Being Prepared for Emergencies

Seems that many people are not prepared for a disaster that comes in many forms but we are all just one step away from one. No one seems to save or lives within their means to properly prepare.

I had 3 rolls of toilet paper when the shut down began in NY in March. Why did people need to hoard toilet paper for a virus? They were hoarding water, paper towels, disinfectant, wipes and food. It was more like the end of days, than a pandemic.

Photo by Markus Spiske on

I did manage to grab 4 rolls of toilet paper during the crazy time in March but then went online and though I wasn’t getting my normal type of rolls, it got me through till I could get more. My mother on the other hand had 48 rolls even though she asked me to get her more. Meals on Wheels delivered her a roll and a local pharmacy had a supply though one had to just get a few (but it was there). But the masks were harder to get as well as thermometer, gloves and one use wash cloths. I made a mask looking at videos online and I was lucky to have some material. I asked on a FB group for my city how to get the medical masks and was told to use Groupon. They came through. Even Shaklee failed me getting those wipes. I got a mixed assortment of things and deliveries sometimes took months. It was hit and miss at the stores that after Senior hour, there was nothing left in toilet paper. I now have an a supply of toilet paper, a thermometer that I have batteries for though its in Celsius, paper towels, wipes (but use paper towels soaked in soapy water) and have to get supplies ahead of time. There are still limits and shortages and its now Aug. A local market at Mobil gas station has the essentials.

Harriet Harrison’s backyard after Isaias.

But now a hurricane like storm (59 mph winds) comes through and in 2 hours knocks out power to thousands in my area. I have electricity and did not lose my Fios (many lost Optimum) and my mother was also okay. The power is out for many for days now and people are still complaining. I have seen utility trucks parked in mass at a local school and by hotel that is closest to me. There are a lot of trees and branches down not just during the storm but after. People who have well water say they have no water cause it needs electricity and then if they have water it is cold. Most need refrigeration and electricity for cell phones, internet and air conditioning.

Did these people ever lose power before? Are people getting ready for these things as Hurricanes do occur more frequently along with power outages. I live in an apartment and without air-conditioning it is very hot inside my unit. I do not have cross ventilation. I have had power outages but they were in my building and then when the whole East coast went out.

I have candles and batteries for flash lights. I have had my water turned off a lot by my building and I always fill up containers for water to flush my toilet and for drinking water. There are solar battery chargers for phones and we did have sun after the storm. If I had a house, I would look for alternatives for loss of power and/or go to a hotel.

Not sure people are thinking things through. We did have plenty of time to prepare with lots of warnings. Not sure why well water users do not have a storage tank for just these occasions and non-perishable foods incase the electricity goes out. Some of this was also for pandemic. I had food for an illness that does not need refrigeration. There are even milk choices now in non-refrigerated choices, lots of bottle water now.

Using solar might be the right way to go. My mother’s neighborhood has lots of solar roofs now. Why is my area so slow on this? It is time to get ready for the unexpected. People expecting flooding should get those big plastic bags for cars and clothing and even furniture. Might be time to invest in those tiger dams that one can store flat but fill up with a hose. Batteries, flashlights, water storage (one can fill your own containers) and foods that do not need refrigeration might be smart. I might get a battery charger that is for cellular but will have to stick out window in morning. I get lots of morning sun but it goes over my building after 12 noon.

Unfortunately, we are also in a pandemic but even our library that finally opened put out charging tables outside. I know a lot of people have generators but got to use gasoline and it really pollutes. I would get one of those smaller wind mills if I had a backyard that could be set up for these kinds of times.

Were you ready or just lucky? What would you do different?

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