Water And Electricity ‘Could Be Off For Weeks,’ New Disaster Report Admits

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Water And Electricity ‘Could Be Off For Weeks,’ New Disaster Report Admits

Governments, business, residents and communities in southern California are largely unprepared for a major earthquake that can occur any day, according to the authors of a major study on disaster risk prepared by the University of Southern California (USC).

“Water and power delivery systems could be off for weeks, housing for tens of thousands could be damaged and specific aspects of our infrastructure could be disrupted or rendered unusable,” states the report, Strengthening SoCal: Southern California Disaster Risk Initiative, prepared by experts at USC’s Bedrosian Center for Public Policy Research.

Although the report specifically involves southern California, it nevertheless gives an indication of how long services might be out for the rest of the country after a major disaster, especially a big earthquake.

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The study, released on June 22, draws some frightening conclusions, including:

  • Many of the water lines in Southern California will burst during an earthquake, leaving residents dependent on bottled water for weeks or months.
  • Natural gas pipelines would rupture, creating massive fires that could destroy large areas of cities. Since there would be no water, there might be no way to put out those fires.
  • Many of the natural gas pipelines in Southern California lack shut-off valves, making it difficult to turn gas off after an earthquake. Broken natural gas pipelines might fuel massive wildfires.
  • Many businesses lack the equipment needed to keep running for days after a disaster — such as generators and backup power systems. This includes hardware stores, which are essential to rebuilding.
  • Many local governments are as unprepared as businesses. That means police, firefighters and ambulances might not be available.
  • Large numbers of people would be injured or killed because many building codes do not require earthquake-proof structures. That means many homes, offices and business will collapse.
Water And Electricity ‘Could Be Off For Weeks,’ New Disaster Report Admits

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The study’s authors fear that critical industries would simply pull out of California completely rather than rebuild, and would take thousands of jobs with them.

San Andreas Could Be Close to The Big One

Geophysicists think that California’s most dangerous fault, the San Andreas, might be close to giving way, The Los Angeles Times reported.

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New computer imaging technology has detected rising and sinking on the fault that could indicate a big quake is imminent. Areas of the fault in Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego and Bakersfield counties are rising at a rate of about 1/10th of an inch a year. Other parts of the fault in Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo and San Bernardino counties are sinking at the same rate.

“Once there is a major event, all of that energy gets released,” geophysicist Sam Howell told The Times.

There has not been a major quake on the southern San Andreas fault since 1857. A major quake takes place, on average, every 150 years, Howell said. Other parts of the fault haven’t seen a major quake in 300 years.

Despite that, experts still cannot predict when the next big one will hit.

“It’s pretty much impossible to say when the next one will happen,” Howell said.

What is your reaction? Do you believe America is prepared for a big earthquake? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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Frightening: California Faces 14-Day Blackout Because ONE Power Plant Is Down

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Frightening: California Faces 14-Day Blackout Because ONE Power Plant Is Down

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Many Californians face up to 14 days of blackouts this summer because a single natural gas storage facility is unavailable.

The Los Angeles Times reported that there is not enough natural gas to make the electricity needed to keep Southern California, including L.A., cool during an anticipated heatwave.

The grid is so low on electricity that Southern Californians are being urged not to run dishwashers or washing machines during day hours, The Times revealed. Temperatures often soar above 100 degrees, causing a major strain on the grid due to the use of air conditioners which rarely shut off during such extreme conditions. Residents have been asked by utility companies to keep their thermostats no lower than 78 degrees Fahrenheit.

Homes, businesses, airports and even hospitals could lose power any time this summer, Reuters reported. Electricity supplies are low because of a leak at Aliso Canyon, an underground natural gas storage plant in the San Fernando Valley, north of Los Angeles.

In April, millions of Southern Californians were told to expect as many as 14 days without electricity this summer because of problems at the plant.

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Aliso Canyon is used to store natural gas burned in L.A.-area power plants. The facility is currently shut down for repairs, so there is simply not enough fuel for the grid that powers Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties. It serves 21 million customers.

Natural Gas Powers California

A plurality (45 percent) of California’s power comes from natural gas, because it is far cheaper and less polluting than coal. Aliso Canyon normally contains 86.2 billion cubic feet (BCF) of natural gas, but the level has been reduced to 15 billion BCF. Aliso Canyon is the largest natural gas provider in the state, The Times reported.

Frightening: California Faces 14-Day Blackout Because ONE Power Plant Is Down

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Natural gas is in such short supply that regulators are letting the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power burn diesel fuel in its power plants to prevent blackouts. Air pollution regulations normally restrict the plants to cleaner natural gas.

Rotating Power Outages

Up to 21 million people could face rotating power outages, or rolling blackouts, under a plan prepared by the California Independent System Operator or ISO, the organization that runs the region’s grid.

“We’re doing everything we can to reduce the load,” Ronald Nichols, the president of the utility Southern California Edison, told the newspaper. “It’s something that we’re closely monitoring.”

Southern California Edison is so worried about shortages it is literally paying some of its customers to use less power. Under a program called demand response, people who cut electricity use get a discount on their next utility bill.

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Northern California could be next.

“We are certainly watching temperatures,” Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) spokeswoman Lynsey Paulo told The Times. “We are encouraging our customers in Northern California … to prepare for the heat now.”

PG&E is the main electricity provider in Northern California, including the San Francisco Bay Area.

California’s electricity shortage could get worse in the near feature because PG&E wants to close the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant near San Luis Obispo by 2025. Diablo Canyon generates 2,160 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 1.7 million homes. Another nuclear power plant at San Onofre in San Diego County closed in 2013.

Do you believe Congress and the White House are doing enough to strengthen America’s grid? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Are You Prepared For Blackouts In Your Area? Read More Here.

Massive Earthquake Looming As Pressure Builds On San Andreas Fault: “Wound Very, Very Tight”

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Screen shot 2016-05-05 at 10.07.50 AM

By Mac Slavo – SHTFplan.com

Any number of disaster scenarios would seemingly bring the U.S. to a grinding halt, and wreak untold havoc upon the vulnerable population.

Worse, there seems to be an uncomfortable sense that a major event like that is long overdue.

Surely one of the most devastating would be a major earthquake along the San Andreas fault line. For several years now, experts have warned that the stress levels have reached a dangerous threshold and that the “big one” could be coming to Southern California… any time now.

Scientists have issued a dire warning that Southern California and the Los Angeles area could be in the path of a major earthquake of 7.0 magnitude or greater.

In the worst case scenario, it could destroy the Los Angeles metro area and rupture hundreds of miles of land in Southern California. A 7.9 earthquake took place back in 1857.

The Los Angeles Times is now reporting that the San Andreas fault is “locked, loaded and ready to roll” – there is a clear and present danger:

Southern California’s section of the San Andreas fault is “locked, loaded and ready to roll,” a leading earthquake scientist said Wednesday at the National Earthquake Conference in Long Beach.

The San Andreas fault is one of California’s most dangerous, and is the state’s longest fault. Yet for Southern California, the last big earthquake to strike the southern San Andreas was in 1857, when a magnitude 7.9 earthquake ruptured an astonishing 185 miles between Monterey County and the San Gabriel Mountains near Los Angeles.

[…] “The springs on the San Andreas system have been wound very, very tight. And the southern San Andreas fault, in particular, looks like it’s locked, loaded and ready to go,” Jordan said in the opening keynote talk.

[…]

The devastating potential of the fault became clear with a 1857 temblor, which had an estimated magnitude of 7.9… The quake was so powerful that the soil liquefied, causing trees as far away as Stockton to sink. Trees were also uprooted west of Fort Tejon. The shaking lasted 1 to 3 minutes.

According to the leading scientists in the study of tectonic plates and movements, earthquakes must periodically relieve plate pressure (about 16 feet worth of movement every century), but that has not happened on the San Andreas fault during that time period – in fact, the event is overdue.

If they’re right, that makes disaster all but imminent in one of the most heavily populated areas in North America.

Here is a simulation of what could occur:

The L.A. Times also noted:

A 2008 U.S. Geological Survey report warned that a magnitude 7.8 earthquake on the southern San Andreas fault would cause more than 1,800 deaths, 50,000 injuries, $200 billion in damage and severe, long-lasting disruptions. Among the predicted problems: The sewer system could be out of commission for six months.

Additionally, a major, devastating quake would almost certainly interrupt transportation, shipments and commerce, perhaps for months on end. The lack of vital services (such as the sewer system, as noted above) could pose major issues to survival and the resumption of everyday life.

If you are unfortunate enough to live in Los Angeles, you may have some life issues to work out anyway, but… it would be wise to heed these warnings.

If you are caught in a major quake, it is important to avoid being trapped by collapsing buildings or flying debris. Here are some thoughts on surviving the aftermath.

The San Andreas fault is not the only troubling hotspot in the country – Old Faithful has been causing recent worry from Yellowstone, and the New Madrid fault line has DHS/FEMA concerned enough to run multi-agency nationwide drills simulating a major earthquake disaster. Meanwhile, the Ring of Fire has been causing devastation at flashpoints throughout the Pacific ring in many nations.

This article first appeared at SHTFplan.com: Massive Earthquake Looming As Pressure Builds On San Andreas Fault: “Wound Very, Very Tight

Filed under: Disaster Scenerios, Earthquakes, News/ Current Events, Volcanic Activity

First Significant Santa Ana Winds of Season Target Southern California

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By  – AccuWeather

The first significant Santa Ana wind event of the season will whip across Southern California during the latter part of the week.

The return of the winds will renew the fire danger, create hazardous crosswinds for motorists and increase the potential for tree damage and power outages.

The wind event is being produced by high pressure building into the Great Basin.

“Northerly winds will initially blow through the [I-5 corridor of] the Grapevine and north-south canyons of Santa Barbara County on Thursday,” AccuWeather Western Weather Expert Ken Clark said.

The winds will be the strongest in the morning hours on Thursday with gusts of around 50 mph expected.

Continue reading at AccuWeather: First Significant Santa Ana Winds of Season Target Southern California

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Filed under: News/ Current Events, Weather