Here are some things I have read from different articles that people learned from Hurricane Sandy.
The first two paragraphs are from my niece, Maralee who I have mentioned before about how she invited friends, neighbors, Church members and strangers to her home because her heat was restored during Hurricane Sandys wrath. She invited people over for Hot Chocolate and movies. She told me she was totally prepared (I am one proud Aunt!) as far as food and water. Please read her thoughts so we can all learn from each other.
Hi Aunt Linda. I would have to say that lack of food and water was not our biggest issue. Warmth was. The temperatures at the time were even in the 50s and we felt miserable in the cold house. Luckily for us, our power was restored before temperatures really dropped. Having a way to warm up even one room was a big deal and we have paid a lot of attention to that for future emergencies. Plus, we saved our generator at first because we didn’t have any “real” emergencies, but eventually put it on for internet and to power some entertainment devices because boredom and being cold really set us on edge. Some people have suggested having “no power weekends” as a way to practice for long-term power outages. We are getting our fireplace fixed and investing a lot in practical indoor propane heaters that won’t output a bunch of carbon monoxide and endanger us. We are too used to being warm inside our houses!
For us, dealing with the cold was our biggest issue. We were very silly in the fact that while we had adequate food storage, we had not yet fixed the lining of the chimney (we just bought our house in April) because it was expensive and we didn’t think it was very necessary. We would have loved to use that fireplace during the cold days without power (and its light and warmth would have been a huge morale boost at night, too). It’s amazing how much heat even a small living space requires (more than our seeming adequate propane heater could put out). Our house these days are built for pretty, not for heat retention (a giant foyer looks great, but my friend with a large, beautiful house will tell you, she hated her “beautiful” foyer after only a few days without power, knowing that it was wicking away all the heat her fireplace was putting out).
Here are some more thoughts about living through a disaster or unexpected emergency:
1. Yes, this can happen to you, me or us
2. We are never really prepared to go longer than a day or two without power, water, air or heat
3. You will need lots of propane, gasoline, kerosene, firewood
4. Better have a fire-starter, flint or matches
5. 3 or 4 cases of bottled water is not water storage
6. If you don’t have enough water stored-you are in trouble
7. Cash is one of the most important things to have (money at the bank, credit union or stocks-means nothing in a disaster)
8. Store as much fuel as water
9. Around day 3 the stress creeps in…temperments start changing for the worst
10. Stored water can taste nasty-I personally store “True Lemon”, they are inexpensive and come in different flavors: lemon, lime, orange, etc. for the nasty tasting water!
11. You eat more food when your kids are out of school for 2 weeks
12. What if you have enough food and supplies for your own family and then the neighborhood kids show up at your door?
13. Your 1972 Honda Civic can get you to the store just as well as a 2012 Escalade…but the Honda allows money left over for heat, food, a generator, etc.
14. Some of your neighbors shut down in an emergency…and there is nothing you can do about that
15. Some things take a ton of power: refrigerators, toasters, microwaves, freezers, etc.
16. Most things do not take much power to run: computers, phones, radios, TV’s, etc.
17. Some things you can’t have enough of: matches, paper plates, paper cups, plastic silverware, toilet paper,
18. Stock up on Medicines (Advil, Tylenol, cold medicines,, etc.)
19. Small solar charging devices are a necessity not a want
20. When it gets dark at 4:30 in the afternoon the nights get really long without power
21. All the expensive clothes in your closets are worth nothing if they won’t keep you warm
22. You need a lot of firewood to keep your home warm day after day
23. Someone in your family needs to learn to play the guitar
24. Kids do not like washing their face in cold water
25. The electrical grid is more fragile than most people realize
26. All the food storage in the world means nothing if your kids won’t taste it, let alone eat it
27. Neighbors can be a great resource, they can also become a huge drain on your food storage. Be prepared to handle this situation, it is easy to share on day 3, not so easy on day 11. It’s reality.
28. Anything that you depend on someone else for is not available anymore
29. Mom, Dad everything you have done for your kids is forgotten very quickly if your kids are hungry
30. Normal social behavior quickly goes out the window. People become like animals when hunger is involved. It’s worse when it’s your kids that are hungry and crying……..
31. Heat, get one or two sources of heat to warm just one room….until power can be restored. If your fireplace needs repair don’t wait to fix it. Do it now and start storing fuel safely for your area/community. We never know when we might need it.
These are only a few of the statements I have read…..it only reinforces why Kendra and I want to teach the world how to be prepared for the unexpected emergency or disaster. I would totally recommend some sort of solar or temporary power system that works for your area. I would also say get one or two ways to warm your family. I have electric blankets or I can layer LOTS of blankets at night but the days can be brutal if we are too cold. The red buckets above is how I store my Ozark Oak Lump Charcoal. I sure wish I had a fireplace……….Let’s be prepared together.
I was thinking if our neighborhood were to lose power for a few days I think I would make a peach cobbler in my dutch oven! Nothing smells better than a dutch oven baking a surprise dessert, breakfast casserole, dinner or a pineapple upside down cake. We remove the lid and say WOW! In all honesty we might just need to cook with some of our food storage stash so we might as well buy what we like to eat right now. Our family likes to eat freeze dried peaches right out of the can. I make peach cobbler with them when I can’t get fresh peaches. Please think of adding a fruit this week to your food storage stash. If you don’t care for peaches then choose a different fruit.
Kendra and I wanted to add a few first aid products this week to our 72 hour kits. I lather Vicks VapoRub on my feet when I have a cough and cover with socks and I sleep all night. I love the smell when I lather it on my neck when I have a cold. Its probably my age but we never went to the doctor when I was little. We had Vicks VapoRub and Methiolade (I read where it was banned because of Mercury). Hmmmmm. I think we also used something called Mercurochrome as well….wow how things have changed. I looked online you can still buy that stuff.
1. chapped lips
2. makeup remover
3. remove makeup stains from clothing? Really? Wouldn’t the vaseline stain your clothes…LOL!
4. use a quick dab on your shoes for a shiny look
5. can help prevent chaffing
6. mix with sea salts to make a scrub
7. use it on your cuticles and they will soften
8. remove chewing gum from wood
9. heal wind burned skin
10. it lubricates psoriasis and eczema-it gets rid of dry patches
Would you know what to do in an emergency? If the answer is no, then you should start planning. Planning is the key to safely get out of danger for you and your loved ones. Here are a few tips on what to do ensuring you are ready in ase a natural disaster happens.
1) Disaster Supply Kit
Make sure you have a kit in your home filled with goods which you will need in an emergency. Such products include water, (at least 2 litres per person per day), food, First Aid Kit, warm clothes and waterproof clothes for every family member, plastic sheeting, duct tape, personal hygiene items, flashlight and a few tools. Make sure this disaster recovery kit is in its own bag in the house. Put it somewhere safe yet accessible and everyone should know where the bag is
In times of emergency, make sure you have gone through the evacuation plan of your house. It may not seem like a big deal, but you must plan the exit routes. Decide where to meet if the disaster strikes when you are out of the house. Will it be the local playing field or the local school? Remember that in times of disaster, the power may cut out and you will not have electricity. Decide to meet at a local school center where you know they will have industrial Generators to ensure they have power and lights for the community.
Tell everyone in your household the importance of the emergency plan. This is crucial if you have children. Explain to kids what a disaster is, what type of disasters they could expect and how and when they should call for help. Tell them the emergency contact numbers and the relatives who live outside the area. It is important to explain to all family members what to do in an emergency. There are many other people such as Red Cross volunteers, doctors, police officers, that will be helping in an emergency.
4) Make Backups
Make sure you copy any important documents and keep these copies away from your home. This can be either backed up online which can be accessed from any computer or stored in an offsite location such as work or a close relative’s who lives outside the potential disaster area. It is important to make copies of passports and drivers licences as well as bank accounts (although you should be able to get these online).
Juliana writes for Allight Sykes. Allight Sykes is a market leader in mining and industrial equipment including lighting towers, diesel gensets, air compressors and pumps. They have a reputation worldwide which has built up through over 40 years of experience.
Thanks for your post Juliana!
I took a C.E.R.T. (Community Emergency Response Team) course this last year. I learned a lot about emergency situations and what we can and cannot do as a C.E.R.T responder. We had a gentleman in our class who was a retired military man. He told our class about how he had travelled the world and used Colloidal Silver to purify or filter his water. He didn’t have a special container to purify or filter the water he drank from rivers, ponds and streams. Nope, he just used his cup/hankerchief to strain and a few drops of his Colloidal Silver. He never once got sick from drinking water on one of his trips. He mentioned he never goes anywhere without a container of this stuff. Well, at our class we were told we cannot administer anything like this to our neighbors, etc. in a disaster like situation as a C.E.R.T. responder. Okay…I totally understand this. We as C.E.R.T. members are there just to direct people and assist them until help arrives from the local government agencies, etc.
I really liked the comments this guy made at our class. He even gave us some literature for our own families about this product. He uses it for medicinal purposes as well as purifying his water. I am not an authority by any means about this stuff. I do want to give you some ideas to think about concerning Colloidal Silver. You must use your own judgment as to whether this makes sense or not. I am just going to explain what I have read about it in simple terms. The products on the right side I picked up at a local emergency prepardness store. I ordered the ASAP 10 online. I have used both and love them! Remember, I am not a doctor, nurse or scientist…just a Mom & Grandma wanting to try and understand products I have heard about.
I have a neighbor who tried “making” her own Colloidal Silver with directions from a good friend. It was a disaster. She took WAY more than she should have and now has permanent skin discoloration. I would be very skeptical to make your own…..please be cautious.
I was given a sheet of paper written by the St.George Medicinal Herbs Co./Introducing St.George Silver Sol/Ionic/Colloidal Silver Solutions. It was given to me at a local Emergency Preparedness store “Your Family Still Matters”. I am condensing the article…your local emergency preparedness store probably has a similar article to go with their Colloidol Silver.
Here we go:
Okay, I am not a perfect typist (hopefully I typed the words correctly) but I REALLY wanted some information on the Colloidal Silver I keep reading about. I see it at sooooooo many stores. Yes, I purchased the above bottles. We each have to decide what we want in our 72 hour kits. I am nervous if I can’t get ANY antibiotics in a REAL disaster……remember I am NOT saying go and buy this stuff. Please do you own research and you decide what is good for you and your family. Please let me know if you have used this stuff….or something similar. I would love to hear from you.
Camping is a popular activity and even more so after the success of the Olympics. There have been reports of increased number of tourists from Europe willing to backpack across the country after seeing that Brits are hospitable and warm after all. Realistically, it also helps that the British Pound is lower than the Euro so their money goes a longer way here.
Of course, there is a difference between caravanning and camping because caravanning is bringing along a camper and parking. It’s a little like cheating because you still have a comfy, soft bed to sleep at night. With camping, expect a lot more rough and tumble. In fact, you have to equip yourself with some basic essentials in your bag pack.
First Aid Kit
Let’s not pretend that you are invincible and will not be hurt in any way while camping. A First Aid kit will always come in handy, if not for you then for someone else. Be sure it is complete with plasters, a burn ointment, scissors, gauze, topical antibiotic, and an ice pack. It would also be great if you knew basic first aid techniques which you can learn in a day or by browsing the net.
Sharp Knife with Cover
The knife is good for cooking, cutting through heavy foliage, protection, fishing, and even opening tin cans. Just make sure it has a cover so you don’t cut a hole through your bag pack. Also, you don’t have to bring a huge knife and if you have a Swiss knife, it’s even better because it usually comes with bottle cap remover, and several other tiny gadgets that may come in useful during your trip.
Did you know it’s possible to survive a few days without food but impossible if you don’t have clean drinking water? Always make sure you have a bottle with you. However, choose the bottle carefully because there are some bottles that can turn the water toxic if it is exposed to direct sunlight for certain lengths of time. On the other hand, if the day is sunny and you want to replenish your water using local water sources, make sure to expose it to direct sunlight for at least 6 hours to disinfect the water. This trick only works if the sun is out.
Flashlight, Matches, or Lighter
This hardly needs an explanation but aside from cooking and seeing things better at night, these items will also come in handy when you need to signal for help. You should learn Morse code because while camping, you’ll never know when you need and you’ll be extremely grateful when that time comes.
What would a good camping trip be like without dry food? One of the top producers of dry food is http://www.emergencyfoodstorage.co.uk/. It’s great for emergencies and when the fish refuse to take the bait – literally! The advantage of dry food is that it can be stored easily and does not attract animals. It does not have a smell so you can be sure your bag pack is safe from odors for the entire trip.
Other essentials that you can hopefully squeeze into your bag pack are a mat, warm clothes, a map, mobile phone, extra batteries, and disposable garbage bags.
Author’s Bio-This is Jake Hansen has written many blogs for Survival Food – Emergency Food Storage. Thanks Jake for your post!