for Your Family

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No matter where you live, your home is at risk for some kind of natural disaster. Whether you’re on the earthquake-prone west coast or right in the heart of tornado alley, it’s crucial to learn how to prepare your home and family for possible disaster. Disaster preparedness is crucial when it comes to taking care of your family. Here are a few ways to ensure your entire family stays safe in the event of a weather emergency:

 

  1. Make a family emergency preparedness plan.

Not only is it important to sit your family down and discuss exactly what to do in the event of an emergency, it never hurts to have a tangible copy to refer to in the moment. Natural disasters are hectic and panic has a way of making you forget what you’re supposed to do, so having a reference is always a good idea. Create an emergency preparedness plan with your family that covers all the potential disasters for your area. Where should your kids take cover in the event of an earthquake? Does your spouse know where the emergency flashlights are? Do you have a designated emergency contact your children can reach out to if you’re unavailable when disaster strikes? Keep hard copies for emergency reference, but make it a constant conversation to refresh everyone’s memories.

 

  1. Take special considerations for children.

You’ll want to make sure your kids understand the gravity of a true emergency and the importance of acting quickly and appropriately. If you live in the country, your kids should know that the second they hear tornado sirens while in the backyard playing, they can’t waste a single second in dashing to the basement. If you live in the city, talk about “safety spots” near their school — like a trusted friend or family member’s house — they can go in case getting home amid the chaos simply isn’t possible. Make sure they understand that their safety should never be compromised under any circumstances; not even to save your garden from ferocious hurricane winds.

 

  1. Buy a few medical books.

You never know what injuries may occur, so stock up on some emergency medical books — don’t rely on a smartphone’s access to the internet or a tablet having enough charge to pull up the information. A few books on basic first aid, sterilization, and emergency care, as well as any applicable pet emergency care literature should be enough to keep you prepared. This is especially important if you live in a secluded, rural area and rescue crews may take longer to reach you in an emergency. One of the best medical books you can add to your household is “The Survival Medicine Handbook” by Dr Joe Alton and Nurse Amy Alton. Also known as Dr.Bones and Nurse Amy they focus on teaching people how to deal with emergencies in laymen terms so we all get it.

 

  1. Prepare your pets.

Ideally, your pet is micro-chipped with up-to-date information, but never underestimate the power of his collar and ID tags; these items can be a major help to getting him back if he runs away or becomes lost in a crisis. Keep in mind that even if you live in a residential suburb where most people know your pet, he could wander farther than you expect and without tags, a rescuer may assume he’s a stray. You should also make sure his leash and carrier are somewhere easily accessible should you need to evacuate the house in a hurry.

 

  1. Practice, practice, practice.

Practice safety drills in your home on a regular basis. Switch up the times of day and situations in which you alert your family to a practice emergency, including during meals and smack dab in the middle of game night. Go over what to do in situations away from home so that even if you’re somewhere unfamiliar on vacation, everyone will know what to do should emergency strike.

 

When it comes to floods, hurricanes, blizzards, and all of their havoc-wreaking cousins, there’s no such thing as “too prepared”!

The post Disaster Preparedness for Your Family appeared first on American Preppers Network.

Surviving a Super-Typhoon

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Surviving a Super-Typhoon

As part of my somewhat colorful past, I have the dubious distinction to have lived through at least 2 dozen typhoons. Sounds impossible, right? Well, when you spend more than a decade in the area of Micronesia, typhoons happen. A lot.

These massive storms, called hurricanes everywhere else but in the Pacific, rip through the islands, bringing devastation and, sometimes, irreversible damage. In my part of the world, they happened so frequently, we became a little too nonchalant at times.

When news of an oncoming typhoon hit the airwaves, we only had a few preps to put in place. Because of frequent power outages, as well as earthquakes, having a few shelves of canned goods wasn’t prepping. It was just a way of life. Nobody used electricity to cook, ever. Instead, we all used propane stoves on a daily basis, and a lot of families used hibachis, barbecue pits (55 gallon metal drums cut in half), or grills.

So, when a storm was approaching, we had the food we needed, as well as a way to heat the food and purify water, if necessary. When I was a lot younger, buying bottled water wasn’t a thing, so we filled up all our bathtubs with water. Consequently, we didn’t bathe much in the storm’s aftermath!

We were on an island, so when the power went out, there just wasn’t anything much blacker than being in the middle of the Pacific, without even a single lightbulb. Most families used kerosene lanterns, which I highly recommend you stock up on, candles (although my parents worried about dripping wax and unprotected flames), and we only used battery-powered lights for real emergencies. A couple of gallons of kerosene lasts for weeks, but batteries can run out quickly if you’re relying on them to power your light sources.

I can’t over-emphasize the importance of having forms of entertainment, like board games, to keep everyone occupied. My sister would read books, but reading books by kerosene lantern wasn’t my idea of fun. Who needs that kind of eye-strain?

Washing clothes was about ten times more difficult than you can imagine, unless youve done it yourself without any form of power. My mom did it but sometimes she would conscript me into service. I would have to wring clothes by hand, very difficult!, and then hang them up to dry. In our humid climate, it took a very long time for them to thoroughly dry. On one island, the washaterias would have their own generators, so we would wash our clothes there and then bring them home to dry on clotheslines.

We were fortunate to live right near the grid the hospital was tied to, so we usually got our power and water before most other people.

During the days following a typhoon, school would be out, and this could last from a few days to several weeks. If the running water was affected, there was no school until it was restored. My mom was a schoolteacher, so she would invent school assignments for us to do. I guess nowadays with homeschooling being so popular, it’s a lot easier to find textbooks and school supplies of all kinds.

Everybody on the islands owned at least one machete, and this was the primary tool for clean up following a typhoon. Those machetes were everything from military surplus to cane machetes. These islands didn’t have huge trees, so the clean up involved mostly cutting up branches and clearing debris. No one waited for the government to come and clean up. They did it themselves, including the clearing of roads.

I guess there are a lot of prepping lessons here that go beyond surviving a super-typhoon.

  1. Spam is your friend. I love Spam to this day.
  2. Canned goods may not be the most healthy food, but they’re a survival/emergency necessity. Eating Dinty Moore stew from the can isn’t all that bad.
  3. Water, water, water. Living without running water is far more difficult than doing without electricity.
  4. Additional water sources can be priceless. We regularly took our baths in the ocean.
  5. Don’t rely on batteries in a long-term survival scenario. Take a look at other sources of light that rely on different fuels.
  6. Nowadays, I’d stock up on solar powered lights, in particular.
  7. Plan to deal with insects, maybe more than you’ve ever encountered. Mosquitoes became a big issue in the days and weeks following a typhoon. We stocked up on mosquito coils.
  8. Adjust your mindset that you’ll eat and drink food and water at room temperature, or warmer.

Living through and then surviving the aftermath of a super-typhoon is much like any TEOTWAWKI event. Our lives just stopped for days or weeks, while we dealt with this new reality. I expect a future worst case scenario will be very similar.

 

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Beginners Guide To Surviving

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Submitted By H.D.

What is it that makes a natural disaster so dangerous? Is it the fact that, we can’t prevent it from happening? Or does it have to deal with our inability to recognize the signs? The answer is neither. The reason why a natural disaster is so dangerous, evolves around preparation. To put it another way, they’re dangerous because we don’t prepare for them. A large percentage of the American population goes throughout their day-to-day lives without ever thinking of a natural disaster occurring. A beginners guide is something we all need to make us aware of what we need to do.

With that being said, ask yourself, “How can we survive something we’ve never prepared for?” it would be equivalent to taking an exam in a subject you’ve never studied for. The answer is simple, you can’t! This is why earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, and tornado’s rip cities apart, taking thousands of lives and causes billions of dollars in damage.

According to DoSomething.org, between the years of 2000 and 2012, natural disasters caused $1.7 trillion in damage and affected 2.9 billion people. The researchers later discovered that, 2012 marked the third consecutive year worldwide natural disaster damage exceeded $100 billion.

Believe it or not, natural disasters like wildfires can strike at any time, without warning. In other words, even if we tried to recognize all the signs before a disaster hit, one could still strike unexpectedly. Those are the ones that cause the most destruction.

 

Here are some things to keep in mind before a natural disaster hits your home.

 

Don’t Wait Until It’s Too Late

 

  1. Preparing For A Flood

 

Like most natural disasters, flooding can affect anyone, regardless of where they live. Within the United States, it’s actually the most common type of natural disaster. As a result, flash-floods has caused about 200 deaths annually, according to LawHelp. In order to make sure you’re protected, get to higher ground. Don’t attempt to operate a motor vehicle no matter what – otherwise you risk the chance of getting stuck, or even swept away by fast moving water.

 

Ways To Protect Your Home

  • Seal the basement walls with waterproof compounds.
  • If possible, have a sump pump, as well as a backup one that operates on batteries.
  • Check and make sure that all electrical components are no less than 12 inches above any assumed flood levels. This will help prevent you from getting electrocuted.

 

  1. Tornado Watch

A tornado is a combination of wind and water that can travel anywhere from 250 to 300 miles per hour. Needless to say, a tornado can destroy any and everything it comes in contact with. Turning everyday household objects into dangerous projectiles that can kill people and damage property. Before strengthening your living environment, check and make sure your home is out of harm’s way. To emphasize, make sure you live somewhere that isn’t within arm’s reach of the windstorm.

 

Tornado Proof Your Home

  • If you live in an area that’s prone to tornado’s, make sure you cover your windows to protect them from shattering. Garage doors should also be checked and reinforced. Just because it’s one of the heaviest and most powerful pieces of machinery in your entire house doesn’t mean it can’t be blown away by a twister.
  • Schedule a home inspection to have your house and roof checked.
  • Make any repairs necessary in order to ensure your safety.

 

Despite the fact that tornado’s are commonly known to occur in the springtime in areas of the U.S. known as “Tornado Alley,” the truth is, tornadoes have been known to occur in every state and in every month.

 

  1. Hurricane Season

 

Anytime a hurricane is approaching the coast, you will more than likely witness people scrambling to hardware stores buying whatever they can get their hands on. Although this may sound like a good idea, the reality is if you wait until a “hurricane watch” has been issued, you’re too late. During a hurricane, homes might get damaged or even destroyed by high winds and high waves. Meaning that, windows will be shattered and homes can even fall to the ground if they’re built on a weak foundation in extreme storms, like Hurricane Katrina.

 

Don’t Waste Time

  • First and foremost, don’t wait until a “hurricane watch” has been issued to the public before grabbing the hammer and nails.
  • Remove weak and dead trees or tree limbs located on your property.
  • Have a backup plan in case you have to evacuate your home. Also set aside some cash, and make a “grab” and “go” bag that has all your important paperwork, and personal information stored inside.
  • Lastly, make sure you have a battery-powered radio, so you can keep up with the latest news.

 

  1. Tectonic Plates Shifting (Earthquake Preparation)

 

Let’s be honest, if you’ve ever experienced an earthquake you know how scary it can be. According to Ready.gov, earthquakes are defined as sudden rolling or shaking events caused by movement under the earth’s surface. These events happen along cracks within the earth’s surface called fault lines resulting in a release of energy that causes the earth to shift and move; shaking buildings, bridges, and homes. In the United States, earthquakes are more commonly known to occur throughout the western region, however, other states have been known to experience this disaster as well.

Since earthquakes are unpredictable, make sure your home is sturdy enough to withstand intense shaking, no matter where you live. In the case of an earthquake, it’s always better to assume the worst and have too much rather than not enough.

 

Don’t ignore the signs.

 

  • For heavy items that can fall over, secure them to a wall or floor.
  • Breakable items should also be moved closer to the floor or placed on lower shelves as well.
  • Check your foundation for cracks, and any loose wires that may cause a fire. Unlike other natural disasters, earthquakes come without warning. Therefore, you should make repairs to your home immediately after inspection.
  • For families, make sure your children and other loved ones know the earthquake safety drills.

 

  1. The Do’s & Don’ts For All Natural Disasters

 

 

Do Don’t
●       Stock up on food.

●       Don’t forget to purchase lots of water.

●       Assemble a first-aid kit for cuts and bruises.

●       Pack spare clothes in case you’re away from home longer than you expected.

●       Sanitize whatever items you use properly.

●       Drink water you think might be contaminated.

●       Forget to wash your hands as much as possible.

●       Hold on to food items that may have come in contact with contaminated water.

●       Forget to protect important documents. After all, once they’re gone, they’re gone for good!

●       Store food outside.

 

As a final point, even if a natural disaster isn’t threatening you or your family, it’s still a good idea to stay prepared for whatever comes your way. If you live in areas that are prone to disasters, never second guess leaving your residence if you have to. A home can be replaced, but a life can’t.

Be safe out there!

——-

Thank you again for taking the time to read my article. I would like to know, have you ever experienced a natural disaster before? Or, do you have any tips you’d like to share? I’ll be checking for comments, so feel free to express your thoughts on today’s article.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

H.D. loves taking advantage of the sunny weather outside. If you can’t catch him online reading whatever he gets his hands on, you might be able to catch out playing football with friends, or cheering on the Denver Broncos. Follow him on Twitter at @Davis241.

 

 

Sources:

 

The post Beginners Guide To Surviving appeared first on American Preppers Network.

Natural Disasters; Are you Ready?

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When natural disasters comes to your town, what do you do? Most people aren’t prepared. And, because of that, they’ll suffer catastrophic losses and be totally blindsided by the fact that they don’t have electricity, clean water, and probably food. Here’s how you can prepare yourself so you’re not caught out in the unprepared.

 

Planning For Any Disaster

You’ll see common preparedness tips for every type of natural disaster, which is why a disaster preparedness plan makes sense. Most natural disasters will knock out, or limit access to, essential services. Services like police, fire, and rescue, but also services like food, water, and shelter.

You should be familiar with a disaster before it strikes. Because once it does strike, the only thing you can do is “press play” and carry out whatever plan you have in place. For most people, a basic survival plan includes a “bug out bag” or a “bug in bag,” which includes basic safety supplies, 3 ways to make a fire (including waterproof matches), waterproof clothing, a rain slicker, some food (freeze-dried or canned with a can opener), and a first-aid kit.

You will also want some basic tools like a hatchet, pick, walkie-talkies, and multi-tool. You need enough materials so you could survive for at least 72 hours alone, if you had to. If you want extra protection, give yourself a week’s worth of supplies and stock 2 of everything.

 

Preparing For An Earthquake

This is one of the hardest things to do, because of the nature of the disaster. If you live in an area prone to earthquakes, you already know. If you’re not sure, use the Global Seismic Hazard Assessment Program and the U.S. Geological Survey to map out where the high risk areas are. The USGS also uses a live map so you can see up-to-the minute activity.

There’s nothing you can do to avoid a quake, but you can give your home an earthquake checkup. Check for disasters, fasten shelves to the wall studs, and store anything breakable in a safe place. Store poisons in cabinets that latch shut. Put heavy objects on low shelves and secure heavy furniture. Practice earthquake drills with your family.

The most important thing you can do is get underneath something sturdy and find an open space. Most deaths caused by earthquakes come from flying debris and falling objects. Collapsing structures and walls are also dangerous. Your first priority is to minimize personal injury. Finally, avoid damaged or falling structures.

 

Preparing For Hurricanes

Like tornadoes, hurricanes produce very severe and fast winds that are damaging to people, buildings, vehicles, and the natural environment. The benefit is we often see them coming from many miles away and have technologies to detect them easily.

Hurricanes bring on flooding, fires, and other secondary disasters. They also bring on sustained winds and rain. Board up the windows and doors with plywood, install storm shutters, and secure your roof and siding. Bring in outdoor furniture.

Check the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s flood map database. If you have to evacuate, shut off your utilities, including the main power switch. Check with the local authorities about a main evacuation route, and practice it with your family.

Hunker down and evacuate when ordered to do so. Even weak hurricanes can kill. And when it’s all done, flooding cleanup may not be completed for days, meaning you’re stranded in a flooded area.

So, it’s usually best to evacuate, since rescue may not be able to get to you in time, and you won’t have anywhere to escape to.

 

Planning For A Tornado

A tornado can come on fast and be quite unpredictable. Tornados don’t just happen in the Midwest either. They can happen in the south, north, and west — basically anywhere in the U.S.

Anywhere a thunderstorm can form, a tornado can too. The amount of concentrates damage they cause is astonishing. Like most storms, the best way to handle one is get out of the way.

You can’t really prepare your home for a tornado, since they’re so damaging. Some homes are built to withstand tornado winds, and are protected by special shutters and siding, but even then there are no guarantees that the tornado wouldn’t destroy everything.

Tornadoes are accompanied by strong winds and storms. The wind might pick up for a while and then suddenly die down. Watch the sky. It will get dark and suddenly, you might hear a loud rushing sound, like a roar. Be on the lookout for clouds that rotate in a circular pattern. They strike quickly, and the trademark funnel cloud is a good sign but may not appear until debris is already picked up.

Listen to NOAA emergency Weather Radio, because severe storms will be reported here first. Listen for emergency broadcasts if conditions look right for a tornado. If one strikes, stay low and get to a place in the basement. Ideally, you will be on the lowest level of your home. If you’re in a highrise, try to get down to the lowest level quickly.

But, stay away from windows and outside walls. If you’re in a vehicle, this might seem scary but get out of it. Vehicles can be picked up and flung very easily by tornadoes. Get out and lay face down in a ditch or a very low area. Stay away from bridges and underpasses as the wind can be very harsh under them.

 

Charlie Lucas lives in a flood zone and has seen his beloved home, and possessions, destroyed by flood waters once already – He takes every measure he can so it doesn’t happen again and warns others too.

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The Ultimate Guide To Hurricane Preparedness

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Hurricanes are easily one of the most destructive natural disasters in the world. In fact, only large earthquakes and volcanoes are capable of inflicting more damage. The largest hurricanes can cause tens of billions of dollars in damage and claim thousands of lives. In the United States, the East Coast and the Gulf of Mexico […]

The post The Ultimate Guide To Hurricane Preparedness appeared first on Urban Survival Site.

When Should You Bug Out?

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There are many videos and articles out there that tell all about Bug Out Bags and what to do when you bug out, but have you thought about WHEN you should consider bugging out? Of course, we all have different opinions about these things. Jack from Black Scout Survival touches on a few things that you might not have thought of.

He tells about the acronym RED-OUT that he lives by and what it means. He touches on issues of hurricanes, riots, lack of resources and the fact that 20% of our population is on some sort of behavioral medication.

Below is a transcript of this video. If you like Black Out Survivals videos please do not forget to subscribing to receive more videos!!

When Should You Bug Out?

(Video Transcript)

Video By: Black Scout Survival
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Transcription provided by American Preppers Network

Number of speakers: 1 (Jack)
Duration: 8 min 27 sec

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BSS: What’s going on guys? Black Scout Survival and today we are going to be talking about when to bug out and a lot of people do a lot of videos on bug out bags and all kinds of bug out stuff. But how do you know when it is time to bug out. You know what I mean? If you leave to soon, you could be making a mistake because it could be quickly over or it could be something like Katrina where if you stay you might end up everything or dying. Or becoming in a worse situation.

So there are a few things you need to consider before you bug-out or to know when to bug out. I first heard this acronym on a podcast. I can’t remember who came up with it but it is a very good acronym. I was writing down and taking notes when I was listening to this podcast 2 or 3 years ago. The acronym is RED-OUT. Basically we will through the list starting with R.

R- Resources, or lack of: So let’s say you’re in a situation and you run out of food in your house. You know you’re sheltering in place and you run out of food. Obviously you need to go. Go find better resources or there could be a place that has better resources and so you need to bug out there. Or you run out of resources at your home. Either or. So resources. Obviously you need these things to live so you need to bug out if you run out or bug out if there is a better place that has more resources than what you have or what you need.

E – Environmental Threat: Obviously that is a no-brainer. If you got a CAT 5 hurricane coming at you house you need to leave and go somewhere else. Now when we are talking about bugging out we are not talking about catastrophic end of the world disaster. Although we could be talking about that but also just common sense stuff. Like Katrina, a lot of people tried to stay and weather the storm and though wound up dying or losing everything they had.

So environmental, getting away, you know if you’re in Asia or Japan and pneumonia is coming obviously you need to leave. So basically, common sense. Environmental, if you’re going to be in danger by staying there.

D – Destination: The next thing is Destination. Bugging out if you have a bug out destination, if you don’t then why would you bug out because you don’t have any place to go. Living out in the wilderness is probably not ideal for a lot of you because you couldn’t sustain yourself out there. So why would you do that?

You need to have a destination obviously or if you don’t, then don’t bug out. You’re at your destination.

O – Overwhelming Force: The next one is overwhelming force. This could be getting attacked by people. Residential homes are not built to be impenetrable. Most houses are, if you have a brick home, it’s pretty tough but it’s not impenetrable. You have doors and windows and all that kind of stuff. You could knock it. If you have vinyl siding like these new houses you can take an axe and be in it in about 20 seconds if you wanted to. Probably 2 minutes if you wanted to just by hacking away at the house. So

So, houses are not built for that so overwhelming force. If you are obviously outnumbered or outgunned you need to bug out. Don’t stay there and basically wait for your death.

U – Unprepared for the situation: The next one is unprepared for the situation. So let’s say this is the first video you’ve ever watched on black scout and you never prepared for anything and something happens tomorrow and you have nothing. No supplies or anything. Well then obviously you need to bug out. If it is a hurricane or something like that you need to go ahead and get out and get to another area where you’re safer. Just like the overwhelming force, your house can’t with stand a CAT 5 hurricane. You need to bug out to a safer place.

Obviously, that is also looking at maybe medical. If you lack medical supplies and you need medical supplies or medical treatment to get those. Or lack of resources. The other thing is that 20% of the population so you really have to be aware of that. That once the grid goes down, a lot of people are going to be off their meds and stuff like that and it is going to be dangerous with crazy people off their medication. That is another thing to be aware of.

T – Threat Growing: The next thing is threat growing and if violence is imminent obviously you want to get out to a safer place. You don’t want to stand around in a dangerous place waiting to get jumped by a bunch of people. You want to get out and get away to a safer location. So looking at like the LA Riots, not standing around a riot area go ahead and get out. Bug out. Get away from the situation.

Like I said again, the bug out where a lot of people think only doomsday prepper type stuff, I’m talking about getting out of a situation. Riot and chaos in the neighborhood you go ahead and leave. And like in the LA Riots, the Korean neighborhoods were getting attacked and the stores were getting robbed. They wound up having to defend themselves with firearms in that situation. They sheltered in place but they were getting overwhelmed even though they had firearms. The other guys did to.

We are over populated for the most part all over the world and most homes and residence that you look at like the suburbs. A lot of people live in apartments, a lot of people are moving to cities. Cities are growing larger because that is where the jobs are and it so getting to where you have a large group of people so if something bad happens what do you think is going to happen when you have a large group of people and everybody is going nuts? So that is something you have to be aware of as well.

Basically what we are getting to with the Red Out acronym and everything else is you have to look at the risk verses the reward. Is it going to be worth your time to, I mean, is it going to be safer to bug out and the reward going to be better? Is trying to get the reward going to risk your life. So you have to look at these things.

Anyhow guys, I hope you enjoyed this video and make sure and subscribe for our channel because we try to put out videos every week. As always, thanks for watching.

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Hurricane Preparedness: Making Sure Your Office is Ready!

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Hurricane Preparedness

Living on the Gulf Coast, I am all too familiar with Hurricanes.  This infographic will provide a lot of good information for anyone wanting to know about Hurricane Preparedness and especially those who might own businesses.

Click to Enlarge Image

Preparation is Key: How to Make Sure Your Office is Hurricane Ready

From Quill

 

 

Peace,
Todd

How To Prepare And Survive In Case Of A Hurricane

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The U.S. has had its fair share of hurricanes in these past decades. Hurricanes Sandy, Rita and Katrina have hit pretty hard. They took so many lives and the process and produced massive infrastructural damage. No matter how far we’re willing to go as far as preparations go, we will never be completely safe from nature’s wrath. But every precaution can be a small battle won and +1 when it comes to our chances to survive in case of a hurricane. In order to beat the storm and come out on top, we must understand what a hurricane actually is. Hurricanes are immense storms that cover great areas. Because the winds blow in a swirling motion, powerful air currents are created that can be strong enough to pull out trees out of the ground, lift cars and even lay whole cities to the ground. Wind speed is a major factor in considering how devastating the hurricane is going to be; according to wind speed, hurricanes fall into the following categories:

  • Category 1: winds reach speeds of 74 mph – 95 mph
  • Category 2: winds reach speeds of 96 mph – 110 mph
  • Category 3: winds reach speeds of 111 mph – 129 mph
  • Category 4: winds reach speeds of 130 mph – 156 mph
  • Category 5: winds reach speeds of speeds of over 157 mph

Hurricanes will most likely form over warm ocean surface, and they sometimes have the tendency of going towards land. When this happens, it also sends a wave formation (storm surge) towards land alongside heavy precipitation. These two combined can cause major flooding to urban or rural areas. Even though hurricanes cover large areas at a time, the intensity of the storm is not constant throughout the entire area, but it’s rather varied from zone to zone. Based on intensity, hurricanes are comprised of the following parts:

  • Zone 1: the eye of the hurricane is the portion in the middle of the stormy area (central zone); it’s the zone that’s least affected, where wind and precipitations are at their lowest
  • Zone 2: the eye wall is a circle of thunderstorms that swirl around the central zone (the eye); the wall is where storm activity is at its highest, with heavy precipitations and strong winds
  • Zone 3: rain bands stretch from the eye wall towards the outside; they’re a weaker reflection of the eye wall, comprised of storm clouds, precipitations and possibly tornadoes

 

Preparing for an incoming hurricane

As I’ve said before, there is nothing you can do that is 100% hurricane proof, but every measure of precaution you take might just be enough to save you or your property. First and foremost, my main advice is to consider of building your very own underground bunker or disaster-proof room somewhere in the vicinity of you home and have it filled with as many provisions as you can. Just be sure to consider flooding and the need for oxygen. If such a room would be too much trouble, you can also reinforce a room in the house (possibly the basement), turning it into a safe room and hope for the best. If you want to save as much of your property as possible and limit the damage, cover your windows with special, permanent storm shutters; if you can’t find any in your vicinity, just use some plywood instead. Roof straps will reduce the damage and maintain the structure of the house as whole as possible. Trimming your bushes, trees and shrubs around the house will make them less likely to fly off and damage or even kill somebody; the trimmer they are, the less “grabby” their surface will be when it comes in direct contact with the wind. Rain gutters should be unclogged, in order to fight off flooding.

What to do during the storm

If there’s a massive storm coming your way, you need to stay informed. Follow any sort of alerts and directions the authorities issue on the tv, radio or internet. Secure your house as best as you can by closing all the doors, even those inside the house. The less the air flows through, the safer you’ll be. Any sort of small object left in your shed or front lawn should be moved in the house. If they get picked up the storm, they could become serious projectiles that can do permanent damage or even kill. When the storm hits, turn off all the utilities and keep away from the phone as much as possible. Propane tanks should be switched off, as well as the refrigerator. If things get serious, go to your panic room or your provision room. Keep enough food and water supplies. You cars should be fully fueled, because if the opportunity should arise, you must be able to drive without stopping as far as you possibly can. Also keep cash on you; banking and ATM systems will most probably be shut down. If you’re eager to evacuate, take a moment and think things through; acting on impulse might cost you your life. Wait for things to settle down a bit and listen to the directives given by the local authorities.

Dealing with a hurricane is a stressful and life-threatening situation. Take all the necessary precautions you can in order to limit the damage, but remember that nothing’s more important than saving your life. You safety should come first, before everything else. So if you’re taken by surprise, flee for safety and don’t waste any time in securing your property.

 

By Alec Deacon

 

 

 

The post How To Prepare And Survive In Case Of A Hurricane appeared first on My Family Survival Plan.

Weathering The Storm

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Weathering the Storm: Preparedness Essentials

Even though people living in areas exposed and often afflicted by hurricanes and tornado’s generally are aware of all the precautionary measures, people still do tend to lose lives in these disastrous situations. This is why we’ve come up with an article outlining all the necessary preparations for weathering a storm.

Food and Water

To start with the most basic of needs, the problem here doesn’t necessarily lie only during the timeline of an actual storm, but for days of craze and distortion that ensue afterwards. Here is what you’ll undoubtedly need:

  • One gallon of water per person per day, to last three days at the very least, not only for drinking, but sanitation and other needs, as well.
  • Peanut butter – this product is quite long-lasting
  • Protein bars
  • Fruit – you’ll need your vitamins, especially in potentially exhausting situations such as this
  • Canned food, such as fruits, vegetables, meats (tuna), canned beans, etc.
  • Canned juices – this is a great source of sugar, as well as liquid that your body might need
  • Crackers – yet another type of food that can last for ages
  • Non-perishable milk
  • Dry cereal
  • Other foods that do not require refrigeration or cooking

First Aid Kit

This, of course goes without saying, seeing as how injuries are a frequent occurrence in situations such as that of a storm. Emergency services will probably be overwhelmed, perhaps even physically unable to reach you. Even minor injuries can cause sepsis and further complications, if not treated within a reasonable time period. Here are your basic first aid essentials:

  • Sterile gloves – you wouldn’t want to suffer bacterial infections, especially in instances such as this type of a disaster
  • Sterile dressings, quality adhesive bandages
  • Antibiotics – whether it’s ointments, or pills, supplements that prevent bacterial infections are of vast importance here.
  • Prescription medications – you need to have reserves of necessary pharmaceuticals that you or your family members might potentially require. These include insulin, heart medicine, asthma inhalers (you wouldn’t believe how easy these are to misplace, so you better have at least a couple of these stockpiled within your first aid cabinet).
  • Tools such as tweezers and scissors – not only are these absolutely necessary for first aid purposes, but might come in handy for a plethora of impromptu situations
  • A whistle – ridiculous as it may sound, these items can turn out to be real life savers – no one laughs at a whistle sound during or after huge storms, no matter how ridiculous it may seem to an observer
  • Towels – these have a wide variety of utilization abilities, from preventing bleeding out, to drying off, in order to avoid hypothermia.
  • Garbage bags
  • When it comes to infants, you’ll need a large number of diapers, to avoid risking infection, as well as an instant formula, for obvious reasons.
  • It is smart to have pliers and a wrench, if nothing, than so as to be able to turn off utilities, such as pipes, or age-old electrical equipment.
  • Complete change of clothing, enough to last at least 3 days.
  • A fire extinguisher for cases of electrical surges
  • Matches in a waterproof container

 

Other Paraphernalia

  • Generators
  • Portable toilets
  • Fuel tanks – There are many diesel fuel tanks available out there, so make sure you have this covered
  • Cook stoves
  • Batteries (it is smart to have these in all sizes available)
  • Flashlights
  • Duct tape
  • Candles
  • Sleeping bags
  • Rubber boots

 

These cover most of your essential needs for a storm, as well as other types of a disaster. Make sure you have all these covered and thus insure you remain safe and healthy. Of course, a bit of extra consideration might go a long way in helping you weather the worst of weather conditions out there, so feel free to add a couple of your own ideas to the list.

 

John Stone
Editor, SmoothDecorator

The post Weathering The Storm appeared first on American Preppers Network.

Calm Before the Storm

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Calm Before the Storm

Everyone is always calm before the storm hits, but when there’s a storm on the way, most people freak out. They load up on water, batteries, flashlight, and canned foods. But, what about the home? If you’re the type of person who likes to be fully prepared, here’s what you need to know about protecting your fortress.

 

 

Clean Out Your Gutters and Downspouts

Clean out your gutters and downspouts, because this is where water will back up and cause flooding right at the foundation of your home. Once you’ve had a thorough cleaning, it might be time to consider shielded gutters, which will resist leaves and other debris. They will keep your gutters clean, while also allowing rainwater to safely drain away.

 

 

Inspect Your Roof and Skylights

Ferguson Roofing Company contractors can inspect your roof and skylights. And, you should probably have it done every year or at least every other year. Skylights are notorious for leaking, so pay extra special attention to them. Gravity often forces the seal on internal glass packs to fail.

Because these glass packs use metal spacer systems, and because heat is constantly rising out of the home, it’s also not uncommon for skylights to fail in the fall, winter, and spring, when the outdoor temperatures may be significantly warmer than the indoor temperatures. The heat coming from the attic will cause the metal and glass to shift and expand, while the cold air coming from above will cause the glass and spacer to want to contract. The result is seal failure of the glass pack.

Replacing skylights with newer systems using “warm edge spacer” technology might help reduce the risk or incidence of failure, but there are usually no guarantees. So, all other things being equal, buy the most expensive skylight you can afford, and make sure the company backs the product with a warranty – lifetime, if possible.

Roofing materials wear out, so you should have them periodically inspected, especially after a storm, which can reduce the roof shingles’ useful lifespan. Butterflying, torn, or missing shingles should be replaced immediately.

Moisture that works its way under the shingles, and is allowed to sit, will rot out the decking underneath, which will then need to be replaced.

 

Test Smoke Detectors At Least Once Every 6 Months

Test your smoke alarm at least once every 6 months. As long as the batteries are working, you should be fine. However, you may want to test it with a little smoke. If you don’t smoke, buy a pack of cigarettes or some incense.

Light up, and wave the smoke in front of the detector. If it goes off, it’s working. If it doesn’t, it’s time to replace the device or check the batteries.

(Editors Note: Do Smoke Detectors wake up your kids?)

 

 

Prune Back Trees and Shrubs

Prune back trees and shrubs so that they are not blocking windows or hanging over your roof – especially large trees with branches that could break off and crash through your roof, damaging it.

 

 

 

 

Check Weather Stripping

Check weather stripping on all doors and windows. Weather stripping is usually not something that will fail quickly and catastrophically. It usually fails over time, wearing down from years of use. Rubber on the seals may rot or dry out, become moldy, or develop micro-tears. Replace any damaged weather stripping, and seal all doors and windows as needed.

 

 

Get a Soil Study Done, and Have Your Foundation Checked

Bring in a soil engineer and have the soil tested for porosity. Then, check your foundation. This will help you better understand the risks of flooding in your foundation. Flooding can cause foundation and structural damage, which is expensive to repair. The engineer will be able to give you guidelines to prevent damage and fix any problems you’re having now with flooding.

 

Stock Up On Survival Food

Canned food is OK, but dehydrated survival food is real food, and it won’t make you feel like you’re eating out of a can. Plus, not all canned foods are “balanced” in the sense that you’re not always getting balanced nutrition.

Most people don’t worry about this because they don’t expect to be out of power for more than a day or two. But, even if power is restored within 24 hours, that doesn’t mean you’ll be able to go to the store during that time.

If roads are blocked off, or if there is some other reason that supplies can’t be brought in to your area, then you will want to have food that only needs to be re-hydrated and constitutes a full, balanced meal.

It might be a step or two more complex than canned foods, but you’ll probably enjoy it more and be better prepared if you go this route.

Of course, you will also need to buy a water filter capable of filtering non-potable water – water that may contain viruses, bacteria, and other critters you wouldn’t want to ingest.

These filters aren’t sold in your average grocery store. They are, however, available in camping and sporting goods stores, online, and through various “prepper” and survivalist-themed stores.

 

Matthew King is part of a property maintenance team and likes to offer his insights on keeping your home in top shape. He is a regular contributor for a number of DIY and home websites.

 

 

The post Calm Before the Storm appeared first on American Preppers Network.

5 Of The Best Radios To Stay Connected In A Survival Situation

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Believe it or not, no serious prepper should go without one of the best radios in his personal survival kit. And this is because when modern society fails and crumbles (and our means of communications will be amongst the first to go) or if you simply find yourself stranded, you’ll need to keep in touch with the latest news. Information will be vital for your very existence in such a scenario, and you very own survival radio device will get the job done. So whether hostile armed forces are marching in towards your location or whether a natural disaster is heading your way, you’ll hear it all and have enough time to take whatever precautions are necessary. Choosing a radio for a SHTF situation won’t be as easy as choosing one for everyday life.

These tiny gadgets can be very complex, but their complexity is a plus if anything. You can have radios that are set to pick up certain wavelengths that transmit the status of natural disasters. Some support multiple power sources, some can charge your small appliances (phones, etc.) and others have a crank system that will allow them to work when there is no energy left. Here are some of the best choices that are available on the market.

The American Red Cross FRX3 is a radio made to work indefinitely, despite the fact that there might be no electrical power running through the plugs anymore. Of course, it does have the capability to stay plugged in, but when the plugs fail to deliver, you can use the crank shaft to power up its internal NiMH battery. And if your hand gets tired, you can just point it towards a strong enough light source and the solar panel will do the rest. It’s not just a radio, it’s an intricate device that gets AM / FM bands, all the NOAA (National Weather Service) bands, has a flashlight attached and a USB port to charge up other devices. If you’re the type of person that often losses things, you’ll be happy to know that the Red Cross FRX3 is very hard to misplace, as it has a glow-in-the-dark locator and a flashing red beacon.

American Red Cross FRX3

The Kaito Electronics Inc. KA500BLK Voyager is a radio that is very light, well built and comes with many gadgets that can prove very useful in all sorts of situations. It has many choices when it comes to power sources (AC, Battery, computer, hand crank and solar), ensuring its autonomy in all sorts of environments. The solar panel is situated at the top of the device and it’s adjustable at a 180° angle. This feature is very convenient, as you won’t have to turn the whole device towards light sources. But its strongest feature by far is the array of lightning options you get with this radio device: a flashlight, a red strobe and if these weren’t enough, it also has 5 LEDs for reading light. It gets all sorts of wavelengths (even shortwave broadcasts). And for those of you for whom esthetics matter just as much as anything else, the radio comes in black, red, blue, green or yellow.

Kaito Electronics Inc. KA500BLK Voyager

The Grundig S450DLX is an excellent digital radio device, very strong and reliable. It’s very good especially when it comes to shortwave signals. It has a preset channel function that will allow you to preset you favorite radio channels and to access them with the push of the button; you get 50 slots for preset channels (10 per each band). The large LCD display is clear and easy to read and the knobs work perfectly (both the normal tuning and fine-tuning). It receives a high quality signal, with very little background noise, mainly thanks to its excellent anti-interference. And if somehow you’re still having trouble getting a clear signal, you can attach an external antenna. Aa a power source, it uses DC IN (9V) or 6 D batteries.

Grundig S450DLX

The Epica Emergency Solar Hand Crank Digital Radio is a radio similar to the model used by the Red Cross, except theirs is smaller. Personally, I’m having doubts whether this is a radio or a flashlight first, as the 3 LED lights fitted on this device are very powerful. As power sources, the internal batteries can be charged by USB, hand crank or through the solar panel. The display is easy to read and the radio picks both AM / FM bands, as well as all 7 NOAA weather bands. Most of the device is incased in a rubber-like housing, which acts as a shock absorbent and also waterproofs the circuits.

Epica Emergency Solar Hand Crank Digital Radio

The Swiss+Tec ST84500 BodyGard Platinum is one of the most versatile tiny radios on the market. It’s small, very light and you can carry it around everywhere by either throwing it in your backpack or a pocket, or simply by keeping it tied to your wrist. It has an incredibly large number of features such a small device: it has LED lights (low beam / high beam), emergency flash (bright red), 144mm diameter compass (oil based), crank charger, USB charger, security alarm (that’s motion activated) and state-of-the-art Li-ion batteries. As you can plainly see, it has EVERYTHING except the kitchen sink. But that’ll hopefully be included in the next model.

Swiss+Tec ST84500 BodyGard Platinum

Staying in touch with the world is a must for all of us. But a simple radio just won’t do. As you can see, there are plenty of choices out there for preppers when it comes to survival radios. And there are plenty more models to check out in order to find the “perfect fit” for you. But get your very own radio, and fast. You’ll never know what’s going to happen next.

By Alec Deacon

The post 5 Of The Best Radios To Stay Connected In A Survival Situation appeared first on My Family Survival Plan.

Elephant Plague, World News

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Elephant Plague, World News
Matthew Gilman “The Collapse Experiment

World NewsToday saw the land fall of the most powerful hurricane ever recorded. Hurricane Patricia made landfall on the west coast of Mexico with winds over 200 mph. the size and wind speed broke the previous record set by typhoon Haiyan in 2013. Haiyan killed over 6,300 people when it made land fall in the Philippines.

Paul Ryan World NewsPaul Ryan is adding to his long list of bad decisions by running for house speaker. This comes after scrutiny for his demand of family time if he did take the position. Ryan has repeatedly voted against paid family leave and only worked a total of 97 days last year.

World NewsIn Sweden a 21 year old was shot by police after storming into a school attacking foreigners with a sword and a knife. One 17 year old male student was killed and another was hospitalized along with two teachers. The attacker wore a Nazi style WWII helmet with a facemask and left a suicide note explaining that Sweden could not take anymore foreigners. He specifically targeted people with dark skin. The attackers face book page was filled with Hitler speeches and Nazi related posts.

Another shooting happened on an American campus in Tennessee. One man is dead and two others injured after a dice game went bad. The assailant is still at large leaving the scene on foot. The two men injured were not students of the college.

Researchers have found traces of the black plague dating back to the bronze age. This it two thousand years before they previously thought the disease existed.

World NewsA US- Iraqi raid freed 70 hostages from ISIS. Special forces working with Iraqi military raided an ISIS prison. One US soldier was killed in the raid. The 70 hostages were scheduled to be executed. 20 of the hostages are Iraqi security members.

World NewsHillary Clinton survived an 11 hour hearing over Bengazi. This furthers the amount of money the republican party has already wasted on this.
All of this and more on the Collapse Experiment podcast.

Listen to this broadcast Elephant Plague, World News in player below!

Download this show HERE!
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Listen to archived shows of all our hosts . Go to schedules tabs at top of page!

The post Elephant Plague, World News appeared first on The Prepper Broadcasting Network.

200 MPH Category 5 Storm Patricia hits Mexico and moves NE

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“Catastrophic” is a word sometimes overused by the main stream media, but in this case it is the strongest storm in recorded history.

Catastrophic Hurricane Patricia Makes Landfall in Mexico

Hitting Mexico right now but moving northeast, people should prepare for structural damage, extended power outages and flooding.
For those in the area make sure to frequently check the news so as to stay updated.
Good luck everyone!
FerFAL

Infographic: Natural Disasters and Hospital Safety

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Natural Disasters and Hospital Safety During times of meteorological disasters, citizens often make it a point to head to local hospitals in the hopes of finding safety from the storm. After an investigation by Consumer Reports, it has become apparent that flocking to nearby hospitals may not be the safest option, especially when so many […]

INFOGRAPHIC: Risk Areas Of Natural Disasters in the USA

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Life throws you curveballs, and there are many things in life that you can’t prepare for. However, you can prepare for natural disasters and severe weather that’s likely to come your way. Different areas of the United States are more likely to encounter certain kinds of dangerous weather, and by knowing what your region is […]

National Preparedness Month is September!

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National Preparedness Month is Here.

National Preparedness MonthIf you haven’t recently, now might be a good time to access your overall preparedness during National Preparedness Month.  With so many reasons to have some of the essentials you’ll need on a daily basis at your disposal, it makes sense to take some time to do a needs assessment.  Unfortunately, this is something we should all be doing on a regular basis and not just in September.  But for those who are fairly new to self reliance and preparedness it’s a start.

Most of the time “Preppers” are not thought of as anything more than crazy people preparing for the end of the world by the media as we have seen on television.  However, being prepared or prepping is not defined by “Doomsayers” but actually includes over 3 million Americans from all walks of life and from every corner of the country.  Why is this you might ask?  There are a few good reasons that prepping is growing and it has mostly to do with living a more sustainable lifestyle and getting back to basics while realizing the government isn’t going to be there to help  when a major disaster strikes.

Amazingly, according to a new survey conducted by the Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation, 55 percent of Americans believe that the authorities will come to their rescue when disaster strikes. We have news for you,  FEMA is not going to come to anyones rescue anytime soon if disaster strikes.  If we think back to Hurricane Katrina of any other natural disaster in recent memory, or consider some of the potential scenarios including a major financial collapse, It’s time to get prepared so you can take care of your own family if need be.

So what are just few of the things you and your family can start to do today?  We compiled a short basic list to help you to start to get your “Preparedness”  house in order.

Air> Air is the most important thing we need to survive.  It is said that you can live “four minutes without air, four days without water, and forty days without food.”  So, are you CPR certified?  Can you help someone if they stopped breathing? If not get certified.  Here is how to get certified 

Water > Water is an essential to have on hand.  30 gallons per person (2 gallons per person per day for 1 week). This might sound excessive, but look at your water bill this month! This figure assumes that when at home, you will occasionally want a sponge bath, or to cook something like pasta or rice. You might even wash your hair or clothes, and will eventually flush a toilet. Large food grade 55 gallon plastic drums are ideal for bulk water storage. A good location is in your detached garage. Remember that your water heater in the house is typically 50 gallons, and may be used if your dwelling survives. Additional water may be purchased in single use plastic bottles, and should be stored away from the house or garage. Remember that these water bottles will need to be rotated out since they have a limited shelf life unless water treatment is used.  A portable water filtration system is a must.  These systems can provide a very high quality of clean fresh water.  A good water test kit is also recommended so you can evaluate your stored water on an on-going basis.

Shelter > Where would you go if a disaster struck and left you without your home?    FEMA recommends that you know that information now as well as some other important evacuation routes in your area. Do you have a temporary shelter at home that you could use if needed?  If not get one and keep it dry and easy to get too.

Fire > We have all seen survival television shows and each and every time lighting a fire is paramount to survival over the long haul.  We may need it to keep warm, to cook, to disinfect water, for light and protection.  Can you light a fire if needs be?  How to build a fire so it will light – survival 101

Food > If you’re considering a food storage system at your home, than a food storage calculator is going to be required so you have the right amount to meet your families needs. The type of food you store can vary but it might include canned foods long term food storage systems to MRE’s, grains, legumes and alike canned fruits and veggies from your own garden.  Cooking and heating tools for survival incase of a disaster or emergency are easy to use and not very expensive to get.  Wondering how much grain to store? You might be surprised.  Read more at http://www.preparednesspro.com/do-you-have-enough#u1fS0AHFwQfYJ2vg.99

First Aid Kit > A good first aid kit could save a life during a disaster  Make sure you have a good one.   Off Grid Survival recommends “30 Things you Should Have in Your Medical First Aid Kits

Survival Kit > A survival kit is a short term kit of essentials to last you approx three days.  It can be kept in your car incase you get stranded in an emergency. > Learn more

BOB or Bug Out Bag > A Bug Out Bag is more of a long term survival kit designed to help you get out of town or “bug out”.  It would include all of the above mentioned items to a greater or lesser degree plus much more.  Some examples of items included might be weapons, shelter and bedding, clothing, a heat source and tools to name a few.  A good example can be found right here.

 

There is so much more that you can do to get your self prepared both in the short and long term but this will be a good start.  Remember the Internet is a great source of information on all things “Preparedness”.

If you start today you will be better off than most Americans are in case of a natural disaster or National emergency.

Follow our Facebook page for more info on all things preparedness.

Thanks,

Jeff “The Berkey Guy”

 

Sources:

http://scoutingrediscovered.com/scout-skills/the-scouts-guide-to-survival-the-big-5/
http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/55-percent-of-americans-believe-that-the-government-will-take-care-of-them-if-disaster-strikes
http://theepicenter.com/howto.html
http://www.preparednesspro.com/do-you-have-enough#u1fS0AHFwQfYJ2vg.99
http://www.bhs.idaho.gov/pages/Preparedness/PDF/Disaster_Preparedness_Kit_Supply_List.pdf
http://www.directive21.com/
http://offgridsurvival.com/30-things-you-should-have-in-your-medical-kits/
http://www.preparednesspro.com/do-you-have-enough
http://www.isu.edu/outdoor/survkit.htm
http://bugoutbagacademy.com/free-bug-out-bag-list/
http://www.philly.com/philly/health/HealthDay666756_20120720_Many_Americans_Not_Prepared_for_Disasters__Poll.html?cmpid=138896554
http://graywolfsurvival.com/2810/build-fire-basics/

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