E.J., “The Survival Guy”. True story! A couple of days ago I was making my security update rounds and all three of the downstairs flashlights I keep handy were DEAD, not two, but all three. To add injury to insult all three take those not easy to buy at CVS Lithium 123 batteries. I stupidly had zero on hand. To wrap up a foul prep day I bought out the hardware store which did not have enough 123s to allow me to fill my 8 battery Surefire light. I got an “F” for the day in prep. Conclusion: (a) It is counter intuitive to prep properly. (b) Brutal to get your wife to buy into prep. You can imagine the howling when I suck up room in our smallish rear deck of the truck with our jumbo navy seal survival pack. (c) Expensive. Loading up on dozens of Lithium 123 batteries ain’t cheap! (d) Time consuming and inconvenient. In short, very few folk really have the disposition to be 100% properly prepared! It takes a fair amount of time weekly. By example when I get back to Key West I need to empty and re-fill my whole wall of water, a horde of 5 gallon water bottles. And on and on and on we go.
The email reminded me of earlier in the year when I experienced a survival challenge of my own. During a storm, a transformer had come down and caught fire in my backyard. Luckily no one was hurt, but it was a live-fire test of my response skills. Read more on that here.
Electrical fires from transformers are a huge risk to neighborhoods. Take it from me. If there are some near your house have plenty of fire extinguishers at the ready. Walk your neighborhood to locate transformers. Are there any clear risks to you and your family such as low hanging or dead trees? If there are keep an eye on them or call the electric company to look at them.
Keep your cars full of gas. A few Labor Day’s ago a hurricane hit Newport. It wasn’t bad. But our guests had to stay another night. Keep those gas tanks full.
I’ve told you about my Yeti cooler. Becky and I moved all of our frozen, grass-fed, meats to the Yeti and they were still frozen when I unpacked them this morning.
There is no downside to having plenty of cash on hand. Cash works even without power, unlike ATMs.
One thing Becky and I talked about as a dozen or so firemen, police officers, and utility workers descended upon our property was: “This is no longer our property.” It happens that fast. They were in charge and to put it nicely “we were in the way”. Imagine if this was a city-wide event? First, there’s no way a crew of that size would help us as quickly as they did and second, you better be prepared to lock-up your property. An emergency can quickly turn your property into a public place. There is a fine line between who should be there, on your property, and who should not. When the smoke cleared and the firemen were gone I went to the back fence, climbed up to check the damage and there was a guy standing there. I asked him if he was a friend of my neighbor’s and he said “No” he wasn’t. He said he wanted to check out what happened. He had no right being there. He was trespassing. But the cops were gone. He knew that.
Make sure your weapons are easily accessible. I am partial to my Sig Sauer P226 to help me, as they say, fight my way to my shotguns. Here’s our review of our favorite shotguns.
Make sure you have light. I love my Streamlight 88030 ProTac 1L. It uses a CR123A lithium battery. It’s small and it’s powerful. Put it in your pocket and you’re good to go in the dark. And it won’t break the bank.
I also love my SureFire Minimus variable-output LED headlamp because two hands are better than one. I pack this on our boating trips and ski trips. It’s great for when a transformer catches fire in your backyard, cuts the power to your house, and you want to read in bed to calm your nerves so you can sleep.
Have a go kit. Check out our Navy Seal Kit here.
Buy a handful of Henry Survival Rifles for your family and keep one in your car. For the car, store the loaded clip in a separate place from the rifle.
Have plenty of water in your car. Dick Young has all of the above for his frequent north/south trips between Key West and Newport.
Don’t forget, night comes fast when there’s no power. And, as is often the case, this stuff happens at night. Be ready.
Have a prep story to share with me? Email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy
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