Saturday, November 3, 2012

Special Posting...How to prepare for a disaster (Week of November 4th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,


Once again we have been reminded of the importance of being prepared both temporally and spiritually with the recent Superstorm Sandy on the East cost of the United States. Last week I heard on the radio 95% of Americans are not prepared! Wow! That is a lot, a lot more than I thought. Are you in that 95%? I have also heard that only 6% of LDS Church members are prepared! Wow!!!

As the events of Superstorm Sandy have unfolded on TV (mostly CNN) and radio stations, I have been listening for things I was not aware of that we need to do to be better prepared, and also, reminders of things we need to do. Some times the situation/warnings may become worse than predicated, as in the case of "Sandy". Here they are...

Things people need the most beside food and water (ABC new caster report, ABC New Good Morning America):

1) portable toilets (and sanitaiton suppies)
2) generators (no power, cannot pump water out of basements and houses)
3) flashlights and batteries
4) cleaning supplies, brooms and heavy trash bags (also hand lotion, water hard on their hands)

Also, blankets, shelter, clothing and heat.

The things they are trying to save from the water damage are family photos and albums, important documents, and school year books.

1) Evacuation: When they say to evacuate, do not hesitate, or second guess it, evacuate! In some case on the East coast, it became to late to evacuate and they were advised to hunker down. Precious lives were lost because they did not heed the warning. When you are advised to evacuate, gather all important documents (you should already have them all together), family photos/albums, family heirlooms, and anything else special to you you would not want to loose and leave. If your family is separated, have a meeting place (your home, a relatives home, a landmark) and leave.

2) Your vehicles and gas generators: Always keep at least a half of tank of gas in all your cars at all times. If you have to evacuate it should get you far enough away. If possible, keep extra gas stored in regulation gas cans in your garage. If you have a gas generator, you will need gas to run it. Remember: DO NOT PLACE THE GENERATOR IN YOUR HOUSE OR AN ENCLOSED AREA, IT WILL KILL YOU! On the East coast people are in 3 hours waiting lines for gas. In some cases the gas stations pumps were not working due to no power. Now they are starting to run out because it is difficult to get gas to the stations.

3) Keep extra food, water and medical supplies stored: I would rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it! Stores only keep enough items for 2 weeks. In a disaster situation they will run out in just a few hours. PLEASE store some extra cans of food and water at all times in your home and keep your 73 Hour Emergency Individual Kits in your cars (just in case you are away from home when the disaster hits). You should store at least a months supply, or more if possible.

4) Keep emergency supplies on hand: You will need ways to light (lanterns, flashlight with extra batteries, generator, etc.), a radio (either solar or battery operated with extra batteries), plastic tarps to cover leaking roofs and broken windows, a way to provide shelter if you cannot stay in your home, a way to provide heat if cold, sanitation. Remember: DO NOT USE A CHARCOAL BBQ OR GAS GENERATOR IN YOUR HOME OR AN ENCLOSED AREA. IT WILL KILL YOU! Have extra medical supplies on hand, and prescription medications. See under "Postings" on the right side of this blog, "Emergency Supplies, Shelter, Heating, Lighting, Cooking", etc. DO NOT USE CANDLES OR OPEN FLAMES! If there is a gas leak, there will be an explosion. They could fall over and cause a fire.

5) Flooded Water: Do not wade through flooded water if you can avoid it. Do not cross flooded streets in your car. It can become stuck, you could fall into a large hole not visible, and you could be washed away.  Flood water is usually contaminated with oil, chemicals, sewage and other deceases. If it is sea water and your home is flooded, all your electrical will have to be replaced. Sea water damages the wiring and other things. Do not turn on your electricity until it has been inspected. Do not go outside...there could be down power lines you cannot see in the water or in the dark, you will be electrocuted.

6) Water: Do not drink the water from your faucets unless instructed by local leaders it is safe. Contaminates can get into the water too. Keep water stored, at least enough for two week per person in your home. See the "Postings" under "Water Storage" on the right.

7) Communication: Phone lines (land lines) and cell phone towers may be down. Even the main phone companies and cell phone companies main equipment may be down. There may be no communication or limited communication. With no power, there is no way to charge your cell phones. If you cannot call out, you may be able to text.

8) Fires: There may be explosions and fires due to gas leaks and exploding transformers. Be careful. Do not use candles or open flames. Keep a fire extinguisher in your home and cars. Do not attempt to put out gas leak fires with water, they will spread.

9) Fallen Trees: Watch for trees that have been saturated by heavy rain or damage due to earthquakes. They could fall onto your home, cars and people. Watch for down power lines caused by the fallen trees. (Do not attempt to remove the trees or go around them.) Keep a chain saw so you can cut down fallen trees, if it is safe. Keep plastic tarps so you can cover up any damages to your roof.

10) Injuries and Death: There will be injuries, and possible those who have died. There may be no medical help from the fire department. There may be no hospital available in your area and no way to get to another hospital out of your area. You will be on your own! Keep emergency medical supplies in your home and good first-aid kits in your cars. Attend to the most serious injuries first, then continue until the minor ones. If someone has died, if possible, cover them up and put a marker if you have to leave.

11) On Your Own: You may be on your own for several hours or several days. You may be trapped in your home, car or work place until help can arrive, which could take a long time. Be prepared to take care of your family and help neighbors the best you can. Neighbors will need to pull together and help each other. Pull your resources together.

12) Homeowners Insurance, Homeowner-condo Insurance and Renters Insurance: It does not cover any flooding, damages nor personal property caused by the flooding! You need a separate policy for flooding through the National Flood Insurance Program.

13) Infrastructures and buildings: Roads, freeways, bridges and tunnels may be unusable or destroyed. Buildings may have serious damages. Be careful! Do not attempt to use them. You may be cut off from emergency help. Take are of situations the best you can until help can arrive.


While listening to CNN I heard a story from a lady who lived on Staten Island. Due to the damages of the bridge from the main land to the island, they were cut off from any help. FEMA and other emergency help could not get in for several days. The area had serious damages, flooding and loss of life. Her home was flooded (basement and first flood). They were not in an evacuation area, and were told they did not need to evacuate. Her young just happened to look out the window and saw the sea water coming towards them. They lost many precious temporal things, but her family was alright. She said her church was there before FEMA. Thirty members and the missionaries from her church showed up to help her and her family and others. Even though they had lost "things", some precious to her, she knew they were resilient and God was watching over them. They were prepared with food and water, but more important, they were prepared spiritually. Yes, this family is from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They were prepared the best they could be both temporally and spiritually!

Anyone who reads this blog...Please take the things listed above seriously. Please prepared for what may come your way. Please share this with other family members, friends, neighbors and co-workers. Please share this blog with them, it may save a life. The more of us that are prepared will allow the local and government emergency teams to help others, and we will also be able to help others. Please remember, "If ye are prepared, ye have no need to fear."

Postings on the right: Please review all the postings on the right under "Postings" so you will know what to do and what you will need in an emergency situation. They could save precious lives!

Comments: Please share your comments, suggestions and experiences below so we can all help each other be better prepared. Thank you


  1. Thank you Nancy for all this info on disaster preparedness. We do learn from the experiences ie disaters of others to better be prepared.I purchased some candles that use batteries, not a real flame,at Costco recently.I am saving them to light my home in the event there isn't any electricity.I noticed you mentioned not using candles several times due to possible fires or explosion from broken gas lines.That was a good point you showed us. That was a good story about the help the lady recieved from the church members.I hope you are better soon! Love Sally Salcido

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