Security Precautions FYI
Editors note: While we reject the fear-mongering process, we do believe in the old Boy Scout motto Be Prepared, for any disaster, natural or otherwise. Accordingly, we wish to share this e-mail.
An emergency management official provided this general advice to one of our readers for survival if a terrorist act hits very close to home.
Heres some suggestions to be prepared:
Treat this situation as if it were a major earthquake.
If terrorism strikes in your state or even region, cellular phone systems will go out due to the overloading of the system and the resulted crash of the network. Also, your regular phones may be disrupted, and the state of emergency may result in 1/3 of your regions lines being turned off for periods of time so that the system doesnt overload. This is similar to rotating blackouts, only on the phone lines. Thus, develop a plan for you and your family members so that you can either meet or be assured they will know how to regain contact with you.
Also, consider that if family members work or frequently travel to another city, roads may be blocked or unsafe to travel. Thus, arrange for those members away from the general home area to divert to a close friends house in the city they frequent. Have them stay there until the all clear is given. You (and they) will be more assured of their safety. Have backup friends, too. Consider you will not be able to communicate with them for at least four to 24 hoursagain, AT LEAST.
Ensure that you frequently refuel your vehicles and that they are always full with gasoline. Those of you who frequently let your car go below 1/2 tank, that may not get you home if stuck in local traffic. The last thing you want is to run out of gas. Remember, gas stations need electricity to run and in a terrorist situation, they may be ordered to shut downeven if there is electricity available.
ALWAYS carry cash and lower denomination dollar bills. In a situation with communications failure, no store can process credit card/ATM transactions because these require phone lines. If you frequently forget to keep cash on you, have $40 in loose bills stored in a secret spot in your car that you use the most. This way, if you get caught on the road without cash, you have that secret stash.
Keep enough water on hand for ONE WEEK. Freshly bottled water. This is because our municipal water systems ARE at risk. One week will be sufficient for trucked water to make it in. The traditional three days is too short.
Have your pantries STOCKED with food for one week, too. This should be food that is very simple to make. You should also have enough packaged food for a few days that require no cooking, should the electric systems be taken out.
It is a good idea to have a portable emergency kit in a large duffel bag containing the above items, should you (God forbid) ever need to be evacuated. This way, you can grab the (ONE) bag and go. Essential items should include medicines (for one weeks supply), toilet paper, toothbrushes and paste, hand sanitizer, water/food, flashlights, portable radios with plenty of batteries, pen and paper, whistle, rope, duct tape, blankets, general toiletries, and anything else you feel necessary to sustain you for ONE WEEK. Believe it or not, this can all fit into one large duffel bag for a regular sized family. Your life is the value, not material possessions.
Pets. Make sure you have the appropriate carriers for your pets and plan for extra water and food for them. It is a good idea to buy a small bag of food for them and store it with that emergency duffel bag. Also store leashes/collars, and extra water. Do NOT leave pets unattended. In emergency situations, they know something is wrong and get scared easily and may try to even run away. Be mindful of this.
In extreme cases, the Red Cross and local governments utilize Amateur Radio as a way to pass welfare traffic. Todays terrorist acts in NYC left Amateur Radio as the ONLY means of communications, in or out of the city. The citys 911 dispatch center was on the 12th floor of one of the towers. That went down and so did their 911 system for the whole city. If you evacuate, it is best to go to the Red Cross and have HAM radio pass welfare traffic to your loved ones across the country.
If you are home when a situation occurs, STAY THERE. DO NOT go out and drive around or wander. Subsequent events can immobilize you away from home and create undue worrying from your family. Doing this also hampers emergency efforts and obstructs lifesaving efforts.
STAY OFF THE PHONE. Calling everyone in the world ties up the phone system and obstructs emergency services. It is best to CALL ONE party out of state and have them contact everyone else to let them know you are okay.
The notion of this cant happen here was proved wrong. It can, and will, happen anywhere. Report suspicious circumstances to law enforcement immediately. Let them determine the severity of the situation. If government says get out or to watch out for certain places, dont take it lightly. THIS IS REAL. Consider that nothing happened to the West coast today, and there are two very large population centers in California.
DONT PANIC. Just be mindful of the circumstances. Just be prepared if it ever hits close to your home. Chances are it wont, but possibilities are endless. Pull together and defend our country and support government. This is a time when we need to unify as a nation more than ever.
I certainly hope the above tips have made you aware of how to begin to take care of yourself and prepare before an emergency. The above can be applied to any disaster (floods, quakes, etc)…It is also suggested that you research more for other items recommended to stock up on not mentioned here (like clothing).