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Sunday, June 14, 2020

Week 12: Wildfire Season Again - Cyclical natural disaster prep

If you are faced with seasonal natural disaster risks or challenges what are you doing to prepare?

Please share any great websites or resources!

Look what we got in the mail yesterday from the power company!


While we have been thinking about upping our earthquake preparedness and stocking the pantry it has become wildfire season again. Intermittent power outages will be coming. Something more to think about.

What to do? Pretty much all of this applies to earthquake prep too.

I'm going to think through 7 days of meals + fluids with no power and make sure we have that on hand for us and the dog. Then there is the personal sanitation plan.

I've also realized we need to freeze ice to move to the frig during a power outage to lengthen the time our refrigerated food is edible. We also need to get thermometers for the frig and freezer so we know if the food is still safe.

Then there is the how to cook uncooked meat in the freezer. We don't want to get a grill so I think I'm going to ask friends right around me if they have one. We could cook and share the result rather than tossing it. Also, I think I will start freezing more cooked meats that could be thawed and eaten without reheating if necessary.

Power supplies for charging phones and providing light? Solar chargers and lights plus battery operated lanterns are going to be needed.

Then there is preparing to have to evacuate again if fires are too close or may cutoff evacuation routes. Another project but we had practice with this one last year.

At least we now have seismic activated latches on all the cupboard doors housing breakables. Hubby is installing seismic straps on both TVs today and I am investigating what to use to strap the computer monitor. We had the water heater strapped correctly when we moved in and we only have electricity so no natural gas fire hazard concerns.

I'm focusing on the positive and using my planning and coping skills. Almost zero risk of hurricanes or tornadoes! No blizzards or floods! No locust hoards!

Seriously - we are in a great position to be able to buy what makes sense and we have local family to evacuate to if needed. Plus we purchased earthquake insurance and have fire coverage in our homeowner's policy so if a lot of damage was to occur we would get some financial relief.

21 comments:

  1. I like the earthquake proof latches. Smart. I would actually buy a gas grill to cook stuff on. It would only take a 5gallon propane bottle and then you could cook whatever. We have an old one we bought from Kmart years ago. You could also just get a camping stove that uses propane bottles too. I guessing your stove is electric? The other thing is investing in a Honda generator. We bought one at Home Depot and it ran our Fridge and freezer when we had the cycling black outs last year. It's definitely worth every penny. We also have a bigger noiser one too but the Honda is great.

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    1. Thanks for the camping stove idea. A generator would be perfect but isn't allowed where I live yet.

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    2. Yes, we also have a small camp stove and some bottles of propane to run it. Our gas grill on the patio usually has at least half a full gas tank,too.

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  2. About ten years ago, we bit the bullet and installed a whole-house generator. It has given us much peace of mind. One thing we might do differently if we need to replace it in the future, is to buy a smaller one. As long as you have enough power to run the refrigerator, freezer, and intermittent heat/air conditioning, you could get by.

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    1. I agree - my Mom did that for winter power outages and it was great. Not allowed where I live yet but we'll see.

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  3. Cooking then freezing meats and meals really is a great idea for future power outages.

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  4. I watched news of the several small fires that broke out last week in S. California, surprised that we'd hit wildfire season again so soon. Time feels like it is standing still in so many ways, but clearly it is not.

    Our travel trailer is our back up plan for most issues, but beyond that I hadn't given much thought to dealing with electricity power downs. So far we have not had them here, but that could of course change at any time.

    It really is a bit of a conundrum though, isn't it? Stock up for earthquake preparedness, or empty them out in preparation for evacuating the house in the event of a fire, or the event of losing electricity. I will likely continue to stick with the three day rule that I learned in a prior disaster class I took. Three days is apparently the maximum most of us would face being on our own after a major event, based on prior disaster events.

    I can manage that!



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    1. Yes, three days does seem more manageable. I was reminded by the mailer to think about what happened in the Bay area during fire season last year and it went on for more than 3 days I believe.

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  5. Agree that cooked meats in the freezer would be very handy. Maybe freeze some cooked rice as well? And the camp stove would allow heating/roasting vegetables and maybe baking potatoes.

    I heard the other day on the radio that traveling electrical crews that usually get called out after emergencies are going to be an issue this year due to pandemic issues (traveling out of state, transportation, group lodging, etc).

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    1. I hadn't thought about the traveling electrical crews but had considered the problems for the wildfire crews. This is definitely a year or more of challenges and planning for oneself and hopefully to assist loved ones and neighbors.

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  6. I'm on the at least 7 days bandwagon especially for fires and hurricanes. I also like the idea of freezing things that are cooked. I just wonder but the thawing issue either way safety wise. But I have a daughter and an acquaintance who survived a category 5 on ghrand cayman and have huge stories about having big bonfires on the beach and cooking everything they owned and then inviting the world to come and eat it. I would especially be concerned with having only 3 days of water.

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    1. I agree with 7 days as a goal for a minimum survival pantry including water. It might not be what we want to eat but it would keep us going. I still need to find out if we could turn of the water heater and tap into it as a likely thing.

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  7. Bless your heart, if it's not one thing it's ten!! Could you get a hibachi type grill that would be small and portable? My brother bought his children, my parents and himself kits that contain everything you need to exist for a certain number of days. Having a couple of those with food that is designed to store indefinitely might work instead of stocking the pantry with an excess. I am sorry you have this on your plate now, too.

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    1. We do have a 3 day survival kit in our car but it would be for total disaster situation as the food has a 5 year shelf life and looks pretty unpalatable LOL. The water is the bare minimum for 2 humans too. The dog wouldn't survive I'm afraid.

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  8. Juhli, I just thought of a food product you might want to try. Hormel makes shelf stable meals called "Completes". We haven't tried them yet, but I plan to get some for stockpiling. I heard that the chicken was actually good. Worth a try. If a person is in a bind, I think you could eat them at room temperature without trouble. They're completely precooked.

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  9. Sorry, they're Hormel Compleats (not completes)

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  10. It sounds as if you are very prepared. How about some canned meats like tuna and salmon. Those can be eaten as part of a salad without having to cook.

    God bless.

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    1. Great idea. We need to expand beyond the tuna we keep stocked.

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  11. I am heartened that you take this seriously and you are properly prepared and insured!
    -Dar @ anexactinglife

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