Sunday, August 28, 2011

Irene was a test run

I have to say this, only because ..well just because.
(Long ranting type post, be prepared!)
Living between South Carolina, Florida and Texas for the past 30 years, lends that I am in hurricane territory. I do write this from some experience.
I have watched the news reports and reporters on Hurricane Irene for the past week and I can honestly say these things. Some of you may not like what I'm about to say. Period. Be prepared for that.
  • No, where I live did not get 'a direct hit ' from Irene (just some outer bands) I've been hit before.
  • I am not downplaying the damage that was done, a good portion of the east coast did suffer some damage from Irene. I hope for everyone who did have to deal with her, the damage was minimal. 
  • The newscasters must be paid to make it out to be much worse then it is because they made it seem like she was going to rip the US east coast apart. 
  • People are spoiled to their conveniences, like electricity and cars.  
I saw and heard so much with this past 'storm' that it was enough to make me think about how 'unprepared' people really are. How much they rely on the conveniences of modern day to get them through. What happens when those modern conveniences may NOT be available to them..what will they do?  What will YOU do?

I personally think Irene was way over played, but at the same time, I think many people took the possibilities that any storm can create, and made light of it.
How many people expected things to 'still be available' to them today?  Like cars, and open stores and places to 'run get something'!!?!
If you didn't have electricity this morning..why would you expect someone else to have electricity? Why would you expect someone else to get up and go to work (in an emergency situation) so they could provide a convenience for everyone else?  How arrogant is that?
That store owner or worker may have suffered damages from the storm in ways that you have not thought of, not to mention no electricity at the work place or at their home.  Relying on 'others' for personal comforts is NOT the way to get through an emergency.

Having said all that (and deleting some things because..well just because) let's talk about preparedness. I actually don't like that word. It makes it sound like something 'extra' you have to do, and being ready should any emergency arise should not be an 'extra' thing, it should be second nature (nothing in life is certain!).

Have we forgotten we CAN survive without electric or do we always expect there to be the ability to 'have what we want' in times of trouble? Grow up people. Electricity really isn't a necessity to's only a necessity to convenience. Learn to plan ahead before the emergency approaches. Get it?
Being ready for any emergency is a must. It doesn't take a ton of money either, it just takes some planning and forethought.
I could put all the things on a convenient list to check off, but that's not what I'm trying to get across. We need to learn to THINK !!
Sit down and think about your normal day, what you do, every day and what it takes to get things accomplished. Just the daily stuff, food, bathing, bathroom, etc. (write it down if you have to)

Now picture doing them without electricity. What would you need to get it done without electricity. Got that in your head?
Good, now think about doing all those things without 'running' water. No water. How would you do it? What could you do or not do without those two seemingly vital things? Got that in your head. Good, now one more time I'm going to ask you to THINK.
You have no electric, no water and now you have no transportation. Not necessarily because you don't have a vehicle sitting outside full of gas (cuz you thought this would be enough) but that all the roads are washed away, blocked by down trees, or for petes sake, blocked by the powers that be due to a state of emergency or martial law. 
Now..what is it going to take for you to 'survive', even comfortably so, where you are, providing daily requirements for you and your family?
Now, think about doing it for more then a day, 2 days or even 3. Think about it for 2 weeks, 4 weeks..2 months.
Be honest with yourself now..are you REALLY PREPARED for an emergency?
If you're honest, the answer is 'no', probably not.

Our ancestors would never have thought about being 'prepared' for an emergency. Their entire life by OUR standards was an emergency. They were always prepared. No electric, no running water and most times no transportation anywhere. They survived it, the're here aren't you?
So for one day of your life, be a founding family and survive just a day without the spoiled conveniences. See how far you get.
Then rethink your life in an emergency situation. Picture yourself in Joplin MS. when they suffered that horrible tornado..they still have not rebuilt that town and it's been months. Where is everyone?
Consider these other hurricanes, works of nature that put areas in to 'states of emergency'..for days, weeks and months! (click on each one to read about them)

Now go and 'think' for a while on preparedness. It's not just 'stocks' of supplies, it's being able to use your brain to create what you need..that is biggest key to preparedness, the brain...thinking ahead and know how.

I may do more posts on this very subject soon.

Now on to another similar topic at hand.
Knowing this, here is a prediction for you. Irene was a dry run. (Unfortunately..many people failed).
She was a forerunner to something bigger. There have not been any major storms to hit the east coast since about 2004 (going on memory, 2004 was when Florida took great hits from Gustav and Ivan to name a few)
That's somewhere between 5 and 8 years since a major hurricane. I say Irene is a forerunner, a warning to get prepared, to use your head and to think things through.
Simple prediction..the next big one, will hit, the east coast somewhere and will hit sometime.. (Of course, we always hope not.......and I always hope I'm wrong..but what if I'm not?)

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