So, today, are you ready for this?

Discussion in 'General Preparedness Discussion' started by endurance, Dec 14, 2008.

  1. endurance

    endurance Well-Known Member

    I know there's some perverse joy that's gained by thinking about the end of the world as we know it, when what weapons you've cached will make all the difference, but what if something less dramatic happened? What if something like this happened at your home right now?

    Here's the scenario: There's a severe winter storm that has shut down all the roads, brought down powerlines, and temperatures have plummeted to the single digits. You have no electricity, which, more than likely, means you have no furnace or boiler because they take electricity to run fans and pumps. So, how ready are you for this? What steps have you taken to ensure heat, light, and food for your family for 72 hours and beyond? How long could you hold out before you'd have to secure something beyond what you have at home (fuel, food, water, entertainment)? Just what are you going to do if there's no internet or TV to entertain you? What are the next steps you need to make to prepare if you aren't already prepared?

    Personally, I see this as one of the most likely events for most Americans at any given time. If you really want to throw a wrench in it, what would you do if the storm came in while you were at work? In your car?
  2. JeepHammer

    JeepHammer Well-Known Member

    Down at the river house, we aren't on the 'Grid' anyway.

    That's what I've been saying all along!

    Hurricanes, Tornadoes, Snow/Ice Storms, Floods SHOULD be what this forum is all about!

    The paranoids want to turn it into the 'End Of The World', and that's just not going to happen...

    Around here, it was a flood this spring that did in the local utilities.
    I ran my generator, passed around extension cords to the neighbors to allow them to run refrigerators/freezers every couple or three hours,
    and we kept medicine & baby formula for the neighbors we couldn't reach.

    Housed and fed several of the 'refugees' that wanted to stay close to their homes and not stay in a 'Shelter'...


    If you are on 'Natural Gas' or city supplied gas, then all you would really need is a medium sized power inverter to run the furnace from your car battery...
    (and be smart enough to get it hooked up!)

    If you are 'All Electric', you put all your eggs in one basket, then backed over it with a truck! You are simply screwed!

    Also, free standing kerosene or propane heaters and stored fuel would keep you and the house from freezing up,
    But I can guarantee you now that if you don't already have the heaters/fuel, you won't be able to buy any after the big freeze!

    As for the news article you linked to...
    Well, I have always lived in a 'Rural' or 'Secondary Market', so anything that happens, Snow, Ice, Flooding, ect. we have always been on our own!

    In the last big ice storm, I chained up the Wagoneer tires, loaded up the chain saws, bolt cutters and tow straps, and started cutting our way out...
    (and carting the cut wood home! :D If I'm doing the work, I'm getting the wood!)

    The last big snow storm, I chained up the Wagoneer tires,
    Mounted the snow plow, tow straps and chain saws, and went out to plow snow and pull people out of their drive ways.

    It's just what we do around here. The state will take somewhere between 5 days and two weeks to get to us, and I simply don't want to wait for that, so we do it our selves!
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2008

  3. skip

    skip Old hillbilly

    We're bracing for a storm to come thru' tonite. My home is all electric, but we have wood back-up. We have about 25 gallons of water in jugs, and if that runs out, there's a spring nearby. We have our kerosene lamps full, and a camping stove to cook on.We'll be fine
  4. Tim

    Tim Member

    Jeep Hammer,
    With all due respect, I think you are leaving a few things off the list of things to worry about. What about war, terrorist attacks, societal collapse? This forum is named "Prepared Society" that means prepared for whatever threat we face. I realize you live in the country and are well prepared, but those of us who live near the urban centers are definately concerned about more than tornados, floods, etc.

    I am "looking to the future" and that is why I am concerned. You are somewhat oblivious to plight of those less well positioned than yourself. We see a society in steep and rapid decline and we see that the people, including ourselves, are not prepared for what is coming. I am getting more prepared, but the hour seems late and the resources are limited.
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2008
  5. NaeKid

    NaeKid YourAdministrator, eh?

    I am always ready for the ice and cold. Generator - check. UPS battery systems - check. Solar panels - check. Water (beer) - check. Fuel - check. Two-stroke oil - check. Chain-saw - check. Tire chains - check. Propane catalytic heater (and extra propane) - check. Propane cook stove and BBQ's - check. Propane 20# tanks - 7 - half full or better - mounted or covered and tested.

    Here in Calgary we are in the middle of an arctic deepfreeze that dropped the temperatures 40 degrees in 24hrs. We went from high-teens (celsius) to -25. We also had a huge dump of snow to match the cold with water-mains snapping. I am still comfortable - heat is still on. But - that can always change.
  6. dunappy

    dunappy Well-Known Member

    Gee that is totally easy. Got more than 5 cords of wood (will last us in our area up to two full years even with bad storms) stacked and split and up in the barn. Got oil lamps sitting around the house waiting for use. Got food in the freezer, got food in the cupboard, got dehydrated food and stored water. We have a battery and hand crank powered radio and flashlights. As for entertainment, since I don't have kids, I can sit near the oil lamp and crochet my next project which currenly is a nice warm capelet to help keep me warm.

    And finally if a storm comes while I'm at work and I can't get home (cause my home is 30 miles from work), I go to my sisters house in town and she has all the same things available there.

    When you have a crappy electric provider in the first place, you learn early to prepare for those kinds of things.
  7. AgentFlounder

    AgentFlounder fan of analysis

    I tend to agree. I'm interested in preparing for the highest risks -- defined by likelihood and impact (of course all of it is high stakes). So I want to prepare for the stuff that is most likely to happen for my region / situation. For us in CO that'd be tornadoes, snow/ice storms, floods.

    I'm sitting here inside, warm, while it's snowy and < 20° outside. I'm wondering what would happen if power went out. Do I have enough wood to burn in our fireplace?

    (Would a natural gas fireplace work in a power outage? Sounds like it might from what you post)

    I have some actual firewood, enough for one night. That's it. Scrap lumber wood is probably all treated... not sure that's safe to use. No kerosene / propane heaters. Really no other forms of heat. We have plenty of blankets/clothes. We don't have any other option, really. So... clearly I'm not prepared for that and I think that's a sufficiently likely scenario that I should be.

    See, this is why I like this forum -- gets me thinking about risks I haven't really been paying enough attention to.

    Slightly OT: JeepHammer, sounds like you are an FSJ guy too? Mine has gotten me through the last couple blizzards including giving rides to healthcare workers and patients through F.E.A.T. here in Denver. Very empowering and rewarding to be prepared enough to be able to help others in hard times.
  8. endurance

    endurance Well-Known Member

    I think there's a balance to be struck between your worst fears and what's almost inevitable over the course of a typical lifetime. Statistically, most of us should die of heart attacks, cancer, or respiratory disease, not bullet wounds. I started the post because I'm pretty sure there's more folks out there on this forum who've ignored the very likely to prepare for the improbable. Personally, I think we are looking at a period in history where life as the typical urban dweller could change forever. Those who are less dependent on infrastructure will fare far better and we should all aspire to move in that direction.

    That said, Katrina should serve as a worst case scenario for us all. Ten thousand rounds of ammunition didn't do any of them any good, other than send a few idiots to jail when they started shooting at the Coast Guard helicoptors. I think there's a great value in starting with the rule of three's and building your preps around that. You can live three minutes without oxygen and circulation, three hours without protection from the elements in an extreme environment, three days without water, and three weeks without food. While there is some risk that 30 caliber holes in your circulatory system will interfere with number one, when the SHTF, number two better be covered. If you can't protect yourself from the elements and maintain adequate body heat, you won't live very long to use your WMDs.

    I live in a small suburban town that has twice in the last five years received 3' snowstorms that essentially closed the roads and shutdown the city for 2-3 days. While we haven't lost power for meaningful periods of time yet, I think it's just a matter of time before the wrong tree branch breaks and my circulator pump on my boiler ceases to work. Jeep, thanks for the idea about using my inverter to keep it running. I'll have to look into where it's wired in and how easy that would be to do without modifications. I already have a deep cycle battery, 2,200 watt Honda generator (not mine, but I've been storing it for a friend for two years, so it's available), 45w solar panel, and 1,200 watt inverter, so running something like that wouldn't be hard at all if I could get the right wires isolated.

    Before this suggestion, I was focused on the easier solution of using my 23k BTU kerosene heater, for which I have 30 gallons stored (about 12-18 days at 10-12 hours a day). When I moved into my smaller place, this seemed like overkill for heat production since it couldn't be turned down low enough, so I picked up a 6,000-18,000 BTU propane heater. This will heat my master bath and bedroom to 65F on two 20# propane cylinders for about two weeks, running them 24/7. I already had two cylinders and was thinking about getting another couple to always keep topped off.

    If the electric stove is down, I have two multifuel camping stoves and several gallons of white gas. I also have a small butane stove and of course a gas grill (an emergency cooking device that few even remember they have). If I'm trying to conserve fuel, I have enough MREs with heaters to get me and the GF through for 2-3 weeks. The rest of my food stores will take some degree of cooking. If I can power up the bread machine I'll have bread coming out my ears for years.

    For water, I'm stocked for about a week. After that I'll have to melt snow, filter downspout water, bike to the stream about a mile from my house or the river about three miles from my house.

    I'm not worried about an invading army, terrorism only works if you let the fear of it direct your decisions (Bush fell for that one), and societies have always risen and collapsed. Obviously the societal collapse is the one to be concerned about, but the stronger your community, the less the society at-large is critical to your survival. The best insulation and preparation for then end of society is knowing your neighbors, being a friend in the hard times, and working cooperatively to do the best you can with what you have available. Too many survivalists are focused on being a lone wolf, but even the wolves know the better odds of survival lies in the pack.
  9. Tim

    Tim Member

    Its clear that we all come from different circumstances. Where I am presently located, not far enough from D.C., I do definately feel the threat of terrorism is far more than the 'fear factor' it induces, there is a definate physical danger as well. Same thing for war. I should move but its easier said than done right now.
  10. JeepHammer

    JeepHammer Well-Known Member

    You didn't read the orignal post, he was asking about what you would do in an ice/snow storm...
    And in that case, I'd light the wood burner out at the river,
    Or start the generator in town,
    Chain up the old Wagoneer, dig out, and saw up the limbs/trees/poles in the streets & driveways, and help out my neighbors!.

    Problem solved.

    I know it's not complicated enough for city people, but it's effective and it works without discussion committees, board meetings, feasibility studies, million dollar social/environmental impact studies, and 10 years of analysis...
    But it's been working for us 'Country Folk' for the last 100,000 years!

    As for all the other paranoid crap, you don't sweat what you can't fix...

    No war on US shores since 1812,

    There is no way for an individual to prepare for a concentrated Nuclear, Chemical or Biological strike.
    It takes BILLIONS OF DOLLARS and Years of specialized preparation to even consider surviving a deliberate and concentrated strike,
    And it's not much BUT survival since the effort to purify food/water is massive and grossly cost INEFFECTIVE...

    THERE IS N-O-T-H-I-N-G You as an individual can do about it!
    (and if you think plastic and duct tape on the windows is going to work like the 'Department of Homeland Scare Tactics' said you should do is going to do anything, you are a bigger idiot than even I can comprehend!)

    I just live where there is very little likely hood of NBC (Nuclear, Chemical, Biological) Strike so I'm pretty well covered...
    Not by design, it just happened that way, happy coincidence!

    All this ranks right up there with Asteroids hitting the planet,
    Gamma Bursts from decaying stars,
    And all the other crap you simply can't do anything about!


    "Societal Collapse" is a figment of uneducated/undereducated and paranoid minds,
    AND, the hucksters trying to get you to CONSUME!!!.

    (Y2K, Bird Flu, Terrorists hiding under your bed, Economic 'Collapse', 12-Dec-2012, Jesus is coming....
    It's all designed to keep you CONSUMING for the next big 'Threat'...)

    There will always be a 'Society' here as long as there is 'Life',
    It just won't be the one you are used to,...

    And it may be ants or microbes instead of humans,
    But there will always be 'Societies' & 'Relationships' as long as there is life of any kind.

    It's like saying 'Save The Planet'...
    The planet will always be here, it's not going anywhere for the next 4 or 5 billion years until our yellow dwarf sun supernovas and consumes it...

    It might just have returned to the primordial rock in space, or it might have reverted to primordial ooze, but it will still be here after humans!
    Pretty arrogant to think you can 'Plan For' or 'Prepare For' events that could extinct a planet!

    Now, *IF* there are any people here that aren't completely paranoid,
    And can look forward,
    Make preparations for 'After Oil' now, before the rush...
    It's not going to be the 'Emergency' everyone thinks it is, it's just going to get more expensive to retro fit as oil gets more expensive...
    The 'Rush' on solar panels and wind generators is going to drive prices up, and make for a shortage of experienced installers...
    (If you were 'Smart', you would start now, educate yourself, and BOOM when the 'Rush' happens!)

    At the turn of the 20th Century, most of America (and the rest of the world) was Water, Wind, Sun powered.

    Windmills pumped water, sawed lumber, turned tools,
    And now they can EASILY make electricity every day, all day long!

    Water powered mills made everything from Paper to cook Pans, Cloths to Clocks, Medicine to Machinery.
    If we weren't all IDIOTS, we would all have WINDMILLS in our yards!

    Personally, I have one small wind generator that is just about perfect for topping off batteries after the solar panels have 'Quick Charged' them.
    I have plans for a larger model, and have acquired the tower, but haven't got it up yet...

    I'm looking for a mechanical wind mill to pump from my well at the river house. I'm using electrical pump right now, but I'm afraid when we move there full time I'll need that extra current for the household, so I'm looking to go completely mechanical.

    Vertical axis wind generators and solar panels are viable for even the most sardine boxed suburb shack, so don't tell me it can't be done...
    I live in a Suburb with lots of trees, and my solar panels here have already paid for themselves!

    SO! As you forecast 'Gloom and DOOM' while you are sitting on your comfy chair, picking away at a computer key borad, with medicine at your fingertips and a national infrastructure there to support you in a day or two if anything happens...

    I think of what my grandpa that lived through...
    Two world wars,
    The Cold War,
    Korea, Viet-Nam, the first Gulf war,
    The great depression,
    The 1918 'Spanish' flu epidemic,
    3 Polio Epidemics,
    Two Encephalitis Epidemics,
    No Antibiotics for the first 40+ years of his life, when measles and mumps, croup or flu could KILL YOU,
    Having his farm ground & lively hood taken by the state not once, but twice for 'Imminent Domain' projects,

    And I think I have it pretty good! Things are DEFINITELY looking up!



    I do wish they would quit standing in the way of, and distracting the people that are actually getting something done and moving forward!


    Want to help?

    Buy American from your friends and neighbors, even if it costs a little more!

    Buy Metal instead of plastic when you can,
    Drive fuel efficient vehicles, lean towards electric, CNG, hybrids,
    Insulate & Seal Up Your Homes,
    Compost & Recycle instead of buying petroleum based fertilizers in petroleum based plastic containers using petroleum powered vehicles to deliver it...

    If you live in town, Grid Tied (batteryless) Solar.
    No reason that empty house shouldn't be helping with it's own upkeep all day long! You work, why shouldn't your house!?

    If you live in RURAL areas, Wind (mechanical/electric), Solar Electric, Solar Thermal, Micro Hydro (water), ect.
    Those big old barn and shed roofs are BEGGING for solar panels!
    You have PLENTY of room for windmills!

    It's just a matter if getting your big, fat, bloated, pimple covered white *** off the couch and/or computer and DOING IT!

    Grandpa used to say about people that complain and don't do anything,

    "Don't just DO SOMETHING, Stand There and Complain!"
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2008
  11. wd4nyl

    wd4nyl Member

    No war on US shores since 1812,

    Not entirely true. Not counting the Alamo. There was a little skirmish in the 1860's called the Civil War. Indian raids. The Japanese shelling San Diego. Gemans sinking ships in the Gulf. Al Quaida attacking New York & DC.

    That said us getting "nuked" doesn't overly disturb me.

    "Societal Collapse" is a figment of uneducated/undereducated and paranoid minds, AND, the hucksters trying to get you to CONSUME!!!."

    Civil disturbances such as the riots in Watts & Chicago & the breakdown in law and order Post Katrina wasn't "figments of uneducated/undereducated and paranoid minds." It did happen and given the same circumstances, it will happen again.

    Living in the country one wouldn't be exposed to this. Living in the city, it's a very real, very near threat.

    I live it every day.

    And, if today, while law and order is in effect, people are being blown away daily for no reason, as is happening, why should one think things wouldn't quickly turn into a chaotic hell when the next "Katrina scenario" occurs?
  12. Tim

    Tim Member


    You said: "I do wish they would quit standing in the way of, and distracting the people that are actually getting something done and moving forward!"

    So, who's standing your way?

    But I did go off topic a little bit, sorry about that.
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2008
  13. endurance

    endurance Well-Known Member

    So rather than rant off topic, answer the question, please.
  14. JeepHammer

    JeepHammer Well-Known Member

  15. wd4nyl

    wd4nyl Member

    SheepHammer Speaketh "No war on US shores since 1812"

    And further pontificates

    Internal fighting, not foreign attack.
    Again, crack a history book before posting

    Showing that he doesn't hit check his emails before posting

    But, I guess he just proves the saying - "EMPTY BARRELS MAKE THE MOST NOISE"
  16. Tim

    Tim Member

    I haven't ranted about anything. My browser took me to mid-page and I didn't notice your first post, if I had I probably would not have joined in the discussion.

    I can't imagine what kind jerk would take a perverse joy in societal collapse or war, but it ain't me. I'm just trying to prepare for bad things that go beyond ice storms, although that's part of the equation also.

    In answer to your question, I have kerosene stoves, gas lanterns, crank and battery powered radios, ample food and water, books and conversation for entertainment and a generator.
  17. AgentFlounder

    AgentFlounder fan of analysis

    Way to wildly generalize there JeepHammer. I'd write more but I have to go take ...what was it you said... Ecstasy and go be fat and watch my TV and riot... or something. :rolleyes:
  18. jebrown

    jebrown jebrown

    No attacks by foreigners on U. S. soil since 1812?
    Alaska wasn't a state then but is was U.S. soil when the Japanese invaded Dutch Haarbor in Alaska during World War II. It was a ploy to draw attention from the attack at Midway Island in the Pacific
  19. Heat/cooking-pot belly stove and lots of wood already cut.

    Lights-flashlights w/ extra batteries. Wind-up/solar dynamo light. Go to bed earlier.

    Food-have months worth on hand and chickens laying eggs. Pond-on site for fishing.

    Entertainment-board games and cards.

    Water- well with hand pump and a bucket. Pond on site. Bleach on hand. Boiling pot for wood burning stove. Hope to buy a solar-shower and Brita water filter pitcher soon.
  20. Magus

    Magus Scavenger deluxe

    In the blizzard of 93,I threw another log in the stove,cracked a bottle of scotch,propped my feet up on a case of MREs,and went to sleep,except for missing three weeks of work,my life barely skipped a beat.:p

    The blizzard DID come while I was at work,the greedy Btards wouldn't turn us out until there was six inches of snow standing on the road.[this is Georgia,nobody born here knows how to drive in snow!]I put my little Buick in granny and putted on home,it took me an hour to drive five miles,but home I went!after that,it was pretty smooth sailing.