Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Prudent Prepping: Disaster Planning Review

The dust has settled and the First 72 Hours have passed. Follow along as I build a long term plan via Prudent Prepping.

With the natural disasters recently here in California (heavy rains, dam failure and multiple massive forest fires) and now the big hurricane in Texas that's been predicted every year since Katrina, it feel like a good time to brush up on and polish my own disaster plans.

To Bug Out, 
or Not to Bug Out
That is the question I need to answer. There is no chance I'll be hit by a hurricane or threatened by a tornado, and I don't live in the flood plain of a dam like the residents of Oroville CA, or wildfire-prone rural hills of Lake County - but I do live in a well-developed neighborhood with lots of mature trees, just like Berkeley and Oakland.

August 24 was the anniversary of the last big quake to hit near me (in Napa), so it seemed to be a good time to go over my plans to either stay in my place or Get Out of Dodge. Things have changed a bit since I last went over my Bug Out plans. I no longer have a truck to load my stores into, but a car just like this:

Not a truck.

It's a nice car with a fairly big trunk, but there isn't room for the amount of gear I planned to carry when I owned a truck. There will be some serious trimming, and possibly giving equipment and stores to my budding Prepping group, since I won't be the gear depot and delivery agent any longer.

Regardless of what I have for a vehicle, though, my plan is pretty stable.

Bugging Out
If I'm home, I can get everything out and loaded in less than 30 minutes. I think I can reduce that time by rearranging what I have to carry.

Items to Have Ready: 
  • Bug out bags for each person.
  • Cell phone, personal electronics and chargers for each item, including car charging cables.
  • Food.
  • Water.
  • Important papers, photos and sentimental items. Copies of your important papers should be in each persons bag.
  • Food and carriers for your pets if you have any, as well as leashes, vet records, water bowls and toys. 
  • First aid items and medicines, with copies of your prescriptions. Don't forget eyeglass prescriptions. 
  • Cash: enough to fill your vehicle twice and buy several days of meals.
  • Any other items that will help make your time away easier.

Bugging In
This is going to be less of a problem IF there has not been an earthquake that actually affects my house. If there is enough damage to make this house unsafe, we leave. Power outages or other damage caused by a regional earthquake that might cause some inconveniences will have to be looked over if or when it happens.

Everything that I would be taking out is just as easily used at home, so there will only be a problem if the power was out for an extended time and food in the freezers started to thaw.

The Recap
  • Have a plan and review it when any part changes, like the number of people you are working with or how you might need to move your gear. 
  • Be certain everyone involved is aware of what they need to do and also what might be expected if someone else can't do their part. 

The Takeaway
  • There is nothing like a distant (or nearby) disaster to motivate you to take another look at your Bug Out/ Bug In plan and rework it if necessary. 

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