Among the millions who suffered in Texas during the recent deep freeze, there were some rare individuals and families who persevered. These were people who kept calm, had already done some level of preparation, and didn’t wait for others to solve their problems for them.
One of these survivors is Mike Papa, who writes for The Federalist. Papa has endured many hurricanes in Texas, and applied the survival knowledge he gained from those rough encounters to keep his wife and children safe and comfortable during the deep freeze.
Here’s how he survived:
Due to the storm, our family, which includes an 18-month-old and a newborn, were out of power at 2:30 a.m. on Feb. 14. We were out of power with snow and freezing temperatures for 41 hours before the power came on for eight, then was off for 18 hours, before staying on—for now. The water pressure went to a trickle for us after the first day and much sooner than that for other folks.
We were prepared for the power outage and no one slept in the cold at our house. When you are prepared to be self-sufficient for two weeks, three days is not that bad. Here is what we did, and then I will explain how you can do it for far less.
Generator: We purchased a Winco HPS12000HE Tri-Fuel Generator in 2016 after a bunch of research. Generators are tricky in that fuel demand can be an issue in a disaster area if it is too big, but too small of a generator limits what you can operate in your home. As it was, our Winco burned one gallon of gas per hour, and in a prolonged power-outage we could have swapped to natural gas.
A carbon monoxide monitor is a necessity with a generator. Also, hire an electrician to connect your generator to your house or show you how. It is a simple installation and it will make your life so much easier versus cords everywhere in your home.
Water: We had already filled one of the bathtubs before the power went out, an old hurricane preparation trick, so we could maintain functioning toilets. It quickly became clear we would need water for the long term.
Melting snow and ice on the roof during the day was a significant resource, and we just needed to collect it. I emptied six IRIS 82-quart totes and started stationing them on downspouts of the gutters and other places. In 24 hours, we had collected 120 gallons of water, of which we used a small portion for flushing toilets and bath water.
In the South, crawfish pots are fairly commonplace and we have one for our annual crawfish boil. We used the crawfish pot to boil the water and then used it for baths and rinsing dishes. We used one tote for scrubbing dishes and the sink with boiled rain water for rinsing.
Heat: The generator tied into the power panel via 50-amp 220 volt four-wire plug and ran the furnace, lights, and TV.
For the first time in my life it was cold enough outside to store food. We turned the fridge and freezer off, put the food in an ice chest, and left them outside.
Papa goes into great detail at The Federalist, and I encourage you to read his entire account.
You need to do some thinking ahead if you want to comfortably survive a natural disaster.
You can’t prepare for every eventuality, and you shouldn’t try to, but you should focus on the basics. Heat, water, shelter, food, etc.
You can start by living somewhere generally safer than other locations, like one of the ten best states for survival.
You can also download my free special report on storing water for survival. Water should be your priority.
Action Line: Whatever you do, don’t wait. You need to break inertia and get prepared today, because you don’t know what tomorrow will bring. Sign up for my monthly Survive and Thrive newsletter by clicking here. If you’re serious about protecting your family, I’ll help you break inertia and get prepared.
E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy
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