Archive for STARTING POINTS

Jan
22

Decoding Urban Survival

Posted by: JM | Comments (0)

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Water is the foundation of civilization, without it cities and towns die. Access to water in our modern technological wonderland operates at the level of magic. We turn knobs and water magically flows into our homes for cleaning, cooking, and washing our bodies. For the second time in history we even use precious water for removing body waste. The only other civilization to have such an abundance of water for waste removal was the Roman Empire from over 1000 years ago.

Water is one of a handful of LIFESUPPORT building blocks that crosses both dimensions of SURVIVAL and SUSTAINABILITY. You need water to survive several types of mad-made disasters. For example you NEED Water for the DECONTAMINATION process after a chemical, biological or nuclear event. Water is also the absolute requirement to sustain life after a Megadisaster or emergency.

Water Has Its Problems

Water is Bulky, can’t be compressed therefore takes up large volumes of space

Water is difficult to transport even over short distances. It has great weight.

You don’t want to be in a position during a Megadisaster trying to collect water from emergency services, FEMA or some unknown street source. Remember the problems of water, it’s both bulky and difficult to transport.

How much water do you think you could carry from an aid station?

Do you have large volume empty water containers at home right now, to carry water?

How far could you carry water if you were sick or injured during a disaster?

People who live on top floors of buildings accessible only as walk up will have complex water problems in a disaster. Others living in skyscrapers easily accessible by elevators, will double the problems of walk up people. In both cases during an emergency or Megadisaster there will be an absence of power. One of the first things to go during a disaster is power. Do you want to be in a situation walking up many flights of steps in the dark carrying water to your apartment?  No power equals zero elevators to do the heavy lifting for you. Welcome to 19th century life without power and water.

Remember, you would have to carry water for yourself, for family members and pets. That’s a lot of water to transport over possible broken streets and through human barriers.

Never let you or your family end up in this situation during a Megadisaster.  Water should NEVER-NEVER be a last minute thought in a disaster. As a student of history believe me when I state “YOU NEVER WANT TO EXPERIENCE REAL THRIST.”

Many people did experience “REAL THRIST” during Hurricane Katrina and the Haiti earthquake. It would be a great error in judgment to belief “they” would never let an important city like not have water. Even if you are right, can you be absolutely sure your family will have access to a relief supply of water.

Every time a city or urban center has even minor emergency situations, the store shelves become empty of their water supply.

Examples from Recent History

  • In February 2011 South Texas experienced ice storms and record low temperature. Vales on gas system froze and people lost both power and water. Places that had water were directed not to drink the water, only cook with and drink bottled water. Bottle water emptied from store shelfs in hours.
  • In February 2011 during the civil unrest in Cairo Egypt, the 76-year-old grandmother Mary Thornberry trapped in her apartment was able to sustain herself because she had water stored.
  • During The 2011 March Japan Tohoku earthquake and tsunami many people went days without fresh water.

Japan represents one of the MOST prepared for disaster countries in the world. When they had their regional “IT EVENT”, many support systems failed. We invest little in disaster preparedness in the U.S., imagine the water situation after a Japan scale “IT Event.” One part of Japans problem was relying too much on centralized water sources.

Go Beyond Thinking Of Water As A Static Thing

For modern humans in the western industrialized world, water has become a non-conscious expectation. Like the air we breathe, we only notice water when it’s missing. You turn a knob and if water fails to make its appearance, a troubled feeling soon follows. The only question that comes to mind is “when is the water going to return?”

We have to shift from thinking or conceptualizing “water” as noun and picture “water” as the  VERB “WATERING.” I think about and conceptualize water as the VERB “WATERING.” Why? Because when people fail to considered how water move through our lives, we fail to respect the importance of water. Using water requires the motion of water. Try a little linguistic experiment:

First say I am going to cook my meal

Then try “I am WATERING my dinner with 2 liters tonight”:

Washing your hands requires WATERING

Washing the plates, utensils, and pots requires WATERING

The food cooking requires WATERING

After meal clean up requires WATERING

Using the bathroom requires WATERING (We don’t like to think about it, but it’s a biological fact)

Only considering water for drinking is an error made by numerous sources.

“WATERING” is a more important fact of modern life than anyone can imagine.

“WATERING IS LIFE”

The solution To Your “WATERING” Problem

Start stocking an inventory of water as of yesterday. You want to start storing enough for one week. The time to start moving water to your apartment is when you are healthy, not under time pressures, and no one wants to hurt you over water.

There is a Myth in the prepping, survivalist and outdoors world that all you need to do to make water safe for drinking is boil it or add a chemical agent like bleach. Boiling or adding a chemical agent to water is ONLY useful for killing organic pathogens.  The urban environment and certain types of disasters create water dangers beyond organic pathogens. Water can become contaminated with chemical agents or nuclear particles. The safest water you can have access too, is water bottled and sealed before the event. While you are healthy and well fed you can begin your water collection. Notice the lessons of the Japanese disaster, were their water in specific regions became contaminated with radioactive agents.

How Much Do You Need To Store (Duration)

At the LOW end you need one week worth of water to sustain yourself. FEMA has never mobilized for a Megadisaster in less then a week. At the HIGH end you can store 30 days of water. You purchase your water in Cases of 16 oz bottles. In the future we will cover the advantages of using cases of water and the many usages of water cases.

The first objection many will have is limited space for storage. No one understands your house or apartment better than you. So you also understand how to declutter your space and make room for your “7-Days AT Home” WATERING Storage.

How Much Water Do You Need Per Person (Volume Per Person)

How much water do you need for one week of WATERING? Let’s figure it out. Stand up and notice your height in feet. Place one case of water at your feet. Imagine stacking the water cases vertically until the last cast reaches the height of your head. One vertical stack of water equally your height is the amount of water you need for “7-Days At Home.” The easiest way to do the measurement is using a tape measure. If you are six one, you need a stack of water cases to reach a height of 6 feet.

IMPORTANT: The measurement process must be repeated for all family members including babies, children and family pets. When measuring for pets, use the pet’s height on hind legs standing up. Many times the height for a pet will equal the height of a small child. You may want to include a supply for the homebound neighbor you look in on from time to time. Store their stock at their place.

  • People who live in extra dry regions or desert regions should double their water inventory.
  • Remember to keep your inventory out of direct sunlight, away from active heat sources and yet not in total darkness. These features will extend the shelf life of your inventory.
  • Problems Solved by Keeping An In Home Water Rotation System
  • You will have enough extra to barter or trade for other LIFE SUPPORT needs
  • A little extra for neighbors who failed to prepare
  • Enough water to care for someone ill or injured
  • You will have enough if you lose part of your stock
  • In a Home, even if your shelter is damaged you know where you can literally dig up a supply of water if needed
  • Rotate Your Water

Water like any consumable does not stay fresh forever. The goal is to note the bottling date of your water and to slowly rotate through your stock. Drinking and replacing older stock first. Organize and store your water in a WATER ROTATION SYSTEM.

Other Useful Places To Keep A Few Bottles

AT WORK: Keep an extra few bottles of water at your desk during the week. About 3 to 4 bottles near your primary work area. Rotate your work stock by drinking a bottle or two and then immediately replacing them. If a disaster event happens when at work you have water for Decontamination and drinking.

Where ever you work and how you work, you can find a place to keep some extra water handy.

Imagine being at work during a 90-degree day when disaster strikes. Now you have to walk home without water. Never place yourself in this position. During a cold day the body also dehydrates quickly.

The WATER ROTATION METHOD satisfies conditions of the unknown that cannot be predicated. Such as environment changes that would make water sources inaccessible or hazardous to consume.

The Economic Benefits To a Home WATER ROTATION METHOD

You will also save money. A popular trend in the current food industry is the practice of “downsizing” food packaging. When a food or beverage company reduces the volume or size of the actual product (soda, bread, cereal, etc.), yet you pay the same price. Using principles from the visual perception sciences, food companies “downsize” the packaging or bottle. But, the food company charges the same price or more for fewer product in the packaging.

All economic indicators and trends point towards a global rise in food and water prices for the year 2011. Buying now in the present protect your future dollar buying power from the effects of downsizing and inflation.

During an emergency you will want to save your water bottles as containers for addition water storage. In your everyday life you can recycle the bottles and redeem your deposit fee.

Warning: do not try to refill water bottles for long-term storage. There is a process involved to make the water safe for storage that prevents infectious agents from growing. This topic will be cover in detail in future articles.

An IN-HOME WATER ROTATION SYSTEM is one part of a much larger WATERING strategy. It’s still represents an excellent starting point for securing a major foundation for life.

Live your normal everyday life and buy a few cases of water every week. Wow, what a concepts! Buying and storing a few extra cases of water a week will increase your survival and sustainability IF a Megadisaster pays an unwelcome visit to your city.

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