Rural Lifestyle Blog

Life in Rural America

Tag: disaster preparedness

What kind of disaster are you prepping for

There is an interesting thread in the forum that got me to thinking; that thread is what are you truly prepping for? What kind of disaster are you preparing for? Are you prepping for an outbreak of a new disease, long term civil unrest, nuclear war,,, or something else?

My personal opinion, as long as you and your family are prepping, at least you are going in the right direction. The difference is the degree of readiness.

I can not tell you what to prep for. All I can do is tell you how my family and I are prepping.

My long term survival plans include food production, safe drinking water and property protection.

Food Production

Raising chickens for a long term survival situationDuring the Black Death of 1348 – 1350 starvation probably killed as many people as the bubonic plague. Modern society is based on farms and modern transportation. Where would our grocery stores be without trucks, fuel and highways?

Just like the city dwellers of the middle ages, city dwellers of today depend on farmers, roads, transportation and merchants to maintain a steady supply of food to the cities. If just one or two items in the supply line break down, people will go hungry. When people get hungry, society breaks down.

Lets say you went to the grocery store tomorrow and the shelves were empty, what would you do? What is your long term food solution? Continue Reading….

Disaster Preparedness Manuals

Disaster Preparedness Manuals, also known as survival manuals are often overlooked by preppers and survivalist. There is a wealth of information out there, but you have to have the books in hand for them to do you any good.

Over the past few weeks I picked up 6 new disaster preparedness manuals:

Homeland security field guide
Quick Series guide to public health emergencies
Quick Series emergency preparedness for persons with disabilities and medical conditions
Janes Chem-bio handbook
Chickens by Dereck Hall

I also have Chickens for Dummies on the way, it should be here next week.

Homeland Security Field GuideHomeland Security Field Guide, a pocket reference for weapons of mass destruction (WMD) & terrorism response:

One thing that stands out about this manual, the different sections have tabs that you can see without having to open the book. Need information about decon, find the decon tab, open the book to that section.

102 pages

Categories include:

First in response
Command considerations Continue Reading….

Texas starts their Disaster Preparedness campaign

The Texas Department of State Health Services along with state and local officials today launched this year’s Ready or Not? multilingual public education campaign to encourage Texans to prepare for emergencies. “Whether it’s a hurricane, tornado or flood, a disaster can strike when we least expect it, and we want people to be prepared,” said Dr. David Lakey, DSHS commissioner. “We’re one month into hurricane season, but it’s not too late to put together a plan.” Ready or Not? or ¿Estás Listo? in Spanish uses radio, television, newspaper and online advertising; community outreach events; and its websites to encourage every Texan to create an emergency plan now. The goal is to help Texans be ready to respond to, and recover from, any natural or man Continue Reading….

Snow knocked out power to small town in East Texas

On December 4th, 2009 East Texas received an early (and unexpected snowstorm).  It was not really a “snowstorm”, as compared to what the northern states get, more like some snow flurries.  But for East Texas, an area that rarely gets snow, it was more like a snow storm.  In all, may 1/4 inch of snow fell. On the morning of December 5th, some of the residents of Kirbyville Texas woke up to no electricity.  This seems like a good time to discuss to your life revolves around electricity and being connected to the grind. Lets do a quick self evaluation: Can you cook without electricity? Some people are so connected to the grid that they can not even cook a simple meal without electricity.  Have Continue Reading….

Generators and disaster preparedness

Picking the right generator to power your house during a power outage can be a tricky job. If your serious about getting the right generator for the job, then its time to call in a professional. For this video, Billy Williford of Doug Williford & Son AC and Heating was interviewed. Billy installs Generac generators in the Jasper, Texas area. So if you need a generator, and live in Southeast Texas, give Billy a call at 409-384-5458. Instead of having to worry about storing gasoline, consider getting a generator that runs off of Propane or Natural Gas. During power outages, gas stations do not have a way to pump gas out of the underground storage tanks. After hurricanes, uprooted trees have the chance of pulling Continue Reading….

Hurricane season and disaster preparedness plans

June 1 starts off the 2009 Hurricane season. For those of you that live in areas that might be affected by a hurricane, now is the time to make sure your plans and supplies are in place. Lets just review some basic disaster preparedness plans. Have a primary and a backup evacuation route. This includes everything from interstate highways to country back roads. Drive these roads every once in awhile – check on construction zones and slow areas. If the traffic is slow during rush hour, its going to be at a dead stop (or barely moving) during an evacuation. Have enough food and water for double to triple the number of people in your house right now, for at least 1 week (7 days). Continue Reading….

Complacency and disaster preparedness

After a few false alarms, people become complacent with their disaster preparedness plans. Meaning, that they do not think that anything serious is going to happen. When you let your guard down, that is when the real disasters strike.

Becoming complacent with disaster preparedness

As Hurricane Rita was making its way through the Gulf of Mexico in 2005, the projected path was towards the Houston and Galveston, Texas area. An evacuation was called for parts of Harris and Galveston counties. Which is where the cities of Houston and Galveston are located.

The way evacuations are “supposed” to work, the areas that are nearest the Gulf of Mexico are evacuated first. Which is Galveston, and lower Harris county. That is how its supposed to work in theory. In reality, how does one of the largest cities in the USA evacuate? They dont. There were stories of people spending 18+ hours on the highway and not even going 10 miles.

There are 2 major highways going north out of Houston – HWY 59 and HWY 45. Going east and west, there is Interstate 10, 1960, old HWY 90 and 105. HWY 105 is north of the Houston area. It goes from Beaumont, through Cleveland, Conroe and finally hits HWY 6.

Continue Reading….

World Health Organization releases information on Swine Flu

The World Health Organization has posted a Swine Flu questions and answers PDF file on their website. Some of the information that the file covers – What is swine influenza, What are the implications for human health, Where have human cases occurred,,, and several other key points. Go on over to the Swine influenza page on the World Health Organization website and download the file.

Our fragile infrastructure

If memory serves me right, sometime around 1998 somone in the Atlanta, Georgia was using a tractor with a post hole digger to put in a new fence.  The post hole digger cut through a major fiber optic line that provided service to Atlanta, Georgia and several outlying areas. Estimates at the time were that about 250,000 people did not have phone or internet for about half a day. On April 8th or 9th, Vandals cut four fiber optic lines.  Which caused a phone and internet outage for AT&T and Verizon users in the south Bay Area and Central Coast. The infrastructure of the USA is about as fragile as it can get. When a couple of vandals can cut a fiber optic line, and Continue Reading….

Good quality ice chest

After a disaster – such as a hurricane – part of the relief efforts usually include bottled water, MREs or canned goods and ice. The ice is supposed to help people preserve their cold or frozen foods. But, this ice is of little good if the person getting the supplies to does have a good quality ice chest. It has been in my experience that Rubbermaid brand is almost the bottom of the bucket. I have taken a 34 quart Rubbermaid ice chest, put a couple of bags of ice in it. And the next day just about all of the ice is melted. On the other hand, Coleman and Igloo both offer quality solutions. One of my ice chest includes a 128 quart Igloo Continue Reading….

Types of Survivalist

After watching the types of people that join the Survivalist Forum, there seems to be at least 4 different groups: Hoarders – the people that stock up on everything – food, water, canned goods, beans, rice, MREs,,,.  These are the people that have hundreds  or even thousands of canned or dried food products. Some of the plans that hoarders have may include storing several years worth of food.  Some of those plans seem to go like this – vacuum seal food products, such as flour, rice, beans, wheat,,,, and then put the packages into 5 gallon buckets, or into air tight containers. Gardeners – the people that have gardens.  People in this type of group usually stock up on seeds, garden tools, books on gardening Continue Reading….

FEMA camp myths

It seems that ever since Hurricane Katrina there has been a of misinformation going around as to what FEMA really does.

Lets just set the record straight right now – FEMA is here to help people, not throw them in some type of FEMA prison camp.

The law makers in congress have setup a government agency that tries to help people in areas affected by a disaster. Most of the time, the relief efforts are composed of – food, water, and temporary shelter. After Hurricane Rita hit the Southeast Texas area I got to see “some” of what FEMA does. There was an immediate response of MRES, donated canned foods, ice and bottled water brought into the affected areas.

After Hurricane Ike, it became very clear as to what FEMA is designed to do. Bridge City Texas was flooded by the storm surge of Hurricane Ike.

The families there lucky (or blessed) – only got about 4, 5 or even 9 feed of saltwater, mixed with marsh mud in their houses.

The families that were not so lucky – their houses were destroyed by a combination of storm surge and wind damage.

Thousands of families in Bridge City had nowhere to go. People were living in tents, or in RVs and some families left Bridge City to go live with relatives. Out of several thousand homes, only about 12 had not been flooded. FEMA has been working for months to fix that problem. Continue Reading….

Hand crank flashlights

Three weeks after the power has gone out, and all of the batteries are dead, survivalist will be glad that they invested into some kind of hand crack flashlight – also called a dynamo powered flashlight. Whether its a type of lantern, or flashlight, it does not matter, these things are good to have around.

[caption id="attachment_851" align="aligncenter" width="450"]Hand crack flashlights Hand crank lantern[/caption]

The basic principle of a hand crank lantern is that it does not need batteries. Even though these devices say they do not “require batteries”, they have a couple of AA rechargeable batteries to store the charge. A few cranks of the handle is enough to charge the batteries for for several minutes of light. Continue Reading….

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