Sunday October 20, 1991 our family came home from church and turned on the TV to listen to a favorite musical program only to be greeted by a horrible sight. It was the Oakland Hills firestorm in progress. The fire eventually killed 25 and destroyed 3,354 homes and 437 apartments and caused 1.5 billion dollars in damage. Thankfully, the firestorm last night in San Bruno, CA was contained before that degree of destruction could take place.
The community around Boulder, CO has been evacuated again as the winds have changed and are endangering homes once more. As in the San Bruno fire we are talking about a suburban area, not home hidden in the hills.
The Oakland Hills fire was stared by a spark in dry grass. The San Bruno by a gas pipeline explosion. Either of those scenarios is possible in all neighborhoods. There are 2 million miles, yes miles, of gas pipelines in the United States. Only seven percent of those are inspected each year. The pipes which exploded last night were 60 years old. What do you know about the pipes under your neighborhood? The neighborhood which was destroyed was not 60 years old but was built over existing pipelines which supplied neighborhoods a distance away which were built 60 years ago.
Please learn from the fires we are experiencing this week. Prepare now!
With this in mind our tips numbers 10-12 are:
#10 Inventory your Family room/living room. This room is probably where the most expensive equipment is located in your home. Take plenty of pictures, front, back, serial numbers, etc. for all of your equipment. Again, be sure to open all cupboards and drawers. If you have a DVD collection take close up pictures so the name of all the movies can be seen. Do the same with your CD and book collections.
#11 Inventory your bedrooms. Are you seeing a pattern here? When inventorying the bedroom be sure to take a shot of all your jewelry so each items can be clearly seen.
#12 Inventory Office and formal dining room.
We are not done with our inventory but we are done for this weekend. An inventory is essential when making an insurance claim. You will only get 40-50% of the value of any item you claim because the insurance company “charges” you for depreciation. If you forget items and want to claim them later you are out of luck. Please take time to make an inventory. If you have heirloom items or jewelry that has been appraised take a picture of the appraisal just in case your original is destroyed.
Doctor Prepper called and asked me to appear on his show tonight to discuss preparing for a fire. I know it is too short a notice for you to listen live but please listen to the download later tonight. Next Tuesday on READY OR NOT we will be discussing important documents so please join me at 6:00pm Pacific time.
For more specifics about each tip please visit the former posts.
#1: Find an out of area contact.
#2: Gather maps. Get several different colors of highlighters and mark at least three different routes out of the city and ending at the home of your out of area contact.
#3: Collect all your flashlights. Check to make sure they are all working properly. Make note of any batteries you need to purchase.
#4 Post important phone numbers and your own address by each phone.
#5 Place a pair of good shoes under each bed where they can be reached in the middle of the night.
#6 Place a glow stick next to each bed.
# 7: Listen to READY OR NOT. If you can’t listen tonight the show will be available for download at the same link as the live show. Hope to hear from you tonight!
# 8: Stash some cash, about $100.00, for each adult kit.
# 9 Inventory your kitchen, everything.
To Listen to READY OR NOT visit:
Back tomorrow with numbers 10- through 12!
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Back issues: Totally Ready Newsletters July 2009- June 2010
Let’s Play…a look at things to do during a power outage to keep sane.
Food Safety…keeping foods safe during a power outage.
Frozen Food During a Power Outage, when to save and when to throw away.
Dutch Oven Cooking…How to Control the Temperature
Haybox Cooking…one more way to cook when the grid goes down.
Recipes: This month all the recipes are from 1850. They are fun and easy to make and perfect during power emergencies, after all our great grandparents didn’t have electricity!