If You Had Advance Notice Of a Catastrophic Event
Kevin Felts 10.09.17
Let’s say there is going to be some type of event in the next few days; what would you do? Not an end-of-the world event, such as a meteor hitting earth. More like a hurricane making landfall, tensions between the United States and Korea coming to a head, or an outbreak of some viral disease.
For the sake of realistic discussion, let’s use Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria as examples.
- Harvey was a worst-case situation in which the hurricane was blocked by two ridges of high pressure. This was probably a once-in-a-thousand-years storm — but it happened.
- Irma could have been much worse, but it was still pretty bad for a lot of people.
- Maria was a worst-case situation. The infrastructure of Puerto Rico was destroyed, which made relief efforts difficult.
Those are real events that people needed to prepare for. Between those three storms, millions of people were affected.
If you want to use historical events, there was:
- The Black Death 1348 – 1350; an estimated 1/3 of Europe died.
- The Plague of Justinian 541–542; an estimated 25 million people died.
If you were faced with a situation like one of those listed above, what would you do to prepare?
Everyone will have a different answer. To get the discussion started, here are my answers:
Friends and Family
The most important issue would be talking to my parents to get an idea of their plans. When would they evacuate and what route would they take to reach my home?
Most of my buddies have a prepping mindset, so they would have their own plans.
Pets and Animals
Dog food and chicken feed would be an issue. 300 pounds of chicken feed would keep my flock laying at maximum production for around two months. Currently, my hens are laying between 10-12 eggs a day. There are several chicks who should start laying within the next month or so.
For hen scratch, I have a deer feeder set up that holds 150 pounds. It is set to go off twice a day. which gives the chickens a little extra to dig around for.
The chicken yard is 1/2 acre, and they range freely across several acres.
At the back of the property there is a deer feeder that holds close to 300 pounds of deer corn. There are several deer going to the feeder almost daily.
Running through the farm is a clear stream with a sandy bottom. After Hurricane Harvey, a Sawyer PointONE was used to filter the water. See my Hurricane Harvey After Action Review for all the details.
I would like to get another PointONE, which has an estimated lifespan of one million gallons. Along with the Sawyer Mini, this would provide an estimated 2.1 million gallons of safe drinking water.
Of course I would get some cases of bottled water.
As for septic/sewer, my house uses a traditional septic tank. When the power goes out, water from the creek is used to flush the toilets.
If this event were going to last several months, the tractor would be fueled up and at least another 10 gallons of diesel bought. Estimated runtime with a full tank is eight hours. That is plenty of time to disk or plow a couple of acres.
What about seeds? I have been stockpiling seeds for years. Without buying another seed, I have enough to plant for at least two or three years.
Fertilizer, I would probably get 300 to 400 pounds. What will happen when it runs out? I could use chicken manure, composting, and/or hopefully barter with my neighbor for cow manure.
- Bar soap.
- Toilet paper.
- Windex, for cleaning.
- Dish washing liquid.
Everything needed to wash the dishes, keep the table clean, wash your hands, and take a solar shower.
If I could get a few acres fenced in and get some goats, or sheep, things would be going great. Then I could have goat milk, cheese, and churn my own butter.
What about guns and ammunition? I have plenty.
Fuel my truck up? Sure I would, but that should go without saying.
So, what are five things you would do if you had advance notice?