|Mind the gap. Meet the five luckiest people in CA in January 1994 |
without winning the Lotto jackpot. Underwear resupply inbound.
Thanks to Commander Zero (who should already be on your blog-read list), you get this to make up for the post I just wasn't feeling yesterday.
For those who haven't delved back six years ago, when I put up a post a couple of times a week, I commend to you the four-parter regarding the Northridge Earthquake of 1994.
It will be germane to a lot of people, including anyone west of Yuma.
BTDT, got the t-shirt.
How I Spent The New Extra Week Before The Start Of Third Semester Of Nursing School in 1994.
There are lessons there. If you want some lessons particular to quakes, and some applicable to all disasters, give them a peek.
I only bring them up because they're germane today, and just sitting there in the catacombs of my blog collecting dust. And they're free. So if you learn anything, you're welcome, with my compliments. That's why I wrote it all down.
1) No one is coming to help you. YOYO. Plan accordingly.
2) 72 hours of supplies? AHAHAHAHAHAHA.
Try 14-30 days, minimum. Yes, really. IMHO, if you're not ready for 60 days totally self-sustained, you're selling yourself short.
3) Northridge utilities/situation overview:
*Power: Nada. For 11 days. They weren't even sure they could reboot an entire city from scratch when they flipped the switches, but it worked. That time.
*Water: Boil water orders for 30+ days, thousands of breaks in water mains (18" from sewer mains, btw). 25 years later and L.A. still hasn't found and fixed them all. (Doubt me? Google "L.A. sinkholes" since 1994-yesterday. The prosecution rests, your Honor.)
*Heat: It was sunny the day after, even in January. If this had been cold, wet winter, like anywhere in 49 other states, or half of even this one, we would have started loosing people to exposure within two-three days.
*Communication: Ha. Pre-cell era. No POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) for a week. Now, >50% of people don't even have landline POTS. (Might want to rethink that clever strategy, kids.) And cell towers have far less capacity, and maybe 24-72 hrs battery back-up. Maybe.
*ATMs: AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Cash in hand, or do without.
*Retail business: AHAHAHAHAHA. For two weeks. Only when the power came back on.
*Transportation grid: Hundreds of normal overpasses condemned.
The I-5 down to one lane in each direction for a month, and 300 yards of 100-foot-tall overpass gone.
*Gasoline: Did I mention there was no power for 11 days??
You had the gas you had, until it ran out, or you drove 50 miles away to fill a tank, out of the affected area.
So, imagine that was not possible, or a lot farther away than 50 miles.
And remember, hundreds of freeway overpasses were out.
*General destruction: they were still pulling bodies and victims out of rubble two days later, and that was with less than 100 actual rescues or fatalities, and everyone within 200 miles helping out.
Now imagine 1000, or 10,000 victims.
|It's bad when your third floor apartment is now on the second floor. It's|
even worse for the people who lived on the first floor. And who are now pate.
I repeat: YOYO: You're On Your Own!
If you have gloves and a shovel, you're the only rescue squad you're going to see for days to weeks.
Also the only fire department.
And police department.
And pharmacy. (How many days of your meds do you have for back-up?)
And building contractor.
And garbage collection.
And so on, ad infinitum.
Welcome to the real Day After.
Now tell me what's in your kit.